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SAM Club ~ Gravesend, London (Science & More, in a café!)

| June 17, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

SAM June 2014

SAM-2014-02Lovely, to travel up to London, and do an evening session, in a tea room ~ No. 84 Tea Room and Eatery, 84 Parrock Road, Gravesend.

The SAM Club ~ “Science and More!” ~ has been set up “to bring inspirational speakers from the world of science, technology and the arts” to deliver talks to pupils from local schools. Anyone from School Year 6 and older is welcome. Children and parents are invited come to SAM Club events and to have the opportunity to meet, in an informal setting, interesting and enthusiastic people who have a passion for their subject. Continue Reading

The Creative Commons Search Tool

| June 17, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

CC SearchA great place to start seeking Creative Commons content is The Creative Commons Search Tool. Search across multiple sites, to find images, video and music that can be used without asking for permission in advance.

Just2Easy programming

| June 16, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

J2codeJ2code Homepage is the latest tool from Just2Easy. It is completely FREE for all UK schools, offering links to share work. There are three “engines” to use: JIT turtle, logo and a visual block editor, giving children progression, differentiation and a variety of interesting challenges.

If you want to save to Just2Easy‘s e-portfolio system, this is how they make their money. Otherwise, J2code is utterly free to use.

Just2easy photoJ2code meets all of the coding elements of the Computing Programmes of Study for KS1 and KS2, in the 2014 Curriculum. Enjoyable and effective.

rocket copyA great bonus feature of J2code: there is no login, or registration, so you can just bookmark the url, and get a class coding in minutes. On your marks. Get set. “-.-. — -.. .. -. –.  ..-. -. !”

“Bringing Magic into the Classroom” ~ TEDxThessaloniki

| June 13, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

Here is a film, of the TEDx Thessaloniki session, we did recently, in Greece. Take a look at the blog post HERE

Tim Rylands, an education explorer and dreamer swept us off our feet by introducing us to the magical potential that interactive applications and games can bring into a classroom.

He talked about how the word teacher is too one-sided and how a teacher must be prepared to learn from the children, not only teach them.

“The element of picking up ideas from all over the world is something that we are blessed to do”, he said while talking about social media as teaching tools.

He focused on the importance of making the classroom a more vibrant place for children, a place that reminds them of the time they spent outside exploring and inventing while being full of energy at the same time.

Applications such as Runkeeper, Google Treks and 360 Cities can help inspire and motivate them and make them as open and hungry for new things as the world they explore.

It is a way to take education to the next level and help broaden the children’s minds.

In the end that’s what it’s all about: to help children embrace the world through their minds and shape it to the better place it should and can be.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience.

Make Beliefs Comix app

| June 13, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

The, by now familiar, comic generator website “Make Beliefs Comix” has produced a free iPad app, which recreates the experience, but in a tablet environment.

Select your characters, their emotions, and speech bubbles, thought balloons, and the settings where your action takes place ~ hey presto! Your tale is on the way to being told.

Comment Snob & other tube cleaners

| June 12, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

Comment snobYouTube is a massive collection of useful films. It is not just a collection of cat videos! However, it is not the films that are the main problem. It is the undesirable comments that cause more difficulties.

ComentSnob is a Firefox add on that cleans up your viewing of YouTube films. It filters out undesirable comments from the Web. We have mentioned other tools such as Quiet Tube, Cleanr, and NicerTube.

Inspiring Leadership Conference 2014, Birmingham

| June 12, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

Inspiring Learning Conference 2014

An honour to contribute a masterclass to The Inspiring Leadership Conference at The ICC, in Birmingham.

Inspiring Leadership ConfThe CfBT Education Trust, the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) and the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL) invited delegates to the first ‘Inspiring Leadership’ Annual Conference, taking place at the International Convention Centre Birmingham. Continue Reading

Readability ~ Chrome Firefox … a possibly brilliant add on

| June 11, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

Readability 2 TReadability add onhe readability extension is a genuinely useful tool ~ take away many of the distractions, and get a readable version of many web pages.

Readability turns (most) websites into a clean view for reading now or later on your computer, smartphone, or tablet.Readability Chrome

From links off the Readability site, you can get “add ons” for Firefox, Chrome, Safari and others. There is also a Readability for Android App, and Readability app for iOS. Not always perfect, but potentially powerful. ~ Another online chart builder

| June 11, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

Livegap 3Livegap 4Thank you to Omar Sedki, for the nudge towards to make simple, but superb, online graphs, with a live preview as you change data.

Create a line chart, bar chart, or radar chart, and then edit it in “real time”.

Tools to Tell a Tale ~ Improving reading & writing through ICT, with Pie Corbett & David Mitchell, Birmingham

| June 10, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

Looking forward to a bit of magic alongside Pie Corbett, & David Mitchell in a special event entitled Tools to Tell a Tale

Talk4WritingVisit the Talk For Writing Tools to Tell a Tale web page HERE for more information

Be part of an evolving story alongside children from around the world, investigating a wondrous collection of digital and analog gems for bringing learning alive.

Baldy-Locks-and-the-3-Hares-300x98Great to get the three bald bloke together again for an exploration of the joy of picking up words, & juggling them

Join us, as we travel across dangerous terrain, through swamp-infested landscapes, and to the top of crumbling towers, all through the power of inventive technologies.

Be a part of a live writing master-class, with children from Skye to Sydney, responding to this creative challenge.

An intriguing, imaginative & exciting experience, for those joining the journey, leaving everyone with copious practical ideas, approaches & technical tools to take back & use in their own teaching, with children of all ages, & abilities.

We will be demonstrating the use of imaginative techniques and inventive tools, whilst interacting with pupils from around the globe as they “set the tale, develop the plot, enhance the drama and inspire the world in just six hours”.

“This one-day workshop will help inject the creativity back into your classroom, mixing digital methods with traditional writing strategies, and will provide you with a host of practical and simple ideas to apply in your KS2 and KS3 literacy lessons. The talented trio have a proven impact on standards, achievement and enjoyment – making this day a must for any English teacher”.

Not a hair in sightDelegates will:

  • discover a vast range of ways to use ICT to enhance literacy
  • explore methods of engaging interest, and developing communication
  • be introduced to the power of blogging
  • experience a Coveritlive collaborative writing session
  • investigate shared writing in conjunction with powerful, accessible, technology
  • be part of creating a story that travels around the world, and is built upon by children across the globe

Tools to Tell a Tale with Pie Corbett, Tim Rylands, Sarah Neild and David Mitchell, Wednesday July 2nd, The Macdonald Burlington Hotel, Birmingham.
More information and booking HERE ~ another picture editor

| June 9, 2014 | Add Your Thoughts 

Thumba is a great online image editor for when you need to change some images on the fly and don’t want to bother with a lot of menus and options.

Adjustments, like brightness, contrast, hue, saturation, gamma, color balance are easy to apply. You can also add tints and filters, convert to greyscale, or multiply the percentage values of an image, to name a few, and effects like blurring, sharpening, distortion, stylization, bring pictures alive at a pace.