The beginning of the end – Final Reflection

What a fast module that was! I have tremendously enjoyed Digital Technologies and have learnt a wealth of valuable information that I am looking forward to use and develop throughout my future teaching career. Back in September, I picked this module to gain a deeper understanding of digital technologies and explore the range of digital learning tools that are used within the modern classroom.

This module has allowed me to develop an array of skills; such as, working in a team, creativity skills and enhance both my communication and listening skills. Not only have I explored the various types of digital learning tools which can be incorporated within curricular areas. I have also recognised how important digital skills are within today’s society. It is vital the children in our class are digitally literate in order to gain success within their future careers. In our society today, digital technology is everywhere and applies to almost all careers, in one form or another. This reinforces the importance of embedding digital technologies within our curriculum.

Throughout this module, I particularly enjoyed the QR codes lecture. QR codes was an area of this module I had little knowledge of, however, in our final session I gained a very good understanding of the technology, its abilities and how to incorporate it within both education and wider society.  This was my favourite workshop and one I am eager to use throughout placement and within my future teaching career.

Although this module has been a really interesting subject, it was often challenging at times. However, I quickly learnt how to overcome my struggles and I felt myself growing in confidence each week.

Minecraft was a workshop that caused me concern. I had no prior experience or any knowledge of the game, other knowing of its popularity. Despite this, I quickly managed to understand the basic principles of the game and explore the areas in which it can be embedded within the curriculum.  It is an area that I do feel needs more work, but I fully understand its qualities as part of the overall teachings of Digital Technologies.

Throughout the module, I found it particularly helpful working in a team for many of the inputs. It allowed us to share ideas collaboratively and come up with the best possible activities that we all were equally content with. I believe I also built a stronger connection with my peers from working together each week, which also developed our communication skills.

Overall, this module was a tremendously positive experience and I fully believe my understanding of digital technologies has developed over the 12 weeks. Every input was beneficial and I can see myself including each and every aspect within different lessons throughout my teaching career. I also built on my ability to reflect, which I recognise as an important skill as a teacher. I feel my skills have certainly improved throughout this module, which I hope has been visible throughout my weekly blogs.

This is just the beginning of my digital technologies journey!

Week 10 – QR codes & outdoor learning


For our last week in digital technologies, we looked at QR codes and outdoor learning. A QR code is defined by “a pattern of black and white squares that can be read by a smartphone, allowing the phone user to get more information about something. QR Code is an abbreviation for quick response code” (Collins, 2019). As well as discovering the benefits of QR codes we looked at the positive impacts that outdoor learning can have on children.

Having experienced an outdoor lesson on placement, I do believe children become more engaged working outside and having a different setting from the day to day classroom. Learning and teaching Scotland states, “Outdoor learning experiences are often remembered for a lifetime”. This is because it allows children to see certain topics they are learning about in real life contexts (Learning and teaching Scotland, 2010).  As well as giving children the opportunity to work collaboratively, outdoor learning also develops a range of children’s skills. These skills include:

  • Critical thinking
  • Personal safety
  • Promotes healthy lifestyles
  • Promotes inclusion and develops communication

The task

Our task today was to create a treasure hunt using QR codes. For this task, I worked alongside 2 of my peers. Personally, I have never worked with QR codes, however I was amazed by how quick and easy it was to make one. The QR generator was so easy to operate and had a range of ways you could communicate information. As a group, we decided to create a maths treasure hunt, we thought this would be a fun activity for children which allowed them to use and develop their problem-solving skills. We had 6 codes all together and placed them in different locations throughout university and gave another group the opportunity to give it a go. Below are our questions from each code:

Code 1: I am thinking of a number… I am an even and squared number and you’ll find me in the 8 times table

 Remember your answer and go to the reception area to find your next question

Code 2: From your previous answer:

  • Add on 6
  • Divide by 10
  • Finally, double this number

Take note of this number and head to the union shop to complete the next question.

Code 3: In the shop… your previous answer is how many bananas you have in your basket. How many bananas will each person get if there are 7 people in the group?

Go to student union.

Code 4: ?, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128, …

What is the 8th term in this sequence? *note ‘?’ stands for previous answer!

Go to the revolving doors for your next question.

Code 5: I am the number from your previous sequence. Divide me by 8. Add  3 to me and divide me by 7.

Return to the student union for your final question.

Code 6: Finally… what is the difference between me and the number of wooden chairs in the student union.

