Category Archives: Third Level

OneNote Class Notebook Creator

OneNoteMalcolm Wilson, ICT Curriculum Development Officer in the Curriculum Support team of the Service and School Improvement division of Falkirk Council Education Services has been providing support to staff in several high schools in Falkirk on the use of OneNote Class Notebook Creator.

What is OneNote?

The ordinary OneNote is a free tool available to anyone. OneNote Online a free tool either for use online or as an app on a mobile device or via a web browser on a desktop PC or mobile device. It is akin to a ring-binder online – it can have multiple sections (like with colour dividers) each with multiple pages​. It can be used for a whole variety of purposes from pupil topic research tool to a learning journal shared by pupil with teacher. Microsoft OneNote is part of Microsoft Office 2013​ and is also part of the suite of tools available free to all users via Glow in Office 365. OneNote online is available via Glow and works with mobile devices​. For more information about how to go about using OneNote click here.

What is OneNote Class Notebook Creator and how is it different?

OneNote Class Notebook Creator is available to schools signed up to Office 365 for Education – which schools in Scotland get through Glow. OneNote Class Notebook Creator gives the facility for a single notebook to have different sections, each with unique access rights. So on setting one up in a class space within Office 365 (a Glow site) it automatically has a section which is open to the teacher to add content, and where the pupils can all see this content (but not change it or add to it). Another section gives all pupils a space to collaborate – they have access set up automatically to let them share and edit content with all others in that class. And the final section is for individual pupils to each have their own pages where only that pupil and their teacher can see the content – ideal for tasks competed by a pupil to be seen by the teacher and where the teacher can add comments to support the pupil, and where that is not seen by others in the class.

For more information about setting up and using OneNote Class Notebook Creator go to the following:

https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/fa/ICTFalkirkPrimaries/onenote-to-rule-them-all/ – the section at the top deals with OneNote itself, while the section at the foot of the page deals with the OneNote Class notebook Creator.

 

Engaging with Learning Activities using QR codes & mobile devices

Malcolm Wilson, ICT Curriculum Development Officer within the Curriculum Support team of Service and School Improvement, Falkirk Council Education Services, presented a professional development session to teachers from several educational establishments on engaging with learning using QR codes and mobile devices. This session was supported by Yvonne Manning, Principal Librarian, Service and School Improvement Team of Falkirk Council Education Service, and colleagues within the Learning Resource Service of Falkirk Council Education Services.

Participants first took part in a pre-created activity trail to interact with Falkirk Council Education Services Learning Resource Service based in Camelon Education Centre​. This involved participants making use of their own mobile device to scan the QR codes which were located within various parts of the building, each of which revealed a task to complete, and then provided a clue to find the next QR code and associated task.

This particular activity trail had been created using the QR Code Treasure Hunt Creator from Classtools.net​ http://www.classtools.net/QR/index.php​ – which provides a step-by-step guide for use by educators creating their own learning trail for their own pupils.

The session demonstrated that QR codes used with mobile devices can be used across the curriculum and for all stages, and provide a quick way to present information or tasks in a form which engages learners in their learning. Examples were described including using QR codes for Class trails​, linking to audio feedback​, pupil videos talking about their artwork​ or practical work, teachers adding links to support resources on labels stuck on pupil work.

The session provided advice about what to consider when making use of mobile devices in an educational context (taking into account the AUP which can be found here https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/fa/mobiledevices/documents/ and availability of wireless and mobile devices).

Rather than simply linking to information the features of the mobile device can also be harnessed when linking from a QR code. An example of how this was used in an outdoor learning context was shared, and a description of this can be found here:​https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/fa/CurriculumSupport/2014/05/12/taking-ict-outdoors-with-mobile-devices/

The session provided guidance on a range of free QR Code ​Creators which are available​. Some provide different options (such as www.unitaglive.com/qrcode), some provide tracking and automatic shortlinks (e.g. http://goo.gl/), some provide step by step guide to creating different types of link (to text message, URL, text-only, etc)​.

