WrightICT eNews

Issue 10

Welcome

Welcome to the latest issue of WrightICT eNews.

Articles and further snippets via my website, Twitter and Pearltrees.

Change is Afoot

Following up on a suggestion made by a local headteacher, I have decided to cease sending a free flyer out and incorporate it into a small SLA which offers an ongoing advice and support service, including a monthly flyer. The flyers have been a tad irregular in publication thus far, but as part of a paid for service, monthly deadlines will be met!

Details of the offer are here, but briefly, I'll be available via email, SMS and phone to offer advice, support and guidance on ICT/Computing. I might not have all the answers, but I'll do my best to find them for you.

There will also be a regular contribution from ICT4C's esafety officer.

The service is £150 per year, commencing April 2015, but if you already subscribe to my 3 day SLA, I won't be asking you for more. This is part and parcel of that service.

If you'd like to subscribe, please let me know via email to paul@wrightict.co.uk.

If it's not for you, I hope you have enjoyed the newsletters sent so far and found some of the items useful.

Forthcoming Events

Information Security Seminar: . 'Are you Legal and Safe'. Thursday 12th March 8.45-12.00. Holiday Inn, West Bawtry Road, Rotherham, There's one at Hull University on the 12th May if you'd prefer not to travel.


RM Seminar. AJ Bell Stadium, Manchester. ( Near the Trafford Centre if that influences the decision!). Wednesday 18th March.


Hull and East Riding Schools IT Conference & Exhibition. University of Hull. Tuesday 24th March.


Naace Strategic Conference. 25th-26th March. East Midlands Conference Centre.

Click here for the programme of events.

Mystery Skype

Mystery Skype is an educational game, invented by teachers, played by two classrooms on Skype. The aim of the game is to guess the location of the other classroom by asking each other questions. It is suitable for all age groups and can be used to teach subjects like geography, history, languages, mathematics and science.

WeVideo

WeVideo is a cloud-based video editing platform that allows you to create videos online: editing, adding titles, effects, animation, music, narration and more.

Apps available for Apple and Android allow you to upload pictures and videos to your account.

WeVideo is accessible via the browser of smartphones, tablets and computers, so it can be used anywhere there is internet connectivity.

The free account offers 1 GB storage, 360p resolution, 15 export minutes per month, 5 invites per project and 390 licensed music titles.

Paid for options offer, well, more. Education packages start at $250 per year.

I do like the 3 interface options, enabling users to choose depending on their experience of editing.

The finished videos can be left on WeVideo or exported to other services, such a Vimeo.

Vimeo

As mentioned in the above article, Vimeo is a video hosting service. Whilst there are plenty of them about, notably YouTube, many schools have access to this blocked or restricted.

Vimeo offers both free and paid for options, with the latter offering more control over your account. The facilities are outlined here.

One advantage of using a video hosting service is that they provide the embed code that allows you videos to be published on your school site or blog. The School Life>Brazilian Dances section of the Parkstone Primary School website shows the end result. Unfortunately for them, I used my Vimeo account, so they're stuck with my mugshot on the videos. Now there's an incentive to get your own school account!

Additionally, it provides a place to store all those video clips that you might not want on the website but would like to be available to a wider audience, rather than them just sitting on the server unviewed.

The clip below was created in WeVideo, published to Vimeo at the same time, as the accounts can be linked, and the embed code parked into this flyer.

If that sounds like the actions and processes of a 'geek', it's not. After all, I managed it.

Balloon Ride

Emailing Parents

The crumpled letter in the bottom of a school bag is probably most people’s first thought when they think of how schools communicate with parents. But while email and other technology is often a more efficient approach than ‘pupil post’, it does bring with it some challenges to ensure compliance with data protection law.


The ICO (Information Commissioners Office) has published an article about contacting parents via email from schools.


Click here for the article.

Know Your Rights

Also from the The ICO is a commissioned a set of teaching materials to give teachers an introduction to information rights and provide them with a series of lesson activities. Help your students become aware of their information rights!

