Blog


London Connected Learning Centre Podcast no 5: digital exclusion and entitlement

According to the recent Carnegie Trust report on digital inclusion, Switched On, 10% of households have no access to the internet and 11.3 million people in the UK lack digital skills. This has far reaching impacts. Increasing numbers of basic services, from benefits to housing, are accessed online, not to mention job searches and shopping […]

Read more

The web at 30: a resources roundup

The world wide web turns 30 years old tomorrow and there are celebrations taking place across the world. For educators it means a bonanza of resources and activities about the world wide web that can be adapted for use in the classroom. Here’s our roundup of what’s happening and our choice of activities to mark […]

Read more

Relationships and sex education guidance recognises the online world

Peter Lillington responds to the government’s draft guidance on Health, Sex and Relationships education The world in which children and young people are growing up has in many respects changed considerably since 2000, the last time that Health and Sex and Relationships Education guidance was updated. The government’s draft guidance, which was actually published for […]

Read more

Join us at Tate Exchange to make digital moves around creative arts teaching

London CLC is heading back to Tate Exchange and this time it’s bigger than ever…. Well, longer than ever anyway. Just as in previous years, London CLC is a Tate Exchange associate. This means that we take over the Exchange floor on level 5 of Tate Modern, giving pupils the chance to create digital and […]

Read more

Safer Internet Day 2019: three hard questions educators need to ask

The online safety curriculum keeps evolving – and it needs to. As children and young people’s use of online media evolves, so too do the safety challenges that arise. Last week’s Ofcom report into children’s media lives provides a snapshot of what children are doing online and how online interaction is changing. For example: YouTube […]

Read more

National storytelling week: four practical ways digital tools can inspire stories in the classroom

Stories are at the heart of so much that we do and children have an innate drive to create, tell and retell stories. While storytelling is as old as human culture itself and requires nothing more than an imagination, digital tools can help us to tell the stories in new forms, from creating Minecraft worlds […]

Read more

London CLC wins Bett award

London CLC is a Bett award winner! Last night our work with schools was recognised in the support and service category at the Bett show, the most prestigious awards in the schools edtech world. The award celebrates companies and educational organisations that provide effective services, support and professional development to ensure that technology really makes […]

Read more

Five reasons why you should come to our Bett talk on digital criticality

Can you spot a fake news story? Can you teach somebody else how to? We all need to approach the online world with a critical mindset and our Bett talk will explore what that means in an age of deep fakes, fauxtography and deliberate disinformation spreading swiftly across social media. How do children make sense […]

Read more

Reducing teacher workload: 10 top tech tips for tired teachers

With research showing that teachers spend more than half their time on admin, we’ve rounded up some of the most effective productivity tools and techniques to stay on top of email, planning and collaborating.   Teachers in English schools won’t be surprised by a recent report from the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) which […]

Read more

Protecting your school’s data – three quick tips

With the news this week that the number of data breaches reported by schools increased by almost a quarter in just two years to 703, and further warnings about the increasing vulnerability of schools to cyber attacks, London CLC’s Krzysztof Jurek looks at three areas where everyone can help to keep their data more secure.   […]

Read more

London CLC is a Bett 2019 finalist

London CLC is through to the finals of the Service and Support category of the Bett Awards 2019. The award celebrates UK-based companies and educational organisations that provide effective services, support and professional development to ensure that ICT really makes an impact in the classroom. It recognises the fact that educators need ongoing support for […]

Read more

What is news literacy and how do you teach it?

London CLC’s Peter Lillington explores this hot topic and recommends some new resources to help you teach it in the classroom. In September we wrote about and podcasted about the place of digital literacy in computing and the wider curriculum, and highlighted our participation in a newly formed News Literacy Network with national partners such as […]

Read more

How to choose a good password – a step by step guide

Kanye with the expert 000000 passcode pic.twitter.com/blUMExjfnN — Kenny Ducey (@KennyDucey) October 11, 2018 If  your password is: “password123456” or anything similar (or 00000, looking at you, Kanye West) – it is not going to be effective. You may think that using a long and complicated password, such as; “YourName+yourDOB” will protect your account. Bad […]

Read more

The Edtech Podcast Festival 2018 – review

Peter Lillington, London CLC teaching and learning consultant, shares his highlights of the first Edtech Podcast Festival. Sophie Bailey, the voice behind the popular and well regarded EdTech podcast, has long had a dream to bring together listeners and contributors, educators and edtech companies in a festival of ideas. The result was the Edtech Podcast […]

Read more

London Connected Learning Centre Podcast episode 4: digital literacy

What is digital literacy and why is it important? How and where should it be taught – as a subject in its own right or weaved through computing, citizenship, history, English or all subjects? Should ‘fake news’ always be published in Comic Sans font…? Having the skills to be critical about information that’s encountered online […]

Read more

What is digital literacy and what’s it got to do with fake news?