For more about how they can be used, how to create QR codes and more click on the following link: 

https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/fa/ICTFalkirkPrimaries/2012/03/13/qr-codes-what-are-they-and-how-can-they-be-used-in-and-out-of-the-classroom/

Falkirk Staff Online Spaces for Sharing Resources and Collaboration

Malcolm Wilson, ICT Curriculum Development Officer within the Curriculum Support team of Service and School Improvement, Falkirk Council Education Services, has been supporting many central staff and staff within educational establishments across Falkirk Council to set up shared online spaces for making available resources to colleagues working in Falkirk Council, and to provide them with tools to collaborate.

These online spaces provide a means to share resources within the education community of all Falkirk Council establishments and can be accessed from here: http://tinyurl.com/pvmjx92

Each site provides at least one document store, and in many cases multiple document stores for making accessible resources in different formats, as well as picture galleries for sharing examples of practice, a discussion area for asking questions or sharing ideas, a news area for updates, and a weblinks area for quick access to related material elsewhere online.

Some of these sites are for sharing centrally sourced resources, some are for providing the means for staff in establishments to share with others, some provide a means to share with specific colleagues in different establishments, some provide structured professional development combining reading material, presentations and video, space for reflective comments with colleagues undertaking the same professional development and making use of video-conferencing spaces, and some provide a common space for clusters of schools to plan together and to pool resources for activities across multiple establishments.

These shared online spaces include Active Learning, Active Literacy, Art Teachers Network Falkirk, Bilingual and Traveller Pupil Support Service, Denny Cluster (including for Mathematics and for Outdoor Learning Network), Education Communications, Education Matters, Employee Review and Development, Curriculum for Excellence Experiences and Outcomes Expanded for all curricular areas and for all levels, Falkirk Confucius Classroom Hub, Falkirk Headteachers, Good Practice Network, Graeme Cluster Good Practice Network (including cluster transition event planning), ICT in Learning and Teaching, Instrumental Music Service for Falkirk Council, Interdisciplinary Learning in Falkirk Council, Numeracy and Mathematics, Physical Education, Primary Language Learning 1+2 Resource Bank, Specific Learning Differences, Storyline, Teaching for Deep Learning, and the To Lead or Not to Lead programme, amongst other online spaces specifically for staff working in Falkirk Council.

Staff within Falkirk Council Education Services can access the above spaces by clicking on this link.

Subject Development Groups

Gillian Campbell (Curriculum Support Officer for Secondary) has been working, since taking up post in September, on the creation of ‘Subject Development Groups’ (SDGs) for Falkirk schools. At present we now have 25 groups representing the subject areas which our secondary schools present to SQA for new National Qualifications.

Each secondary school can appoint a subject specialist to join this group and the majority of the 25 SDGs have represenatation from each of the schools.

In their most recent meetings these groups have created action plans detailing the development work they feel is needed for the coming year in their specific subject area. Individuals and groups have opted to take on pieces of development work which will then be shared across the authority.

In additon to planning upcoming developments these groups discuss their experiences in implementating the NQs and as a platform for quality assurance of materials and for completing authority level moderation. In a time of massive curricular change in Scotland there has been recognition of the importance of secondary teachers working across schools to share workload and these groups are an excellent example of such collaboration.

For more information on SDGs and their work email: gillian.campbell@falkirk.gov.uk

Commonwealth in rhyme – creating and editing audio recordings to share online

Malcolm Wilson, ICT Curriculum Development Officer in the Curriculum Support team of Service and School Improvement, Falkirk Council Education Services, supported pupils from the Grangemouth High School cluster to create and edit audio recordings which they shared online as part of a national Digital Commonwealth project. Creating, editing and using an online tool to share recordings provided one set of skills learned across a series of themes in this project.

Working with Dugald MacGilp (of Young Reporters for the Environment, part of the Keep Scotland Beautiful Charity) and Steve Duffy of Grangemouth High School the pupils were set the task of creating an audio recording of a piece of writing in rhyme which represented a Commonwealth country of their choice. Some groups of pupils chose to find a representative poem from a Commonwealth country of their choice, while some did some research about their chosen Commonwealth country and their Commonwealth athletes (in the lead up to the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow) before creating a piece of writing, poem or rap.

Click here for Jamaica Rap which one group of pupils pupils created, edited in Audacity (including adding backing sounds) and uploaded to AudioBoo, free online podcasting host.

Click here for Swaziland Rap which another group of pupils created, edited in Audacity (including adding backing sounds) and uploaded to AudioBoo.

