Digital Learning & Teaching in Falkirk Schools

Digital technology to support learning & teaching

June 10, 2021
by Malcolm Wilson

Moving Glow User – Steps for Staff Glow Users Moving Establishment or Local Authority

At the end of each school year you may be moving from one establishment to another, or from one local authority in Scotland to another. You’ll want to be aware of how your move may change your access to your Glow account and actions you’ll need to take before the move.

The following guides may be helpful in taking the steps needed to ensure you keep access to what you need or everything moves as you wish!

Glow Connect is the national support site for all things Glow for all users. This support page details what is affected when you move school or move local authority and gives guidance as to what to do

Glow account guidance – Glow Connect


Staff may find useful the interactive Thinglink from South Ayrshire Council

This helpful infographic guide from North Ayrshire Council may also be useful:

If you wish to move your OneNote Class Notebook then here’s a quick video guide by Mike Tholfsen:


And for a detailed text version of the step-by-step guide to exporting a OneNote Class Notebook here’s the guide on the Microsoft Support site: Guide to exporting a copy of your work from OneNote, Class Notebook, Teams, and OneDrive (


July 24, 2020
by Malcolm Wilson

Managing Notifications in Microsoft Teams

When you use Microsoft Teams you might find yourself getting overwhelmed with notifications from Teams to which to which you belong. Instead of deciding to leave any Team, you can control notifications so that you get what you want, and in the way you want it.

So for some Teams where it’s good that you are a member, but don’t need notifications, then you can switch these off entirely.

For other Teams where you are responsible for that Team then you want to notifications of everything a sand when it happens.

And there’s lots of permutations from one extreme to the other!

Managing the settings for what notifications you receive in Microsoft Teams

It’s a 2-step process – one where you control how you’ll get the notifications, and second step to choose which teams and channels within them you wish or don’t wish to receive notifications about. Here’s a link to a guide to managing the settings for what notifications you receive in Microsoft Teams – this provides specific guidance for using in a browser or on mobile device Teams app.

Click here for guide to Managing Notifications in Microsoft Teams. Click on the tab for desktop (for desktop device or laptop/netbook), iOS (for iPads or iPhones) or Android for specific guidance for the device you use

Click on this link for a helpful video by Mike Tholfsen showing how to take control of your notifications in Microsoft Teams

Click here for TeamsTips101 – managing notification video


July 24, 2020
by Malcolm Wilson

Get OneNote on your device

OneNote is one part of Microsoft Office 365 suite of digital tools available to all Glow users, which includes Microsoft Teams. If you have a class Team in Microsoft Teams then you will automatically have a OneNote Class Notebook as part of this.

Here’s links to short videos showing you how to get OneNote on your mobile device, whether Android or iOS (iPhone or iPad).

When you are signing into these for the first time on a mobile device then use your Glow email address – this is your Glow username followed by

OneNote on Android


OneNote on iOS (iPhone or iPad)


OneNote Online (web-based through a browser)

July 24, 2020
by Malcolm Wilson

Connection woes? Here’s suggestions to try

Don’t panic – it happens with any online tool!

Every online platform hiccups from time to time: you might get error messages, things don’t update, you can’t upload files, you can’t share what you need to share – and you can probably add to that list!

And, of course, it happens when you are trying to do umpteen different things.

Take a breath….and don’t panic – it really can happen when you are using any online tool, to anybody, anywhere. So don’t rush to change platform or switch tool. There are a few steps to try to see what you can do, and sometimes it’s doing things a slightly different way.

What steps to try if your class is using Microsoft Teams

At times of network pinch and uploading files into the shared files area is causing an issue then try the following:

  • In the browser in Teams click on the ellipsis (3 dots) at top right and choose “Open in Sharepoint” to show the folders/files for the files area of Teams
  • If you are using Teams on an Internet browser on a laptop or computer then instead try using the Teams app on a mobile device
  • Instead of using the Teams app on a mobile device try instead using the OneDrive app on your mobile device (and if you have not already got this app on your mobile device then download and sign in with your Glow email address too) > click on “Libraries” at the bottom-right > type the name of the Team in the search box at the top of the screen > choose from the list which appears > navigate to the folder in the Team > open the file or upload using the + icon. Click here for a video by Andrew Bailey illustrating the use of the OneDrive app on a mobile device to access the files from Microsoft Teams

