Digital Technologies- Movie Making 13/2/2018

Todays Digital Technologies lesson focused on the benefits and impact of iMovies in the classroom. The lesson focused on the ways iMovie could be used to promote internet safety. We begun by taking part in a class quiz on internet safety before learning some information on internet safety. Finally, for our assessment task we created our own short films using iMovie that promotes internet safety.

Our assessment task today was centred on the theme of promoting internet safety. My group discussed the many ways we could promote internet safety while highlighting the danger of the internet. Eventually we settled on the idea that our movie, entitled “BEar Safe”, would focus on the issue of people hiding their identity online and that you never know who you might be chatting to online. After this we wrote a quick plan for our movie (see featured image) then divided our group into those who would edit the movie and those who would set up Instagram accounts and set the scenes. In the short iMovie the main character Bear can be seen displaying his personal details on his public Instagram page for example his age, where he lives and his school location. As a result, anyone online can access this information and easily find Bear. As the film progresses we see Bear receive a friend request from Unicorn, a stranger who Bear has never met, and they begin to chat online. The chat soon results in Unicorn asking Bear to meet with Bea becoming sceptical and telling his mother who advises Bear to delete Unicorn and make his account private. The movie ends with the reveal that the Unicorn is in fact a terrifying werewolf who has been posting fake pictures to chat to Bear. I feel our movie gave the important message of internet safety while warning viewers to be mindful of who they are speaking to online and that if they have any worries they should speak to a parent or teacher. I also feel our movie, which won “Best Original Script” at our class Oscars Awards, is relevant to today as it uses popular social media website Instagram to highlight how easily a stranger can access your personal details online.

As a learner, I found the iMovie app fairly difficult to use, the editing process was time consuming however shooting the movie was relatively easy. Despite the process being time consuming myself and my group enjoyed the movie making process. We enjoyed working together as a team to shoot the scenes of the film and edit to create the finalised project.

As a student teacher I feel the iMovie app would be an educational and engaging tool to use in the classroom, specifically as an aid to promoting internet safety amongst young learners. The children could work in groups to create their own short films that showcase the dangers of internet safety as not only would this allow them to have fun and experiment with technology, but it would also inform them of the dangers they are filming. Beauchamp (2012, p.58) discussed internet safety “the key idea [is] that e-safety is not about restricting children, but about educating them.”. In other words, rather than discourage children from using social media and technology we should educate them on the potential dangers they could face. The NSPCC supported this view by stating in their ‘your children’s online world’ guide for parents, “try to strike the right balance between keeping an eye on your child and giving them the independence and freedom to explore” (NSPCC 2015, p.6). They advised parents and careers in their leaflets to take an interest in what their child does online and establish regular conversations with your child about what they do online. In turn your child will be more educated on the dangers of the internet while feeling comfortable to share any concerns they may have.

Additionally, A lesson like the one we took part in today could potentially combine multiple curriculum outcomes such as Technology, Literacy and Health and Wellbeing:

“I understand positive things about friendships and relationships but when something worries or upsets me I know who I should talk to.” HWB 0-44b / HWB 1-44b

“As I listen or watch, I can identify and discuss the purpose, key words and main ideas of the text, and use this information for a specific purpose.” LIT 1-04a

“I can extend my knowledge of how to use digital technology to communicate with others and I am aware of ways to keep safe and secure.” TCH 1-03a

Overall, todays lesson highlighted to me the many ways I might teach a lesson on internet safety besides giving a talk to the class. By using technology resources such as iMovies the children can interact with the lesson and display their ideas on how to stay safe online while absorbing the crucial information they need to stay safe online. As a student teacher I am now confident that I can teach a lesson on internet safety while combining multiple curriculum outcomes and most importantly making it informative an engaging for the children.




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

NSPCC (2015) Your child’s online world: A guide for parents. England.