The final answer was 2

We made our task around second level maths and linked it to the following experiences and outcomes:

  • I can explore and experiment with digital technologies and can use what I learn to support and enhance my learning in different contexts. TCH 1-01a
  • Having determined which calculations are needed, I can solve problems involving whole numbers using a range of methods, sharing my approaches and solutions with others. MNU 2-03a

Once we completed our treasure hunt and placed the different codes throughout university, we swapped with another group where we were given the opportunity to try out each others activity. The other group gave us positive feedback and noted how the thought children would not only really benefit from but it is also an activity they would extremely enjoy. However, on reflection one downside to this task was timings. It took our group just under 2 hours to fully complete our task, yet it didn’t take a lot of time for the other group to complete. As a teacher, I understand time is vital and it is important to ensure the tasks we are preparing take up a good chunk of the lesson and keep children busy for a good amount of time.

I really enjoyed todays lecture and been given the opportunity to work with QR codes. I believe children would really enjoy a lesson using QR codes – they are a great addition to the classroom which help to develop children’s ICT skills. They can also be used cross-circular in a range of ways. It makes a lesson more thrilling for children and allows them to work collaboratively.


Overall, I think this was my favourite session of the whole module and something I am excited to incorporate within the classroom. Additionally, I have discovered the range of benefits outdoor learning can have on children and their wellbeing and it is an area of teaching I look forward to gain more experience within.


Learning and Teaching Scotland (2010) Curriculum for Excellence through outdoor learning. (Online) Available: [Accessed 6th April]

Collins Dictionary (2019) QR Code [Online] Available: [Accessed 6th April]

Education Scotland. (n.d.) Curriculum for Excellence.[Online] Available: [Accessed: 6th April 2019]

Week 9 – Games based learning


With almost 86% of 5-7 year old children and 90% of 8-11 year old children using gaming devices regularly (Ofcom, 2011), we as teachers need to find a way to effectively incorporate game based learning within our classroom.  In today’s lecture we were given the opportunity to explore the application ‘Minecraft’ and discover its educational benefits. This may sound like a very fun, interactive lecture, however coming from someone who has never played Minecraft I began todays lecture feeling very stressed out and not knowing what to do.

Today’s learners have grown up in a world that is so different from previous generations. As society changes our education system changes and what we teach children may be considerably different to what their parents learnt in school. With video games being a part of a huge number of children’s everyday lives, it is beneficial to incorporate areas of games based learning within our classroom. Bray (2012) highlights that games should not just be used as a reward for early finishers, it is important we, as teachers, look at games in an educational approach. I was very interested for today’s session as I did not have a wide range of knowledge about games based learning prior to todays lecture.

Beauchamp (2012) states there are a wide range of transferable skills that children develop through the use of games based learning, these skills include:

  • Strategic thinking
  • Planning
  • Communication amongst peers
  • Group decision making
  • Data handling skills

The task

Today we specifically looked at the educational version of Minecraft, which we were asked to download onto our own devices prior to the session. Our task was to either work independently or in small groups and come up with lesson plans around Minecraft. Personally, I worked in a group of three which I really benefited from as one of my group members had a lot of experience when it came to Minecraft from playing it when he was younger. We began by playing the game and experimenting with the different features available. This really helped as it allowed us to get a feel for the game and gather ideas for our lesson plans.

For our task, we looked at a range of different curricular areas and as a team came up with fun, interactive lessons. Below I have listed a summary of our lesson plans:

Health and Wellbeing: Pupils would select survival mode; the aim is for the children to learn how to ‘survive’, they have to fend for themselves by building shelter and find their own food by killing the animals on the game. This provides protein for the character which gives them energy. This lesson would allow children to work collaboratively and develop their problem solving skills by deciding what tasks to carry out in order for their character to ‘survive’.

Creative writing: Pupils could either work independently or in groups and create a story with a series of events they want the figure on Minecraft to do. Pupils could then be given the opportunity to swap stories and carry out the events of another groups creative story. This lesson would allow children to challenge each other and work together to complete the set tasks.

Expressive arts: Children can show their creative skills on Minecraft by discovering the range of features that are available on Minecraft , e.g. build, hunt etc.

We linked our lessons to the following experiences and outcomes:

  • When listening and talking with others for different purposes, I can exchange information, experiences, explanations, ideas and opinions, and clarify points by asking questions or by asking others to say more. LIT 1-09a
  • I can explore and experiment with digital technologies and can use what I learn to support and enhance my learning in different contexts. TCH 1-01a
  • Through taking part in a variety of events and activities, I am learning to recognise my own skills and abilities as well as those of others. HWB 1-19a
  • Through observing and recording from my experiences across the curriculum, I can create images and objects which show my awareness and recognition of detail. EXA 2-04a

At the end of today’s lecture, we were also given the opportunity to share our lessons with our peers in the class. This was very useful as it was interesting seeing the different ideas and curricular areas other groups came up with. It was also beneficial gaining feedback from other groups as it helped to indicate areas which perhaps need a bit more work.