  • Instead of sharing in the Files area of Teams, if there is difficulty uploading, the instead share via conversations/posts in Teams (everyone in the Team will see anything posted here so may not be appropriate for sharing to individuals or for pupils sharing to their teacher)
  • Use assignment feature to share a task and/or resources to a class (and if using the assignment tool via a browser, but find network issues is giving issue on a computer or laptop, then try instead on mobile device app rather than browser)
  • Consider creating a quiz/assessment using Microsoft Teams and sharing the link to that either in the conversations/posts in Teams or using the assignments feature to share to the class – this is just a link so isn’t an upload so should share pretty quickly and easily. And, as the teacher, you can set the questions so they self-correct (if multiple choice question type) so that pupils get immediate feedback, and you also get all responses in one easy to access location within Forms. Pupils also get the benefit of Immersive Reader built into Forms which will read aloud questions
  • Use Outlook Email within Glow (you can find the Glow email address of a Team member by clicking on the ellipsis (three dots) to the right of the team name > Manage Team > click on name to see email address.

Microsoft shared this webpage with very helpful tips/solutions for using Microsoft Teams either in situations where there is poor bandwidth or when usage spikes – only point to note is that Glow does not have Stream, mentioned here, enabled

What about OneNote?

If you’re using the online version of OneNote, but finding an issue with content not appearing, then go to either the desktop version for computer/laptop (if you have not already got this installed then Glow users just remember to sign in first time with your Glow email address) which can be used offline with no Internet connection and will sync when there is a renewed connection.

Alternatively, if you have a mobile device (smartphone or tablet), then use the OneNote mobile app – it too will work offline to access content which has already been synced or to create material which will sync when you have a connection. On the mobile app to push a sync to happen click on a page and pull down from the top of a page, or go to the top right and click on “Sync Now”

Click on the link below for a support guide from Microsoft for advice and tips if you ever experience syncing issues with OneNote – and there’s advice here regardless of which device you are using and whether app or browser.

Best Practice for Syncing Notes in OneNote -page on Microsoft Support Site dealing with resolving syncing issues for OneNote for mobile, tablet or PC/laptop web/browser or desktop/mobile app

Click on the following link for Microsoft Support Site page “Fix issues when you can’t sync OneNote for issues relating to OneNote on Windows PC/laptop or Mac”

What about Word Online?

If you are finding that the Word document online is not opening at times of network strain then click on the top-right button to edit and choose either to open in desktop or open in a new tab from the document files area in Teams. Or download the Word app (or Microsoft Office Mobile app) on your mobile device and open from there.

For more helpful advice click on the link below for the device platform-specific advice for syncing files:

Click here for Microsoft Support page with advice to Sync the files on your computer with your mobile device

July 24, 2020
by Malcolm Wilson

The First Step is the Hardest Step in Distance Learning

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”

This is a saying which is believed to have originated from a famous Chinese proverb from the Dao De Jing ascribed to Laozi: every long journey, or difficult task begins with one first step.


Reflections from others

What can we learn from those who have taken first steps in distance learning, where teachers are supporting, encouraging and teaching their learners from a distance through the use of digital technology?


Listen to this episode of the Wired Educator podcast to hear from teacher Stephanie Castle about her experience as an educator in Shanghai, during the initial COVID-19 outbreak in China, about remote instruction and learning as Stephanie and her colleagues have been instructing remotely longer than many other teachers


Effective remote and digital learning” – a concise document by the West Partnership Regional Improvement Collaborative clearly setting out the rationale for digital distance learning, defining terms, making reference to research and experiences elsewhere and providing tips and strategies for educators as well as parents/carers.

Tips for Teaching Online from Lisa Anne Floyd and Steven Floyd

The reflections at this link, and lessons learned from experiences gained, by primary teacher Marc Andrew may be helpful in looking at similarities for teachers in their own circumstances and to support reflection in choices as practice develops.

This diary of teacher reflecting on their journey with remote learning may provide echoes for many

Michael Ha shared visual infographic posters with advice about distance learning, one poster for the teacher and one for the pupil, providing tips for each.

Michel Girard shared this visual graphic about distance learning – highlighting the opportunities afforded by teachers sharing ideas through a professional learning network such as available using Twitter and following the hashtag #MSFTEduChat

What does research say about distance learning?

This link to an article by Dr Michael Harvey provides references for evidence-based approaches to maximize the impact of online teaching based around the science of learning research centre at the University of Queensland. This highlights a number of approaches including “that a combination of relevant visual images and speaking to the images as prompts greatly enhances learning,” and suggests that in an an online environment “providing learners with predictable presentation formats with text, subheadings, and images in the same locations will improve learner focus.”  The “adoption of a spiral curriculum can also help” where it’s “not simply the repetition of a topic taught. It requires also the deepening of it, with each successive return to concepts building on the previous one.” Dr Michael Harvey can be found on Twitter at @Dr_Harves

What online courses will help prepare for and develop distance learning?

