Tag Archives: ict

#BettChat archive 8th January 2013

(All these tweets took place between 4pm and 5pm on Tuesday 8 January 2013)

Bett‏  @Bett_show

Welcome to #BettChat! Today’s topic: What do think has been the biggest game-changer for learning tech since #Bett_Show started in 1985?

eSchools‏  @eschoolsuk

@Bett_show #BettChat pupil’s ability to have the world at their fingertips?

Promethean Planet‏  @planet_tweets

Um… we say: The biggest game changer in education since ’85 has been INTERACTIVE WHITEBOARDS!! Agree/Disagree? #Bettchat #learningmatters

Future Learning‏  @_futurelearning

Is vertical teaching a viable option?: http://goo.gl/IORyg http://goo.gl/OUPEo #education #bettchat

Animate It!‏  @AnimateEducate

The size and portability of tech is a major change – as is the amount of storage. I have more in my new phone than in my 1st PC! #BettChat

Joe Makepeace‏  @ischoolaudit

#BettChat One of the biggest change since 1985 has to be access to information from both the teachers and the pupils perspective.

Joe Makepeace  ‏@SmartAuditLtd

#BettChat One of the biggest change since 1985 has to be access to information from both the teachers and the pupils perspective.

Adrienne Phillips‏  @Planet_Editor

MT @planet_tweets: Um… we say: The biggest game changer in ed since ’85 has been IWBs! Agree/Disagree #Bettchat #learningmatters AGREE!!

edubiscuit‏  @edubiscuit

#Bettchat @Bett_show #BETT2013 I’d have to say Internet radio would be near the top

Access Area Ltd‏  @Accessarea

@planet_tweets We certainly supply lots of them and they are a fantastic resource for teachers/pupils. Have they changed the game? #BettChat

Promethean‏  @PrometheanUSA

AGREE!! MT @planet_tweets: Um… we say: The biggest game changer in ed since ’85 has been IWBs! Agree/Disagree #Bettchat #learningmatters

Joe Makepeace  ‏@ischoolaudit

Does anyone have a show guide from ’85? What interactive social media forum was available at the time – guessing it was the Pub #BettChat

Joe Makepeace‏  @SmartAuditLtd

Does anyone have a show guide from ’85? What interactive social media forum was available at the time – guessing it was the Pub #BettChat

Russell Prue‏  @russellprue

Just to remind everyone that #BETTChat is well-underway today and some good topics up already join the crowd and use the tag!

Joe Makepeace‏  @ischoolaudit

@edubiscuit I am intrigued as to your reasons for Internet Radio being near the top. #BettChat

Joe Makepeace‏  @SmartAuditLtd

@edubiscuit I am intrigued as to your reasons for Internet Radio being near the top. #BettChat

Promethean Planet  ‏@planet_tweets

@Accessarea Definitely. We love that IWBs can be used to get kids out of seats, at the board, physically interacting in the lesson #BETTChat

joeharrod‏  @joeharrod

Biggest game changer in #education since ’85? The World Wide Web! After that – why it’s interactive whiteboards of course! #Bettchat

eSchools‏  @eschoolsuk

#bettchat has learning tech progressed faster in the last 3 years than the previous 25 years? #tablets #android #iphone #learningmatters

joeharrod‏  @joeharrod

Biggest game changer in #education since ’85? The World Wide Web! And interactive whiteboards of course! #Bettchat #learningmatters

Promethean Planet‏  @planet_tweets

#BETTchat Video! The NEXT biggest thing in Education >> instant feedback. Check this out: http://bit.ly/TINq5W #edchat #learningmatters

Joe Makepeace‏  @ischoolaudit

#BettChat It would appear that #IWB‘s are well in front so far….

Access Area Ltd‏  @Accessarea

@planet_tweets Does every classroom now have access to #IWB‘s or is it still a work in progress? #BettChat

Andy Knill‏  @aknill

#BettChat mobile technology and its versatility

Andy Knill‏  @aknill

#BettChat the access to the Internet and global exchange of ideas and information

attro  ‏@attro_UK

We would agree that IWB’s have been the biggest changer since 1985. Tablets to the next one? #bettchat

Andy Knill‏  @aknill

#BettChat ICT tech has become a tool we can all access

Claire Ashton‏  @ClaireAshton

#BETTChat, has anyone mentioned actual access to technology? In 1985, one suite of BBCs in my sec school now technology is ubiquitous

Promethean Planet‏  @planet_tweets

@Accessarea depends on market but we know they are a game changer for teachers. Thanks for supplying 🙂 #IWB #Bettchat #learningmatters

Andy Knill‏  @aknill

#BettChat IWBs have made a big difference ( #promethean #activadvocates role)

David Kempster‏  @KempsterD

@aknill: #BettChat IWBs have made a big difference ( #promethean #activadvocates role)” Have they? When used well but most aren’t.

