Category Archives: Professional learning

Career Education CLPL

We have worked with Skills Development Scotland (SDS) to create a suite of Careers Education Training and resources to support Primary and Secondary practitioners.  This training consists of 4 modules:

The Career Education Standard

This session sets out what the Career Education Standard is, its origins and what this means for us as practitioners.

Career Management Skills (CMS)

This session sets out the mandate for teaching Career Management Skills as part of the curriculum.  Gives examples of classroom practice to support teaching CMS and provides resources for this.

Labour Market Information (LMI)

This session explains what Labour Market Information is and why it can be useful for teaching career education.  Examples of how to use this information in classroom practice and resources to support this are provided.

Skills

This session explores what we mean by skills and why they form an important part of careers education.  Two case studies on Primary and one Secondary are then highlighted as examples of good practice.

Computational Thinking CLPL

Here is our Computational Thinking CLPL.  This came back in our practitioner surveys as an area  which required support and training.  We can understand why as it sounds like a really complex and difficult concept.  In the creation of this CLPL we have found some great examples of practice and some excellent support resources.  Hopefully you will agree.  If you click on the links below you should be taken to each of the presentations for this CLPL.  This will work better on a laptop than a phone or tablet.

Computational Thinking Early Level

Computational Thinking First Level

Computational Thinking Second Level

Engineering CLPL

Hi All

Here comes our engineering CLPL.  This session has been created using Microsoft Sway instead of our usual medium of video.  The session is split into 3 sections: Whats is Engineering?; Engineering Skills; Resources for Teaching Engineering.  The aim of these sessions is to demonstrate where engineering already appears in your lessons right across the curriculum.  Also to highlight where engineering skills are being created in the curriculum.  This is in a bid not to add to workload but instead offer opportunities to capitalise on opportunities to mention and recognise engineering as part of what is already going on.

First off what is engineering and what does it look like in our curriculum?  If you click on the full screen option (four arrows pointing outwards) then you can navigate through the sway.  You can click on images to enlarge them.

The next sway is on recognising engineering skills in our curriculum.  As you will see you will already be teaching these skills.  Perhaps as the lesson practitioner being able to relate the skills to engineering might help pupils to relate to what engineering might look like as a career and that it could be something they would be good at.

The final presentation contains links to resources to support the teaching of engineering and engineering skills.  This will remain as a live document and we will continue to update it with new opportunities as we find them.

We hope you have found these presentations helpful.  If you need any further support with these topics please get in contact.

 

Improving Gender Balance and Equalities CLPL

This week when creating an early level resource on people who help us in the medical field I put some clip art in. I searched for doctor and chose one of the first images. Then the same for nurse.


‘So what?’ you say.  All I did was pick the first images returned in a search. But when I looked at the search results mostly they return a stereotype.


On reflection I started thinking, as I am potentially influencing pupils ideas of what a doctor or nurse is.  Perhaps even influencing what pupils feel they can or cannot aspire to.  Should I have thought more carefully about the images I chose? 

To help us think about the influence we may be having on pupils and therefore who thinks STEM is right for them, this weeks CLPL is from the Improving Gender Balance and Equalities (IGBE) team at Education Scotland. Fiona Shaw is the IGBE officer who covers Falkirk and her contact details are in the presentation.

STEM Self Evaluation Framework CLPL

Hi All

This week’s CLPL is on the STEM Self Evaluation and Improvement Framework.  This framework has been provided by Education Scotland to support schools with developing their STEM practice by evaluating their current work and giving focus for next steps.  We are very aware that we are in an ever changing and somewhat uncertain times.  The last thing we want to do is to create more work for practitioners or place importance on tasks which may not seem pressing.  The current situation is far from ideal and has pushed us down paths in providing education we may not have chosen.  However it is apparent that some excellent work is being done and as enthusiasts for STEM, multiple opportunities to engage our pupils and colleagues in STEM have presented themselves.

Family learning has been the status quo for most pupils for the last 3 months and this may continue to be the case for some in part at least.  Are we making the most of this family learning to engage parents in STEM?  Are we providing equity for our families with the provisions we are making?  If so can we continue to build on this?

Outdoor learning lends itself so well to covering STEM Es and Os, as outdoor learning seems to be being encouraged as we return to school can we capitalise on this to support STEM work in our school? Could we lead the outdoor learning through STEM?

We have been engaging with technology in ways we probably never imagined.  Pupils and practitioners alike are up skilled, can we continue to build on this? Are we going to change the way we teach?

Pupils are working in a very different way at home with different timescales, is this increasing their higher order thinking and creativity? How do we continue to support this in school? Could this be through STEM?

The framework allows us to evaluated these exact topics.  Perhaps as this is where we are for now and these are the opportunities we have been afforded we could work to take advantage of this and find ourselves in a better place at the other side?

To help you engage with the framework and provide examples of good practice we have asked Gayle Duffus, National Education Officer for Primary Science and the RAiSE program to provide this CLPL.   Some of you may know Gayle from our Friday Q and A sessions.  Below you will find Gayle’s video for this.  The associated resources are in the teams drive in the CLPL folder.

 

Electricity CLPL

This weeks CLPL is on electricity.

I teach this as part of the engineering science curriculum using a mixture of software and breadboards.