Digital Technolgies-Mobile Devices/Ebooks 6/2/18


Upon reflection of Digital Technologies week 5 lesson on the use of E-books in the classroom it is clear as to why the use of e-books is becoming increasingly popular in todays society. Firstly, the Oxford dictionary defines e-books as “An electronic version of a printed book which can be read on a computer or a specifically designed handheld device.” (Oxford dictionary). However, despite being aware of the definition of an e-book prior to this lesson, I was not aware of the multiple benefits of e-books. At the beginning of the lesson we gathered into groups to create a mind-map discuss the benefits of e-books before experimenting with E-books and creating our own for the lesson task.




Today’s task begun with us working in groups to create a multimodal brochure advertising student life at UWS.  To do this we had to take photos and videos of the university’s main attractions such as the library and lecture theatres.  We then combined the photos and videos to the text descriptions in the brochure, making it a multimodal text. Despite my group falling short of time to complete the task the activity gave us the experience and confidence of using the Book Creator App that we needed for the assessment task.

The assessment task involved editing a children’s book we had read into a multimodal e-book we could potentially use in a lesson. The book I chose to edit was “Froggy goes to bed!” by Jonathan London.  The book is about Froggy being feeling exhausted from a day of play however when it’s time for bed Froggy finds any excuse not to go to sleep.  After reading this book it is easy to see why children love the book, the book follows a child’s stereotypical bedtime routine of bathing and brushing teeth while adding an abundance of onomatopoeia and adding the comedic element of Froggy always losing his possessions. While editing the book I included questions for the readers to show their understanding of the book such as “use an adjective to describe Froggys mother” (see featured images).  To make my e-book multimodal I included the semiotic systems; linguistic, visual, audio, gestural and spatial.



As a learner I had pervious experience of reading E-books however no experience of creating my own. After watching some YouTube tutorial videos, I found the app and its features easy to use. I enjoyed adding text, drawings, audio and images to my book.

As a student teacher I feel E-books would be an educational and engaging resource to introduce to the classroom.  After using E-books, myself I feel children would have no trouble creating their own e-books and that they would find it fun and engaging. The Scottish Children’s Parliament released a document entitled “A Digital Learning and Teaching Strategy” that detailed children’s responses to questions on technology. When asked whether they would like to use digital technology more often for learning and how, many children answered that “this was seen as having the potential to make learning more fun or engaging” and “that accessing iPads or other classroom technology should be seen as the usual/normal thing to do, and not just something offered as a reward or part of Golden Time” (Scottish Children’s Parliament 2016). Additionally, the use of e-books provides children with an unlimited range of stories to choose from. Therefore, they are no longer restricted to the same books from their classroom library and in turn their literacy skills will continue to develop as they read new and exciting texts. Also, the use of e-books can result in the learner feeling more engaged with the text they are reading through its multi-modality. Lots of e-books now have engaging features such as sound and pictures to encourage the child to interact more with the story. For educators, e-books supply a helping hand to children who may struggle to read as there is a feature enables the learner to have the book read to them aloud, meaning they no longer must wait for the help of the teacher if they are struggling to read the text themselves.

In addition, e-books provide a classroom the opportunity to incorporate 21st century technology into lessons. Children in today’s society are heavily familiar with the use of technology such as I-pads and smartphones hence why they are considered ‘digital natives’ (Beauchamp 2012) as they are surrounded by it every day thus they are more likely to be excited to use technology that they use in their home life than they are to read a book. Beauchamp (2012) spoke on the implications this may have on a classroom as with more and more children becoming ‘digital natives’ it is likely that children have greater experience in the use of technology than their teacher does. Therefore, it is vital that we as student teachers expand our experience and knowledge of using technology to keep up with the digital age.

Furthermore, E-books can be used in line with multiple Curriculum for Excellence outcomes. For example, I feel my e-book would be a good asset to a lesson that is in line with the Technology and English areas of the curriculum:

“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

“To show my understanding, I can respond to different kinds of questions and other close reading tasks and I am learning to create some questions of my own.”     ENG 1-17

To conclude, todays lessons on e-books developed my understanding on the importance and impact of using e-books in the classroom. I now feel I have the skills and confidence to progress with using e-books to develop my ideas on the ways I could incorporate the use of e-books into future lessons. I look forward to introducing e-books into future lessons as I feel they will be a fun and interactive asset to many lessons within the curriculum.