IrritableTech  ‏@IrritableTech

#BETTChat What do think has been the biggest game-changer for learning tech since #Bett-Show started in 1985? Affordability. Sorry I’m late!

David Kempster‏  @KempsterD

#BettChat I think that IWBs have led to more didactic teaching over the past few years. The BBC Master was a big game changer 4 me.

Bett‏  @Bett_show

Thanks everyone for some great contributions to #BettChat! Remember to let us know your suggestions for next week’s topic


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Time for schools to re-boot technology use in the classroom

Justin Sycamore, managing director at Vocab Express, provides some food for thought for teachers drafting their ICT wish lists.

There is no question about it, education technology whether hardware like digital tablets, or software like educational games, can greatly improve students’ learning. However, a recent study carried out by the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts claims expensive digital technology for schools often sits unused in classroom cupboards.

In the last three years, researchers estimated that schools in England alone spent more than £1.4bn on technology, a staggering amount considering tight school budgets, but it is not being used to its full potential. It was reported that the main reason for this, was teachers’ and learners’ lack of understanding in using these costly digital kits.

In an interview with the BBC, Dominic Savage of the British Educational Suppliers Association (BESA) welcomed the report commenting: “Schools should only invest in technology when they understand what they want to do with it and what it will achieve.”

Here at Vocab Express we support this opinion and believe it is incredibly important for education suppliers to provide resources which are user friendly, support the educator, can be easily updated and strengthen and accelerate learning. There is a rich range of resources available but schools need to be careful not to put excitement at innovation ahead of what actually helps students learn. To all teachers reading this blog and attending the Bett show in January, our advice would be to carefully consider what products will best suit both you and your students. It may be easy to compile an extensive list of flash techy gadgets, but are they straightforward to use? Will you need training to use them? Do they effectively support the work you undertake in lessons? Could they become obsolete in a couple of years? Do they need to be used in conjunction with other products? Is there a more effective alternative?

Suppliers at Bett will be happy to answer any questions and for visitors to trial their products. To find out more information on the show please take a look at the Bett 2013 website where you can find out more about each exhibitor before hand with their exhibitor profiles http://www.bettshow.com/

We would love to hear your thoughts on the use of digital technology in schools!

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#BettChat archive 4th December 2012

(All these tweets took place between 4pm and 5pm on Tuesday 4th December 2012)

Bett‏  @Bett_show

Welcome to today’s #BettChat. Who wants to start us off by discussing the ICT topics/issues for academies & free schools?

Smoothwall‏  @Smoothwall

Raising The Participation Age – more pressure on academies to offer a good post 16 educational experience. http://bit.ly/GPYA4P #Bettchat

Bett‏  @Bett_show

Is anyone exhibiting at #Bett_Show providing resources/systems to support academies? #BettChat

Daydream Education‏  @DaydreamEdu

@Bett_show #bettchat are free schools still to be run as a charitable status? Plenty of cost issues there!

Smoothwall‏  @Smoothwall

@Bett_show @Smoothwall is exhibiting at #Bett_Show and we provide web filtering and web security solutions for academies. #BettChat

Bett‏  @Bett_show

What do you think will be the topic on everyone’s lips at #Bett_Show? #BettChat

Lara UniServity‏  @LaraUniServity

@bett_show We’ve created an online learning consultancy deal for academies wanting to review use/development of their VLE #BettChat

Serco E & L‏  @Serco_Education

#ProgressoMIS supports academies and free schools to use their data more effectively and efficiently #BettChat

Lara UniServity‏  @LaraUniServity

Enabling networking & collaboration to prevent schools from becoming isolated and to share best practice is important #BettChat

Firefly Solutions‏  @fireflyteam

@Bett_show Lots of the schools we work with want to talk about iPads and mobile learning #BettChat

semantise‏  @Semantise

@LaraUniServity has a good point. Non-Academy / Academy schools will get left as LA support is withdrawn due to cost cutting, #BettChat

