Category: English and Literacy

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03 November 2020 1630-1730, Developing Literacy and English Through Digital Learning in Secondary Schools

Tuesday 3rd November, Thursday 19th November and Wednesday 2nd December at 4.30pm, 2nd December at 4.30pm – Developing Literacy and English Through Digital Learning in Secondary Schools

This webinar is for teachers and librarians working in SECONDARY school contexts and utilising digital tools to support learners through mixed delivery.

 

About this Event

A Glow login is required to join this webinar in Teams.

It is for teachers and librarians working in SECONDARY school contexts.

It will be delivered over THREE DATES:

  • Session 1 – Tuesday 3rd November at 4.30pm
  • Session 2 – Thursday 19th November at 4.30pm
  • Session 3 – Wednesday 2nd December at 4.30pm

Long-term school closures earlier this year have highlighted the importance of developing children’s learning through a range of digital tools and resources. In this webinar we take a look at how children’s experience and knowledge of digital learning can be used to support their progress in Literacy and English. The sessions will provide practical guidance for practitioners to utilise a range of digital tools and resources which have been carefully selected to support the Literacy and English curriculum.

The webinar, run in partnership by Education Scotland Digital and Literacy colleagues, will consist of a series of three sessions. The first two sessions will be a tutorial style with examples of how aspects of listening, talking, reading and writing can be developed through digital learning. The third session will be interactive, allowing participants to share their own examples of practice or bring along an idea which they would like to develop through group discussion.

Upon booking your ticket a link will be issued to you to join the Developing Digital Learning in Literacy and English (webinars) Microsoft Team Site, within Glow; where the training will take place. This can take twenty four hours to process.

Register here

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27 October 2020 1630-1730, Developing Literacy and English Through Digital Learning in Primary Schools

This webinar is for practitioners working in primary school contexts and utilising digital tools to support learners through mixed delivery.

 

About this Event

A Glow login is required to join this webinar in Teams.

It is for PRIMARY practitioners.

It will be delivered over THREE DATES:

  • Session 1 – Tuesday 27th October at 4.30pm
  • Session 2 – Tuesday 17th November at 4.30pm
  • Session 3 – Tuesday 1st December at 4.30pm

Long-term school closures earlier this year have highlighted the importance of developing children’s learning through a range of digital tools and resources. In this webinar we take a look at how children’s experience and knowledge of digital learning can be used to support their progress in Literacy and English. The sessions will provide practical guidance for practitioners to utilise a range of digital tools and resources which have been carefully selected to support the Literacy and English curriculum.

The webinar, run in partnership by Education Scotland Digital and Literacy colleagues, will consist of a series of three sessions. The first two sessions will be a tutorial style with examples of how aspects of listening, talking, reading and writing can be developed through digital learning. The third session will be interactive, allowing participants to share their own examples of practice or bring along an idea which they would like to develop through group discussion.

Upon booking your ticket a link will be issued to you to join the Developing Digital Learning in Literacy and English (webinars) Microsoft Team Site, within Glow; where the training will take place. This can take twenty four hours to process.

 

Register here

07 October  2020 16:00 – 17:00, Supporting early level learners to digitally document their learning.

Afternoon Webinar – Wednesday 7th October  2020 4-5pm

Gmail login required.

In this introductory session, you will find out about a range of digital tools that exist to support learners to document their learning, by allowing them to creatively capturing their voice and interactions. The session will be brought to life by real examples of rich media footage captured by whiteboard recording, green screen, interactive digital books, lip-syncing and storytelling apps. This webinar also focuses on how the media can be collated collaboratively by practitioners and then shared with parents and carers via Glow. All other practitioners working with learners at any level are also welcome to join this webinar.

Please sign up via Eventbrite here.

07 October  2020 10:00 – 11:00, Supporting early level learners to digitally document their learning.

Morning Webinar – Wednesday 7th October  2020 10-11am

Gmail login required.

In this introductory session, you will find out about a range of digital tools that exist to support learners to document their learning, by allowing them to creatively capturing their voice and interactions. The session will be brought to life by real examples of rich media footage captured by whiteboard recording, green screen, interactive digital books, lip-syncing and storytelling apps. This webinar also focuses on how the media can be collated collaboratively by practitioners and then shared with parents and carers via Glow. All other practitioners working with learners at any level are also welcome to join this webinar.

Please sign up via Eventbrite here.

