Thursday, 6 December 2012

Weekly Teacher Logs

Notes from Hull University
There is no strict format or limit to adhere to in your logs as we are deliberately hoping you will be creative in how you approach this task. You should aim to record at least 3-4 minutes of reflections but no more than 10 minutes, unless you absolutely feel the need to do so!
In terms of content it is entirely your choice but it might be helpful to remember what the research team are looking to identify in the first phase and perhaps target your comments/reflections towards these items. We suggest you address three simple questions in your recordings which are:
1. What have you done with your iPad this week ? (e.g. how have you used it for teaching and learning; what apps have you used)
2. Identify one specific activity you undertook with the iPad this week and explain what you did. What excited you about this activity? What made it worthwhile?
3. Explain how you have used the iPad in a way which is different from what you would normally do, or maybe even impossible to do without the iPad.
Please see Files section of Sciennes’ portal for Kevin’s ‘Teacher Logs’ document with further detail.
Where do I send my recordings?
The research team are based in Hull and we would like to receive your log entries on a weekly basis to give us a feel for what is happening on the ground in your school.
e-mail the logs, video recordings or audio logs to
send the files to a secure DropBox You will have received an invitation to use this shared folder and will be required to open a free DropBox account to do this. Please ensure you label your files clearly with a title (your name and school ) and a date. This will ensure we do not confuse the files you send. If you have not yet received an invitation to this secure DropBox please send your e-mail address to Kevin Burden ( who will give you access.
Pupils could use this Pupil Log Form
Wendy has started to complete the Pupil Log form – thanks Wendy! – so I’ve changed it to a ‘Pupil and Staff Log’ form. Kevin and his team have direct access to it, if you choose a written format for your log.
I’ve also knocked up a Parent/Carer version. Might not be very well used, but it is another channel open for feedback.
Kevin very kindly helped me reword it so it is more suitable for parents.

Log 1.4.12 Wendy
We used the ipad this week in the following ways:
I created an Easter maths book on the book creator app which I then uploaded to ibooks on all of the children's machines.  On it I had created various problems for them to work through which related to the work we have been doing on fractions and percentages.  The children then used it as a text book.
We did dramas where in small groups the children were in role as either a Jacobite chief or Bonnie Prince Charlie and had to argue for or against going on to London from Derby.  We then looked at a youtube video which took us through some of the basics of how to edit in Imovie.
We started creating a book with the book maker app, of our fantasy stories.
One of the mums who takes a group on a Thursday to practise times tables facts used some of the maths apps in her session.
Last week we created silhouette pictures in Brushes by following the video in Cooking with apps.

 I was particularly excited by the Jacobite activity.  I liked the fact that the children were able to film arguments to 'Bonnie Prince Charlie' about whether to return to Scotland or go onto London.  This task allowed for a lot of choice in how they presented their arguments and built upon a paper and pencil task where they outlined possible arguments.  It made the task more memorable and fun.  The children were able to make choices about the characters in their drama; how they would present the arguments e.g. on a news show, straight to camera; about how to introduce the piece and how to finish it.  They made use of costumes and came up with lots of ideas e.g. putting a news introduction video in the background.  I used a youtube video to show them some of the basics of editing in imovie but several groups were soon teaching me and the rest of the class how to do things like, increase the volume, add in an image.  They learnt about why it is better to create short clips and edit them together with transitions rather than one long take, how to add in transitions, how to add a title slide.  It was time consuming and due to the door going every five seconds and interrupting filming, sometimes frustrating but it was lots of fun.  The children were definitely using a variety of skills such as communication, planning, editing, creating a drama and arguments.  The videos at this stage are quite basic but I think this was a worthwhile first go at creating a movie.    We may well have done the drama and would perhaps have filmed it with a flip but then editing is something that is very hard to do in the suite as there are all kinds of logistical hurdles e.g. getting the film onto the networked computers, not clogging up the server, getting enough time to edit film in a very restricted computer suite time.  The ipad meant the children could film quickly and easily, could spot errors and discuss them before refilming bits and on the one device had everything they needed to film, edit and add in other features such as title slides and music.  They also really enjoyed watching each other's movies on the whiteboard using the VGA cable that shows what is on the ipad on the screen.  It gave some people who were stuck ideas and then they saw things that other people could do and asked them how to do it e.g. adding in a still photograph.