Staying connected with remote learning through Microsoft Teams and Office 365. This free online course will help with understanding the difference between remote learning and online learning, look at evaluating considerations, explore options for continuing the learning and connections with your pupils, how to establish routines and develop workspaces that foster learning, and reflect on how to incorporate your school traditions and develop connections. Sign in with your Glow email address so that you can receive a certificate, badge and transcript of what has been undertaken.

Keeping Students engaged: Building strong student/teacher connections in a remote learning environment – a free online course providing information about the use of Microsoft Teams to develop remote learning experiences, how to create a class Teams call, use of pre-recorded lessons, assessment tools available in remote learning and how Assignments and Grades in Teams support your review process, as well as how OneNote Class Notebook can enhance your they way you share resources with pupils as well as evaluate their understanding. Sign in with your Glow email address so that you can receive a certificate, badge and transcript of what has been undertaken.

Accessibility, Special Education, and online learning: Supporting equity in a remote learning environment –  a free online course about supporting equity in a remote learning environment, providing tips for ways to make content accessible for all pupils, and to help pupils transition to remote learning . Sign in with your Glow email address so that you can receive a certificate, badge and transcript of what has been undertaken.

July 24, 2020
by Malcolm Wilson

Access Microsoft Teams in Glow on Different Devices

Here’s how to access Microsoft Teams in Glow on a tablet or smartphone​

Go to App store > search for Microsoft Teams > download/install > open app > enter your Glow email address which is your Glow username followed by (some users may have a different ending:  > enter your password  then sign in







Here’s a helpful video from Beeslack Community High School showing how to download and sign into the Microsoft Teams app (as well as Microsoft Office app) on a smartphone or tablet with your Glow email address

Accessing Glow on a Gaming Console

Click on this link for a guide to accessing Glow via a gaming console

This guide gives information about using a Kindle Fire device to access Microsoft Teams


For more help with signing into Glow go to the Glow Connect website at the link below:

July 24, 2020
by Malcolm Wilson

OneNote Class Notebook in your Microsoft Teams Class

So what is OneNote Class Notebook inside Microsoft Teams?

OneNote Class Notebook is built into Microsoft Teams. OneNote Class Notebook is like a digital ring-binder with cardboard colour dividers, and within each section you can have as many pages as you like. Each page is a freeform page which can be any size you wish, and become like your classroom whiteboard, where you can add a very wide range of content (including images, audio, video, documents, presentations, embedded Sway presentations, embedded Forms, and you can freehand draw or write just as you would on your classroom whiteboard. It all saves automatically and is accessible on any device so you can move from working on your smartphone on the OneNote app to working in the browser on a laptop (and other devices).

A OneNote Note Class Notebook already comes with the permissions for your pupils to access and collaborate on anything in the collaboration space, so you’ve no setting or permissions to worry about if you wish a group of pupils to work on something together, just create the page and tell them who’s working on it. In addition to these collaboration spaces a OneNote Class Notebook also has a section which the pupils can see, but on which only the teacher can add or edit content – handy for sharing what you might have shared on your classroom whiteboard. This is called the library space. There is also a teacher-only section which can be enabled (so you can create content ahead of time and move into the library when you wish pupils to make use of it. And the OneNote Class Notebook within Microsoft Teams also has individual sections for each pupil – which only you as teacher can see and that individual pupil (other pupils can’t see anyone else’s sections).

And if that wasn’t enough, OneNote Class Notebook built into a Microsoft Teams class also has Immersive Reader Learning Tools built in providing accessibility options for all learners.

Click on this link for a guide to OneNote Class Notebook within Microsoft Teams in the Microsoft Support site – each page on this help-guide site allows you to toggle between what the teacher can do and how to do it, and by clicking on the student tab on each page you can see the related help-guide page for the pupils from the pupil perspective

If you’re new to using Microsoft OneNote Class Notebook then here’s an in-depth overview introduction by Susan Sey and Jen Mackay to OneNote in Glow. This covers a OneNote Notebook created by an individual, as well as OneNote Class Notebook, and includes a OneNote Class Notebook which is integrated in a Microsoft Teams class. It’s an incredibly versatile digital tool so can be as simple as you wish – you don’t need to use everything just because it’s there. But this overview will give you a flavour of what’s possible so you can decide what will best be useful for your learners.

Setting up your your OneNote Class Notebook for the first time ready for use by your class is first step in getting it to look the way you want your pupils to see it.

Tweaking the settings for your OneNote Class Notebook in Microsoft Teams



This video by @TeachMe_UK gives a quick overview of getting a OneNote Class Notebook organised (it’s a very versatile tool so it can look just the way you want it to look!)