It is a topic which I enjoy but always with an element of trepidation, will the kit work (blown bulbs, loose wires etc.), are the multimeters on the correct setting, will there be lost components?  Pupils amaze me every time finding a creative way for things to go wrong.  Last week however I started using the playdough circuits and I have never had so much fun!

There is so little to go wrong and the components are so cheap that if it breaks I could just use a different one.  The circuits are very flexible having their own glue so mounting circuits onto a project is easy.  There are no long wires to move about or cram into a small space.  This low tech option could be good for returning to school and providing small amounts of kit for experiments.  Have a look at the first level video and see what you think.

To highlight the good practice already going on in Falkirk W/C 11th May Mrs Jones from Carmuirs Primary School produced an excellent week long task on electricity for her P6 pupils using Wakelet.  This could be a useful approach for STEM during blended learning.  Check it out here.

The resources for all three levels for this topic are in the teams files as usual in the CLPL folder.  If you are a member of the team click here for resources. This week we’ve included possible novel studies which the topic of electricity could be covered as part of.

To join our STEM – RAiSE Falkirk Team type the code is188td

We also really appreciate your feedback, if you could complete the microsoft form below we would be very grateful.

Online mini CLPL Tools in School

Hello,

This CLPL is on Tools in School. Below is the video for the course and links to access resources.

The idea is to set out what would be required to start using tools in school and demonstrate how easy it could be to achieve some simple projects.  The projects all contain the vital life skill of attaching things with screws.

You may have seen the pupil from Carronshore Primary School tweeting his success making a planter from the @littlelessons20 twitter tutorial

or the pupils from Victoria Primary School screw fixing objects to a fence to make a busy board.

Perfect examples of what can be achieved with these skills and how these learners are being inspired to have an interest in STEM.

To participate in this CLPL, watch the video, have a look at the twitter links above and have a look at the ‘tools in school’ resources here.

As part of the PSDO network across Scotland we have produced these tool guides.  These have been approved by SSERC.  The guides give you basic teaching points for each tool, images for tool use instructions and H and S to use with pupils and QR codes which lead to videos of using these tools.  These guides can be used to provide basic training or checklists for practitioners or could be used with pupils in class.  When we return to school and it is possible I would be more than willing to run staff training on tools so please get in touch about this.  gw14hanningbarbara@glow.sch.uk

 

Falkirk Early Years team have also been providing tools training for their practitioners.  They provide info on how to get started and where to buy tools.  They have also been working with Pete Moorhouse and he has provided some free resources for Falkirk too.  This can all be found on the EY Frobel blog here.

We would appreciate your feedback on this CLPL.  Please complete the microsoft form here:

 

 

Online Mini CLPL, STEM through Stories

Hi everyone!

My name is Laura McCafferty and I am one of Falkirk’s Primary STEM Development Officers (PSDOs).  My days for this role are Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Barbara Hanning, who is the other PSDO, works a Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

I thought it might be helpful to share a little bit about me with you.  I have 13 years primary teaching experience.  I have taught all stages and have also been lucky enough to cover a maternity Support for Learning Teacher role providing me with an even deeper understanding of additional support needs.  I’ve had a wide range of leadership opportunities over the years including leading World of Work and Rights Respecting Schools.

At the end of the 2018/2019 session, I was successful in gaining the role of STEM lead within St. Margaret’s Primary School where I have been a member of staff for 7 years.  This meant I would be in class three days a week and out of class for two days each week developing STEM within our school setting.

My Headteacher asked me to set up three STEM hubs in our school for P1+2, P3,4+5 and P6+7.  Unfortunately, due to building works this was put on hold when we started back after summer until after the October holidays.  In the meantime, I researched and looked at the variety of ways to implement STEM in the classroom and discovered the idea of teaching STEM through stories.  I put together a range of folders for ages 5-7, 7-9 and 9-11 (all of which are shared on our Teams page) and decided to try out ‘The Iron Man’ with my own class.  You will see from the video and further resources shared the success of this.

When I was able to get into the STEM hubs, I thought carefully about what was required to allow children to have the best experience they could.  With support and advice from Gayle Duffus at Education Scotland, she introduced me to Emily Hunt’s ’15 Minute STEM’ book.  I looked at the 40 challenges and the resources required.  I related each activity to CfE Experiences and Outcomes for staff in order for them to make links between class and hub learning.  I then developed resources further by retyping the challenges without photos or information other than the challenge to encourage thinking and problem solving skills in the children.  The other information was made up to share with staff incase they wanted to take learning further.  Finally, I made up answer booklets to go with each of the challenges, some including tally charts, measuring, bar graphs etc… so a visit to the STEM hub has lots of meaning and develops a wide range of skills as well as learning experiences.  (All of these resources are also available for you to access and use on our Teams page)

I am absolutely loving my roles of PSDO and STEM lead and although I do not have a specialism in any of the aspects of STEM, I fully appreciate its value as a learning experience to raise attainment and achievement.  STEM learning does not have to be all whizz, pop, bang experiments and infact, I would imagine most of what you already do is STEM learning, you just don’t identify it as that…..yet!

I look forward to working with you and if you have any questions or would like some support, please do get in touch.  That’s what I’m here for and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed getting in to meet some of you already to help you on your STEM journey.

 

To join our STEM – RAiSE Falkirk Team type the code is188td

All resources associated with this CLPL can be found in the team.  If you are already a member click here.

We would appreciate your feedback on this CLPL.  Please complete the microsoft form here: