Blog


Give it a try – our pick of the best apps and tools, part 7

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, and any […]

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Scratch Day 2019: three cool Scratch coding activities

May 11 is Scratch Day, an international celebration of coding on Scratch’s free, block-based coding platform. London Connected Learning Centre’s Rowan Roberts shares her love of Scratch and suggests three great Scratch activities to try. Why is Scratch such a great tool? Scratch allows you to develop a deep understanding of the logical structures used […]

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Screen time and children: what’s the problem?

Screen time – that shorthand for the hours children spend on digital devices – has become a contentious topic in recent years. Blamed for everything from obesity to sleep issues and cyber bullying, kneejerk reactions have tended towards the hardline. Politicians have called for time limits on social media and the debate has become both […]

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London History Schools Day: digital resources to support children’s learning

With our London CLC Humanities conference coming up on 1 May and the third London History Schools Day on 24 May we direct the spotlight onto London’s rich history and the benefits of using digital technology to support children’s learning, especially to bring the local context to life. London History Schools Day, which was launched […]

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The government’s EdTech Strategy 2019: a good start for schools?

London CLC responds to the government’s new EdTech Strategy and argues that context – and funding – is everything. The government launched its EdTech Strategy this week, designed to help tackle 10 key education challenges including reducing teachers’ marking workload, boosting training opportunities and levelling the playing field for people with special educational needs. The […]

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London Connected Learning Centre Podcast no 6: what makes a critical learner in the digital age?

What’s a critical learner? What are the skills children and young people need to develop in order to question and safely engage with information they come across online? How can educators support them to develop these critical skills? In this podcast experts from the award-winning London Connected Learning Centre look at the latest research to […]

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‘Using digital technology to improve learning’ EEF report response: technology is not an end in itself

The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) has today published Using Digital Technology to Improve Learning, a guidance report (download it here). The report reviews the best available evidence and offers schools four recommendations of how technology can improve teaching and learning, It also includes guidance on tailoring school communications to encourage parental engagement and offering more […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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.   […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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.   […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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, […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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