Animate It!‏  @AnimateEducate

We think everyone is going to be talking about budgets this year. How to get the best value with limited ££ #BettChat

Capita SIMS‏  @CapitaSIMS

Are there any Tweeters from actual Free Schools or Academies that can contribute to this? #BETTChat

Frog‏  @frogtrade

Visit stand D100 at the @Bett_show to have a play with the new technology developed by @frogtrade http://wp.me/p1HkQJ-fh #BettChat

Animate It!‏  @AnimateEducate

Also lots of schools looking for Apps for the mobile devices they have/are about to buy, and the impact they can have on learners #BettChat

XMA ‏  @XMAITSolutions

XMA will be at Bett with a “Do More, With Less” theme, showing how institutions can provide better education with less resources #bettchat

Daniel Cresswell‏  @EdCityDan

Visit the @EducationCity stand D300 at the @Bett_show to see the great developments that we have made  #BettChat

XMA ‏@XMAITSolutions

Check out http://www.xma4education.co.uk/bett for more information on topical seminars that will be held throughout Bett in Gallery Room 18 #bettchat

Smoothwall‏  @Smoothwall

Protecting students from inappropriate sites or online bullying and having a suitable e-safety policy. http://bit.ly/VhOoml #Bettchat

School Website  ‏@SchoolWebsite

The arrival of amazing new consumer technologies doesn’t dilute what is already a great education system unless people let it #BettChat

Lara UniServity‏  @LaraUniServity

@capitasims Tend to find few school staff are able to spare the time at this stage of the day (especially this time in the term) #BettChat

Lara UniServity‏  @LaraUniServity

@animateeducate Yes, this will affect all schools, especially those that lose out as funding formulas around FSM & SEN change #BettChat

XMA   ‏@XMAITSolutions

You can also check out XMA’s exhibitor zone here http://bit.ly/Xmxidb for more information about who were are and what we’re about #bettchat

Lara UniServity‏  @LaraUniServity

@Semantise Perhaps this is a positive if tech can enable schools to create new networks through interest rather than locality? #BettChat

Capita SIMS‏  @CapitaSIMS

Capita SIMS is used by almost 30 Free Schools. If you’re a Free School, find out more at BETT stand B250 #BETTChat

Bett  ‏@Bett_show

A big thank you to everyone who took the time to join us for #BettChat tonight. Have a lovely evening!

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It’s time to get connected through the ICT Mark Network

Dave Smith, ICT Adviser for Havering School Improvement Services reflects on the launch of the ICT Mark Network.

Networking is the new CPD, sharing ideas for free and inspiring others need not cost.  The ICT Mark Network is a great new initiative from Naace and the organisers of Bett that provides financial and other support to help you to set-up a group of your own.

On Thursday 18th October 2012 I attended one of the ICT Mark Network launch events in London. With the participation of schools, local authorities and ICT Mark assessors, the event had a real buzz about it as Jan Webb of Naace and Joe Willcox of Bett Show organisers i2i Events Group explained the benefits of how to get started.

The ICT Mark Network provides a way for ICT Mark accredited schools to work with those aspiring to become ICT Mark accredited to share best practice in ICT. Additionally, the Network acts as a way to get more schools involved in the Self-Review Framework, applying for the ICT Mark and attending the Bett Show.

In austere times there are not many initiatives providing schools with start-up funds to help set-up a CPD network. The ICT Mark Network even has the benefit of a dedicated Network Co-ordinator to support you in getting started.

It really is simple…

1. Sign-up as an ICT Mark Champion

2. Plan a launch event in your school

3. Invite local schools to your event – a list of schools will be provided, as well as support telephoning schools and providing promotional materials

4. You can even get financial support for your event to help cover refreshments!

5. Sign-up your Group Members

6. Encourage continued networking and learning – with some great ideas for this provided by the ICT Mark Network Co-ordinator

7. Plan a group trip to Bett – again there is funding to help!

This was one of the best events I had attended in ages.  The attendees discussed ways in which they could share best practice – sharing specialisms, such as the use of tablet devices, learning platforms, open-source tools etc. There was excitement around the sharing of ideas across a wider geographical area, helping to plug the gaps in local authorities where there is no-longer organised school improvement services to host networks.

Joe went on to explain how there is going to be a dedicated area at Bett 2013 for ICT Mark Network members to share ideas and help signpost the exciting seminars and other free CPD events to further enhance whole-school improvement through ICT.