How to add pictures, files and videos to your OneNote Notebook pages

You can create more interactive notebooks in  your OneNote Class Notebook. Click on this link to see  short videos showing you the steps to add pictures, files, and videos to your pages in your OneNote Class Notebook

Using OneNote to Show what they know

Here’s a video by teachers Jeni Long and Sallee Clark illustrating how to develop the use of OneNote so that learners can use the digital platform to demonstrate their learning.

Here’s an in-depth overview of the use of Microsoft OneNote Class Notebook within Microsoft Teams in a  webinar hosted by Helen Myers with many illustrations of how these tools are being used by teachers

Click on this link for a video by maths teacher Joel Speranza (aimed at his learners) giving a guided tour of how OneNote Notebook within his Microsoft Teams class works

Click on the video below about OneNote Class Notebook in Microsoft Teams from the Microsoft Educator Centre site to get a quick video overview of how Microsoft Teams and OneNote Class Notebook work together.

July 23, 2020
by Malcolm Wilson

Upload to assignments in Microsoft Teams

So if your teacher has assigned a piece of work for you in Microsoft Teams in Glow, then how do you as a pupil upload your work?

Here’s how to upload your work to assignments for your teacher to see

💻🖥 Using a Laptop/computer? 💻🖥

Here’s a video by Andrew Bailey showing how a pupil would upload work (whether a photograph or work, or a file such as Word document or PowerPoint presentation) if you are working on a laptop or computer, to an assignment set by their teacher in Microsoft Teams assignments in Glow

Here’s a video by Eoin Neil showing how a pupil would upload a Word document, using a the computer/laptop app or browser, to assignments in Microsoft Teams through Glow:

Here’s a video by Park House English School showing how a pupil would upload a Word document, or PowerPoint, using a the computer/laptop app or browser, to assignments in Microsoft Teams:

🤳📱 Using a Smartphone or tablet? 🤳📱 

If you are using a smartphone or tablet then click here to see how to add the Microsoft Teams mobile app and the Microsoft Office mobile app to your smartphone or tablet. Also it would be a good idea to have the OneNote app on your device so click here to see how to download OneNote app to your smartphone or tablet

Here’s a video by Andrew Bailey showing how a pupil would upload work (whether a photograph of work, or a file such as a Word document or a PowerPoint presentation) using a smartphone through the Microsoft Teams app to an assignment set by their teacher in Microsoft Teams assignments in Glow, using the Microsoft Teams app (and Office app for a file such as a Word document or PowerPoint presentation)


Here’s a video by Eoin Neil showing how a pupil would upload a photograph of work, using a mobile device, to assignments in Microsoft Teams through Glow:

Here’s a video by James Doyle showing how to upload a Word document through a tablet with the Microsoft Teams app, to assignments in Microsoft Teams:

Need more help uploading your assignments for your teacher?

Click here for the help guide on the Microsoft Support site showing how a pupil turns in an assignment in Microsoft Teams


June 24, 2020
by Malcolm Wilson

Want to use video meet with your class in Microsoft Teams?

👨 🎤 💻 Want to present to your class in a live video meet?

Microsoft Teams in Glow provides the facility for you as the teacher to present live to your class via video meet. This can be useful if you want your pupils to have the familiarity of seeing you and hearing your voice, and to hear each other.

Don’t feel under pressure to use this video meet facility right away. And take on board safeguarding and employer requirements in use of such a tool, as well as being mindful of your professional teaching association advice.

Situations will vary as to what digital resources or facilities learners have access, and when, especially if sharing the same device in a home. And Internet connection available can be highly variable from one location to another, and one home to another. If you are sharing a message or teaching point then an alternative to live video meetings could be to share a recorded video.

If having a live video meeting is for you, then click on this link for specific step-by-step guidance from the Microsoft Support site to setting up a video meet in Teams for your class (note that this link is not specific to Glow so you’d need to be signed in first to Glow and then have opened Microsoft Teams – click here for more Glow-specific advice about Microsoft Teams on the Glow Connect site).


If you wish to have only your voice in the video meet then you might instead opt to have the camera pointing at an object (piece of work, paper on which you’ll demonstrate a teaching point, or maybe a piece of writing you’ll discussing together, or for perhaps a class toy/character/mascot figure.

Here’s how to invite everyone in a class Team to a scheduled video meet in Microsoft Teams in Glow, or to invite individuals: video meet in Microsoft Teams can be set up in 3 different ways and here’s a link to a very quick video showing how (just note that the third way is only available for staff-to-staff video meetings as chat is disabled for pupils nationally in Glow)

It’s worth being aware that within Glow nationally there is no access to anyone without a Glow account, and recordings are disabled.

