Projecting Poetry to Prominence

Words in rhyme are part of literacy around us, whether lyrics of songs, advertising jingles on television or posters, rap or nursery rhymes. And in developing literacy in the curriculum there are opportunities to encourage looking at rhyme.

At different times of the year there are often national or international opportunities to harness the prominence of poetry in its various forms to engage pupils, whether it’s part of national poetry day or month or a local or national festival, or an anniversary celebration of the works of a particular writer in rhyme (such as annual Burns celebrations centred on the life and works of Scotland’s bard Robert Burns).

There is a host of ways of using various free tools to help engage pupils in writing poetry in various forms.

Click here for a variety of ways to use a range of free tools to engage pupils with the poetry of Scotland’s poet Robert Burns - each of the ideas are equally adaptable to be used with poems in other forms and by different writers, poets, rappers or lyricists.

If rap is a style in which some pupils find their outlet for creativity then click here for The Week in Rap which provides examples of how the style of writing can be used to engage in the news of the week while also developing the facility to write in rhyme. Although most of the content is available only by subscription there are free examples which will provide inspiration for pupils to create their own reports in rap.

Getting the chance to hear young people recite poems can often provide the inspiration for others to develop this skill. Click here for the US Poetry Out Loud site to support a poetry recitation competition, with hosts of examples of students reciting poetry of their choice. This site also includes helpful guides and resources to support teachers looking to provide support for pupils in developing recitation skills.

Blabberize provides a free online tool to create an animated image where a pupil can add a mouth which moves at the same time as a recording of the spoken word which the pupil can either record throught eh program itself or upload from a previously made recording. This can be used to bring alive an image of a character or animal from a poem spoekn aloud by a pupil.

Read, Write, Think website has a wide range of activities for supporting literacy, and with many on poetry. Click here for a post about how a variety of these tools can be used during a focus on poetry.

Listen and Write – literacy activities inspired by song – provides a range of free to use online tools which help support a teacher support pupils engage in looking at lyrics of songs. These can be used in different ways, whether looking for the rhymes and how lyrics are put together, to finding ways to inspire pupils to create their own lyrics.

Ode to Poetry – websites to generate student poetry online is a fantastic post by Mrs Smoke which is a collation of a range of online sites which support using poetry in the classroom in many different ways and for different ages and stages of development.

Cybraryman Poetry page is a collection collated in categories by Jerry Blumengarten of tools and resources to support using poetry in the classroom.

Poetry, Poetry, Poetry Symbaloo – is a collection of links, collated by Shannon McClintock Miller, to a variety of online resources to support pupils engaging with poetry, including magnetic words, alliteration creator, rhyme finder, poems in shape forms, acrostic poems and much more.

And if your pupils want to record and share their words in rhyme, online, then click here for free tools to help pupils record, edit and share online their audio recordings.

Live streaming egg hatching from the classroom

Several times requests come in from teachers looking to share live video online of chick eggs hatching in their classroom, so that children can watch whenever they wish the progress of hatching chicks.

This contributes to understanding of life processes as part of the curriculum in science, and health & wellbeing.

Organisations such as Living Eggs can provide the resources to schools. Science Net Links also provide classroom information.

To share the progress outwith the classroom schools can periodically simply take photographs and upload these with short descriptions of oberserved activity to the school website, class blog or via a school, class (or indeed specific project) Twitter account. If the school has a Twitter account they can also periodically share recorded videos by using TwitVid.

Schools looking to broadcast livestream video as it happens can do the following:

Set up a webcam connected to a PC pointed at the chicks (ensuring it is not pointing towards any classroom activity and that no sound will be broadcast). 

Ensure a request has been made in plenty of time to the school’s ICT support engineers to remove the named computer which will be used from any automatic shutdown in the evening (this process is used to help conserve energy) – otherwise the PC will automatically shutdown at a set time every evening.

Ensure you log into the PC with an account which may get access to streaming media  – as a pupil account may not get access to streaming media.