These groups will provide an important focal point for the sharing of ideas and the encouragement of schools to become ICT Mark accredited. Currently there are around 1200 schools with the ICT Mark. The ICT Mark Network can only help to ensure that more schools are accredited. For me that is a positive thing, as this can only serve to have a positive impact on pupil outcomes.

So there it is then. Now is the time to sign-up to the ICT Mark Network. Learn from everyone, share ideas and even receive support to get started. It truly is a great initiative.

For more details contact: natalie.keller@ictmarknetwork.co.uk

Dave Smith is ICT Adviser for Havering School Improvement Services. You can find him on Twitter @davesmithict and @haveringict, or via email dsmith1.311@lgflmail.org.

 Visit the ICT in Havering Blog www.haveringict.edublogs.org

The next ICT Mark Network events are taking place in November:

Telford Venue: Southall School, Rowan Avenue, Dawley, Telford TF4 3PX

Tel: 01952387600

Date: Thursday 1st November 2012

Time: 4.00 – 5.15pm

Cost: FREE

Refreshments included


Shropshire Venue: Woodfield Infant School, Woodfield Road, Copthorne, Shrewsbury, SY3 8LU

Tel: 01743 343812

Date: Thursday 15th November 2012

Times: 4.00 – 5.15pm

Cost: FREE

Refreshments included

Up to three delegates are invited per school. For more information or to book a place, contact Richard Smith, by emailing richard@amazingict.co.uk, or calling 07527 464322.


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How IT can switch children on to mathematics

Peter Ransom, President Designate of The Mathematical Association, explores how IT can be used to engage children in mathematics.

More and more teachers are moving away from the idea that mathematics should be taught in short topics in isolation from other subjects. There is a wealth of historical events, technological breakthroughs and subjects that can be linked to mathematics and increasingly IT is a tool to support this cross-curricular approach.

During my 30 years’ teaching experience, I have learnt of new ways to make mathematics more accessible to pupils. Of course there are some students who love mathematics regardless of the lesson format but it is equally important to engage students who have previously had no interest in the subject. A cross-curricular approach that draws on a diversity of subjects and topics is effective in emphasising to a class how mathematics is relevant in daily life and the number of useful applications.

With an increased focus on the STEM initiative, I think it is vital for mathematics teachers to highlight how it links to science, technology and engineering.

One lesson plan that worked well in my GCSE mathematics classes was a presentation on the calculations that were applied by Isambard Kingdom Brunel when designing and constructing the Clifton Suspension Bridge. I showed my pupils copies of his calculations book which included Pythagoras’ theorem examples, simultaneous equations used to calculate distances and even examples of corrections Brunel had made. They found it interesting to see how the GCSE mathematics they were learning had been applied by Brunel hundreds of years earlier.

Brunel’s bridge designs provide perfect material for pupils to exercise a bit of mental geometry. I have found that students have responded well to lessons that enable them to apply mathematics in a practical way, whether it is creating something or using software applications to come up with solutions. Rather than get my classes to inspect a static picture of the Clifton Suspension Bridge, I decided to make it more practical by asking the pupils to investigate the shape of the curve caused by a suspended chain on the bridge. Using a one metre chain and a framework which can be made by cutting a panel out of a cereal box, I would get my GCSE students to suspend the chain from the framework and measure the horizontal and vertical distances from a certain point. The pupils would then input the data into a spreadsheet on TI-inspire CX, which is a hand-held device and software system. From the data, the students were able to use the device to work out the quadratic equation of best fit using either a graph or statistics page. This exercise helps develop students’ measuring, algebraic and IT skills. One of the key advantages of using a hand-held device and software like this is that it provides simultaneous, dynamically linked representations of graphs, equations, data and verbal explanations, meaning that a change in one representation is immediately reflected in the others. This application can really help enhance students’ relational understanding of mathematics in a way that is not possible with a traditional pen and paper approach.

Young people have an increasingly advanced aptitude to using technological applications and harnessing their IT skills in a relevant way can open the door to a much deeper understanding of some tricky mathematical concepts.

Technological devices, software and resources are not there to remove the function of teaching but can act as a supporting tool to enhance lesson plans and pupil engagement in ways that were perhaps not possible a few decades ago.

Peter Ransom works as an education consultant and part-time lecturer at Bath Spa University and is the President Designate of The Mathematical Association. He has 30 years of teaching experience and will be speaking on cross-curricular mathematics at the MA annual conference in April 2013.

For information on CPD events, visit www.m-a.org.uk/

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