Although I believe there are clear benefits to introducing game based learning within the classroom, there can also be some downsides. Children may not fully focus on the task set as they might see it as an opportunity to play around with their friends and not completely focus on the set task. To overcome this, I would make the rules very clear for children and ensue they are aware of the instructions while regularly checking they are following the task.


Overall, I found this session very beneficial as beforehand I was not certain how games could possibly enhance children’s learning. However, after exploring the benefits and given the opportunity to create lesson plans this is something I will be eager to incorporate within curricular areas as I believe it would be something children would extremely enjoy and benefit from. Despite thorouly enjoying this week’s session, I also found it very difficult and hard to get to grips with I believe I need more practice with applications like mine craft, therefore I will continue to develop my learning on Minecraft to ensure I am fully prepared and can teach my class to the best of my ability.


Beauchamp, G. (2012) ICT in the Primary Classroom: From Pedagogy top Practice. Pearson.

Ofcom. (2011) Children and parents: media use and attitudes 2011. [Online] Available: [Accessed: 29th March 2019].

Bray, O. (2012) Playful Learning: Computer Games in Education. [Online] [Accessed: 29th March 2019].

Education Scotland (n.d.) Experiences and outcomes. [Online] Available: (Accessed 29th March 2019)

Week 8 – Animation; Part 2


Today’s session was the second animation workshop.  However, as I missed a previous session due to weather conditions this workshop was also a catch-up session for those who missed previous assessment tasks. Therefore, due to this my group and I created our animation out-with university. Despite this we still gained a lot of valuable skills and information regarding the benefits of using animation as a learning tool within the classroom.

As mentioned in last week’s blog, my group and I decided to create our animation on volcanoes using the istopmotion app. We decided last week we wanted to also include fun, interesting facts on volcanoes within the video to make it both educational and interactive. As well as creating our animation we evaluated the skills we used and developed while working as a team and deepened our understanding of how animation can enhance children’s learning within the classroom.

The task

To create our animation, we decided we were going to use paper mache as it is a creative activity which I think children would love! Throughout the week, we purchased the necessary materials and began to create our animation. I must admit, it was a lot harder and more complex than it looked! Trying to get the camera in a good position where everything could be seen and keeping it in that position was the first problem we faced.

Once we felt comfortable with our positioning, we began to create our animation. We started with a bottle of coke that we built the paper mache around as by the end of the animation our aim was to put mentos in the coke, giving the impression of the volcano erupting.

We worked efficiently as a team of three and ensured all roles were equally shared as there was a lot we had a lot to do. One person was building the paper mache, another person was looking up interesting facts while another person was creating the animation by taking a picture for each movement. Occasionally, we would alternate tasks to ensure everyone got the chance to do each.  Creating the animation proved relatively difficult as we didn’t know how many pictures to take as the process of making the paper mache was quite long and complex. After looking at examples on moodle and YouTube videos relating to animation, we soon realised in order to have a successful animation you must take photos of every movement, despite how long it would take. The process was time consuming but we got there in the end! After carrying out this task I do believe a task like this within the classroom children would love. It is also a chance for them to develop skills such as problem solving. We related this task to the following experiences and outcomes:

  • I can explore and experiment with digital technologies and can use what I learn to support and enhance my learning in different contexts. TCH 1-01a

Although our group received positive feedback from both peers and our lecturer, we do feel there was room for development. I believe we could have been more prepared for this task, as when it came to making our animation we still weren’t sure how we were going to do certain things. Preparation is a skill which is fundamental as a teacher and I do believe this is something I have improved and gained valuable tips on throughout the course so far.

When reflecting on the process of creating our animation and the skills we used while working as a team. Communication was a skill that was crucial. Working as a team can sometimes be stressful, however with effective communication it limits the chances of mistakes being made and frustration being caused.

Another key skill which I believe was essential for this task was listening. It is so important, when working as a team to listen to everyone’s thoughts and ideas and to help one and other in order to achieve the best final product. Personally, as a team we listened to everyone’s ideas and managed to take bits from each person in order to achieve a final product we were all equally happy with.

There were 3 people in my group, which I believe was a good number of people to work with as someone always had a role to carry out. Reflecting on this task I believe any more than three people would have been quite stressful at times. In a classroom setting, for an activity like this, I would make a maximum group size of 3 people to ensure everyone is involved. It is often easy for children in a big group to lose focus and interest which results in them sitting back and letting others do the work.


Overall, I really enjoyed this task and believe that I benefited from it. I believe animation is an effective tool that helps to engage pupils. It also allows children to work effectively as a team and develop both their communication and listening skills. As a developing student teacher, this is a learning tool I will be eager to include throughout lessons.


