Using blogs to engage parents

Often schools struggle to communicate and engage with the parents of their pupils and the wider community. We have found that blogging has an amazing potential for improving communication and engagement without too much extra work. Most blogging tools will interact with other social media such as Facebook and Twitter so it is relatively easy […]

Call for schools to register for aggregated tablet procurement by 6th May

The Department for Education is facilitating a procurement of tablet devices through the Crown Commercial Services (CCS) Aggregation team. The pilot procurement made a saving of 12% for participating schools. The procurement will offer 4 tablet options: Apple iPads, Microsoft Surface Pro, LearnPads and a generic tablet, along with associated items eg. covers, security marking, […]

Scratch your Roamer

I am a great fan of Scratch and use it a lot with pupils in KS1 and KS2. Scratch has many experimental extensions which allow you to connect Scratch to all sorts of devices. One I have recently come across is Roamer ScratchX which allows you to use Scratch to control the new Valiant Roamer. Valiant […]

Air Server

Some time ago I spoke of how wonderful Air Server is. This is a piece of software that you can run on your PC (Window 7 or newer) or Mac so that it allows you to show you iPad screen on your desktop. This is brilliant in a class situation because you can wander around […]

Web based OCR

OCR or “Optical Character Recognition” is a technology that has been around for some time and allows you to scan a printed document and turn the picture of the text into real text. There are free OCR packages available and there are paid for packages. Some of these are incredibly good and are able to […]

DB Primary and iPads

It is possible to put documents straight from your iPad into a gallery on DB Primary, for example, you could take pictures in class using your iPad and upload them straight into your class gallery. One way of doing this is to use WebDav Nav which is a free app (there is a paid for […]

Office 365 SharePoint Calendar issue 1

If you regularly use Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 11 with Microsoft’s Office 365 you may notice some occasional glitches. One problem we have come across is that the SharePoint calendar may appear to be stuck in month view and not show the times of appointments. To remedy this you need to add to the “Compatibility […]

iPad Ambassadors

I have recently started to run an iPad Ambassadors after school club of about 10 pupils in a primary school. The idea of the club is to train them up as experts in the use and care of the class set of iPads and for them to act rather like Digital Leaders. They will become the […]

A class set of iPads

I have been fortunate enough to be involved in a project to set up a class set of 30 iPads in a local primary school. The iPad 2 tablets have 16GB memory, are stored in three iLuv cabinets and are connected to a Mac Mini running the latest server software with Apple Configurator. One of […]

Connecting iPads to projectors in the classroom

A teacher with an iPad, what a fantastic pair! In an ideal world the teacher can wander around the classroom with their iPad whilst showing images, videos or other apps on the screen at the front of the class. You see a great piece of work as you wander, photograph it with the iPad and […]

mb or Mb?

Just to clarify things for those of you who are as pedantic as me, mb stands for milli-bit and Mb stands for mega-bit. Your Internet bandwidth is usually measured in Mbps or Mega-bits per second, that is 1 million bits every second. A milli-bit per second connection (mbps) would require 1 million seconds to shift […]

Imagination and knowledge

I was at an ICT conference yesterday and during a talk on the proposed new curriculum for computing I was reminded of something Einstein said: “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to […]

iPad Apps – Epic Citadel

Many of you may already be aware of Tim Rylands, “an extremely gifted and inspirational teacher, with a love of the creative potential of technology and an excellent rapport with his pupils”. Tim really inspires pupils to be creative through the use of technology and you can see an example of one of his presentations on […]

Your Own Technology Survey (YOTS)

Do you know what technology your pupils have access to at home? Do they have internet enabled mobile devices? Would they be willing, able and allowed to bring them into school every day? If you are thinking about BYOD or BYOT then these are questions you need to know the answer to. The Your Own […]

iPad Apps: Using Mobile Podcaster to podcast to PrimaryBlogger

Why Podcast? Over the next few weeks I am going to be working with groups of primary school pupils to try and improve their speaking and listening skills. One way of helping with this is to record them and play back the recordings so that they can hear and analyse themselves. There are lots of podcasting […]

Using YouTube to embed videos in your blog using an iPad

One of the problems with publishing videos on your blog is making sure that the video can be seen from all platforms. If you publish a video directly from an iPad it may not play automatically on a PC and vice versa. One way around this problem is to publish your videos via a third […]

iPad Apps: Class Dojo

Actually, this is far more than an iPad app. Class Dojo is a website based classroom tool that helps teachers improve the behaviour in their classrooms. Many teachers use a reward points system, Class Dojo is one of those systems with bells on. Once you have registered you can set up your class or classes. […]

Early Years – Profiling

2Simple have done it again! They have produced an early years record keeping app that will run on iPhones, iPads and Android devices. It is called 2Build a Profile and is described as: “A simple and fun way to log children’s achievements against the EYFS profile. Every child has an individual portfolio of achievements. Take photos […]

Big Schools’ Birdwatch

It’s that time of year again. Each year the RSPB organise the Big Garden Birdwatch and the Big Schools’ Birdwatch. There is very little food around for birds at this time of year and putting some food out can have incredible results. So why not visit the website for ideas, get a bit of food […]

Fit for Purpose?

I have recently visited a number of primary schools where their ICT System was obviously not “fit for purpose”. Rather than being an aid to learning it was a huge hindrance. So I thought it would be useful to put together a check list of questions that you could use to help decide if your […]