Category: Aberdeen

family learning cyber aberdeen

Supporting Children in the Digital World: a user story from Aberdeen City Council Family Learning

This guest blog post was provided by the Community Learning and Development team at Aberdeen City Council.

Supporting Children in the Digital World is a four week course developed by CLD Family Learning Aberdeen to help parents keep their children safe online and develop strategies to manage device usage.


The course was created in response to a need identified by parents/carers who wanted to understand the technology their children using.

Over the course of four weeks we cover:

  • The technology children and young people are using
  • Digital footprints and being a good digital role model
  • Understand the risk and reward of devices
  • Know how to respond to negative online experiences
  • Discover age appropriate online safety resources
  • Learn about online safety strategies

The aim of the course is to ensure parents feel more empowered to manage device usage in their homes and give their children the skills to self-regulate and make good decisions while online.

We deliver this course to parents/carers in Aberdeen out in the community as well as online, to ensure we can reach as many parents/carers as possible.


One parent who attended the course said:

“I feel a lot happier that I now have the skills and information to tackle internet safety with my child, and will be a lot more relaxed having conversations which will in turn will benefit my child and make them more likely to approach me when they need support.”


We are further developing the course to create two one off information sessions, for those who cannot commit to the full four weeks. One of these one off sessions will focus on pre-school children and device usage and the other will be a more general information session condensing the content of the original course.

If you would like to know more, get in touch with the team by email:

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The Future’s Bright, the Future’s Blended.

As we move into this next stage of teaching during lock down and coming out of lock down it’s really important that we make the correct decision. In the Scottish Government’s reopening Schools guide as well as Local Government guidelines we have seen the term blended learning being talked about. What does this mean? We know that blended learning means that it uses a number of different pedagogical approaches including distance learning and prudential learning but what else does it incorporate?

Blended learning is a generic term given to a number of different approaches involved in synchronous and asynchronous teaching using online tools as well as being present in a classroom. This can have a number of different names and approaches:

Rotational learning, flexible learning and flipped learning or the flipped classroom. 

Rotational / blended learning is a: “…model (that) allows students to rotate through stations on a fixed timetable, where at least one of the stations is an online learning station. This model is most commonly in  primary schools because teachers are already familiar with rotating in centres and stations.

The ‘Flex blended learning’  is included in types of Blended Learning and its model is one in which… “a course or curriculum area  in which online learning is the backbone of pupil learning, even if it directs pupils to offline activities at times. Pupils  move on an individually customized, fluid timetable among learning modalities. One teacher is on-site, and students learn mostly in their school classroom, except for any homework assignments. The teacher or other adults provide face-to-face support on a flexible and adaptive as-needed basis through activities such as small-group instruction, group projects, and individual tutoring.”

Flipped Learning:

A flipped classroom is a type of blended learning where students are introduced to content at home and practice working through it at school.


It is important to understand the stages of Flipped learning and that activities that are accrued out at home are clearly and concisely linked to activities in the classroom. 

We we think of Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy might would immediately think of the  the standard triangle with the remembering at the bottom and creativity at the top,


Flipped Learning turns Bloom’s Taxonomy on it’s head:

We need to think of our learners carrying out those low order thinking skills outside of the classroom in their work at home so that when we are in the classroom we can work on their high order thinking skills. 


When we talk about “home work” we are talking about those activities that our learners can do it independently with if necessary and possible support from parents and carers. What format might these contain:

We could add to those activities at home , simple worksheets, Kahoots, quizlets etc. 

In our flipped classroom it is important to think of the activities that we are going to do:

  • The link between home and the classroom. 
  • Our central Repository – Where will they be? Drive, Classroom, Teams, Onedrive Etc.
  • Classroom management: How will I manage the class at home and in the class: Will they be working collaboratively at home? Will  I have differentiated groups or tasks? Will they work in pairs in the classroom? 
  • Content: How will I create content for my classes? When it comes to video, will I create my own video material or will I look for appropriate ones online? How can I create activities that are attractive and engage my learners?

These are just some of the areas that need to be considered when carrying out flipped learning.

So does it work? What are the benefits? Pupils can be learning at their own pace and with peers. Missed class or were ill. The class has online video material, so you can see what has taken place. Having done work prior to coming to class, learners prepared to contribute. It is a format which enriches Group work & projects. As teachers we can target those learners  who need help knowing that other learners can work in a more independent manner. A teacher instead of standing centre and at the front we are guiding our learners from the side “coaching” them. This format  benefits differentiation and work in small groups. 

As we all know our learners do not come in a “standard format” where one size fits all. As teachers and educators we all know that often certain approaches work well with certain learners. The situation we find ourselves in now as a profession requires us to think of the 4 “Cs”:

  1. critical thinking,
  2. communication,
  3. collaboration, 
  4. Creativity.
  5. Flipped Learning Apps  –  A few Examples 

Further reading

Video – What is Flipped Learning

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Flipgrid in the Remote P1 Classroom, Riverbank School, Aberdeen City


Flipgrid, a video discussion platform, is used for different purposes in the remote classroom. Among them, to mention a few that we use in P1 at Riverbank school, are the following:

● As an engagement tool. In my P1 class in Aberdeen with 17 pupils, we have started using Flipgrid in Google Classroom, in today’s literacy assignment, children were to show their favourite book and tell us why. They show up, talk about their book and express their emotions. They improve their oratory skills, the possibility of adding stickers, backgrounds and other aesthetic enhancers is also an attractive feature to them.

● As a prompt: in Registration I upload directly from Flipgrid to Google Classroom as a short video (called shorts in Flipgrid) which is used as a conversation starter and mind engaging with the learners. Next week they will be having again prompts during registration: Things that they have learnt during confinement, even and odd numbers, using the connective “but”, using the connective “and”, something I did was it a subtraction or an addition, can you represent it graphically? They watch the video and they can choose to answer with a video back or in writing.

● As an assessment tool: Another Flipgrid they had last week The instructions were to tell us about their favourite book, mention the title and the author and tell us the function of an illustrator. The two key resources which support teachers to plan learning, teaching and assessment are experiences and outcomes and benchmarks. With this Flipgrid activity, the children should be exposed to, recognise. Describe, and make use of:

○ Recognize book words: cover, author, illustrator, theme, title etc

○ Share likes and dislikes

○ Enjoy choosing stories

Finally, let me tell you that for language teachers it is a great tool as well. It allows for fantastic feedback on pronunciation. But not only that, it can be used for presentations, acting, interpersonal communication, making connections, language and cultural comparisons. It is the perfect space for the students to practise their speaking skills and share their thoughts. The teacher can set goals and reflect on progress. Moreover, the teacher can use language to develop critical thinking, investigate, explain, and reflect. Flipgrid allows for the 4 Cs of education in the 21st century to be developed and encouraged in the activities you set. It enriches the learning experience greatly.

Flipgrid has got many other uses and functions. I would be very interested in hearing your experience with this tool.

Pilar Arqued
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Digital Creativity in Aberdeen City

Aberdeen City Schools have been busy using digital tools to unleash their creativity.

Airyhall School have been creating their school using Animal Crossing and creating News Reports about the Battle of Culloden

Northfield Academy have been creating stop go animations

Seaton Primary School have creating analogue and digitally labelled pictures about artic animals

Heathryburn School having been collaborating using Jamboard

Have a look at the Twitter posts below,

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