Education Scotland. (n.d.) Curriculum for Excellence.[Online] Available: [Accessed: 22nd March 2019]

Week 7 – Animation; Part 1


Today’s workshop was a very fun, interactive task looking at animation and the different ways in which we can incorporate it within a range of curricular areas. This topic was introduced today and is going to be explored more next week when we will be creating our own animation. Animation ‘breathes life into something that wouldn’t normally move’ (Moving Image Education, 2016). Throughout primary school, I remember being introduced to animation and exploring an application called ‘purplemash’. I always remember extremely enjoying using animation as it allows you to be fully creative and create a range of different projects which was why I was exceptionally looking forward to today’s task.

Animation is an incredible tool which can be used to enhance learning. According to Bertrancourt (2005), there are 3 different components of animation which helps to enhance learning. The first element which stood out to me was how animation intensifies children’s visual representations. Secondly, it demonstrates processes to children as there are a range of steps needed to successfully build an animation together and, lastly, it provides an interactive element for children.

Animation is also proven to be effective in supporting children with challenging behaviors (Beauchamp, 2012). As animation involves a lot of steps it is likely to cause frustration. However, if mistakes are made they are extremely easy to fix. This allows children to play about with different features and when something doesn’t go to plan it can be easily resolved, which avoids frustration and limits insecurities within children’s learning.

The task

Today, we looked at another two animation applications called ‘istopmotion’ and ‘puppetpals’ which I have personally never used before. After exploring both applications the major benefits of using animation within the classroom were clear.

Firstly, my peers and I looked at the app ‘puppet pals’ and explored the range of features available. This app allows children to be creative with a choice of characters and scenes. I enjoyed looking at this app, however, I think it would be more beneficial for children in early and first level who are still developing their skills within ICT, as it is quite restricted in what you can do and is fairly easy to operate. I believe it can act as a great tool to introduce animation to children and allow them to show their imaginative skills within their learning.

We then looked at ‘istopmotion’, which personally I found more enjoyable as there were more features available and it allows you to be totally creative. The app allows you to take a series of photographs and also include voice recordings. My peers and I created a short animation clip while using a bendy figure that were available during the class. Discovering both these apps was extremely beneficial as it allowed us to explore the features and become familiar with the app prior to next week’s session where we will be creating our own animation!

I linked todays activities to the following experiences and outcomes:

  • I explore and discover different ways of representing ideas in imaginative ways. TCH 0-11a
  • I can explore and experiment with digital technologies and can use what I learn to support and enhance my learning in different contexts – TCH 1-1a. 


Having the opportunity to work collaboratively and look at both these apps today was very valuable as it allowed us to see the clear benefits of using animation to enhance learning within the classroom. As a developing student teacher animation is something I will be eager to include within many curricular areas as it is a fun, interactive task that I believe children would not only enjoy, but also benefit from.

For next week’s task, I decided to work alongside two of my peers. After looking at both the applications today, we created a mind map of ideas we had for our animation as we wanted to ensure we had all the necessary materials prior to next week’s session. In the end, we have decided to create our short animation clip around volcanoes, as within this module so far our previous tasks have mainly been targeted towards literacy and math’s.

Overall, today’s task was extremely beneficial and really opened my eyes to the world of animation and how it can be incorporated within the classroom effectively. I am looking forward to considering animation in more depth next week!


Beauchamp, G. (2012) ICT in the Primary School: From Pedagogy to Practice. Pearson.

Moving Image Education website: [Online][Accessed: 19.3.19]

Jarvis, M. (2015) Brilliant Ideas for Using ICT in the Classroom: A Very practical Guide for Teachers and Lecturers. [Accessed: 20.3.19]

Scottish Government (2019) Curriculum for Excellence Technologies – Experiences and Outcomes. (Online) Available: (Accessed: 20th March 2019)


Week 6 – iMovie


This week’s session was the fourth and final assessment task for this module. For today’s workshop, we were looking at the application ‘iMovie’ and given the task to create a movie linked to internet safety. Personally, I had previously used this throughout high school so I felt very comfortable as it was an app that I found simple to operate and was familiar with using. I was looking forward to this session to explore the different ways in which iMovie can be used to enhance learning within the classroom as well as looking at internet safety and the dangers that children can be faced with while using the internet.

With the rise of technology in today’s society the children we are teaching today need to be equipped with the essential digital skills in order to increase their chances of success. This includes having knowledge on a range of digital devices such as, tablets, smartphones and laptops. (Weiss, 2007). iMovie  is a great application which allows children to become more aware of using I pads as well as developing their ICT skills and demonstrating their creative ability through making a movie. This can also be used within a range of curricular areas and will allow children to put their learning into practice.

Additionally, I movie, when used successfully, is suggested to help raise attainment within schools. There is a wealth of evidence that suggests that effectively using digital equipment and resources within lessons helps to “raise the speed and depth of learning in science and mathematics for primary and secondary age learners” (The Scottish Government 2015). As well as having the necessary knowledge and skills, we need to ensure children are using the internet safety and are aware of the dangers.

With technology being a huge part of the curriculum today it is our job, as teachers, to not only provide children with the essential technological skills but more importantly we need to expose children to the dangers which can be faced when using the internet and social media apps. Beauchamp, 2012 states, “e-safety is not about restricting children, but about educating them”. We cannot control whether children chose to have social media accounts. Instead, we should educate them to make the right choices by making sure their accounts are private and ensure they know to speak to an adult or someone responsible if they ever feel unconformable. Personally, I don’t think enough is being done throughout schools to promote e-safety and it is an area I would want to stress as a teacher.

The task

Prior to today’s workshop, we were asked to arrange ourselves into groups. I worked alongside two of my peers. Before getting started, we created a mind map of various ideas we had and what we wanted to include in our movie. I found this extremely beneficial as it allowed us to bring our ideas together and plan ahead. We decided one of the members in our group would lie about his age and start speaking to a girl on a popular social media app, snapchat. The video started off with me and another group member talking about snapchat expressing our different opinions towards it. In the video my peer (Jenny) was eager to create an account, despite being too young. However, on the hand I (Sophie) was trying to put her off the idea as I was aware of the dangers involved. An example being the app allows you to see people’s location which was a feature of the app we decided to include in the video. In the video, Jenny then decides to get Snapchat, despite knowing the risks and starts talking to a boy called Adam who claims he is the same age as her. Adam then asks to meet up with Jenny after a few conversations, Jenny goes ahead with this despite the risks. Adam turns out to be a lot older than he said, reinforcing the dangers of social media.

Our overall aim for this video was to emphasise to children how easy it is for someone to lie and pretend to be someone else on social media. We hope children seeing a video like ours reinforces the dangers and limits the chance of them putting themselves in a dangerous situation, similar to the one acted out in our video! We also included striking facts at the beginning of our video to grab the audiences attention.

We linked our iMovie to the following experiences and outcomes:

  • I can explore online communities demonstrating an understanding of responsible behaviour and I’m aware of how to keep myself safe and secure” – TCH 2-03a.


Overall, we were happy the way our iMovie turned out. Although, as with most things, there is room for improvement and there are definitely things I would do differently if I was to use this application again. For example, I would manage my time more effectively and plan out every scene before starting. Although we did create a plan, it was not very detailed which resulted in us changing things throughout the video. This proved to be quite stressful as we had to go back and re-film some scenes to ensure the video flowed nicely. I did enjoy exploring this app and it is something I would consider using in the classroom one day as I would love to see the children’s ideas and what they come up. It also allows children to work collaboratively and use their imagination. Additionally, I gained valuable information regarding online safety. As a teacher, this is an area I will put stress on within my classroom. I will be sure to teach the importance of internet safety and educate the children on how to stay safe online and avoid dangerous situations.

Below I have attached our final iMovie:




Weiss, D. (2017) Time to Know blog [Online] Available: [Accessed: 6th March 2019]

Beauchamp, G. (2012) ICT in the Primary School: From Pedagogy to Practice. Pearson.

Scottish Government (2015) Literature Review on the Impact of Digital Technology on Learning and Teaching (Online) Available: (Accessed 6th March 2019)

Education Scotland (n.d.) Experiences and outcomes. [Online] Available: [Accessed 13th February 2019]

Week 5 – Book creator


Today we were given the chance to explore the app ‘book creator’. This is an application that can be downloaded onto an electronic devices, such as an I pad, which allows you to create an eBook. The oxford dictionary defines eBooks as “An electronic version of a printed book which can be read on a computer or a specifically designed handheld device” (Oxford Dictionary, 2019). The app allows children of all ages to transform their favourite book or nursery rhyme into an eBook, while allowing them to demonstrate their creative skills. Our task today, was to use the I pads and create a summary of a children’s book or nursey rhyme, of our choice, using the book creator app. Using I pads within different curricular areas allows children to work collaboratively and develop their communication skills with others. I was looking forward to this session as I was excited to explore the app and become aware of the major benefits of using electronic devices within the classroom.