Audacity is free downloadable software which works like a word-processor except it is used to edit  audio recordings. With a simple click on a record button in the screen, and with a connected headset/microphone a redording can quickly be made of any audio. Once recorded there are simple cut/copy and paste icons just as in a word-processor to remove unwanted noise or move elements and reuse in a different sequence. It can also be used to have multiple tracks so that once the spoken word (for example) is recorded you can play it back and also record a new track at the same time (such as to add a beat sound). Once you are finished editing the audio you can go to File – export – and save as an mp3 file which is then ready to be shared with others for playing back. Click here for more information about where to download the Audacity software and how to use it.

AudioBoo is one of a number of free online tools which can be used to either upload previously recorded mp3 files or to record straight from microphone. The resulting AudioBoo recording can then be shared with others and played straight from the page where it is stored.

Spelling Bee

Yvonne Manning , Principal Librarian, Service and School Improvement Team of Falkirk Council Education Service attended Larbert High School’s first Spelling Bee. It was an excellent event with pupils from S2 who overcame their nerves to stand on the stage in front of their peers and pupils from Kinnaird PS and Stenhousemuir PS to show their excellence in spelling. Award winning author Nicola Morgan, Larbert High School’s Patron of Reading, was there and her main message to us was that reading  for enjoyment helps the brain to perform better! Nicola also presented  prizes to the pupils.

The Thinking Reader – Active Literacy

Sharon Wallace, Curriculum Support Officer, School and Service Improvement team led a CPD session on The Thinking Reader approach to active reading. 54 colleagues attended the session.

Kristina McGinley, Hallglen PS, Aimee Roan, Carron Primary School, Anita Cowan, St. Mary’s RCPS and Alison Marshall, Drumbowie PS all shared good practice in this area. Kristina had observed Sharon teaching using this approach, whilst the other three ladies had attended the course in November. All four teachers explained how using this approach to reading had led to noticeable increased attainment in reading skills.

Colleagues then participated in a Thinking Reader lesson before considering how they could use it in their own establishments. They all engaged in professional dialogue considering how this approach could be used to develop the six reading comprehension skills across a range of texts from a range of genres.

Schools Library Service also contributed to the session by providing a wide range of resources which support this reading approach.

All resources produced so far for the Thinking Reader can be found on the Active Literacy Resource section on GLOW.

RED Book Award

 

Yvonne Manning , Principal Librarian, Service and School Improvement Team of Falkirk Council Education Service led the 8th RED Book Award ceremony on the 29th January  2014 in the Falkirk Town Hall.

 The shortlist this year was Mortal Chaos by Matt Dickinson, Torn by David Massey, Mister Creecher by Chris Priestley and Slated by Teri Terry.

This year there was an international dimension to the Book Award with young people from Nairobi (International School of Kenya and Mathare North Library) shadowing the award. It was very successful and they have renamed their book group The RED Book Club!

250 pupils from  the secondary schools in Falkirk Council participated in the Book Award reading, enjoying and debating the shortlisted books. Along with the Kenyan young people, they voted in December for their favourite book and planned a creative interpretation of one of the books to be performed at the award ceremony.

The Award ceremony had a wonderful atmosphere thanks to the energy and enthusiasm of the young people. The performances showcased the creativity and  confidence of the young people. We particularly enjoyed the performances from Nairobi sent to us electronically. At the ceremony the radio broadcast team from St Mungo’s High School recorded interviews, pupil journalists from Graeme and Larbert High Schools wrote a news report which will appear in The Falkirk Council News, a film team from Braes High School filmed the event and a pupil from Falkirk High School, interested in photography, shadowed the council photographer.

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Feedback from the some of the authors:

“Thank you so much for everything this week. I had the best time at the RED book awards. I think having the colour red as part of things added such a fun element to the day. I really enjoyed myself, and was amazed at how good the presentations by the schools were. ” Teri Terry

“Could I just say a big thank you, on behalf of David and myself, for the hospitality shown to us during our time in Falkirk. We enjoyed our visit to Scotland so much and are looking forward to returning when we have more time. Some of our favourite moments were seeing the children act out parts of the shortlisted books – especially Torn of course!” David Massey

And the winner of RED 8 is Slated by Teri Terry