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

Children’s Parliament Consultation (2016) A Digital Learning and Teaching Strategy for Scotland: The Views of Children. [Online] Available: . [Accessed on 6 February 2018]


Digital Technologies- Coding/Scratch Jr (30/1/2018)

This week our Digital Technology module introduced Coding programmes, specifically focusing on Scratch Jr. Scratch Jr is a programme that allows children to create their own interactive stories and activities. They can make their chosen characters move, interact and sing to bring their story to life. Prior to today’s lesson I had no knowledge of Scratch Jr or the impact it can have on children’s learning throughout a lesson. I feel that many teachers particularly student teachers such as myself would feel reluctant to introduce fun technology games into a class lessons from fear of losing the children’s attention and causing too much excitement that it would be difficult to recover from. However, throughout the class we studied the benefits of using Scratch Jr in the classroom while acknowledging the opinions and views of educators as well as the curriculum and I learned that this might not be the case. As well as this I got to experience using the Scratch Jr app from the perception of a first time learning and as a student teacher in training.

Today’s lesson involved using Scratch Jr to create our own story that we could use as a lesson. I chose to base my story on a baby pig named ‘Bella’ who on her birthday wishes to go swimming in the ocean. After being told by her parents that pigs cannot swim she enlists the help of her friend ‘Froggy’ to help make her wish come true. My story ends with both Bella and Froggy jumping into the ocean without indicating the outcome. I chose to leave my story on a cliff-hanger as during today’s lesson we looked at how educators can use Scratch Jr in a literacy lesson with Scratch Jr being used as an introductory activity for story writing. Therefore, by leaving my story on a cliff-hanger I am providing an aid to the children who struggle with their imagination by showing them an example of the beginning of a story while providing learners with the opportunity to continue the story and add on characters, use imagery, describe the ocean setting and develop the plot.

As a learner using Scratch Jr for the first time I found the app relatively easy to navigate and use.  I enjoyed the apps features of making my character move while using the audio feature to give my character a voice. I found the app interactive, engaging and inspiring my creative thought.

From the perception of a student teacher I feel Scratch Jr is an interesting and enjoyable app that has many benefits for young learners.  Firstly, it is the opinion of some that coding is the new literacy and while I feel that this statement is far-fetched I understand that learning the skill of coding is largely beneficial for learners. It is important today that we teach children from a young age the skills to comfortably use code computer programmes as the use of coding is becoming increasingly popular in today’s schools. The lead project reiterated this point as they spoke of the vital skills young learners may acquire from using Scratch Jr. “They are learning to think creatively, reason systematically, and work collaboratively – essential skills for success and happiness in today’s world.” (Lead Project 2014). Thus, by teaching children these vital skills coding programmes such as Scratch Jr provides children access to specific careers “Gaming companies want more programmers. The government wants more high-tech start-ups. Manufacturers want trainees who can design embedded systems” (Naughton, 2011, p2).  Therefore, after acknowledging these points it is apparent as to why coding is a valuable component of literacy in modern society.

Jr can be used in line with a variety of Curriculum outcomes. For example, my lesson followed the curriculum outcomes for both First and Second level of ICT to enhance learning and First level tools for writing:

“I explore and experiment with the features and functions of computer technology and I can use what I learn to support and enhance my learning in different contexts.” TCH 1-04a / TCH 2-04a

“I can present my writing in a way that will make it legible and attractive for my reader, combining words, images and other features.” LIT 1-24a

Upon reflection on today’s lesson of using Scratch Jr I feel the programme is easy and enjoyable to use and a programme that I would consider using as a resource for future lessons. I feel the programme is an undoubtedly beneficial and engaging resource for children of various levels and that there is a range of ways I could use Scratch Jr in future lessons to enhance children’s literacy and digital literacy. Therefore, I am eager to continue experimenting with the Scratch Jr programme as an aspiring student teacher to further improve my skills of using the programme and inspire my ideas for future lessons.