After furthering my research on the use of I pads within classrooms, the research and feedback gathered was mainly positive. A report that stood out to me was a research task conducted by the University Of Hull (2012). Their aim was to investigate the impact the use of personal tablet devices has on both teaching and learning within schools. Some of the key findings include;

  • Over 90% of pupils believed using the I pads within lessons enabled them to learn more.
  • Using I pads in classrooms engaged both teachers and pupils equally.
  • “The use of iPads has enabled many more students to express their creativity, to engage in peer assessment and in group critique” page 10
  • 75% of parents stated that their children were more willing to complete their homework tasks (Burden et al, 2012)

Despite this positive feedback, there are also negative findings towards the use of I pads within classrooms. It is thought that when using electronic devices within lessons some children see it as an opportunity to carry on and not fully focus. Children can be easily distracted when using I pads within the class especially when working alongside friends. Therefore, as a teacher I would carefully monitor lessons whereby I pads are being used and make the rules clear to ensure children are consistently engaged.

The task

For today’s task, we were given the opportunity to work either independently or in pairs and become familiar with the app book creator, by re-creating a popular children’s story or nursery rhyme. I decided to work in a pair for this task, which I believe benefited me as it allowed us to share ideas and link our skills together. We decided we were going to focus on the nursery rhyme ‘Incy Wincy Spider’. As this is a fairly short nursey rhyme we decided to include the full rhyme within the e-book. We linked our e-book to the following experiences and outcomes:

  • I explore sounds, letters and words, discovering how they work together, and I can use what I learn to help me as I read and write. (E NG 0-12a / LIT 0-13a / LIT 0-21a )
  • I enjoy exploring and choosing stories and other texts to watch, read or listen to, and can share my likes and dislikes. (LIT 0-01b / LIT 0-11b)
  • I can demonstrate a range of basic problem solving skills by building simple programs to carry out a given task, using an appropriate language.TCH 1-15a
  • I can explore and experiment with digital technologies and can use what I learn to support and enhance my learning in different contexts. TCH 1-01a

We started off by choosing our background colour which we ensured was accessible for all children as research has suggested a plain white background makes it difficult for some children to read. We then created our cover page, which included our title in large font and a picture of a spider. We simply then added different pages including sound, pictures and drawings making our book multi-modal and more interactive for children. Multi-modality is an aspect we have already explored the benefits of within this module which is why I am eager to include it as it is proven to be incredibly engaging for children. Finally, we added activities and questions at the end of the book which would allow children to reflect on their reading and challenge themselves. When watching the activity on the app it allows you to include audio of someone reading out the book, which is a great feature for children to use. However, the video I have attached unfortunately doesn’t include the narrator feature.


Overall, I found this app very simple to navigate and enjoyed exploring the different features which can be incorporated throughout the book which make it increasingly more interactive and enjoyable for pupils. This app is definitely something I want to use in the future as I would love to see the different things children create. I think I pads are a great learning tool for pupils which allows them to develop both their literacy and ICT skills while working collaboratively.


Oxford Dictionary. (2019) [online] Available: [Accessed: 1st March 2019]

Burden et al. (2012) iPad Scotland Evaluation. [Moodle Resource] Available: [Accessed: 1st March 2019]

Education Scotland. (n.d.) Curriculum for Excellence.[Online] Available: [Accessed: 1st March 2019]

Week 4 – Scratch Jr; Introduction to coding


Today we were given the task to create a lesson on Scratch Jr. Scratch Jr is “an introductory programming language that enables young children to create their own interactive stories and games” (ScratchJr, n.d.). With the rise of technology over the years, this application has become increasingly popular and is commonly being introduced to children in early and first level.

Coding is becoming a key skill in our modern society which is why it is vital we begin to teach children the basic principles in early level. Thus, giving them the necessary skills and understanding to be developed throughout first and second level and perhaps used within their future careers.

Introducing this application allows children to either work independently or in groups while using their imaginative skills to compose a computer game of their choice. Coding also involves a different way of thinking and allows children to both use and develop their problem solving skills (Naughton, 2012)

The task

Today, we worked independently and created a lesson of our choice on Scratch Jr. Personally, I have never used Scratch Jr before and have little to no knowledge regarding coding. Therefore I decided it would be beneficial to begin by exploring the app and looking into the features available before creating my lesson. I also looked at some of the examples on moodle for some inspiration as I wasn’t sure exactly what I wanted to include. From this, I decided to incorporate math’s, in particular, adding and subtracting as I thought it would be valuable for children in early and first level, where this application frequently used.

For my first slide, I used the road background and added 5 characters. I then programmed for the characters to cross the road at the same time. In the corner of the screen, I had the Scratch character and programmed him to say “How many people crossed the road”. I then put a 45 second timer on before the answer was reveled in order to give pupils enough time to count in their own pace.


After completing the first page I felt more comfortable with using the app and continued to explore the range of interactive features. For the next slide, I included a background of a stage. I then added 9 people to the stage and programmed them to jump up and down to give the impression of them dancing. Again, I gave a 45 second break, before the scratch figure revealed the answer.