Log 18.4.12 Wendy

In the holidays I used the ipads to create novel study books for my reading groups on the app Book Creator.  I am going to put these onto Dropbox and get the pupils to access them so that they can use them to do work relating to their group novels in class and at home.  I also used the app Viewfinder to find images and attribution text. 

I also began to explore a website that organises lots of free online maths games under helpful headings to find out which of the games were non-flash and usable on the ipads.

In addition, I explored a brilliant free book created by American educators called: Hot apps 4 hots which gives ideas for activities using the apps, linked to Blooms taxonomy.  All the apps it recommends are free and although the examples relate to a specific context they are all easily adaptable to other contexts.  It gives step by step instructions and examples of completed tasks.

In class we have used the ipads to practise tables, on AB Maths and we have also used the app Tom and Ben to create newsreports. 

We have also used the ipads to access, The Daily What on Glow to look at the features of newspaper reports.    Making a newsreport about the Jacobite rebellion.

The children read about what happened after Culloden: the measures taken by King George's government to bring the Highlands under control, punish the rebels and suppress clan power and about what happened to Bonnie Prince Charlie.

Next we discussed some of the features of a news report and planned the format together.

After that the children worked in pairs and threes to create a script for a news report either about the measures taken to bring the Highlands under control or about Charlie's escape. 

Then they used the app Tom and Ben news to record their newsreport.

Finally they imported their Tom and Ben clips into imovie and created a theme and some title slides.  "    "The news reports would have been possible on a more limited scale in the computer suite but we would have been much more difficult for the following reasons:
we wouldn't have had enough flip cameras to record them
there isn't the same amount of time for making mistakes and then doing retakes
there wouldn't have been the app to create a fun, format that is easy for them to use
we would have run out of time to finish things off and then share what we had done

The ipads mean the task can be done at convenient times.   I am really beginning to understand their potential for allowing the learners to be involved in collaborative group work which allows them to use a range of skills and to be creative.

Log 28.4.12 Wendy
This week we have:
created graphs on a graph making website then saved them and imported the photo into pages where we made a report for an amusement park who were reviewing current rides and considering new ones - Kids Create a graph (website) and Pages
Worked on group novel study tasks where the children created their own book in which to put their answers - Book Creator
Practised mental addition and subtraction - AB Maths
Downloaded ebooks from Library to go = Overdrive
Made a board about places the Olympics have been held - Moodboard lite
Created fanfares in groups - a range of percussive instruments and Music Sparkles lite
Done a range of homework tasks on the ipad - Spell that, Book Creator and a Pages document with exercises and websites revising large numbers and place value"    "I was particularly excited about downloading ebooks from the City of Edinburgh libraries, Library to go service. 
First of all there were some administration things we had to do.  You need an Adobe ID and most of them, as requested had created an Adobe ID at home but I had to help a few people sort theirs out.
Susan, from the city libraries had already registered their cards so that they could borrow books and had a note of their library card numbers and a pin number needed to borrow the books.
The children then browsed the collection.  I had explained to them that it is a new and growing service and might not have everything they might want but that they should all find something.
Finally they downloaded a book and began reading it in class.  Some children chose an audio book.
Susan is still building the collection and is keen to hear their ideas.  This has led onto an authentic, 'real life' task which we began planning this week and will work on in the weeks ahead.  We are planning to survey Primary 4 to 7 in the school about the authors they enjoy and present the data to Susan to help her make decisions on her next purchases.  The children are excited that they will get to help inform decisions on what will be available. 

The novel study books I have created for each of the reading groups means that they are able to do tasks more at their own pace.  They created a book on the app, Book Creator on which they will do their work and we did one in class together and they also did another as part of their reading homework.  Back in class some people were then ready to start looking over the next task and making decisions about what they might do.  Some of the tasks are quite traditional e.g. looking at grammar, vocabulary, comprehension, others allow them to be creative in their responses and consider setting, character, plot. With some of the more traditional comprehension tasks they can use apps to display their work in more interesting ways e.g. a Sticky note board on similes and metaphors. In the creative tasks they can choose from two tasks and make use of an app of their choice.  For example, in one task they can create an iMovie trailer about a movie of their book.  The apps make the ability to do something creative in relation to the novel much easier and more immediate and allow for choice that is easier to manage.