As London CLC announces a new digital literacy collaboration with First News and the Guardian Foundation, and a free CPD session for teachers, Peter Lillington explores what exactly literacy means in a digital world. Digital literacy has become something of a buzz phrase. At first appearances its meaning seems obvious but it is frequently used […]

Read more

Damian Hinds’ edtech future for schools: putting the vision into practice now

Last month we wrote a response to the government’s announcement that it was putting education technology at the heart of education, welcoming the initiative and arguing that it must be led by teaching and learning needs rather than the ed tech industry. Bob Harrison has also responded to that ‘vision’ in a no-holds-barred article, Don’t look […]

Read more

Gamelan workshops: explore the traditional music of Java and Bali

During September schools will have a chance to bring classes of children to London CLC for a flavour of gamelan music making, combined with animation. London CLC’s teaching and learning computing consultant Peter Lillington participated in the International Gamelan Music Festival in Java earlier this month and gives an insight into the spirit of gamelan.   […]

Read more

A ‘tech revolution in the classroom’? A response to Damian Hinds

Damian Hinds’ new initiative to put technology at the heart of education is an exciting and overdue development but it must be led by the needs of learning and teaching – not the edtech industry, says Sarah Horrocks, director of the London Connected Learning Centre. Education secretary Damian Hinds today set out his vision for […]

Read more

What is gamelan? And why choose this creative arts and computing workshop?

Gamelan is the collective name for an ensemble, orchestra or group of instruments that come from the fourth most populated country in the world – Indonesia, and the islands of Java or Bali in particular. The instruments are mainly but not exclusively percussion, and learning basic playing techniques is quite simple – so the gamelan […]

Read more

Computing at School (CAS) conference 2018 – highlights and links

A CAS conference is always a pleasure to attend, writes Peter Lillington, London CLC’s computer teaching and learning consultant, and this year’s 10th anniversary event in Birmingham was no exception. Having been to the London conference in the spring I knew that CAS is fantastic at bringing together academics, teachers, industry and business, enthusiasts, consultants […]

Read more

London Connected Learning Centre podcast no 3: technology use in the early years

Welcome to the latest episode of the London Connected Learning Centre podcast, in which presenter Julia Lawrence explores with expert guests how technology can be used in early years settings.  The discussion focuses on challenges and opportunities while also unpicking some of the debate around online safety and screen time for very young children. “Our […]

Read more

What’s a London CLC primary computing conference like?

From design thinking to Pixar’s 22 rules of storytelling, unplugged computational thinking to light-up cities, you can guarantee that a London CLC primary computing conference will be varied, enlightening and always inspiring. Twice a year, primary school computing subject leaders gather at London CLC’s HQ in Clapham for a packed day of CPD. What can […]

Read more

How schools can combat fake news through critical literacy

The Commission on Fake News and the Teaching of Critical Literacy Skills in Schools, published its Fake news and critical literacy: final report yesterday. It is a must-read for teachers and school leaders, writes Sarah Horrocks, director of London Connected Learning Centre. Key findings are that only 2% of children aged 5-16 have the critical […]

Read more

London Connected Learning Centre podcast no 2: girls and computing

Welcome to the latest episode of the London Connected Learning Centre podcast. What’s turning girls off computing and what can be done about it? In episode no 2 on gender and computing, presenter Julia Lawrence explores with expert guests the question of where children are getting the idea that computing is more for boys and the […]

Read more

Get arty with Scratch scripts

Teachers often ask us how they can support their pupils’ progression and creativity in Scratch programming, writes London CLC computing education expert Rowan Roberts. One great way is to give children the opportunity to get artistic with their Scratch scripts. Check out these arty example projects. Each one shows off a different feature which your pupils […]