I then continued to complete this process for another 2 slides while using different backgrounds. The 3rd page was under the sea where I programmed 4 fish to swim across and the 4th page was a basketball course where I programmed 2 people to be running around playing basketball.


I linked this activity to the following experiences and outcomes:

  • I have explored numbers, understanding that they represent quantities, and I can use them to count, create sequences and describe order. MNU 0-02a
  • I use practical materials and can ‘count on and back’ to help me to understand addition and subtraction, recording my ideas and solutions in different ways. MNU 0-03
  • I understand that sequences of instructions are used to control computing technology. TCH 0-14a
  • I can develop a sequence of instructions and run them using programmable devices or equivalent. TCH 0-15a

I found todays workshop extremely beneficial and really opened my eyes to the importance of coding. Scratch Jr is a great, simple application which allows children to build their understanding. With the amount of computer and video games children in this generation play, I think it not only important for them to understand the process behind them but also a fun, interactive task that I believe they would really benefit from.

Coding is an essential skill which I believe needs to be incorporated more in schools in order to give children the capability needed to be successful in our digital society. As a developing student teacher, Scratch is an application I will be eager to incorporate throughout many curricular areas.












Week 3 – Multimodal texts


This week was a fun filled session focusing on multimodal texts, while looking at the ActivInspire and discovering the range of tools which can be used within the application to make it multimodal. In order to make a text multimodal it has to include at least 2 aspects of the semiotic system. There are 5 aspects in total which include:

  • Visual
  • Audio
  • Linguistic
  • Gestural
  • Spatial

As stated by Beauchamp (2012, p8) “The multimodality of technology is another reason to use it, as it allows teachers to present an idea in a variety of different ways to help pupils understand it.” I believe multimodal is an essential tool to maintain children’s engagement within the classroom and an concept which can be used for any curricular area in a range of different ways. The application we explored today, ‘Activeinpire’, has a great range of features which can be incorporated within activities, making them multi-modal.

The task

ActivInspire is a popular tool used by teachers in order to enhance children’s learning through the use of interactive tools. It is an application which can be transferred to the interactive board and is seen in the majority of today’s modern classrooms. It is a versatile tool which can be used for any stage and a range of curricular areas. The application is simply defined as “ActivInspire provides a vast suite of tools to create and deliver dynamic lessons.” During this session, we were given the opportunity to either work independently or in pairs to create our own flipchart activity, including at least 2 aspects of the semiotic system. ActivInspire was always an application I was familiar with throughout both primary and secondary school as it was commonly used throughout lessons.

Despite this, I have never had the chance to create my own flipchart. From a learners point of view, I always thought ActivInspire was an effective tool which was easy to operate which was why I was looking forward to have my own opportunity to create a flipchart of my choice. However, it was more complex than I expected and it took me a bit of time to get used to it. For this particular task, I decided to work in pairs as for the majority of tasks I find this a more effective way of working. Before creating our flipchart, we decided to look at the resources on Moodle for some inspiration as we were unsure which curricular area to focus our flipchart on. After planning we decided to create it around math. The first page was a cover page, which was then followed by the cFE experiences and outcomes for the particular lesson. The lesson was focused on tens and units and targeted towards 1st level math’s. Children would be asked to move a box which revealed a number underneath, children would then be asked to move the appropriate boxes to the correct columns. We included sound of someones ‘clapping’ as well as pictures, making our text multimodal. Below are some images:

We linked our flipchart lesson to the following experiences and outcomes:

  • I have investigated how whole numbers are constructed, can understand the importance of zero within the system and can use my knowledge to explain the link between a digit, its place and its value. (MNU 1-02a)

Despite really enjoying working my way through the ActivInspire, similar to all technology, there is disadvantages to this too. Firstly, I found it to be more time consuming than other applications I have previously used, such as PowerPoint and sway. The application itself also took some time to get used to and with the various tools available it can make it quite complex to make simple adjustments.

However, I recognise ActivInspire as an extremely effective tool used to enhance learning in an interactive way. The range of tools which can be used are incredible, such as the clock tool which is used to develop children’s understanding of time in an collaborative and captivating way.


Overall, I am eager to develop my skills within the ActivInspire application as it is a tool which I am keen to include throughout my lessons as a developing student teacher.


Beauchamp, G. (2012) ICT in the Primary School: From Pedagogy to Practice. Pearson.