One thing that I couldn't have done before without the ipads is let the parents see all of the things that we are working on with the group novel so it will be interesting to see how they respond.

Log 29.4.12 Lucy

I don't have access to a personal iPad but can use them in school and have worked with my dad's one. I thought it might be of interest to say a little about my father's use of technology, since he took possession of an iPad 3 on the day of the 1:1 Kick Off at Coatbridge 16th March. I hurried back to his house to see him that day - and he was delighted with the present from me and my brother for his 80th birthday. We bought him his very first laptop - a mac - for his 70th birthday and he has demonstrated lifelong learning in his use of technology ever since. He's had another Macbook, and is now on his second iMac. He has two iPods - a nano with video and an iPod classic to store all his classical music. (I showed him how to convert his VHS opera tapes and then I used Toast, iMovie, iTunes and iDVD to make him new digital versions.) I got him an iPhone as a Christmas present this year and an Apple TV very recently. We have since watched the YouTube videos that Fraser recommended and he particularly enjoys using the three finger zoom facility, especially when looking at paintings online. He is always on the look out for things that might be of use to me in school. He told me about the Google Art project a while ago and about an app for it very recently.   

I downloaded various Apps that I knew my dad would like. He is a linguist and reads newspapers online every day, including ones in French, Spanish, German and Italian - he can now read them anywhere in the house. He also liked Flipboard as a way to access news and articles of interest to him. He is  keen on a particular genre of blog he discovered a few years ago where bloggers in various countries and cities of the world upload a photo every day. He is very impressed by the quality of the resolution on the iPad and the facility to zoom in and around. I had downloaded lots of apps for books - iBooks and free audiobooks - but realised yesterday he hadn't really cottoned on how to use them when he told me he'd read three chapters of Huckleberry Finn and showed me how he'd accessed them. He'd followed his nose on a literature site of Mark Twain's quotes to a link to the book. Talking with him about how he wants to use the iPad helped me to know to direct him to iBooks and other apps and he now knows how to use them. Wendy introduced us to her friend Susan Varga from Edinburgh City Libraries and the online ebook service Overdrive. I've since discovered it is available in my dad's local library. He is still mobile and can drive and has used public libraries since he was a child but has not had the energy to keep up his membership and go to the trouble of visiting the library for many years. I've renewed his membership online and am going to get online access for him. We have used Skype on the iPad to chat with my brother and his family but he prefers to do this on the desktop so he doesn't have to hold it up high. Yesterday he purchased his first App. He's a retired PT Art and he'd enjoyed using a free app I'd downloaded for him on the Louvre. He had subsequently found out- himself - how to use the App Store and noticed an HD version. He was pleased with the graphics but disappointed there was no information about the artist or painting and noticed himself he could have checked the reviews section before he purchased it. Learning every day - even at 80!  

My dad is making a jigsaw for my three year old nephew and was researching paddleboat steamers on his iMac. With great initiative, he decided to use the iPad to take photographs of different paddleboats on his desktop computer so he could have them to hand in his workshop. I showed him how to click on an image on the Internet and immediately store it in Photos on his iPad. He knows how to download images on his computer and could have printed them off but he wanted to try to use the iPad to help in the task. Having great quality pictures portable and to hand has been a great bonus for him. He's also a great cook and has myriad recipe books but for many years now has questioned why anyone would ever buy a cookery book when there are so many recipes online. He prints off ones to try but particularly enjoys using Video Jug. However, he has to go from the kitchen to the dining room (where the iMac is) to view - no great distance but increasingly off putting for him and he had been using it far less frequently of late. Not now though! The iPad can be onhand as he cooks!

Log  12.5.12 Fiona
This has been a very short week. Holiday on Monday, Scottish Opera workshop and performance all day Tuesday.