Sign up for an account from a service such as Livestream at – this provides html embed code. Many streaming video services use ads to keep it free for users. The school would need to decide whether the inclusion of ads was acceptable to the school, or opt for a paid-for premium version to avoid the inclusion of advertisements.

The embed code can be added to the school website. Alternatively a simple link to the Livestream can be added to the website. Note that if your school decides to opt for a free live streaming account it would be recommended adding text above or below where the embedded video (or link) appears on the school website advising that there are ads and that the school and local authority can take no responsibility for the content of these advertisements. Click here to see the use of Live video streaming by a primary school for egg hatching.

It may also be helpful to add images and short comments on the school Twitter account to show progress and link to the livestream each time.

Coding in the Curriculum for Creating rather than Consuming

Do you wonder why it’s important to help pupils learn to code?

The products of coding or computer programming are around us every day, whether we see it or not. Daily living in today’s society depends on someone somewhere having created something in which coding or programming has played a part. Many voices have spoken about how the society in which our pupils live requires more people now and in the future to be skilled in programming or coding.

There is a fear expressed that schools which ignore teaching programming or coding are setting up pupils to only be consumers rather than creators of the code-driven products of today and the future.

Many teachers of today, themselves unfamiliar with coding or programming from their own education, may be anxious that they don’t have the skills needed to teach pupils coding or programming.

So this post sets out to collate resources which will support teachers to provide age-appropriate support for their pupils in including coding or programming in the context of different curriculare areas.

Mitch Resnick, one of the main creators of the coding program called Scratch, delivered a TED Talk outlining the benefits of teaching childrens to code, so they can do more than just “read” new technologies — but also create them.

Ginni Skalski has written a blog post of an interveiw with Red Hat product manager Burr Sutter (who works to make developers more successful and productive with open source tools, technologies, and techniques) who talks about why he believes children need to know how to solve technical problems, to know how to fix the tech tools they use every day, and how he balances that with other activities in which children participate.

Watch the short video below to see a few creators of well-known online tools (from Facebook to Dropbox) explain briefly what they first did to get started in coding, and why it’s important we have more people learning to program. This is also described slightly more fully here. Also it is part of The Hour of Code which links to quotes from a far wider range of well known or influential individuals on the importance of teachign coding today.

Charlie Love has written on the Nesta site about why we should be finding ways to incorporate the teaching of coding into the curriculum, and highlights the links to SDcotland’s Curriculum for Excellence.

5 Reasons to Teach Kids to Code is a graphical poster  created by @GrechenNoelle and @jonmattingly and presented by Kodable (a free programming tool and curriculum for the iPad) which sets out in a visually interesting way why it is important schools empower pupils to learn skills of programming.

Dr. Patricia Fioriello sets out in a blog post why we should be Teaching Kids To Code to Prepare Them For The Future. The post lists 6 reasons, and describes them, and ends by advocating including teaching perogramming in the classroom.

In a BBC Technology report “Where is the next generation of coders?” Jane Wakefield reports on the move to encourage young children to learn programming/coding. The gives the background to the need to have programming taught at an early age, and also what kinds of tools are available.

Programming Power: Does Learning to Code Empower Kids? This post by Ben Williamson looks at the idea that young people should learn to code, which has become a global educational aspiration in the last few years. And asks what kinds of questions should digital media and learning researchers ask about these developments? He suggests three approaches: first, to take a historical look at learning to code; second, to consider it in political and economic context; and third, to understand its cultural dimensions.

Why Learning to CodeMakes My Brain Hurt! This post by Mamie Rheingold explains what she believes learners learn when they are programming. 

So what tools and resources are available?

There is a host of tools available which can be used to support teaching pupils coding or programming. Some are downloadable software, some are specific to certian gaming devices or computing environments. Some work on specific mobile devices as apps. And some are online, requiring no downloads.

Chris Betcher describes and illustrates in this video a range of tools suitable for children to learn to code.

Edutopia blogpost about apps for teaching pupils coding provides a list of a few programs or apps which are aimed at use with children. Each is briefly described. 

