Sunday, 1 October 2017

Update on iPad Deployment

In 2017-2018 we currently have:
1 to 1 (one personal device per pupil) in three P7 classes
1 to 1 (one personal device per pupil) in three P6 classes
Two class sets in three P5 classes (one using grant funding from OneFamily Foundation)
One class set shared between three P3 classes
One class set shared between three P2 classes
8 iPads allocated to P1 classes as a pilot
One iPad per class for staff use 
A number of iPads for our Support for Learning Team to distribute to individual pupils.

Our ambition is to provide:
1 to 1 (one personal device per pupil) in three P5 classes 
1 class set to be shared at P4

Saturday, 14 January 2017

iPad Deployment Update

In 2016-2017 we currently have:
1 to 1 (one personal device per pupil) in three P7 classes
One class set shared between three P6 classes
One class set shared between three P2 classes
One class set shared between three P3 classes
One class set shared between three P5 classes (using grant funding from OneFamily Foundation)
One iPad per class for staff use 
A number of iPads for our Support for Learning Team to distribute to individual pupils.

Our ambition is to provide:
1 class set shared between three P4 classes
1 to 1 (one personal device per pupil) in three P6 classes

You Did It! Amazing £5000 Win! Thank You for Voting for Tech@Sciennes
We are delighted to announce that our bid to win £5000 to support learning and teaching with technology was successful!

Thank you so much for your tremendous support in voting for the project and to parent Colin Sim for all his hard work in preparing and submitting the bid to the One Family Foundation.

Thank you very much to the One Family Foundation Community Awards Scheme for this generous, tremendous boost to digital learning for our children.

Monday, 28 November 2016

BE QUICK!... ANOTHER Amazing Chance to win £5000 for Sciennes!

 ANOTHER CHANCE TO WIN £5000 for Sciennes! This time with OneFamily Foundation

We have until MID-DAY THIS WEDNESDAY 30th NOVEMBER  to get enough support by voting to win £5000 money from the One Family Foundation. (Thanks to parent, Colin Sim, we have already been successful in reaching the Judges' Final of another competition two weeks ago from Aviva, but this is a different vote).

Just now we don't have enough votes.

Can you spare five minutes to go online and support us by voting for Sciennes, to help our pupils and school win £5,000 to support their learning?

It's free to vote. You can register or log in using your email details, or Facebook or twitter account. You then just vote for our project.

If you have not voted already, please get involved and vote now for Sciennes at

Remember you have less than two days to get involved as voting closes on Wednesday.

Thank you for supporting our pupils and school. We will find out in mid December if we have had enough votes to win the money.

Sunday, 11 September 2016

Update on iPad Deployment at Sciennes

In January 2011, Sciennes began investigating the possibilities of introducing a leasing scheme for mobile devices, which would involve personal parental financial contribution, by approaching the eLearning Foundation at BETT in London. In March 2011 we took part in a webinar with the eLearning Foundation to discuss possibilities further and in May 2011 attended a meeting with staff from Portobello High School and Sciennes Primary School, hosted by Senior ICT Development Officer, Dave McKee, and other key local authority leaders. After lengthy due consideration, a decision was taken at authority level, in consultation with the Scottish Government, that schools should not seek personal parental financial contribution in purchasing mobile devices, but should instead use their devolved school budget and fundraising to acquire devices.

Towards the end of term in June 2014, Sciennes' Parent Council agreed in principle to support school plans to acquire additional iPads through a school budget leasing scheme, which would run over a number of years. An annual contribution from Parent Council funds to support the leasing scheme was agreed, however, by August, our key priority for 2014-2015 had shifted towards improving our school playground, and so all available funds were required to deliver that ambition. Ambitions to extend 1:1 (one device for each individual) to all P6 and P7 classes and increase access to devices for other year groups were shelved to enable all efforts to be concentrated on enhancing our school grounds. All community stakeholders worked tirelessly throughout the year and in August 2015 our wonderful new playground was open to pupils on the first day of the new term.