Scottish Government (n.d.) Curriculum for Excellence.[Online] Available: [Accessed: 2nd February 2019]

Promethean World (n.d.) ActiveInspire-Interactive teaching software. [Online] Available:[Accessed: 2nd February 2019]


Week 2 – Programmable toys


The children in today’s classroom have grown up in a world where technology is a huge part of their generation and people’s day to day lives. As teachers, I believe it is extremely important to embed various types of technology throughout the curriculum and provide children with the necessary skills needed to be successful in today’s society. Despite their being a wealth of evidence that supports incorporating areas of digital technologies within the curriculum, there is also criticisms towards this subject as experts argue that digital technologies are an unsuitable choice for children (Janka, P, 2008). This may be because children often get carried away when using several types of technology within lessons. However, I believe the benefits outweigh this and digital technologies are in fact a great tool used within classrooms. In today’s lecture we looked at the benefits of using programable toys, in particular the bee-bot.

Janka (2008) states that “The curriculum introduces programmable toys as a good example for developing knowledge and understanding of the contemporary world.” This reinforces the importance of embedding areas of technology within parts of the curriculum to ensure children are ready for the ongoing developments in today’s world.

The task

This week in digital technologies we had the opportunity to explore the major benefits of using programmable toys within the classroom. I don’t have a lot of knowledge regarding programmable toys and rated myself a three in my personal assessment, however, I recognise it as an extremely important area of the curriculum. I was exceptionally looking forward to this workshop as I am eager to deepen my knowledge and understanding of programmable toys and the different ways we can incorporate them within curricular areas. Today, we were given the opportunity to either work alone or in groups to make a mat for the bee- bot. The bee bot is a very popular programmable toy which is used within many classrooms. It is a simple, easy tool which is specifically targeted towards children in early level. Bee bots are programmed to follow up to 40 instructions at one time and is located with 7 simple buttons which enable it to move: forwards, backwards, turn left, turn right, stop, clear and go. When each button is pressed the bee-bot creates a small sound. Similarly, when the bee bot has been programmed to move the eyes light up. The bee bot is a very versatile programmable toy as there are many different mats which relate to a range of curricular subjects and different areas within that subject. For example, there are many mats available which focus on developing numeracy skills such as time, money and shape. Personally, I had never used the bee bot within primary school. However, prior to the workshop I researched some of the main benefits of using programmable toys, in particular, the bee bot within classrooms.

Some of the benefits include:

  • Can be used in a variety of subjects in many ways
  • Quick and easy to operate
  • They can help introduce the main ideas in a fun and simple way (NCTE, 2012)
  • Encourages hands on learning

I decided to work in a group alongside 2 of my peers. Before creating the mat, we decided to create a mind map of a few ideas we had and which curricular area it was targeted towards. We also watched some clips on YouTube to give us a feel of some of the existing maps. After preparing, we decided to create our map around literacy, in particular, phonic sounds. Phonics is an area which is introduced in early level and continually developed throughout first and second level. It is a vital area of the curriculum, which was why we decided to create our map around this. In order to make it more versatile we decided to make our mat double sided. The first side was targeted towards the ‘oo’ sound and the second side was targeted towards the ‘sh’ sound. Our mat fulfilled the following Cfe experiences and outcomes:

  • I explore sounds, letters and words, discovering how they work together, and I can use what I learn to help me as I read and write. (E NG 0-12a/ LIT 0-13a / LIT 0-21a)

Each side contained 20 drawings of pictures which contained that particular sound within. Alongside our mat, we had a wheel which contained different letters of the alphabet. Children would be asked to spin the wheel and whatever letter it landed on the children would have to find a picture beginning with the chosen letter and then programme the bee bot to go to the picture. Children would then be asked to spell out the sound either out loud or on a show me board. The purpose of this mat was to not only develop children’s phonics knowledge, but also to challenge children and help them gain practice with spelling, which is an area many children struggle with. When creating the mat, we all worked effectively as a team and took on different roles. We started by drawing out the mat ensuring each square was 15cm by 15cm. We then created two separate columns of each sound and then came up with words containing that sound which we then drew and stuck down. Finally, we created 2 wheels for each sound which children were able to spin.


In conclusion, I believe me and my peers worked well in a team. We divided up the tasks evenly and all took on an individual role which I feel worked effectively. Despite this, I feel we could have managed our time better as in certain areas we got carried away which delayed the process of our project. I recognise time management as an extremely important skill in everyday life, more importantly as a teacher which is why I am going to take this feedback positively and ensure it is something I work on.

I really enjoyed this class and gained a lot of valuable knowledge regarding programable toys. As a developing student teacher I am looking forward to embedding programmable toys within lessons both on placement and in the future.

Below I have attached photos and videos of our mat:


‘sh’ sound
‘oo’ sound

Above is a video of our completed mat and bee-bot in action!



Janka, P. (2008) Using a Programmable Toy at Preschool Age: Why and How?[Online] [Accessed: 28th January 2019]

Education Scotland. (n.d.) Curriculum for Excellence.[Online] Available: [Accessed: 10 January 2019]