Code.Org provides a host of resources collated around teaching coding at different stages and ages and for different purposes – but all aimed at encouraging teachers to use coding with pupils. These links include Tutorials for the Classroom: CodeHS (Online curriculum designed specifically for high school classrooms); Codecademy After School (complete online after-school activities for a coding club); Tynker (programming for primary school in a fun way); Bootstrap (high-school algebra and geometry concepts using computer programming); CS Unplugged (Fun classroom exercises to teach computer science principles, with no computers needed).  There are links to various schemes to bring enthusiasts into schools as well as platforms aimed at use with children.


Alice is a  tool to enable creating an animated story, an interactive game, or a video to share online.

Espresso Coding

Espresso Coding is a series of online coding lessons for pupils (free until October 2014). It guides pupils through the elements of learning to code and make their own apps to share with their friends and family. It includes 70+ step-by step lessons and tablet-friendly activities for pupils to create apps, full lesson plans for each activity, a website area where apps can be published and shared, an introduction to coding using elements of JavaScript, and short, helpful video guides.


Kodu is a programming tool to create games on the PC and XBox.


Logo programming language forms the basis for a number of programmable devices, whether on-screen on robots or vehicles used in schools such as Beebot and Roamer. Click here for resources to support the use of Beebot and Roamer devices or their on-screen equivalents.

Raspberry Pi

Zondle Raspberyy Pi Programming Kit is just one of the ways in which Raspberry Pi can be used to help pupils learn programming. Raspberry Pi is a relatively inexpensive palm sized computer which can be used for programming games.


Scratch was previously only available as a downloadable program but is now available as an online version (Scratch 2.0) – this is a programming language that makes it easy to create interactive stories, animations, games, music and art – and share online.

Step 1. To get started straight away with pupils go to and click on the signup button (or sign in if previously signed up).

Step 2. Click on “create” at the top If this does not show the tutorial step-by-step guide to starting a project then click on “Help” and choose step by step intro here: (this also has printable guides and project cards for use with pupils as well as help videos).

Scratch 2.0 Starter Kit - Tools and resources collated by Randy Rodgers to help get teachers get their classes started with Scratch programming.

Click here for resources created by Simon Haughton specifically for use in primary school, including instruction cards for pupils to create various games using Scratch (including Pong, Golf and racing cars).

Click here for a range of resources from Wes Fryer about using Scratch in school with pupils. This includes video introductions and tutorials, printable guides for pupils and lesson plans and evaluation resources.

For those who like to have a paper handheld guide to using Scratch 2.0 (in comic-book style) then there is a book available for purchase reviewed here by Mark Frauenfelder. It’s also available for purchase in digital Kindle format.

Other Tools

Coding in the Classroom: 10 Tools Students Can Use to Design Apps and Video Games lists and describes 10 programs available for learning about programming, wther for PCs or mobile devices or other devices.

Ask A Teacher: 20 Programming Websites for K-8 - provides a list of 20 programming tools for use in schools with pupils. Includes videos, tutorials and links to resources.

Who can help?

On a Mission: How Code Academy is Helping get Programming into the Classroom.  Lee Summers describes here how Codecademy for teachers is an online educational site built specifically for teachers. It offers slides for each lesson, as well as a quiz and practice set where students can test their knowledge.  The site has been set up so that teachers can craft their own materials and then share them with the rest of the community.

To keep up with developments in such a fast-changing envronment there are a number of groups and individuals who share online via Twitter ideas and resources for supporting teachers in enocuraging pupils to learn to code. These include the following:

@CodeClub – for resources to support programming with 9-11 year-olds

@CoderScot - CoderDojo Scotland is part of a global collaboration which provides free coding clubs for young people to learn programming in a fun and sociable environment.

Developing literacy with Facebook-like and Twitter-like tools

Many pupils today are very familiar with social media tools like Facebook and Twitter, whether they themselves use them or from the many references on television, film or media. It teaching literacy today there is an expectation built into curricular guidelines that pupils should have a familiarity with a wide range of genre, whether in printed form, film or digital. And that includes social media. And it’s recognised by many that the tools with which many pupils are familiar could be harnessed to engage them in their learning. However there are concerns from many areas about how to best prepare pupils for the digital age in which they live,  so that pupils are best equipped with the skills so they can stay safe if and when they use social media, while at the same time recognising the legal and societal constraints on schools.  