I set up a class wikispace at the weekend and uploaded some resources for the children. On Wednesday I issued each child with a username and password to access the wiki, we then did our Big Writing lesson on the iPads. However, we can't upload files to the wiki from the iPads so I set up a shared folder in my Dropbox and logged myself in (as a user I'd created specifically for this) on each child's iPad. I made sure that they ONLY see the shared class work folder - no way they can accidentally share something globally. I had thought that we could export to Dropbox from Pages, but it turned out I was wrong. It became apparent that the children would have to have emails to get their work to me. After discussing with Lucy we decided to go with their GLOW emails. Spent an hour and a half on Friday morning trying, unsuccessfully, to get these set up. I was ready to throw the iPads out of the window! Turns out we had the wrong passwords! Hopefully we'll get this sorted on Monday, but in the meantime I cannot assess the children's work because it's stuck on their iPads, so we won't be able to do the next lesson in the sequence until we get this sorted. Also, one boy is worried about using email because his father has told him that he is absolutely not allowed to use email.

Big Writing lesson using the Class Wiki.
The children loved having their own copy of everything in front of them and under their control, rather than looking at the Promethean board. Several of them zoomed in on the text. They enjoyed playing with the view they had of it. At times this became an issue so we had several points in the lesson where the iPad covers were closed so that everyone could concentrate!
When it came to doing the writing every child managed to open the file in Pages, rename it, and edit it.
One of the higher ability writers, a girl, wrote FAR less than she would usually write. She has not had much access to a computer at home, so she is still not fluent with a keyboard and spends a lot of time searching for the letter she wants. On the other hand, some of the lower ability writers were far more engaged with the task because the iPad would help them with spelling and was fun to use.
I did notice more children using a dictionary without being prompted - I think this was because they were using the spelling checker and when it didn't come up with the word they wanted they had instant feedback and so had a search in the paper dictionary.
We ran out of time on Wednesday (lessons interrupted by class photos) so I said to the children that it was not a prescribed homework task, but if they wanted they could continue at home. On Thursday, 8 (out of 30 who were present) children HAD done more at home, and of those, 2 had sat with a parent to do it. I liked that we could easily involve parents in the work of the classroom - very clear for them to see what their child is doing/learning.
I am quite excited about the idea of using the Wikispace. I have uploaded details of homework tasks, spelling lists, stars of the week, PLPs, and resources for lessons. I know that every child can access this from home (as long as their iPad has not had to be kept in school!), so I am beginning to think about not issuing a paper copy of the weekly homework sheet. Each child has their wiki username and password recorded in Notes on their iPad, so parents could use that and could access the wiki on their own computer if I explained that to them. One to think about.  
I could not have considered using a class wikispace before the children had individual iPads.

Log 20.5.12 Wendy

Last week went by in a bit of a blur.  It was so busy.

As part of the 120th Sciennes Anniversary celebrations Primary 6 has been asked to contribute some pieces for the timeline on the future.  This meant we had to temporarily step away from our Olympics work to do a sequence relating to technology and the future.  It does however, have strong links as we are looking at games and instructions in the Olympic project so the two sequences compliment each other nicely.

It was a busy week, as usual, as we had the Swimathon and the Cabinet Minister for Education and Life Long Learning visiting the classroom with many other adults (journalists, photographers, ministerial advisors, Derek Robertson from Education Scotland, representatives from the City of Edinburgh council and many others).

I am going to report back on only what we did with the i-Pads in relation to this sequence of lessons and with the homework task.  I will attach examples of pupil work and the interdisciplinary plan for the future sequence to help contextualise the learning.  

At the beginning of the week we had begun the sequence with an introduction of what we were going to be doing with this sequence and why. Which briefly explained to the children that we have been asked to contribute some products for the timeline of the interactive ibook as part of the Sciennes Anniversary.  I told them that we had been asked to look at technology and the future and to do that we would be looking at the history of games consoles before going on to consider why the i-Pad was such a good device for learning and then finally they would create proposals for an i-Pad or other one to one learning device for the year 2020.  They would be asked to work as a group to formulate a proposal to present to a Dragon's Den panel.  I also told them that we had been asked to produce artwork on the future for the hall.

We began with a graffiti board activity so that we could find out what we already knew about games consoles. A lot as it turned out!

This link explains how graffiti board works.


Fiona had brought in nearly all the makes of game boys for us to have a look at right up to the DS Lite and that proved very popular to talk about.  They couldn't believe how basic the original game boy was and how long it took to load.