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The Literacy Academy: Forth Valley and West Lothian Regional Improvement Collaborative

The Literacy Academy is a central change idea of the Forth Valley and West Lothian Regional Improvement Collaborative Literacy Plan informed by the National Improvement Framework, the EEF toolkit and Hattie’s meta-analyses of “what works” in closing the socio-economic gap in literacy. Like many others, we have had to move our programmes on line since the start of the lockdown and, consequently, we’ve been running on-line training sessions and webinars for teachers in our four local authorities (Stirling, Clacks, Falkirk and West Lothian) as well as creating and collating resources. We’ve been delighted by the response.

Explore the full resource here

Dr. Janet Adam is the Literacy Academy Lead in the Forth Valley & West Lothian Regional Improvement Collaborativ​e

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Craigie High School’s Digital Journey during Lockdown

 

Craigie High School’s Digital Journey During Covid-19 Lockdown

Before Covid-19, Craigie High School was looking to improve digital engagement for both pupils and staff. We werein the process of self-evaluating and looking to work through the Digital School’s award just as Covid-19 closed our schools. We had created a Digital Teacher Learning Community and set up the Twitter page @digilearnchs in order to showcase examples of high-quality digital learning and teaching in our school. If we can take any positives from lockdown, it is that Craigie Staff have gone above and beyond to improve their digital skills at home. We are looking forward to returning to school and continuing on our journey to become a Digital School. We are definitely much further forward than we were in March!

At Craigie High School staff have found many creative ways to engage pupils remotely.

Many departments have set up individual class teams on Microsoft Teams, allowing them to access resources and talk to staff directly. Many departments make use of the assignments tool to track pupil engagement and mark homework this way. We also have whole year teams, where pupils are given more generic resources and information. This has allowed for a more collaborative approach from staff and sharing of good practice. This can also be seen on our Whole School Staff Support Team.

Online Support Hub

Resources have also been added to our Craigie Online Learning Hub for pupils who may have trouble accessing Teams or may prefer a different format. This is a public facing website which has information for both parents and pupils on how to support learning for home. This directs pupils to information about lost passwords etc, and has links to lots of useful revision websites and fun learning tools. This also has information for pupils and parents about how to cope with learning from home and some information about the importance of Health and Wellbeing at such a time.

Twitter

Craigie also continues to use Twitter effectively. Our whole school Twitter page keeps parents updated with all important information, as well as retweeting information from partner agencies and individual school departments,. Each department has their own twitter account and has been sending out many encouraging and positive comments along with essential information for parents and pupils.

The Art department, for example, have set up a 30 day Drawing challenge and tweet examples of excellent work from very talented pupils.

 

In Home Economics, pupils have been given lots of resources to learn practical life skills at home. There have even been differentiated lesson plans sent out for pupils to work on catering for their different dietary requirements. They have also used their Twitter to share examples of pupils finished recipes.

The Science departments continue to share many different exciting videos and resources for pupils. The Biology Department have set milk and volcano home experiments for pupils and a spring photography challenge. They have been sharing excellent examples of home learning from pupils on twitter.

Pupils have been making use of One Note in Science. They have made a poster about an animal and its habitat/diet etc using a rubric attached to their assignment in Teams. Some have done this digitally and uploaded it, others on paper. They’re all uploaded to their pages of our class notebook.

They have also been completing class work through OneNote, including an experiment setting up a pitfall trap and counting and identifying the insects they trapped the next day.

 

 

School Videos

Our lovely Support for Learning Dept sent out a video message on twitter to allow pupils to see a friendly face. We are currently working on a Prizegiving congratulations message and a staff wellbeing video.

Music and Drama

Our Instrumental service has set up teams groups for all instrumental pupils, they have access to video lessons, sheet music, discussions etc. Mrs Mackay has have delivered instruments and music to around 25 kids. Some of our pupils are performing outside at 8pm on a Thursday night, over the rainbow on 28th April drew a lot of participation and engagement. Our seniors are currently working on a music video which will go out in a few days. Drama pupils are engaging with the National Theatre online resources which are brilliant. Pupils have also engaged with creating online performance videos which have been edited together by one our wonderful music instructor, Mr Nicoll.

 

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RMPS

Unfortunately, the RMPS dept did not get the chance to take part in the Youth Philanthropy Initiative before the school closure. However, a ‘Your Community Fund’ challenge has been launched by the Wood Foundation. Our RMPS dept are working with pupils to create presentations explaining the reasons for donating money to a local Dundee Charity. S3 (new) have been set the task the task of writing a letter to someone they find inspirational. For example, they are able to choose to write to a key worker or even someone in their family. The returns have ranged from writing to a nurse at Ninewells hospital thanking them for their hard work and also a beautiful letter to a Gran who is also a care worker who has to come home and look after Grandad who is ill. I’ve been encouraging these pupils to actually send their letters of appreciation on.