Facebook and Twitter are currently two tools with which many pupils will already be familiar, whether themselves, or familiy members or through references in television, film and media. And many teachers have recognised the potential for pupil engagement in learning across the curriculum when using tools in the style of Facebook and Twitter, while at the same time in many schools they may be unable to have pupils themselves use these specific tools themselves.      

What Facebook-like or Twitter-like tools are available for schools?   

SMART Notebook Facebook format template                                                                                    

Amber Coggin has produced a SMART Notebook file for use with a SMART Board which is in the form of a Facebook template which can be downloaded and used without an Internet connection. This can be used both to reinforce safety messages about the use of social networking tools, and the SMART Notebook file can be edited so that pupils can create their mock page for a historical character or for a character from a novel study, or for pupils to develop a character they themselves have made up in a piece of their own writing. Click here to access this resources:

Fakebook and Twister from

Alternatively from the iLearn Blog comes the links to use online fake social media pages Fakebook and Twister created by @russeltarr to teach about the use of Facebook and Twitter. Use them by getting the pupils to create fictional pages for historical characters or create fictional characters in creative writing. While there is then the curricular purpose with a creative tool there is also the opportunity to reinforce the message about safe use of social networking tools.


Fakebook from is a free online tool which lets pupils create a Facebook-like profile for a fictional or historical character. Just by adding the name of the character in history or from a novel the tool will search for and add an appropriate image. Likewise for “friends” of the character these will add images automatically. In this way the tool has been designed specifically for school use and encourages pupils to research details of a character (fictional or historical) to make approriiate choices of event sequencing for the status updates. So if using a historical character from the time of a specific event in history there is considerable reading and research required of a pupil in order to sequence events correctly, to interpret and summarise a sequence of events, to include the viewpoints of other real-life associated historical characters in their posts on the original character’s timeline and make inferences basd on what information may have been available at that time in history to these characters. The familiar format of Facebook, and the automatic addition of appropriate visuals, has been found by teachers to engage pupils in the learning about the historical characters, often demonstrating a much deeper understanding of the information than might be expected. Fakebook profiles for historical or fictional characters can be saved online – a user simply adds a password so only they can edit it (but keep a note somewhere of the direct link to the Fakbook profile you created in order to find it again!). The completed Fakebook profile can also be saved as a PDF file for saving elsewhere as evidence of the learning of the pupil. If you are looking for ideas to get started or to demonstrate for pupils then click here to search for Fakebook profiles created by others.


Twister from is a free online tool which provides a fill-the-blanks format for pupils to enter information about a historical or fictional character. Images will appear automatically so time is not wasted in searching for suitable images. The limited-character nature of status updates of Twitter (and use of hashtags) encourages pupils to summarise factual information appropriate to their character, and the familiarity of such to pupils today has been found by teachers to be a particularly engaging and effective way to teach the skill of summarising. The Twister homepage provides links to a host of examples of the use of the tool to create Tweets as if created by historical or fictional characters – so provide useful starting points for those who may be unfamiliar with the tool or who may be looking for ideas to spark their own imagination for characters related to the historical character under study.

 Further tools for teaching about safer use of social networking tools like Facebook while also teaching about historical figures can be found on Richard Byrne’s blogpost here

Powerpoint and Word Templates

Templates using Microsoft Word or Powerpoint have been created by teachers so that pupils can create profiles of fictional or historical characters in the style of Facebook or Twitter. Click here for one example – others are available and doing an online search for “fake Facebook Word or Powerpoint  templates” will provide others.

Twitter itself

If you are looking for resources about making use of Twitter itself for a class or school account then click here.

If appropriate in your own situation Twitter itself can be used for fictional characters or historical events or characters. This has been used by teachers with a class to send messages (Tweets) in the sequence of time that an event happened in history or in a novel. If Twitter had been available at that time what would the messages have been? Click here to see an example account set up by a S4 pupil retelling the journey of David Balfour in Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel.