After this we looked at an interactive timeline (which is unfortunately flash based so we had to look at it on the whiteboard), of games console development.  The children were then divided into pairs, working with someone they don't usually work with.  We decided as a class what the main information someone wanting to know from a quick presentation (we nominally set a limit of 7 slides though I can't say I was rigid in enforcing this), would be to help them to find out about that console and what it was capable of.  Each pair were then given a console to research under the agreed headings and took notes on an app of their choice (most used Pages, notebook, notepad or Sticky notes).  Finally they had to create a presentation using Keynote and various criteria were set relating to the content, the presentation itself and presentation skills.  Some of the presentations were going to be given in front of the Cabinet Minister so this gave the activity quite a buzz!  I have a lot of people who like to perform.  One of the things that we learnt how to do, that many of us didn't know before, was how to add a link to a video.  Many of the children found videos or websites where you could play the original games from the console.  This caused a lot of comments like 'unbelievable'.  They couldn't believe how basic the consoles were in the past.  I shared with them that the first console was The Brown Box which was sold commercially a few years before I was born and all the rest have come in my life time.

On the day of the visit we shared the presentations and the children downloaded a feedback sheet from Dropbox to record feedback for each of the pairs based upon our agreed criteria and also gave an, 'Even better if...' comment.

This task was different from what we would have done before because they would have had to have made a presentation in the computer suite over several weeks or at home.  It was much quicker to research, make and deliver, give feedback on and for them to adjust work based on feedback.  So essentially it was easier to work formatively.

Sharing was also more mobile.  Also, on this occasion we had a genuine audience.  This led one boy to do more work at home on the future and he made a presentation of his ideas on the future.

Then on Friday we watched a video on 12 consoles that failed and the task was to give advice to a console development company on what is needed for a console to succeed.  The advice was to be given in an app of their choice and they used, Sticky notes, Keynote, Pages, Brushes, Moodboard lite and Pic Collage.  This led to a really interesting discussion and their ideas ranged beyond what was said on the video.

Another task that we used the i-Pads for was to research ideas for and to create digital art on the future of Sciennes.  We made use of the blog Paleofuture to look at what people in the past thought of the future.  They were asked to choose to either create an image of the school building in the future, an object in the classroom or transport that might be seen out of the window.  I suggested that they could use the layer feature to put a background photograph of an image they liked to get some shapes but that it was not to just be a tracing exercise, they must adjust or add to the image with their own ideas, colours, textures.

For homework this week they were asked to make their own Flashcardlet set for their spelling words and they were to create a graph from information on medals at the Beijing Olympics then paste it into a Pages document and write sentences about what the graph showed before emailing the document to me.

One thing I would really like to do with them is use the Scratch programming software to create a simple game.  There was an app for Scratch but it was apparently withdrawn so this is one we will probably do in the computer suite.  I am also interested in us finding out more about app design at some point. 

Log 25.5.12 Fiona
This week's log covers the last two weeks (I'm afraid reporting took over last week!).
- Set up email for transfer of work
- Children used Keynote (VERY effectively) to accompany their class talks
- Used Pages (and wiki-space) for Big Writing
- Used Brushes for digital art
- Used Inspiration lite for learning logs
Big Writing
This week, and last, the children downloaded the resources from our wiki-space and then did their writing in Pages. Yesterday's Big Writing lesson was one of those lessons that sticks with you because it was so successful. When we came to the individual writing part of the lesson EVERYBODY was on-task. I got round FAR more pupils than usual because I was not interrupted by constant behaviour management issues.

The children's class talks were amazing this year. The majority of them had produced fantastic presentations (using Keynote) to accompany their talks, and very few needed to use a script or prompt cards because they used the text in their Keynote presentations as reminders of what they were going to say. Before the ipads everyone needed prompt cards because we often had issues using presentations that had been prepared at home on our class computer.