Also for June, pupils in the BGE are going to be set this RMPS Superstar challenge.

Office 365 Tools

We have also been making use of Microsoft Forms and Insights on Teams to monitor pupil engagement and check for understanding. We have also been using other Office 365 tools through glow such as Sway to try and encourage digital literacy in our pupils.

 

 

Some staff have been providing live online lessons through Teams, whilst others have been videoing themselves teaching and uploading these to onedrive for pupils to access.

Online Classrooms

Staff have also created Online Interactive Classrooms. These have been updated with links to work, and sites along with showcasing pupil work. They look amazing!

And so much more…

Our Duke of Edinburgh candidates are still being supported remotely too, with teachers sending links and advice to help pupils to continue their award through challenging times.

Staff have also been working on continuing their professional development, and the introduction of a Craigie High Quality Learning and Teaching webpage is helping staff to consider new ways of teaching on their return to the classroom. They have also been attending Dundee City Council Online Digital Support Webinars. Finally, our amazing Parental Support Officer has delivered over 130 learning packs to pupils. She is joined by PTG’s PSWLAC and PTSFL in making weekly calls to pupils and their families. Food parcels are also organised on a daily basis for our families through other foodbank agencies.

 Twitter : @craigie_high and @digilearnchs

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Movie Makers at Banchory Primary

Like everyone with recent events we were thrust into a new way of delivering learning.  Normally at this time of the year Primary 7 are asked to prepare a short speech on a project of their choice.  The pupils are then asked to present these to their class, the selected pupils then present to the whole school before going forward to the cluster final in which they deliver their speeches to a judging panel.

The pupils were asked to continue with the project using the skills which had been taught previously in school, the pupils use iMovie, Do Ink Green Screen, GarageBand and clips to create their speeches.

This is one example of a Student Speech that was submitted. This student created a script, got into character, filmed himself in front of a green screen and then edited the video. I am sure you will agree the content is excellent and the theme for the video has made the video extra special.

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Digital Content – ThingLink, Google Earth and Google Tours

Wednesday 10th June 2020 at 1pm

Glow Login Required

This session is aimed at teachers, primarily in the Primary sector, but could be adapted to the wider BGE. The aim of the session is to demonstrate ideas for creating, delivering and assessing Digital Literacy using

  • Thinglink; it’s interactive image and video technology features
  • Google Earth to create stories, maps, voyages and quizzes
  • Google Tours a web-based storytelling tool which lets you easily create and explore stories and places around the world

Please be aware these sessions are for practitioners across Scotland who have a Glow account. Some products may not be available in your Local Authority, please check in advance.

Upon booking your ticket a link will be issued to you for you to join the Digital Skills Microsoft Team Site within Glow where the training will take place, this can take 24hours to process.

Register Now

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Spotlight on: Claire McVittie, Teacher of English from St Kentigern’s Academy in West Lothian, Forth Valley and West Lothian.

In this Guest blog post, Claire McVittie, Teacher of English from St Kentigern’s Academy in West Lothian, Forth Valley and West Lothian shares on how she has created a OneDrive page for English specialists to share resources and ideas.
As a Teacher of English, it’s safe to say that my skill set does not rest in technology. However, I am always keen to learn how to use it both inside and outside of the classroom in order to best support pupils and colleaguesI’ve been fortunate enough to work with staff who are always willing to share resources. I am a big believer in working together in order to learn about different teaching styles and different approaches. This said, given that there was only twelve of us in the department, our resource bank was somewhat limited. 
I was becoming increasingly interested in how much time Teachers of English could save, if only we worked together from a shared bank or resources.  On Sunday 11th September, I decided to do something about this, and created my OneDrive page (which I recently synced up with Teams).  The OneDrive page/Teams page is a safe place where people can share ideas, resources and expertise.  I need to add people through their Glow email address – feel free to get in touch if you’d like me to add you.

Currently, the page has 1,398 members; teachers ask to join daily and, most importantly, it gets people sharing resources. I am always impressed with the different resources I find on it and I am very grateful to everyone who has taken the time to upload their own work – we all know how long it takes to produces high-quality resources! 

Given the current climate, teachers are working harder than ever to ensure that our young people are receiving the best possible support in so many different areas. I am delighted to see that my OneDrive page is being utilised and is supporting people during these unprecedented times and can’t wait to watch it grow. 