If you are looking for resources for supporting digital citizenship and safe use of online tools then click here.

Movenote – share your voice, video, presentation and annotations

Movenote is a neat free tool for combining on one screen a video (which can be of the the presenter, or video of anything else being viewed from a webcam or mobile device) along with a presentation (which can be a document or images or other files), and any annotations added as the presentation is being created.

Movenote has been designed to work well with mobile devices (so device-specific apps are available) as well as on a computer. And versatility in linking with a variety of cloud-based storage and email solutions also makes this particularly useful for use with mobile devices.

So in a classroom a teacher may have a Powerpoint presentation or document or series of images, which they can upload to Movenote, then switch on the webcam on the computer (or enable the mobile device camera) and record themselves explaining what is being viewed in the presentation. The teacher can annotate onto the presentation, upload further items (such as images), pause and resume recording. When completed they resulting presentation (with accompanying video right there beside the presentation) can be shared in a variety of ways.

Note that you don’t have to have yourself appear on the video camera but can instead have the video camera looking at something else while recording your voice. Having the video feature beside the presentation can be useful to provide pupils with the familiar voice of their teacher, and convey expression more easily. Also the video may prove useful where signing would be helpful for learners.

Click on the video below to see a short introduction to the features of Movenote:

Click on the video below to see a demonstration by Lisa Lund of getting started using Movenote

Movenote has a YouTube channel with a host of videos showing how to use Movenote in different ways and for different purposes – and with specific videos showing how to use the variety of features. It’s simple to use – yet has a multitude of uses to which it can be put in the classroom and elsewhere, and many ways to make it easy to use with a wide variety of email and cloud-storage tools.

Padlet for Feedback and Much More in the Classroom

What is Padlet?

Padlet (formerly called Wallwisher) is a versatile free online tool which can be used by teachers in a classroom setting to gather feedback from pupils as part of formative assessment. It also serves as a visually attractive tool for individuals or groups of pupils gathering ideas, and presenting them in a way which can be edited, kept private to a user, or shared with specific individuals, or made public.

Getting started

To start using Padlet just go to the website and click on “Build a Wall” to get started right away. Then you simply click anywhere on the screen and start typing – it’s that simple! You can add links to online resources (websites, blogs, videos and more), add images (from elsewhere onlien or from your PC or mobile device), even documents (and an appropriate viewer is automatically included when you upload files).

How a teacher can make it classroom-friendly

You can choose to make the Padlet wall you create entirely private for you and anyone else you choose to add by email. Or you can choose to require users to enter a password, you can choose to make it public yet accessible to all with whom you share the direct link (and a short URL and even QR code is provided automatically you create a Padlet), or of course you can make the Padlet wall completely public for all to be able to find. You can even choose to add moderation to any posts so that posts will not appear for others until you approve them. The choice is yours.

Users do not need to sign up in order to use Padlet, though for a teacher using it in a class setting it would be recommended that the teacher does create an account as that then makes possible the later editing of the wall, moderation of posts, and collating of all walls created in one management screen. You can also choose to set a notification to receive an email when anyone adds to your wall.

Device-neutral tool

Padlet works on any internet-enabled device, whether PC or mobile device which means it can work where schools are making use of a mixture of devices (and no software or apps are required to be downloaded or installed). The resulting walls created in Padlet can be exported in several ways including pdf, spreadsheet or embedded elswehere online.

Examples of use in the classroom

Here is a video by Ryan Brown showing some examples of how he used Padlet in the classroom, and then shows the first few steps in getting started in using Padlet as a teacher.

Sherry Hutchins has created a 5-minute video showing how a teacher can set up and use Padlet for the first time:

If you are looking to see how others have used Padlet simply click on “Gallery” at the foot of the home page. The gallery provides links to examples of the use of Padlet in several categories so you can easily see how to start using the tool in a wide variety of contexts.

Mark Gleeson has described in detail how he uses Padlet in the primary classroom and provides examples of his Padlet walls on his blogpost.