Read more

Give it a try – our pick of the best free apps and tools, part 2

Each week in our newsletter we highlight a favourite free or low-cost app/tool/resource/piece of software and give a brief rundown of how you might use it in the classroom. Every month or so we round them up here on the blog. We’d love to hear what you think about them if you give them a go, […]

Read more

Listen to the new London Connected Learning Centre podcast

Welcome to the first episode of our new monthly podcast series. In this introductory programme, presenter Julia Lawrence finds out more about London CLC’s approach to professional learning, the new iPad aimed specifically for schools, the IBM summer school for computing leaders and what exactly tennis, art and gardening have to do with computing… LISTEN […]

Read more

From seed pods to python skins: exploring the Garden Museum digitally

London CLC has embarked on a number of creative collaborations already this year, such as working with Tate Modern on a Tate Exchange project. Our latest project was close to home in Lambeth at the Garden Museum, writes Caitlin McMillan, London CLC computing tutor.   What is the Garden Museum? The Garden Museum is, as […]

Read more

What’s turning girls off computer science?

In this long read, computing education expert Rowan Roberts explores why fewer girls than ever are taking the new computer science GCSE and suggests how teachers and parents can help girls to emerge from primary schools with a more robust sense of themselves as computational thinkers. Have you ever tried putting ‘computers for boys’ and […]

Read more

IBM Summer School returns – sign up now

  It’s back. Our award-winning collaboration with IBM returns for its fifth season and is open for booking now. Designed for teachers with a responsibility for primary computing, and delivered by IBM professionals alongside our education experts, the course will help you to: Explore effective ways to support colleagues in teaching computing Better understand the […]

Read more

Engaging children with reading and writing through Minecraft

Parents and teachers alike often worry that children spend too much time on their computers playing video games rather than focusing on key skills like reading and writing. However, Reay Primary School in Lambeth discovered that using a platform that children were already familiar with – Minecraft – could bring the curriculum to life and […]

Read more

Fake news: helping children to untangle the web

London CLC director, Sarah Horrocks, examines the rise in concern around fake news and critical literacy and considers whether primary schoolchildren are equipped to spot the spoofs. “We were thinking that everything on YouTube is true,” said a London primary school child earnestly, after completing one of our Fake News workshops. With the current spotlight […]

Read more

Making ‘more blocks’ in Scratch – a great way to promote computational thinking

Last month on the blog I looked at ScratchMaths, an incredibly powerful tool for helping children to visualise abstract mathematical concepts like angles and coordinates, writes Rowan Roberts, London CLC’s computing tutor. This month I want to delve a bit deeper into Scratch 2 and highlight a brilliant feature that has much to offer and yet I […]

Read more

London CLC commended in the Edtech 50 report

The prestigious Edtech 50 report, which shines a spotlight on those pioneering a new future in education through technology, was released this week and we are very proud to have received a judge’s commendation for our work. Aside from wanting to shout our own commendation from the snowy rooftops, we do strongly recommend having a […]

Read more

How do we compare? European teachers’ views on London primary schools

One of the really interesting parts of our work here at London CLC is hosting visits from teachers and policymakers from other parts of the world. It is always fascinating to share experiences, hear from them what our system looks like from the outside, and discover how other countries approach things differently. There’s usually a […]

Read more

Tate Exchange: taking over a gallery with ‘Lifelong Kindergarten’ ideas

Here at London CLC we are pretty big fans of Scratch and the opportunities for learning and creating that it offers to pupils, writes Caitlin McMillan, London CLC computing tutor. Scratch was created by an MIT Media Lab research group headed by Mitchel Resnick, so we were very excited to learn more about its approaches […]

Read more

Safer internet day: top five tips for online safety strategies

Online safety is a complex area. The threats and issues young people face in the online world are evolving all the time. Just when you feel you’ve got a handle on what’s current, a new challenge pops up elsewhere. Repercussions of these daily threats can be felt deeply in the playground, in the staff room and in the wider school community. Unfortunately, […]

Read more

Approaching Online Safety with KS1

Safer Internet Day is nearly upon us with February 6th a few hours away. How to broach afresh this area with younger children without upsetting or scaring them? The UK Safer Internet Centre has found a way with their resources for KS1. As well as an assembly presentation and script about 3 monsters (NOT scary!) […]

Read more