In 2015-2016 we were able to purchase a class set of iPads for P3 and an additional half class set for P6.

In 2016-2017 we currently have:
1 to 1 in three P7 classes
iPads for half the year group of three P6 classes
1 class set shared between three P2 classes
1 class set shared between three P3 classes

and have recently invested in providing one iPad per class for staff. We are currently exploring how we can continue to extend access to technology for our children and have received sterling support from parent, Colin Sim, who is investigating various grant bids on our behalf. Though unsuccessful, thank you to all parents who supported our bid for £25,000 from the OneFamily Foundation and grateful thanks to Colin for submitting the application.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

iTeach iPad Modelling in P2

Anna Millar from iTeach
 Grateful thanks to Anna Millar from iTeach, a great friend and support to the school, who has worked closely with us and with colleagues across all sectors of the city developing and leading training designed to maximise the use of iPads in Learning and Teaching. We were delighted to welcome Anna back to Sciennes on Wednesday 20th May, modelling lessons with our P2 pupils and helping us move further forward by sharing her innovative practice. Andrew Jewell from iTeach also recently returned to Sciennes to pay a second visit to P7 on 30th April and we were delighted to welcome them both.

Thank you, inspirational iTeach, and thank you City of Edinburgh DigITal Learning Team for organising. We were also fortunate to win a green screen kit from iTeach in their recent Twitter competition!

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Innovative iPad Modelling for Pupils and Staff

Andrew Jewell
Anna Millar
Andrew Jewell (Head of Education and Development, Scotland for iTeach-UK) and Anna Millar (formerly of City of Edinburgh's Digital Learning Team) are providing us with iPad training days arranged by the DigITal Learning Team where they model and then discuss innovative iPad lessons with pupils and staff. Andrew also ran an excellent 'Learning with iPads' CPD as a twilight session at Sciennes for staff on Wednesday 22nd April.

Andrew was heavily involved in launching the 1:1 national iPad pilot that Ms Wendy French and Mrs Fiona Barker embarked upon in 2011 and he really inspired us and opened our eyes to possibilities. He is a highly respected international presenter, who has only recently left his own school - Cedars School of Excellence in Greenock (the first in the world to have 1:1 at every stage from P1 to P7) to become a full time trainer. Anna Millar is a great friend to the school who has worked closely with us and with colleagues across all sectors of the city developing and leading training designed to maximise the use of iPads in Learning and Teaching. We are delighted to welcome them both to Sciennes and are excited to take forward their innovative practice with our pupils.

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Paperless Drive

Our Eco Leader, Class Teacher Miss Kirsty Gallagher, has been given an iPad Mini to support our Eco ambitions to drive forward waste reduction by becoming as paperfree as we can. Miss Gallagher is also keen to be one of our pathfinders in adopting City of Edinburgh's cloud based provision for Edinburgh schools via Microsoft 365.

BT currently provide and service laptops for staff use. Now that City of Edinburgh's Digital Learning Team has put in place an infrastructure that has enabled schools to work wirelessly, we are keen to explore how a move towards providing iPads for staff might afford us greater flexibility and longer term financial savings.

iPads for Support for Learning Department

In October 2014 we were able to provide a number of iPad Minis to be used to support individual pupils with additional needs, deployed by our Support for Learning Team Mrs Carol Brechin and Ms Rhona Kennedy.

1:1 in P6

Our ambition for many years has been to establish 1:1 in each of our three P6 and P7 classes. In October 2014, with the support of Sciennes Parent Council,  we purchased a set of iPad Minis for personal 1:1 use in Ms Wendy French's P6 class. Ms French has been a champion and pathfinder in using 1:1 and we are delighted the set has enabled her to continue developing her innovative learning and teaching with technology. We hope we may be able to provide an additional class set to be shared between the other two P6 classes and eventually to provide all the P6 children with a personal device. Mrs Fiona Barker kindly set up Ms French's class set using Cisco Meraki. Anna Mitchell from the Digital Learning Team provided us with some excellent personal training and advice in school which has helped us further improve our procedures.

