ICT Subject Leaders’ Conference 2012: What’s going on with ICT?

Things move so fast in technology and education. We run two ICT subject leaders’ conferences a year at Lambeth CLC and that just doesn’t seem often enough.

Since last summer we’ve had Eric Schmidt’s Mctaggart speech, the Ofsted Report on ICT 2008-2011, the Royal Society’s Shut Down or Restart, Michael Gove’s BETT speech, the new Computer Science GCSE, new curriculum frameworks from Computing at School, NAACE and last week’s announcements confirming the disapplication of ICT Programmes of Study and the unveiling of the New draft Programmes of Study for primary English, mathematics and science.

I started the day with some reflections about freedoms and constraints in the English education system, ran through the above milestones and then moved on to explore trends and challenges from the New Media Consortium K – 12 Horizon Report 2012. My colleague Joe Halloran picked up on the computer science theme and did a sales pitch for the subject. Don’t teach it because it’s trendy, don’t teach it because it will save our economy, teach it because it’s interesting in its own right. Joe used some activities from Computer Science Unplugged to get teachers actively involved, and took us on a journey via the Transit of Venus (see my ancestor Jeremiah Horrocks) and great scientific explorers and onto how to support children involved in pictorial and text based programming from early years upwards.

View the presentation here.

The rest of the day included workshops on QR Codes and Aurasma, using iPads in Primary, presentation freeware, project based learning with Excel and getting started with Kodu.

Meshedia Damiper, a year 3 teacher from Rosendale Primary gave an inspirational talk about how she and her year group colleagues have been working with Tom Barrett and Ewan Mcintosh from No Tosh on a project to support children to assess their own learning within a negotiated curriculum using Evernote and tagging as tools. This really is where change is happening in education. Read more on the blog.

Angela Couchman from Effra Early Years Centre showed us examples of young children using technologies such as digital microscopes, iPads and pocket cameras to explore their world and demonstrated how taking digital photographs helps children to review and reflect on their learning.

Ruth Grimwood @ruthgrimwood from Crown Lane told the story of how recruiting pupils as digital leaders has transformed the practice of adults and children in her school.

Joe will be running his session ‘Get with the Programme’ at the BFI New Media conference on 4th July. The day is a must for ICT, media and computer science teachers in secondary, FE and HE. Hear the big names in computing, games and education including Ian Livingstone, Hack to the Future’s Alan O’Donohue, Coder Dojo’s Vicky Whelton, Little Big Planet, the Language of Gaming from Bangor University, Inspiring Girls into IT, and Social Media and Political citizenship, the iPad and film education with Andy Lee, Narrative Engineering – How to write a video game, Skype in the Classroom, and Anna Higgs from Film 4 on Telling Stories in Parallel Places.

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