Talking Stem Cells

21/02/12 – 2pm
Scottish Stem Cell Network (SSCN) have been running a series of interactive workshops on the topic of Stem Cells.

The workshops are delivered live by scientists enhancing the class room experience and providing a unique opportunity to explore science as a career. The scientists presenting this session are Dr Paul Shiels from Glasgow University and Dr Andy Downes from Edinburgh University.

Resources address key objectives by setting up scenarios to encourage Interdisciplinary learning specifically addressing areas of  Science, RMPS together with issues from Health and Wellbeing. The resources are designed to develop skills in group work within and across schools and critical analysis skills where the students will be assessing the moral and ethical issues associated with scientific advancements based on factual information validated and delivered by experts in the field.

The workshops are lead by a stem cell scientist, making use of a mix of presentations, interactive quizzes, video and web based activities and cover:

• A basic introduction into stem cells, the science.
• How can we use Stem Cells
• What does the future hold
• The Ethical questions
• Careers in the Stem Cell Industry

These workshop sessions are aimed at S5 Higher Human Biology/ Higher Biology classes.

This event will be coming live from Forth Valley College on the day.

Click here to sign up and join in! (Glow log in required)
Please ensure that you have contacted Henriette Laidlaw prior to the event to ensure that you have the relevent materials –

Schools TV from Dumfries & Galloway

Schools across Dumfries & Galloway are giving every other school in Scotland the opportunity to join them as they broadcast lots of fantastic outdoor activities through GlowTV.

So what’s planned:

Monday 20th of February @ 9:30 – 10:15
Photography can be done by anyone, anywhere. What’s around your school? In this session, live from their local environment, the pupils from the Gatehouse Primary School camera club & the Forestry Commision will show you how.

Tuesday 21st of February @ 9:30 – 10:15
What’s around your school? What’s the space used for? Join St Mungo Primary in their outdoor classroom. Find out how they use their space and what activities they enjoy. You will have the opportunity to post your comments and questions.

Thursday 23rd of February @ 09:30-10:15
Join the pupils of Shawhead Primary learning how to encourage birds to come to their school grounds. Find out some amazing facts about the birdlife in their environment and learn how to build your very own nestbox.

Friday 24th of February @ 09:30-10:15
Do you enjoy playing board games? If so, why not join Tom, Liz and the pupils from Loreburn and Applegarth as they find out which environmental or wildlife themed board game will earn their school the title of ‘The Dr Finlayson Challenge Winners 2012′.

Monday 27th of February @ 9:30 – 10:15
Podcasting can be done by anyone, anywhere. If you have listened to the radio and wished you could have a go, you can! Ae Primary are going to demonstrate how they would report on the environment around their school. What’s around your school? What’s the space used for? When you’ve seen a live demonstration from a BBC Producer, you will have the opportunity to create and share your own podcast.

Tuesday 28th of February @ 9:30 – 10:15
The epic journey of the goose. The answers are –

3.Stormy weather

But what are the questions?

Join Wigtown Primary, Caerlaverock Primary and Longyearbyen Skole in Norway in partnership with Brian Morrell WWT Caerlaverock and Elizabeth Tindall D&G Ranger Service.

Wednesday 29th @ 9:30 – 10:15
Review & Share Time. If you have taken part in previous programmes of this series come and join in with the review and sharing.

So sign up to join in and find out more here

Challenge Sectarianism – Accreditation Scheme for Schools

Nil By Mouth is a charity organisation which offers free services to all Scottish schools to challenge sectarianism. We provide workshops for all ages, primary and secondary.

They have recently launched the Nil by Mouth Champion for Change Accreditation Scheme. This accreditation will acknowledge and promote schools that are actively working to challenge sectarianism through the school and the wider community. Find out more on their National Glow Group.

Aberdeen Uni investigate STEM Central

Yesterday (08/02/12), I visited the University of Aberdeen to complete a Technologies workshop with BEd3 & PGDE students. 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, they liked how there were suggested learning intentions and success criteria and also felt that there was lots of ideas that they could adapt to their own lesson planning.

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

Falkirk – global citizenship showcase and school open day

Falkirk Council global citizenship showcase and school open day

Venue: Bo’ness Academy, Falkirk

9:30am – 3.00pm

This event will now take place on Thursday 17th May 2012

This CPD event offers practitioners and school leaders an exciting opportunity to visit Bo’ness Academy and attend Falkirk Council’s Global Citizenship Showcase Event.