Information Rights Video for Schools

This 8 minute video is aimed at headteachers, deputy headteachers, school business managers and school governors. It discusses both data protection and freedom of information, focusing on the areas the ICO think are the most relevant for schools.


It includes key points covering the data protection principles, fair processing, security, disposal, policies, subject access requests, sharing, websites, photographs, CCTV, training, publication schemes, and responding to a FOI request.

Kodu Kup

Entries for this year's Kodu Kup are now open.

The closing date for entries is Friday 29th May.

Kodu is a visual programming language made specifically for creating games. It is designed to be accessible for children and enjoyable for anyone.

Kodu runs on PC and Xbox,

Blue Bot

The much loved Bee-Bot has a new friend, or relation, who knows?

Blue-Bot is here. Named because it uses Bluetooth to connect to a tablet it can be controlled via an app. iPad* only at the moment but Android and Windows to follow.

The app is free and can be used with limited functionality without a Blue-Bot, but once the app senses the presence of a Blue-Bot, the full resources of the app are available.

*Not iPad2 though.

Red Nose Day

Friday 13th March is Scratch Your Nose Day. This bi-annual event is a fun way of combining code with some fund raising, though the latter is clearly optional.

Naturally, the coding options have grown substantially since the original SYN idea came about, so whilst the name remains, don't feel you can't take part if you don't use Scratch.

Although there are no KS2 Teacher Packs, the KS3 one has some useful ideas.

Guidance from DfE on Keeping Children Safe

Published recently, ‘Keeping children safe in education: statutory guidance for schools and colleges.’ This Department for Education document contains information on what ALL schools and colleges should do and sets out the legal duties with which schools and colleges must comply. It replaces Safeguarding Children and Safer Recruitment in Education (December 2006) and should be read in conjunction with Working Together to safeguard Children 2013. It is recommended that all staff should read at least part one.


The document also contains important information for Governing Bodies about their responsibilities in regard to Safeguarding.


The document can be found here.

Anti-Bullying Reporting

Tootoot is an online anti-bullying tool and mobile application for schools, which allows students to report Bullying or any other incidents directly to their school. Students are anonymous and safe when reporting with Tootoot.


Tootoot has been developed over the past 2 years with teachers and other leading governing bodies to create a tool in which students, parents and teachers can create a safe environment to report incidents of bullying, whilst providing evidence for leadership, management, Ofsted and the Department for Education at the click of a button.


Tootoot can be accessed on the go, anywhere at anytime of day, using nearly any internet enabled device. Whether it's an iPad, Android, Windows Phone, PC or Mac, Tootoot is always there.

Snippets

Toontastic is an amazing digital storytelling app for the iPad. Teachers like this app because it is simple to use and has a built-in story arc that actively encourage students to build a well-structured story. Previously a paid-for app, it is now free.

Completed cartoons can be shared online or saved to the Camera Roll for use in other projects.


Book Creator, the recent Bett award winning app......This article and video show how pupils can dictate into Book Creator. This is the iPad way and if you have Android devices, you do it like this. Head to slide 8. No video I'm afraid.


Word Cloud Generator. I'm sure we're all familiar with word clouds, Wordle is one I've used quite a bit. However, this recently discovered alternative does have an impressive range of formatting options. Also, as this one doesn't have an online gallery, there's little chance in you or your pupils bumping into an inappropriate cloud. Completed clouds can be downloaded.


You Tube to launch kids app. YouTube will launch a new app specifically for children on Monday in a bid to make using the service safer.

It is understood that YouTube Kids will have parental controls and restrictions on who can upload content.The app will run separately to the main YouTube service and it will initially be available in the US only, but it is understood that it will be rolled-out in the UK later.

It will be free but only for Android devices.


Maths SAT materials. Scroll down to SAT prep stuff. Lots of resources and accompanying videos.


Telescopic Text. This simple site is a great example to your class of how a short simple sentence can be expanded and continually added to.

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