1:1 in P7

All three of our Primary Seven classes were issued with an iPad for personal use in school in October 2014 and we aim to allow home use by the end of February. We updated our remote management settings - using Cisco's Meraki - and purchased new, more robust cases (designed to protect corners) for two of the three sets. Mrs Fiona Barker's expertise - as an honours graduate in Computer Science - as well as her logical mind, have really helped refine and improve our procedures.

iPads in P2

We introduced a class set of iPad Minis to the Infant Department in 2013-2014 and began using them 1:1 in a class of Primary Two pupils with Principal Teacher Ms Shona Pearmain. School use only, not home use, and we do not intend to send this set home at any point in the future. Mrs Barker's P7 class buddied with the younger children on several occasions to assist them last year.

We have rethought our approach, after listening to Class Teachers, and are now seeking to use the set more flexibly for group and pair work, rather than 1:1 whole class. In 2014-2015 free Apps selected by this year's P2 team of four Class Teachers have been installed and a more flexible approach is being used when deploying them within the three P2 classes.

Saturday, 5 April 2014

Sciennes 1:1 iPad Case Study by XMA

We would like to thank Jamie Marshall from XMA and London film maker Anton who produced this very glossy film explaining 1:1 at Sciennes, and how our programme sits within City of Edinburgh Council's vision and strategy for technology in our schools.

What we find most striking is the remarkable confidence of our pupils in discussing the impact of iPads on their learning.

Apple XMA video for Sciennes 1:1 Mobile Learning

Saturday, 9 November 2013

Edinburgh 1:1 Mobile Learning Evaluation Published November 2013

Sciennes Primary took part in a National Pilot of 1:1 Mobile Learning with seven other schools from across Scotland which was evaluated in this report from Hull University. Sciennes also took part in City of Edinburgh 1:1 Mobile Learning pilot with three other city schools.

In August 2012, the City of Edinburgh Council commissioned Hull University to evaluate the impact and potential of mobile technologies for learning across the four 1:1 pilot schools. These schools were Sciennes Primary School, Broomhouse Primary School, Forrester High School and Gracemount High School. The evaluation took place over academic session 2012-2013 and was conducted by Dr Kevin Burden and Dr Trevor Male from the Faculty of Education at Hull University. The evaluation focused on the impact of mobile technologies on teaching and learning, challenges to traditional patterns of teaching and learning and leadership, logistics and infrastructure.
The evaluation is now complete and is available from City of Edinburgh's Digital Learning Team website by clicking here.
Some of the key findings of the evaluation:
  • Levels of engagement and motivation amongst students rose across each of the pilot schools
  • Student autonomy was considered to be an immediate benefit arising from the allocation of mobile devices
  • Leadership and visible support from the senior management team was identified as a critical factor in the success and sustainability of the project 
  • The use of personal mobile technologies engaged staff in wider CPD opportunities and activities which changed their attitudes to the use of technology in learning
  • There is evidence that teachers are shifting their practices in ways which might prove to be very significant. These include different patterns and means of communicating with students to support their learning beyond school; changing relationships between students particularly in regard to the traditional knowledge giver role of the teacher; and new models for organising learning such as the ‘flipped classroom’
  • All four schools in this project remain positive and optimistic about the benefits and opportunities to be gained from using mobile devices on a personal basis 
This evaluation will be incredibly useful for any school or establishment interested in, or already implementing, 1:1 mobile learning.

Dozen Decades at Sciennes Published in iTunes Sept 2013

Our commemorative eBooks, celebrating Sciennes' 120th Anniversary, are now available to download from iTunes and the iBookstore. Created using iBooks Author and published in six instalments, they can now be viewed on an iPad.