Bo’ness Academy is an inspiring example of a school that has used international education as a vehicle to engage the whole school in global citizenship activities. Through the Comenius Programme and other well established links the school has developed a rich international programme connecting it to countries across the world including: The Gambia, The Netherlands, China, France, Germany and The Czech Republic.

A focus of the event will be to identify and share the practical lessons and ideas that have helped the school move forward on its journey including: 

  • Making global citizenship a key priority in the school and a focus for the implementation of Curriculum for Excellence
  • Using international links to explore important issues in a global context and to create engaging, meaningful and challenging learning experiences
  • Developing strong international partnerships which can be sustained and which have made an impact on every learner.

Participants will have the opportunity to meet and talk with the Head Teacher, International Coordinator, staff and learners and also tour the classrooms and school. Time will also be set aside for participants to reflect and share their own experiences.

Following the open day event, participants will also have the opportunity to attend Falkirk Council’s Global Citizenship Showcase event which will also be taking place in Bo’ness Academy from 4pm – 6pm. This will feature exhibitions and displays from leading organisations such as Eco-Schools and British Council and will showcase innovative global citizenship practice from many Falkirk schools.

How to book

To book, please contact Megan Farr, Policy Officer, Falkirk Council. Email: or Tel. 01324 506671.

 Places for the open day section of the event are limited so please book early to avoid disappointment. This is a free event!

Download programme for Bo’ness Academy Open Day >>

Resources for RME – “Amina” Muslim Womens Resource Centre

Amina – the Muslim Women’s Resource Centre is an organisation based in both Glasgow and Dundee that is willing to support schools in the teaching of Islam. They can offer a wide variety of services and workshops. They have worked with a number of schools in Dundee and have been well received and are looking to work with more schools across the country.

Please visit their website to find out more or look at the attached document.

 Amina Publication

Body Confidence Event

Centre for Confidence and Well-being

New Events

The next Centre for Confidence and Well-being event is with Jo Swinson MP who will talk about both her role as Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary group on Well-being at Westminster as well as the Body Confidence Campaign which was set up in response to the growing concern that photoshopped media images are affecting people’s confidence – particularly young women’s feeling about themselves. This FREE event is on Wednesday 15 February from 5pm to 7pm in the Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow. Please get in touch to register your interest as places are limited.

The Centre is also planning an event called Wanting, Watching and Well-being at the Aye Right! Book Festival on Wednesday 15 March at 7.30pm at the Mitchell Library in Glasgow. The speaker is Professor Agnes Cairn who wrote the recent UNICEF report on young people’s well-being in the UK which suggested that materialism may be a major reason why the UK scores much lower in child well-being than other countries. Tickets available through Aye Right!

Obama’s aide offers food for thought

One of Barack Obama’s key aides will head the line-up for the Scottish Government’s 2012 National Food and Drink Conference.

Dr Janey Thornton, the US Department of Agriculture’s Deputy Under Secretary for Food, Nutrition and Consumer Service, will discuss the benefits of collaborative working for both Scotland and America at the event in Perth on March 7.

Also joining Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead on the conference platform will be Dr Joao Breda from the World Health Organization. He will assess how Scotland is progressing in relation to some of the world’s top food and drink issues.

Completing the line-up at the event – which celebrates Scotland’s high quality food and drink sector and its many innovative businesses and producers – will be one of Scotland’s top chefs, Nick Nairn, as well as entrepreneur Fraser Doherty of SuperJam, who turned his teenage hobby into a successful business.

Click here to download an application for the event.

Launch of new edition of Amazing Things supports youth employment agenda

As Scotland’s youth unemployment figures continue to rise, a new edition of flagship publication Amazing Things highlights the range of opportunities available for young people through Scotland’s youth awards.

 The third edition of Amazing Things – a guide to the youth awards in Scotland, has been produced by the Awards Network, a forum of twenty-one providers of non-formal learning awards across Scotland.The Awards Network was established by Youth Scotland as part of the Scottish Government’s Volunteer Action Plan.

Amazing Things (Third edition) and the work of the Awards Network is in alignment with the Scottish Government’s strategy to tackle the national challenges of youth unemployment. Both recognise the significant role youth work has to play in supporting young people to become successful learners, confident individuals, responsible citizens and effective contributors.

As well as providing an index of the awards available for young people aged 12 – 25, the publication celebrates the significant voluntary contributions that young people are already making in their own communities. It makes a clear link between use of the youth awards and an increase in young people’s ‘soft’ skills and employability levels.

A key publication for youth work organisations, schools, colleges, universities, and employers, Amazing Things (Third edition), is available to download for free here.

