Interim reports

Education Learning Log

Cathkin Third year Biology

Cathkin High have a group of keen bloggers on Thursday lunch time. Last night their teacher Jaye Richards discovered my blog! I’ve been in my office here only a few days and as I’ve been involved in induction activities etc I hadn’t introduced myself properly to the school as I’m in the community wing. Now that I know my schools (one of which will be Cathkin High) I had planned to arrange a proper introductory visit. However after Jaye made contact I was able to go along to her class today and see her using glow with her third year biology class. If ever there was a reason for pushing blogging – there it is! Part of my role is to find examples of good practice and share it – its unlikely I would have got round to finding Jaye and her class for some time without a bit of blogging.

So into the computer base where the third years go every Thursday to use ICT within Biology. Some Australian visitors were also evident to look at what was happening and some of the ICT people from the EA. Jaye had already spent time over a few sessions as an early adopter, training the pupils in the use of their glow group etc.

So today taking the context of Australia the children were investigating population and how various organisms can affect it. They could read their news – which explained the learning intentions, then go to their glow group for biology where they could read documents explaining the tasks and activities. Pupils then used a variety of weblinks which had active tasks such as a food web activity, reading where some functional writing was produced, work on discussion points with the discussion group, developing graphs using excel. There was a lot going on.

Grant admitted he prefers the teacher telling him what to do first rather than it being on screen to read, but he said the activities were much better on glow as they were more active rather than a worksheet. Another pupil said that using glow freed up the teacher’s time to really help anyone who was struggling with an aspect of their learning.

What struck me was the enthusiasm of Jaye Richards and her commitment to use an available tool to improve her teaching. The using of that tool in itself was allowing her to really reflect on the outcomes of the lesson and how to meet the needs of the pupils. I was also really pleased to see how collaborative the work the pupils was doing became very quickly – they were helping each other, asking questions of each other, supporting etc.

This was not about J being a digital native or otherwise (maybe we can just stop using this nonsense term)- this was about good teaching – someone who was using the tools available to their best advantage.

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February 21, 2008 - Posted by | glow, learning | , , ,

7 Comments »

  1. Hello there.

    My name is Tess Watson and I am currently on secondment as an ESO in East Lothian. I would be really keen to set up links between schools in our councils. We are just about to start the rollout of glow in our schools.

    My subject area is Biology. I would be really keen to make contact with Jayne. Do you have a link to her blog or contact details?

    Kind regards,

    Tess

    Comment by Tess Watson | February 22, 2008 | Reply

  2. Great to hear how Glow is being used with classes. Found your blog via ‘where is ab?’ – I think, will add yours to a growing list of blogs to read, looks interesting, we have many of the same interests.

    Comment by Miss R | February 22, 2008 | Reply

  3. Hi Tess I’d suggested to Jaye you get in touch with each other – you’d get her via the Cathkin High Blog on blogroll at side

    Comment by andreareid | February 23, 2008 | Reply

  4. Hi there… Tess, you can reach me at biology@cathkin.s-lanark.sch.uk.
    I’ve read yr blog and website – it would be good to link up.

    Comment by Jaye Richards | February 23, 2008 | Reply

  5. Great Andrea!

    Thanks,

    Tess 🙂

    Comment by Tess Watson | February 23, 2008 | Reply

  6. “This was not about J being a digital native or otherwise (maybe we can just stop using this nonsense term)- this was about good teaching – someone who was using the tools available to their best advantage” I could not agree more with you. We should get past these artificially created barriers. There is evidence to contradict bland ageist comments like this, and as you have described, there is more evidence that using Glow will improve the experience that learners have in school: for both teachers and pupils.

    Comment by Martin Brown | February 29, 2008 | Reply

  7. Ewan MacIntosh has lots to say on this too! ICT is a tool, nothing more, and like he says it’s about the teach not the tech!

    Comment by andreareid | February 29, 2008 | Reply


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