Interesting Ways to Use Padlet in the Classroom is a collection of many ideas shared by teachers collated by Tom Barrett.

105 Ways to Use Padlet in the Classroom is a collection of ideas shared by Sean Banville, listed in categories with each example described. There is also a link to example Padlets and explanatory video.

Today’s Meet – for pupil feedback in the classroom

Today’s Meet provides a free online space, private to those with whom you share the link, where feedback, discussion and ideas can be shared.

This is a tool which comes into its own when users, either individually or in small groups, have access to internet-connected devices (whether PCs or mobile devices). It works on any internet-enabled device so requires no software installations or apps downloads.

A teacher using the tool sets it up simply by going to the Today’s Meet website at, enters a name for the room unique to that lesson, and specifies how long the room will remain open before being automatically deleted (anything from as little as only 2 hours to as much as a year). When clicking “create” the room then becomes available at a unique address on the Internet which appears on the screen for the teacher to share with their own class. The pupils then go to that address and enter a name and start typing their comments.

It is extremely easy to use, though obviously the fact that it does require no user signup means that a teacher would need to use discretion in using with classes – it could be misused by pupils, which would be a behaviour issue, and comments cannot be deleted, nor rooms deleted manually (they are deleted automatically at the time the teacher specified when setting up the Today’s meet room). Therefore it would be suggested that this would onky be used where clear expectations had been shared with pupils, and a teacher was satisfied pupils would use it responsibly. In addition it would be recommended that the minimum time for the room be chosen (the comments can be copied and pasted elsewhere in a document if required).

For formative assessment, this tool is particularly useful where the ongoing feedback from pupils during a lesson can help shape the lesson as it is ongoing. Learners don’t require any special account to set up – it is private to a unique address which is not discoverable by others, and is time-limited so is deleted after it has served its purpose in the classroom setting.

This tool keeps all messages together for the teacher, and pupils don’t require to learn how to use any complicated tools – they just type what they need to say.

Padlet as alternative classroom friendly tool

Because the tool Today’s Meet could be misused by pupils, teachers may wish to consider using an alternative tool such as Padlet which provides features which address the concerns of teachers in a classroom setting – including moderation of content, sending to individuals by specific emails, deletion of individual comments, management of screens (and with additional features which include faciltiy to include images, video and documents in posts on a wall).

Credit Where Credit is Due

When pupils are encouraged to give credit to their sources of information wouldn’t it be good to have tools which would make this easier for them? So that if they find a useful article on the topic a teacher has asked them to research there is a convenient way to ensure proper credit is given to the source of the original reference. So whether a tool for citing sources or a tool to create a bibliography in a standard format the following may be useful.

CiteLighter is a free online tool which lets users highlight text anywhere online and automatically create a way of storing and referencing information gathered. Just sign up with an email address. Then when learners are browsing information and find what they would like to keep they simply highlight and save in the browser window. They can add notes if they wish. And they can store and organise the saved items. They can also create a bibliography – in a range of formats to suit requirements.

CiteThisForMe is a free online tool which lets you create a bibliography in three easy steps – signing up is not required to use the tool on an ad hoc basis but obviously when you do sign up for an account then you’ll be able to store, amend and add to existing bibliographies you have created. You can add the information you have about a reference to a book, journal, newspaper or website and the free online tool will generate as full a reference as it can – you can add information where available if there are gaps. The format of the resulting bibliography can be in one of a whole range to suit your need – just select the style you require and download the bibliography in the format you wish it to be.

EasyBib is a free online tool which lets you create a bibliography for free online simply by adding the formation you have, it will attempt to fill gaps and then highlight thopse parts which you can complete manually. You can also add annotations. There is a citation guide and an education blog associated with this tool which can be helpful if introducing the concept of bibliographies for the first time and looking for support material.

BibMe is a free online tool which lets you reference a host of different types from books, websites, film, newspapers and magazines in order to create a format of bibliography in a style you wish.

If This Then That – IFTTT in the classroom

If This Then That (IFTTT) is a tool which helps automate some online actions, which you may already do one-by-one, to save you the time of doing it step by step. The premise is simple – you set up what you want to happen when something else happens, and IFTTT then does it, automatically every time that “trigger” happens.