National Galleries of Scotland – The Tesco Bank Art Competition

 The Tesco Bank Art Competition for Schools hopes to inspire children across the country with the National Galleries of Scotland’s superb collection of artworks.

This year’s winning works will be proudly displayed at the newly refurbished Scottish National Portrait Gallery.

The closing date is 4th May 2012.

See below for more details……Good Luck!!!

Nursery Theme – How Does Your Garden Grow?

Adolescent Health and Risk Behaviours Symposium

Adolescent Health and Risk Behaviours Symposium
Policy, Research and Practice

 Wednesday 29th February 2012

Royal Society of Edinburgh, George Street, Edinburgh

9:30am – 3:30pm

If you would like to register for a place, please complete and return this form to Renee Ingram (

Glow TV with the Scottish Space School – Ask an Astronaut

13th of June – 10am

Join us again this year for a fantastic opportunity to explore space travel and meet three exciting NASA guests all in one day. Find out more about what they’ve done, ask your own questions, take part in space quizzes and use this unique opportunity to enter the world of space exploration. Don’t miss out, you can sign up here now. More information about our exciting space guests and how you can all get involved in this Glow TV event will follow soon.

SCIPD Group Study Visit to the Netherlands

SCIPD Group Study Visit to the Netherlands

6th  – 10th March 2012

Theme: The Circular Economy – Sustainable technologies, design, economics and production for the 21st century

Education Scotland is inviting applications from secondary teaching staff for a group study visit to ‘s-Hertogenbosch in the Netherlands to investigate how cradle to cradle technologies and a circular economy can be used as a rich and stimulating context for interdisciplinary learning relating to sustainable development education and global citizenship. This visit has been arranged in partnership with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

The Scottish Government is committed to a low-carbon and zero-waste economy, and it is important to develop enterprise, creativity and STEM (Sciences, Technologies, Engineering and Maths) skills in young people to ensure the realisation of these ambitious plans for the future. The circular economy concept proposes the use of sustainable technologies and innovative design and production methods that minimise waste and reduce the exploitation of the earth’s precious resources. Industrial companies in the Netherlands are at the forefront of developing products that mimic natural processes and that are designed for disassembly and reuse.

Education Scotland, in collaboration with The Ellen MacArthur Foundation, is developing strategies for professional development around sustainable development education and the circular economy to encourage the setting up of communities of practice among practitioners in Scotland. These will provide opportunities for ongoing, localised support and collaboration as recommended by Teaching Scotland’s Future

It is expected that the visit to the Netherlands will include:

–       Orientation sessions with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and the Dutch curriculum agency SLO, to introduce participants to the model of the circular economy and brief them on the structure of the Dutch school system and curriculum

–       Visits to businesses which have adopted cutting-edge approaches to circular economy principles

–       Visits to schools to see how learning relating to the circular economy is being used as a theme for interdisciplinary learning around sustainability

Travel to the Netherlands will be on Tuesday 6th March, with three working days in the area, followed by return to Scotland on Saturday 10th March.

SCIPD funding will cover return flights to the Netherlands, airport to hotel transfers, and overnight hotel accommodation in ‘s-Hertogenbosch on a bed and breakfast basis.

Participants will be offered a pre-visit preparatory meeting, and a post-visit meeting to support follow-up activity and encourage wider impact.

This study visit is targeted at education professionals in Scottish secondary schools, particularly teachers of sciences, technologies, mathematics, business studies, economics and geography.

Expected learning outcomes

Participants will have an opportunity to:

  • Increase their knowledge of the circular economy concept, its implementation in industry, and its impact on education for sustainability
  • Investigate and discuss Dutch educational practice for sustainable development and its place in the curriculum
  • Share professional dialogue and reflection with their hosts and with colleagues in the group.

Upon returning from the study visit, participants will be expected to:

  • Produce reports for Education Scotland which demonstrate the impact on their professional practice of the study visit experience
  • Disseminate findings, share ideas and new approaches within their own establishment and beyond
  • Make changes to learning and teaching practices in their own professional context.

Applicants may wish to use the experience of the study visit towards professional recognition by GTCS or simply to enhance their professional understanding and practice.

Applications are invited from suitably qualified members of Scottish school or authority staff, who should complete the Netherlands group application form available below or by email from Nick Morgan at

The closing date for applications is Tuesday 21st Feb 2012

SCIPD Netherlands application form

Marine Scotland Science Glow Meet

Marine Scotland Science GLOW Meet

Everything you ever wanted to know about the marine environment but were too scared to ask….

