I have taught kindergarten, primary, secondary and sixth form, and the Primary school project is king! Just picked up my son's overflowing end of year sack of work and the highlights of the year were, egg's and chicks, the Amazon (river!), and Shackleton's journey. They have all made their mark on an impressionable mind and are the kind of things that you remember forever.
What can technology bring to this feast of knowledge? Well for one the 'too spooky', phonics / cursive writing app can be re-skinned as a dinosaur adventure for reception projects . ;)
The 'spanner', and I (which I guess makes me the pencil!), are in conflict. Our spooky handwriting app is both a little too spooky (mummy why are letters on gravestones?!!!, mummy what's a Zombie?) and our carefully chosen type to trace is a little out of fashion. Joined up writing from the get go is really 'hot right now', and this pencil is not keen to compromise the educational value.
We will save the spooky for Halloween and go sleep on the curvy tails. Its really hard to finish an app as you can always see something extra to add, or start something and realize its way more work than you thought. Amazing to see kids enjoying it though!
Wow! Thank you Todd Rose for pulling those strands together so powerfully.
Best Ted talk ever, and timely given my current interests
It's something that as an educator I am really aware of, we waste potential, let it slip throughout fingers as we are just not superhuman. Technology can really step up here!
I had been pondering how to use some of the 'filtering' techniques of some maths programs and psychometric tests in educational apps for the humanities. It's just a small step but our 14-18 range has a setting allowing questions to be pulled once answered correctly inspired by my work with psychometric testing. It is a crazy complicated idea but has potential for the individualised learning so needed in the classroom and in my experience almost impossible for one teacher to provide to 30 students in 1 hour!
Such a thought provoking talk. A must for anyone who........actually a must for everyone.
Competition and kids is sometimes a tricky one. 'Challenge day', replaces sports day and everyone's a winner at birthday parties (to non parents, you would be surprised at the politics of pass the parcel!).
Two player games can be incredibly collaborative, e.g. toca boca shopper, or competitive e.g. Tiny wings on split screen. In the classroom competition can be great e.g. question races, prises for best sketch/ presentation/ rap, etc. Touch screens have the capacity to be two player but is it bringing anything to the party??
When dealing with the more complex knowledge of exam based subject how to avoid making a child feel inferior but still ramp up the engagement? Building on the knowledge of others? writing questions for each other? One to think about.
Been doodling icons, Owl's were appealing.... to every education app EVER!! Now that this company is looking viable (our first app has now made over £500), we figured an icon and splash page was a must.
Tried mixing education...pencil...!!?? and making ...spanner..., its a bit like naming a baby, you can imagine all the ways it could get mixed up. Don't want our app getting teased in the app store for having a rubbish logo!
Bunting got vetoed by Fred the guy who does the clever stuff, as it seems he really hates bunting, which is a bit like hating kittens, but hay ho moving on!
In the end went for one of the things I like most about teaching, and I know the kids love them (especially the teens weirdly enough!), stamps and stars, everyone likes a star...right??
Edited to add.....except for Fred who from now on will be referred to as 'the spanner'!
Call me utterly deluded but the rise in autism diagnosis and the pace of technological advancement might just come up with something interesting, these guys seem to think so http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/may/22/german-it-firm-sap-seeks-autistic-workers
Daisy the dinosaur and later hopscotch are both made for the budding programmer. An eye for detail and amazing attention spans (on own terms obviously!) are things that many spectrum kids have in bucket loads so might be a winner. My raspberry pie is still sitting in its pretty little box as I am clueless but we proudly managed to get Daisy to shrink, grow and spin!.
For full list of tried and tested apps that bring out the awesome in autism check out my SEN page.
Necessity is the mother of all invention!
My son's diagnosis of Special Educational Needs brought home both the phenomenal role technology has to play in finding a 'way in' to learning for children with learning difficulties and very practically the need to be at the school gates every day.
What is a mum to do? Go slightly nuts, quit teaching (which is harder that you would imagine, took 3 attempts!), and set up an educational app development company.
Wish me luck!
I clearly live in a London new media hot spot. Today was not the first time I spent a sunny morning surrounded by balloons, sausage rolls and VERY excited kids while getting tips on search engine optimization.
Just properly sorted out our facebook page https://www.facebook.com/madeby.educators and began tweeting this blog https://twitter.com/madebyeducators .
Thanks to Adam's dad for tips and Happy Birthday to the birthday boy! x
Saw an inspiring show last night. Not one mention of ipads but had to be flagged, not to be missed by ASD families, do take tissues as you'll cry with laughter....mostly!
John is a comedian and single dad.
His son is eleven years old and autistic... he isn't a genius. His only special power is making his dad laugh. A lot.
This is their true story of Lego, magic trains, the number 75 bus and life in a chaotic world neither of them will ever truly understand.