Thank you to all former and current pupils, staff and friends of Sciennes for their contributions and to Sciennes' parent and author Mary Turner Thomson for all her endeavours in bringing the school's history to life in these digital publications. She has worked tirelessly on our behalf to reproduce all the material collated during our anniversary celebrations in interactive formats on the iPad and we hope you enjoy the timelines, quizzes and videos featuring Sciennes pupils. Thanks also to Andy Nagle from Apple for his suggestion to release in instalments.

We still welcome memoirs and photographs which will continue to be added to our Google Doc Online eBook. Please contact with any contributions.


P7C Digitial Learners September 2013

Six pupils from P7C were invited to present at an Apple Leadership Event at the George Hotel on Friday 6th September and were outstanding ambassadors for Sciennes, demonstrating incredible confidence in front of an audience of educators. Kim, Katie, Tea, William, Robert and Derry worked with Ms French throughout the day creating a presentation on what it means to them to be digital learners. We were glad to have Kim's expertise in helping us sort out some technical difficulties! P7C have now had 1:1 school and home use of a personal iPad since they were in P5 as part of a National and City of Edinburgh pilot scheme. It was lovely to meet pupils and staff from St Joseph's Academy, Kilmarnock and from Dalry Primary in Ayrshire at the event.

Education Scotland 1:1 Case Study Published June 2013

Derek Robertson, National Adviser Emerging Technologies and Learning at Education Scotland, has worked with schools across Scotland who are engaging with a range of tablet devices such as iPads, Windows 8 tablets, Android Tablets, Kindles and Chromebooks to help effect better outcomes for  learners and to help enhance and enrich learning in Curriculum for Excellence. He has published case studies on this Learning with Devices website, including a case study of the National 1:1 Pilot at Sciennes.

Derek visited Sciennes to capture the thoughts of pupils and staff on the impact of learning using mobile technology and we are grateful that he has published the case study so that we can share the information with families throughout the school, beyond the two pilot classes. We intend to hold Information Sessions for all parents and carers next session to explain how iPads are being used to enhance learning and teaching.

Celebrating Learning at the Apple Store June 2013

P6C and Mrs Barker had a fantastic day at the Apple Store in Buchanan Street, Glasgow on Tuesday 11th June. Events Co-ordinator Andy Unger met us in St Vincent Street when we arrived by coach. The children were then warmly welcomed in proper feel good style by rapturous applause from staff on both levels of the store and were delighted to receive fantastic bright yellow "Fun is in Session" t-shirts. Callum, Callum and Naomi led us on a tour of the store and introduced us to staff from the Genius Bar who gave an insight into how appointments can be made for personal enquiries and assistance. Usually the team provide workshops for schools but Andy had arranged a very special session allowing P6C to showcase what they have learned in their 1:1 pilot this year and why they love their iPads! Staff from around the store gathered to see the children's presentations and all were bowled over by their confidence and expertise. It was wonderful to see how easily our  pupils showed how they had used technology both to construct and express their learning in the array of presentations they shared. P6C were then presented with certificates and very cool USB wristbands, posing for photographs on the stairs and at the entrance to the building.

It was a fabulous trip, where our children really made us proud, and an excellent celebration of all their hard work and achievement. Thank you to Andy and all the staff for going out of their way to accommodate us and to Mrs Nowell for accompanying. More photographs on the P6 Class Blog.

Arriving at the Apple Store to a warm welcome

William gets togged up in his Apple t-shirt
Emma wonders what it says on the back.
Smiles all round

Touring the store with Callum
Geniuses at the Genius Bar
Kim and Aleena take their turn presenting
Ciara steps up with confidence
Ruby and Phoebe
Derry's presentation on how he has used the Dragon Dictation app for writing
Dylan with certificate and super cool USB wristband
Maisie's smile says it all - a fantastic event!
Thank you everyone!
Homeward bound