11am – 12pm, Thursday 23 February 2012

Why are fish slimy? What is the weirdest sea creature? Which sea dad gives birth through its mouth? What yukky substance from the sea is used in lipstick?

Around one fifth of Scotland’s population live within a kilometre of the sea and our marine environment is one of the most diverse in the world – supporting over 48,000 species. Despite its importance in terms of our economy and biodiversity, we still know very little about marine life and the oceans remain one of the Earth’s last unexplored frontiers.

Join this interactive Glow meet for a whacky, fun and informative look at the science of our oceans and seas. This Glow meet will be aimed at learners in primary schools.  The school submitting the best questions during the Glow meet will win a visit by the Edinburgh Science Festival Marine Detectives Workshop, complete with rock pool and live creatures.

Click here to watch recording of this Glow meet>>

Further resources about the marine environment are available on Glow at:

Environment Online – a global schools network for sustainability

Environment Online – ENO is a global virtual school network for sustainable development.

Learning is student and problem-centred with both online and offline activities. At the end of each theme there is a campaign week during which the results of learning are raised in local communities and on the web. Students eventually become ambassadors for the environment of their respective local communities and regions. Regular themes and have been forests, climate change, ecological footprint and different cultural themes.

The success of the ENO Programme  lies in the fact that it is run by teachers.  Over 7000 from 105 countries are part of the ENO network. The ages of learners involved range from 12 – 18 years.


  • to deepen environmental themes at schools
  • to add global awareness and internationality
  • to educate for active citizenship
  • to get schools from developing countries as active participants
  • to learn basic skills in ICT
  • to make a change together

 Visit to find out more.

Climate Change Debate Glow Meet 3: Adapting to climate change

2pm – 3:15pm, Monday 6th February 2012

If the recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report is anything to go by then flooding, droughts, heat waves and extreme storms are likely to occur more frequently through to the middle of the century and beyond.

Are we powerless in the face of increasingly extreme weather or will human ingenuity, resourcefulness and spirit provide us with solutions to help us ride the storm? What steps are our government and public agencies already taking to prepare us for the changes coming? How can the poorest countries adapt with limited resources?

From floating houses to massive flood defence schemes there is already much work underway. Will it be enough? In this, the last in a series of three national Glow meets, learners will have a chance to air their views and put searching questions to our panel of experts including:

–          James Curran MBE, Chief Executive, Scottish Environment Protection Agency

–          Anna Beswick, Public Sector Officer, Adaptation Scotland

–          John Sharp, Schools Education Officer, SCIAF

Visit to register, post your questions in advance and join the Glow meet on the day. This Glow meet is aimed at learners in upper primary and secondary schools.

For resources and videos on climate change visit Weather and Climate Change, Exploring Climate Change, STEM Central and Climate Change on Glow.

Other events in the series included:

–          Glow meet 1: Our changing weather and climate view recording here

–          Glow meet 2: Climate science – evidence versus controversy view recording here

My Oil and Gas Career Website

If you’ve been working with the STEM Central contexts, or perhaps want to find out more about potential careers in the Oil and Gas industry for advising learners, OPITO’s new careers website has arrived at the right time. The site is a one-stop-shop for information on careers within the oil and gas industry. is aimed at anyone looking to find out more about entry routes into the sector and details the breadth of careers available. As well as providing information on training and development; the site offers a range of education tools as well as an ‘ask a professional page’ which allows users to post a question to be answered by an industry representative within 5 working days. Filmed case studies focussing on what it’s really like to work in oil and gas (both onshore and offshore) are provided by industry employees – ensuring the site is informed by those who have first-hand experience of working in the sector.

The ‘Future First Survey’ shows 60% of young people choose career advice, work experience or employment skills as issues the education sector should focus on to better prepare students for future careers. This illustrates the vital service will play in opening up the wealth of opportunities available to young job seekers.

If you are keen to help learners explore their future and plan pathways into oil and gas, or to enhance your understanding of the STEM careers on offer in this industry, why not begin the journey at .

Internet Safety Competition

Following the popular competition on internet safety in 2010 the Scottish Government will this year run a similar competition to coincide with Safer Internet Day on 7 February 2012.  The competition will run till 1 March 2012.  The theme for this year is ‘Connecting generations so that we can discover the digital world together safely’. The theme aims to encourage you to think about your internet use, and how other age groups might also use the internet.  Full details of the competition brief and internet safety information can be viewed here.

To view the Scottish Government Internet Safety Leaflet, click here.

Competition Brief

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.