Claire McVittie 

Twitter: @missmcvittie 

Email: claire.mcvittie@westlothian.org.uk

Instagram: @st_kents_english            

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Let’s all “Meet” up – in a virtual learning environment

Our school community are, on the whole, fairly confident and upbeat just now. To understand why I receive such positive views from across the parents, pupils and staff, I have to give a bit of background “pre-Covid”. Argyll and Bute Council have a great IT Team that have been promoting the use of G-Suite (Google Apps through Glow) for a few years now. We in Oban High School had a number of really enthusiastic staff who saw the potential of Google, ran with the training and led peer CLPL.

Around the same time we built a new school and added a Promethean Board to every classroom and gave every teacher an iPad, which they were trained to use alongside the Google Apps. This led to an explosion of online learning via Google Classroom.

The necessity to use the new technology and Google apps, along with regular training, ensured some of our staff were ready for the next step on our journey: live learning and teaching between two schools. As I lead both Oban and Tiree High Schools, it was fairly easy to merge the timetables to allow for the delivery of live lessons to and from each school. This increased the level of subject choice available to senior pupils and ensured effective leadership across the sea; consistent curriculum development and a wealth of shared CLPL.

Admin; Art; Biology; Business Management; Computing; Computer Games Design; Geography; Music Technology; Physics; and PE. Yes, PE! Theses subjects have all been delivered between our schools as part of the merged timetable or, as in the case of PE, to cover a staffing issue.

How does it work? Well, the experience gained by staff in Oban as a result of the introduction of the new technology and mainstream use of G-Suite certainly helped reduce much apprehension. All our teachers were used to setting up and using Google Classrooms (GCs), how to uploading assignments, marking work and conversing through GCs. Colleagues were used to creating Google Docs, Slides or Sheets and to saving and organising onto Google Drive. The only add-on was the move to live learning through Google Meet.

The  “new normal” our teachers faced was that some of the children’s smiling faces were now on a screen; their voices on a speaker. A class is still a class though. The exposition, the tasks, the Q&A and the plenaries are all shared experiences. When doing group work, the Tiree pupils can join an Oban group on the screen using a smaller speaker or vice versa. When they wish to ask a question, the teacher responds one-to-one over their headset. The cameras and screens allow the teacher to see every child in their (expanded) class at all times.

Concern with anything new is natural; safeguarding is a must. To begin with, we only used this with S4-6 classes. No class can exceed its SNCT maximum. IT support is on tap; a line manager is only a call away in the event of a behavioural issue; the office for a medical issue. We have now expanded this across the whole school at our teachers’ request.

What makes it work?

  • Investment by the Local Authority.
  • A core of experienced staff, keen to support colleagues and provide on-going training.
  • The purchase of good cameras, teacher headsets and pupil speakers to capture the whole class “look and feel” to make the pupils in the remote location feel genuinely part of the class.
  • The consistent and coherent use of one software suite of Apps: Google or Microsoft,
  • A safeguarding protocol to give confidence to staff engaging in live delivery.
  • Pupil buy-in – achieved by capturing the essence and experience of being in a larger traditional class environment, leading to an increased feeling of belonging to that class.

Learning and teaching from home has proved remarkably similar to what we already deliver, with the caveat that it has still been a very steep learning curve. The key difference is the need for safeguarding guidance to both staff and pupils; and a relaxation of accepted norms. We must be professional at all times in the way in which we interact with our pupils; we must have support in place for when the rules are not followed and we must keep stressing  that we’re all in a “class” when on online… but we also have to accept our four-legged friends may still appear on screen at times.

Equity for children? A recurring theme in this discussion but just as important for our staff. If there is not a device available or there are not enough devices in the home, every child, and every member of staff, is given an iPad, Chromebook and/or data Dongle. IT support is available to ensure every child can access the devices; teachers take children through getting onto Glow, Google Classroom or how to use any of the Apps. Each child is in a Clan (House system) and a pastoral team member liaises weekly with every vulnerable family or any pupil or parent who asks for help. We do Welfare and Engagement checks weekly. Those not engaging receive a call or a visit to the house where we offer pastoral, IT or curricular support for those who are reluctant to ask but need support; whether online, over the phone or on the door step – two meters distant. We’re here to help.

Delivering a virtual learning experience is not easy for anyone but it will get easier. As each day goes by we learn from our experiences and accept that change is good; or at least necessary. The “new normal” of remote learning in the future will not be new; just normal: the normality a consequence of us investing in both technology; from supporting and training our colleagues; and from teaching our children well in whatever manner we can. It works now; it will work even better with practice.

All support materials are uploaded and shared on the school website below,

http://www.obanhigh.argyll-bute.sch.uk/