Click here for a step-by-step how-to guide on the Microsoft Support site for scheduling a meeting which shows the specific step to add everyone in a team/channel

To avoid pupils entering the class video meet before you, then there’s an additional way that you can set up the video meet in your Outlook calendar in Glow, choose to add it as an online meeting, selecting Microsoft Teams option, and then saving and opening the diary entry again before then adjusting meeting options underneath the “Join Meeting” link which is created to make all participants attendees and only you as presenter. Then copy the link for that meeting and only post it in your Team just at the time you are going to have the meeting. Once you have completed the meeting, and all pupils have left the video meet, you can then delete the meeting from the calendar to ensure pupils cannot then return later.

Using the Teams mobile app to have a video meet


Note that for safeguarding reasons within Glow nationally there is no access to anyone without a Glow account, and recordings are disabled. These technical settings are in place to provide support to you and your learners but safeguarding is also about actions and behaviours which need to be in effect.

Click on this link for a helpful infographic visual poster from LGfL Digi Safe outlining safeguarding principles when considering using video meet

Meeting Etiquette

Managing a video meeting involves more than getting technical settings right – it’s about setting expectations around behaviours to make for the most positive experience for everyone. As you might do in a classroom you may build expectations together with your class, such as when someone is talking then others might be encouraged to mute their microphone, or using the meeting conversation box to add questions or comments. There is no single way to manage a classroom, just as there is no single way to manage a video meeting. The following are suggestions by others who have found what was helpful in their situation, so you can adapt to suit what works best for your class.

Want to show yourself on video side-by-side with presentation or other content?

This quick video by Stephen Eustace shows how, on a PC/laptop, you can show video of yourself (using the inbuilt camera of the device) to lay out the screen with other content (such as a OneNote Notebook page for writing/drawing on, alongside a pdf of work to be completed by learners) – you can then simply share your screen (choose desktop and don’t forget to click on the button to share system audio) in Microsoft Teams

So how long should a video meet last?

There’s no hard and fast rules about length of time to be on video. But there are a few considerations to be borne in mind. Live video meetings consume bandwidth so keeping live meetings shorter will be better for everyone taking part. If sharing a PowerPoint presentation (or other digital resource) then uploading first into the video meeting room rather than sharing your desktop will cause less bandwidth strain. Encouraging participants to mute their microphone (and camera if this is a meeting of staff colleagues, since in Glow the camera is not available to enable for pupils) when they are not speaking will help the experience be more productive for everyone.

This visual, based on research, may be helpful in thinking about what would suit your circumstances and those of your learners:

Joining a video meet – and tips about using more than one tenancy

Click on this video by Susan Sey on the DigiLearnScot YouTube channel for quick tips about how to join a video meeting in Microsoft Teams whether from calendar or a channel in a team. The video also shows how you can switch between tenancies whether on an app or browser if you perhaps have Microsoft Teams with Glow as well as a Local Authority account


What about slow internet issues?

Video meets eat bandwidth! And not everyone will have superfast broadband Internet connections. So if a video meet is something which is being undertaken then it is essential to consider how to minimise connection difficulties for all participants.

10 Tips to support students with slow Internet – a really helpful post by Matt Miller on his fabulous “Ditch that Textbook” site with lots of practical ideas for making the use of video meets friendlier for everyone, whether slow Internet connection or super fast, including easy to follow visual how-to guides.




Looking for more help?

 Click on this link for the Microsoft Teams for Education support page “Creating, attending, and running meetings while using Teams for distance learning” – this gives detailed help for a teacher for setting up a meeting, guides to how to manage a meeting, and tips and advice for working with your class of learners. The page also lets you toggle to see the advice for a learner in a class, showing what they will see, how it will work from their perspective and some general guidance about being a part of an online class in a video meet in Microsoft Teams. Note that for safeguarding reasons within Glow nationally currently video meetings permit only the teacher to broadcast video and to have only audio from pupil (which can also be switched on and off by the teacher), there is no access to anyone without a Glow account, and recordings are disabled.

Click on this link for a downloadable, ready to print if you choose, Teams for Education Quick Guide from Microsoft Support which has a section specifically on using setting up and managing a video meet with your class. Note that this is not specific to Glow so currently video meetings permit only the teacher to broadcast video and to have only audio from pupil (which can also be switched on and off by the teacher), there is no access to anyone without a Glow account, and recordings are disabled.

Click on this link which links to some quick tips from educator Alice Keeler about using video meet in Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams Education: How to manage video meetings like a pro
– very helpful guide by Matt Miller with lots of tips presented in visual step-by-step posters.


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