So you may have a class blog. When you publish a blogpost you may want to let others know it has happened. You can set up IFTTT to send an email automatically to colleagues with whom your class is working when a post is posted from your class blog.

You may have a class birdbox with webcam. And you may have a class Twitter account where you post updates on what is happening. With IFTTT you can set up for a Twitter message to be sent with a snapshot image attachment every hour (or any time interval of your choice). Without any need for your further intervention your class Twitter account then has a sequence of images showing what’s happening in the birdbox.

IFTTT has a bank of hundreds of user-created “recipes” – essentially processes which someone else has already set up to suit them, but with the steps shared so you can take advantage of the setup already being done – avoiding you re-inventing the wheel! You can browse these or search on a topic. Browsing might reveal ideas you may wish to use but of which you hadn’t even thought – opening up possibilities. And you can adapt any recipe to suit your own needs.

So how would you use this in the classroom?

Szymon Machajewski describes some ways he has used IFTTT in his classroom.

The PE Geek (in his blog describing ways in which ICT can be used to enhance PE teaching) describes ways in which he uses IFTTT in the classroom.

T J Houston describes some of the ways he uses IFTTT to help him in automating some classroom routines.

IFTTT has a bank of hundereds of “Recipes” which you can browse or search.

Stan Skrabut has put together a host of resources showing ways of using IFTTT in education – including links to further resources and videos.

Click here for an introductory video showing how to set up and use IFTTT

Zapier is an alternative online tool which lets you choose specific actions from online tools and combine them to create another action in another online tool. This is a commercial product but has a free version which may be sufficient for many needs. Users pick the “trigger” from one service and the “action” to be carried out automatically on another online tool. ”A Zap is a blueprint for a task you want to do over and over. In words, a Zap looks like this: When I get a new thing in A, do this other thing in B. The first part is the trigger and the second part is the action. Zapier regularly checks your trigger for new data. When the Zap triggers, Zapier automatically performs your action for you.”

Have you used IFTTT? What have you found useful?

Educating in Entrepreneurship in the Classroom

In helping in preparing pupils for their future teachers consider what lies ahead, what the skills and experiences their pupils may require for whatever their chosen path in life may be. A facility to make the most of money and having a business acumen may be considered skills worth developing in pupils. Encouraging an entrepreneurial culture and developing skills to support it is often stated as one means of ensuring any society’s economy is secure. So what can teachers do to help nurture entrepreneurship in their pupils?

10 Steps to teaching pupils to become entrepreneurs is a series of 10 statements of the kinds of skills and experiences it may be considered that aspiring entrepreneurs may want to have, and short descriptions of suggested teaching ideas for each one.

Cameron Herold presents a TED talk on his thoughts on why schools should teach pupils about being an entrepreneur. He also suggests ways of teaching to help pupils who may become entrepreneurs to flourish.

Education Scotland’s Entrepreneurial Learning resources support teachers in providing pupils the chance to “experience real business and work-related learning through entrepreneurial enterprise activities where entrepreneurial learning also allows all children and young people to develop a range of skills through ‘hands-on’ participation. These skills are valuable for future employees, employers and entrepreneurs, and link to all subjects right across the curriculum.”

BizKids is a US site supporting teachers teach Business Education, Financial Literacy and Entrepreneurship in the classroom for primary and secondary age pupils. There are videos (including a YouTube channel of episodes featuring children of different ages as entrepreneurs as well as a mix of informational videos about money in everyday life) with associated lesson plans and activity prompt sheets.

Click here to view the introductory video to BizKids:

MyKindaCrowd is an online resource providing the means to connect young people with businesses. It is designed for schools looking to work on problem-solving projects based on the world of work to connect with businesses which would support this. Even if not using the connecting tool the ideas presented could provide the inspiration for a world of work project in-school.

Click here to view the video from MyKindaCrowd:

Making Money Matter is a post bringing together a host of resources to support teaching pupils about money in all aspects of life

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