ICT in Schools Bulletin

APRIL 2016

Two new fun apps for teaching coding.

The Foos

Code spark have just launched this fun, new, free app to help younger students learn to code. Foos are cute creatures that were only discovered by scientists very recently. They are microscopic and live deep inside of computer chips. Foos can be programmed to do almost anything. However, to be truly happy Foos need to have fun and help each other. There is a range of teacher resources including lesson planning to help teachers integrate into the curriculum. Kids have fun learning:

  • Problem Recognition
  • Conditionals
  • Critical Thinking
  • Perseverance
  • Sequencing
  • Algorithms
  • Loops
  • Commands/Parameters

Fix the Factory by LEGO


Meet EV3RSTORM, the cool LEGO MINDSTORMS robot who can walk, rotate, grab, shoot and put the misplaced battery packs at the NOGO factory back in their right place - if you tell him the right moves to do it!

Help EV3RSTORM navigate the massive NOGO factory maze and put the dislocated batteries back in place to proceed to the next level. But watch out, it’s not as easy as it seems. And you never know which challenges the floors inside the factory are going to present to you!

Fix The Factory is an addictive puzzle game full of unexpected obstacles that are guaranteed to challenge your logic thinking, your spatial intelligence and your robot commanding skills.

The game is packed with fun sound effects, challenging puzzles, cool robot functions, great level designs and a funky robotic soundtrack.

See you if you can complete all levels and earn the maximum score based on:
- Least number of attempts
- Least number of moves
- Least amount of errors
- Shortest time


Available on Google play and apple app store.

How teachers can use the Fix the Factory App in the classroom

Three great new tools from Storyboard That

Thank you to Mrs Toward from St Joseph's RC Primary School for sharing these cool new websites with us .

Storyboard That

Storyboard That is a digital story creator that was designed to be used by all audiences, not just professional artists.

  • Drag and Drop Interface
  • No Software to Download
  • Create your first storyboard in minutes

Photos for Class

Teachers need a place to access safe images that are available to be used in the classroom and for educational purposes. Plus, they want accurate image citations. Storyboard that have also created “Photos For Class” to meet your needs for images!

  • Age Appropriate Images - All images are appropriate for the school setting, thanks to Flicker SafeSearch and proprietary filters - Read More
  • Automatic Citation - Downloaded images automatically cite the author and the image license terms - Read More
  • Creative Commons - All photos shown are, to the best of their (and Flickr's) knowledge, licensed by Creative Commons for public use

Quick Rubric

A rubric is a criterion referenced assessment tool used to score assignments or performances. Work is scored/graded based on how well the finished product lines up with the criteria listed on the rubric. A rubric is a very powerful device for performance-based assessments, such as oral presentations or projects, but also makes grading essay questions and narratives quick and easy.

Storyboard That have created an easy to use rubric tool to make your own.

Microsoft Education Webinar

If you are looking to develop your teaching and learning through great training resources and opportunities to share best practice, then look no further. On Thursday 5th May, Mike Tholfsen, OneNote Programme Manager, and Stuart Ball, Partners in Learning lead at Microsoft UK, will be delivering a webinar to update you with exciting news and updates from Microsoft in Education and guide you through how to kick start your training and CPD.

Naace announces new procurement partnership with the Department for Education

Naace and the Department for Education are developing a new partnership to provide procurement advice for schools. The partnership will build on the general procurement guidance of the Department with tools and support to enable schools to plan procurements specific to their particular circumstances. Naace Chief Executive Mark Chambers said, “As more and more schools contact us for advice, we are delighted to work together to provide guidance and support in this area, particularly as budgets shrink. We know this partnership will be of real help to schools, to maximise the value of their education technology purchases.” The Naace/DfE Procurement Advisory Service will be formally launched in September 2016. As part of this partnership, Naace is working with the DfE to bring early procurement opportunities to the attention of the Naace communities. The latest announcement follows.

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 e.g. covers, security marking, charging trolleys.

Indicative timescales are April/May: gather school’s commitment and volumes, with delivery targeted in July/August.

For further information on this opportunity use the link below

Staying Safe using technology

Two South Tyneside boys aged 12 and 13 arrested for possession of indecent images

Read the article here.

Cyberbullying and the sending of inappropriate images is on the increase. It is becoming a very serious and very upsetting issue and is affecting the well-being of students in school. Schools are reporting pupil absences due to anxiety caused by incidents, and the long term effects can be devastating. The power of teaching students about how their behaviour online impacts on others cannot be underestimated.

Get in touch with one of our team on 0191 427 2120 if you would like some support in your school.

Posting pictures and videos on social media

A few years ago most people only took a camera to special occasions like parties or holidays. Now we carry cameras all the time - on our phones.

You can take some snaps or shoot a video anywhere and share them online in no time. Photos and videos can be a great way to show your friends what you’re up to.

But remember, it can be really hard, sometimes impossible, to delete pictures or videos from the internet or other people’s mobiles. Once you’ve shared something online or on your mobile you’ve lost control of it - it can be copied, shared and even edited!

If you send an embarrassing picture or video to a friend it could end up anywhere. If you post it online anyone could see it, including your parents, teachers or future employers!

Remember – it’s never too late to get help if you’ve shared something you regret.

For more information from Thinkuknow click here

For more information on sexting advice for parents from NSPCC click here

For more information on cyberbullying from bullying UK click here

For advice about what to do if you have been bullied on Snapchat from nobullying.com click here