The Lead Project (2014) Super Scratch Programming Adventure: Learn to Program by Making Cool Games! No Starch Press.

Naughton, N. (2012) Why all our kids should be taught how to code. [The Guardian/Observer Online] Available:  [Accessed 30 January 2018]

Digital Technologies- Multimodality/ActivInspire 23/1/18


This week the Digital Technology model focused on interactivity and multimodality, specifically on the importance and impact of ActivInspire in the classroom. A text may be called multimodal when it features two or more modes of communication such as image, sounds, written language etc. These modes can be described formally as semiotic systems, there are five systems which can turn a text into a multimodal text: Linguistic, Visual, Audio, Gestural, Spatial. The use of these semiotic systems in a lesson can result in the educational content becoming more engaging for the learner as it allows them to understand and interact with the lesson through hands on learning. During todays lesson we reviewed the benefits and impact of introducing multimodality into the classroom through apps such as ActivInspire while creating our own ActivInspire lesson.

During the class we got to experiment with ActivInspire by designing a lesson that incorporated the use of Activinspire into a literacy or numeracy lesson. Myself and my partner chose to use ActivInspire as an introduction activity for a literacy lesson, specifically as an aid to help children with their creative writing. Our activity challenged the young learners to work together as a class to construct a fictional piece of text based on an imaginary day in the jungle while using imagery such as similes to describe the animals they encountered. We planned on engaging with the children by asking each volunteer to come to the board and select an animal they wished to include in their story while asking them to provide an appropriate simile or adjective to describe their chosen animal. After all animals have been chosen our activity would progress to constructing sentences with the whole class designing an opening sentence for their story. This would provide the children with examples of adjectives they could use to in their own stories while supporting them with the opening sentences to inspire their thought process.

As a learner using ActivInspire for the first time I feel it is a difficult application to use. Before using ActivInspire I watched multiple YouTube tutorials on how to navigate the app and use its features however I feel even after watching the time-consuming tutorials I still struggled to use the app. Thus, I feel ActivInspire is not an app I would have young children using alone but perhaps as an aid for a lesson perhaps a smartboard activity for the whole class as we had designed in our lesson task.

From the perception of a student teacher in training I feel that ActivInspire would be an effective aid for classroom lessons as they have multiple benefits and a significant impact on young learners. Hands on learning allows children to absorb the educational content more effectively as they are physically engaging with the lesson. Educator Janice Prandstatter spoke on the impact of interactive displays in early learning on an online article ““Touch displays can become a social learning tool encouraging hands-on experiences, thereby helping children to learn by doing.” (Prandstatter 2014). Thus, it is important in education to always strive to maintain your learners’ attention and aim to encourage their interaction with the activity or learners will switch off from the lesson and not learn anything. Beauchamp spoke on the importance of using multimodality in the classroom and the impact of its use on children’s understanding “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.” (Beauchamp, 2012, p.8). Ergo, it is apparent that if I wish to develop my knowledge of digital technology to further develop my practice I must experiment with ActivInspire and other multimodal technologies to enhance my experience that I can incorporate with future lessons.

Additionally, ActivInspire can be used to support multiple curriculum outcomes. For example, we based our ActivInspire activity around the Curriculum for Excellence guidelines, specifically Literacy and Technology outcomes:

“Throughout the writing process, I can check that my writing makes sense.” LIT 1-23a

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

To conclude after my research and trial of Activinspire in today’s lesson I feel it is a teaching software I would consider using as a tool for future lessons.  I feel it would be a great asset to use as an introduction for lessons such as creative writing or addition and subtraction lessons. However, I personally feel the ActivInspire activity can take a long time to prepare thus I would be unlikely to include the activity in everyday lessons. Nevertheless, due to their multiple benefits they can have on a child’s learning it is important as a student teacher that I focus on incorporating the use of ActivInspire into future lessons.


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

Prandstatter, J (2014). Interactive Displays in Early Years Classes.[Online] Available: . [Accessed: 23 January 2018)