Log 4.6.12 Fiona
Used for Reading Conferencing (using Wikispace).
Used Talking News App to finish road safety films for P2 buddies (will share with them next week).
Mapping lesson. Used Maps (various views very useful). Used Brushes to draw our routes to/from school.
Writing - children accessed lesson resources on wikispace and downloaded file for writing. Used Pages. Emailed finished writing to me.
Sketching - used Brushes to sketch 'over' a photo then delete photo."    "In general I've been really impressed by how calm the classroom becomes when we are using the iPads for our 'normal' class work - reading conferencing and Big Writing. I am still finding that I can get round far more children during a lesson.
The activity that I found most exciting was the mapping one. Each child was able to easily locate the school (app does it for you!), they could then switch to street view and 'walk' home. That really helped make the link between the standard map and the real world, especially when the children switched back and forth between views.
After locating their own homes, as well as the school, the children took a screenshot of the standard map. They then imported this to Brushes and drew their routes to (and from) school onto the map.
There was LOTS of excited discussion throughout this activity. The children enjoyed showing their learning partner their walk home.
I really enjoyed the children's level of engagement with the map. I have not experienced the same excitement for mapping when using paper maps.
Once again there was parental involvement outside school. A couple of children came in the following morning to report that they had changed their route drawings after discussing them with an adult at home. I like this instant and immediate sharing with parents.   
The mapping activity was VERY different and was only possible because every child had their own machine. I feel there would have been a lot of frustration for the children had they been sharing machines. Also, each child could take a screenshot of EXACTLY the part of the map they needed. With paper maps I would have had to copy maps of the catchment area, and then the children who lived outside catchment would have needed different maps, thus there would be lots of photocopying/printing. using the iPads meant NO printing/copying costs!
The sketching lesson this week was great fun for the children. It was so easy for them to use a photo to structure their drawing (it helped everyone get the correct proportions in the face). They could use the layering feature to easily 'remove' the picture to check their progress and then put it back in to continue. We were very late getting out of the building that day because it was VERY difficult to get the children to stop and pack up, they were having too much fun! They were all very pleased with their results. This lesson would not have been completely impossible without iPads, but they certainly made it much easier.

Log 12.6.12 Fiona

Reading conference - done on wikispace. I'm enjoying never having to photocopy extra sheets for when children have lost theirs and not having to get everyone to write down details of each week's reading - everything is easily available (at school or at home) on the wikispace.
Diamond Jubilee - The children downloaded a free iBook that had loads of information and pictures from each decade of the queen's reign. Each child was free to read as much or as little as he/she desired (personalistaion & choice!). This would not have been possible without 1:1 devices.
Downloaded Sock Puppet - had 10 mins fun experimenting with it at the end of the day!
(Also downloaded Rock Operator App about Arthur's Seat - we were involved with the creators of this App before Christmas when we did our Old Edinburgh project, so it was nice for the children to be able to download it and explore it more fully than they were able to on our trip.)

Tuesday - holiday

Maths - used some maths games with early finishers.
Buddy Time - we met up with our buddy class (P2) and each child showed their buddy the road safety video they had finished last week (Tom & Ben's News). After that the children and their buddies had some 'free time' to share the ipads. Several children showed their buddies how to sketch from a photograph (we did that last week) and many of them let the P2 child try it for themselves.

Reading Conference again.
Learning Logs - used iThoughts HD to begin mind maps for this week's logs. In the afternoon we had a visit from Interface3 App designers. They told the children how an App develops from the initial idea righth through to a working App. The children then too part in trialing a maths App and they storyboarded their own (fantastic!) ideas for new maths Apps. We didn't use ipads (other than when we were trialing the game) but this activity relied on the children's knowledge and experience of Apps.

Finished Learning Logs.

Log 21.6.12 Iain

I teach one of the other P5 classes in Sciennes. I have used the floating class set of iPads on 6 occasions in the last few weeks to:

support learning in maths (used graphing website)
carry out internet research
create art work (Brushes) (x2)
extend learning in literacy - using iMovie (x2).

Using Brushes this week, we built on earlier work in which we had explored Hockney's iPad art (and later created our own images). I wanted to reinforce how you can use layers to enhance art. We took pictures of ourselves and then added a foreground image, rubbing through the top layer carefully to reveal ourselves.

This was a very engaging activity for the class, who liked modelling for and being in their own art work. They invented a wide array of backgrounds, using images off the web. "    This lesson wouldn't have worked without using iPads, because they bring together a whole range of different functionality and allow you to combine elements fairly easily. Taking photo / video; adding images from research; and integrating them with Brushes made it possible for children to complete a fairly complex project in a very short space of time  - a short 30 minutes, including intro(!). Not ideal, but we were not able to use the kit for longer.

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