BEd4 at UWS investigate STEM Central

Yesterday (31/01/12), I visited the University of the West of Scotland (UWS) in Ayr to complete a Technologies workshop with  BEd4. We began by discussing the misconceptions surrounding Technologies within Curriculum for Excellence, and spent the rest of the time looking at draft second level learning journeys for STEM Central. The students thought the website was easy to use, and the available ideas on the website made it easy to plan a lesson.

You can find the presentation here. (Glow log in required)

We ended by looking at some of the other resources available from Education Scotland to help with teaching Technologies:

STEM Central in Motion

Technologies Staffroom (Glow log in required)

Glow Science (Glow log in required)

Technologies area of the website

Exploring Climate Change

Weather and Climate Change

Working in the Energy Sector

STEM Central and Brain Computer Interfacing

As we approach publication of the new STEM Central context on Bioengineering which includes a learning journey on Brain Computer Interfacing, interesting scientific research featuring in the news today.

Does this raise the possibility of a prosthetic which allows communication for those with motor neurone disease, or stroke sufferers?

Mind-reading program translates brain activity into words

Science decodes ‘internal voices’

Outdoor Learning Cookalong with SSERC

On Thursday 8th March, SSERC will be hosting another Cookalong in their tremendously successful series of innovative and accessible CPD. This is a second opportunity to join in the Outdoor Learning Cookalong. Andy Boswell, one of the SSERC Development Officers, will be looking at practical ways of exploring the environment, including observation and sampling. There will be links to CfE Science experiences and outcomes as well as lots of ideas for cross-curricular links. SSERC is pleased to be able to offer a limited number of free resource boxes to support the Cookalong and the implementation of the practical activities covered.

If you would like to participate in this CPD event, please contact for an application form (deadline for submission is 29th February 2012). By confirming your participation, you will be entered in the ballot for a free box of resources which are specifically tailored to support the CPD activities on the day. Even if you are unsuccessful in getting a free box, you can still take part, whether you choose to source your own resources or not. Many resources are inexpensive and easy to source so we do not anticipate that this will be a problem. For those who wish to source their own kit you can find the recommended kit list on the SSERC Cookalong Glow group pages in due course.

You can make the most of this CPD by encouraging colleagues to help ‘cook along’ on this Outdoor Learning CPD session. Previous participants have arranged cluster schools to come together as well as colleagues from secondaries to assist with Primary-Secondary transition.

This course has no fee, all that is asked in return is that you and each of your colleagues fill in a short SSERC evaluation form in order that they can  further refine and improve this exciting way of delivering CPD for the future. Please note that by submitting your application to receive a box you are committed to attending the Cookalong on the 8th March.

And don’t forget…even if you happen to miss a Cookalong, Glow allows for meetings to be recorded and watched back at a time to suit you! You can see the Cookalong again from the “Recorded Meetings” link on the SSERC Cookalong Lab (Adobe Connect) area of the Noticeboard within the Glow Group.

To register with the SSERC Cookalong Glow Group please send your Glow username and school/centre to

Two awards now open for entries from language learning projects

Are you doing something innovative in your school that promotes language learning? 

SCILT, the Scottish Centre for Language Learning is highlighting two awards for language learning and encouraging Scottish educational establishments to apply.

The European Language Label is a prestigious award that has been running for many years and is recognised across Europe.  Applications are welcome from all stages of language learning and teaching, from early years to HE and adult education.

The British Academy Language Awards are a new set of awards open to secondary schools (11-16 yrs) and offer a substantial cash prize.

The application form and process for each award is very similar so SCILT suggests that schools who meet the criteria should consider applying for both.

The European Language Label is an award for innovative language-learning projects. It rewards creative ways to improve the quality of language teaching, motivate learners and make the best of available resources. To be successful, projects must demonstrate creative thinking and lead to improved teaching provision and learner achievement. They must be innovative, effective and replicable by others in the UK and other countries. If this describes your project, why not apply for an award?

Last year’s winners of this UK-wide award included two Scottish schools, St Roch’s Secondary School “skills for life and work” project won in the secondary catagory and Elgin Academy’s ‘Languages, local businesses and the community’ project, in which the school worked with local businesses in the north of Scotland and Highlands and Islands Enterprise, was Highly Commended by the judges.

Winning projects may use European Language Label on stationery and websites. In addition, all winners receive prizes of books, vouchers or teaching materials from the sponsors. The awards will be presented at a prize-giving ceremony on European Day of Languages on 26 September.  To access more information including an application form, please visit the SCILT website by clicking here.

The British Academy in collaboration with CfBT Education Trust has launched a new awards scheme to promote language learning and teaching in secondary schools in the UK. The British Academy Schools Language Awards is aimed at secondary schools in the UK and promotes language learning and teaching.

Two awards of £4,000 will be given to projects in seven UK regions, including Scotland – one for languages taught in mainstream secondary schools and one for complementary/supplementary schools. A National Award of an additional £4,000 will be given to the best overall project. Awards will be given to projects that promote language learning by finding creative ways to improve the quality of language teaching and motivating students.

Application for the Awards is now open and The British Academy will announce the winners in the autumn and present the prizes at a ceremony in London.

The deadline for applications is 2 March 2012. More information, including the application form and application criteria, is on on the British Academy website.

To access more information and download an application form please click here.

Good luck everyone!!!

Wise up Wednesday…..for parents!

Health and Wellbeing Event for Parents – Saturday 25 February 2012

 The Health and Wellbeing team at Education Scotland is hosting an event for parents on 25 February at Stirling Management Centre. The event will start at 10 am and finish at 1 pm and is free to attend. The aim of this event is to outline the health and wellbeing entitlements for Curriculum for Excellence.

 There will be lots of opportunities for discussion about the different aspects of the health and wellbeing curriculum and how parents can support their children with this. Partner agencies will also be attending to facilitate some group discussions. This event will be of interest to any parent with children in the early years, primary and secondary settings.

 If you are interested in attending this event please register with Anne-Marie Lamont.