Interim reports

Education Learning Log

ICT Futures

Thinking about ICT future development a lot just now….

Loving this video which someone showed me from RM. The future of glass – may not sound relevant to learning and teaching but have a look and its great for starting discussions around possible future developments.

If you haven’t already read it look at the 2011 Horizons report – lots of food for thought.

And one of my favourite augmented reality type learning and teaching sites which Doug Dickinson directed me towards – zooburst

I’ve really enjoyed seeing Doug in action recently along with Richard Crossland – delivering some training in SLC – moments of magic where you see people in the audience nodding and answering the “so what” question in their heads about using technologies. For too many years its been about the how to work the stuff and not the “so what can this do for learning?” What Doug does looks simple from the audience but is anything but….

March 30, 2011 Posted by | education, ICT | 2 Comments

RM Drop In

Attended the RM drop in for the secondary ICT co-ordinators in SLC. Really interesting afternoon, Trying to learn quickly just now for the new ICT aspects of my remit, so the drop in was really useful. Hope to attend more in future and will think more about how this kind of update/info could be extended in some way for others. The offices where I work were part of a cc4 upgrade during the week by RM as we are attached to a primary school.Brian K from RM was a star in the face of our demands from the area and extended team offices – the school upgrade was easy in comparison to us! Anyway lots of nice new features in the upgrade which can be seen here . Its currently being rolled out across SLC primaries by the summer – at the moment 50 primaries have already been upgraded – at its height 8 schools a week will be being upgraded – quite a feat for RM and the authority’s IT team who are also heavily involved in the primary schools modernisation programme too with a lot of movement over the summer in particular.

Trinity High will have their official opening in the Camglen area this Monday coming. The Glow team and ICT folks here are working away with them for some interesting things at the opening on Monday! This week I attended the official opening of Burgh Primary and just loved the performances by the children – wee p1s with their teddy bears stole the show! Fantastic stuff. The plaque was unveiled by Councillor Pam Cleary who had attended the Burgh when she was at school – she put into perspective really nicely just what great opportunities the children in our schools are offered by the learning environments which are being built for them, but also reminded us that its not just about the building its about the staff and community within it – thats what makes the biggest difference. It was also the school Jeremy Paxman visited when he did his “Who Do you Think You Are?” family tree. His great grandfather John McKay was janitor there at one point. Unfortunately couldn’t attend Loch’s official opening this week, but it too sounded great – loved the mementoes they gave out made by the children with pictures of the school – keyrings etc. At that point  I was in a meeting learning about my primary staffing remit – I think I may need to buy a huge calculator for this bit!! Said goodbye to several colleagues on Friday who are leaving the council and who have been committed to education for many years between them, its sad to see them go but it was fantastic to hear about just a few of the  pieces of work they had undertaken which have made a difference to the lives of many children and families – whether as heads, when they were education officers, managers, advisors etc.

March 27, 2010 Posted by | education, ICT | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Parents as Partners Consulting Children

The staff at Cathkin Community Nursery are in the middle of planning and carrying out activities around the focus “Pets”. To add a bit of excitement to this context they are using the eyepet. We’re going to collect this planning so other establishments can see how the nursery goes about planning with the children, parents and all involved in the children’s lives. In May the nursery is holding an Open Doors Event which will have 8 workshops run by staff. It will be open to Early Years establishments and early stage primaries in the Rutherglen, Cambuslang and East Kilbride areas. This follows on from successful work done in EK schools trying out open doors events.

Couple of photos below show some of the planning under way. At the nursery they use a mindmap approach to planning – they listen and observe and list “buzzwords” that the children are talking about. The staff team come together talk about the buzzwords and discuss possible focus ideas and outcomes. Children work with staff to develop a mindmap of the kind of things they would like to learn, find out about, try etc. You can also see  the materials which go up on the wall so that parents can add in ideas and thoughts about the focus.

Asking for ideas from parents about the pet focus….

Information about the children’s pets from parents……

Ideas from parents about the pet focus on the sunshine display board……..

Wee bit closer….

Mindmaps written up after discussion with groups of children around the focus pets and the eyepet

The initial mindmaps are going off to Brian McLaren at the consolarium and he’ll put them up on the glow group somewhere in the future.

Saw this in Oakwood House Nursery this week. They are working on ways to record the children self and peer assessing their work. The children using individual self assessment cards and the staff record discussions with the children around learning experiensces using this format. Currently writing a follow through report on their HMIe visit a year ago. Lots of really great work going on in the partnership establishment!

Enjoyed a visit to Little Pets partner nursery who ran a health day recently – great to see them inviting down local primary 1s to visit. Good transition work going on.

Really enjoyed attending the HMIe dialogue session at the end of the visit to Calderwood primary on Friday. It has been a really positive week for the school, staff, parents and children. Well done everyone there. Looking forward to reading the report when it is published.

Enjoying learning new things. I have some additions to my remit and I’m having a great time getting my teeth into them. Have a strategic ICT role and am spending time with the IT Business manager learning about all things ICT, just great fun getting to grips with the whole picture. Also taking on primary staffing work and again loving getting my teeth into new aspects of work in the education department. Have had an invite to the official opening of one of the schools I work with – Loch Primary. They are awaiting the publication of their follow through HMIe report. The initial visit was carried out around two years ago and the HT had just taken up appointment at that time. Really pleased with the outcome of this too – and can’t wait to see it published. Amazing work done by the staff in the school. Big thumbs up all round to the impact HMIe have had working together with these and other establishments in the area!

Busy week ahead, particularly looking forward to class visits at Hallside Primary.

March 7, 2010 Posted by | education, ICT, learning, Parent Consultations, planning, teaching | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lots of abbreviations in this post…

Brian McLaren did an enjoyable session at Loch Primary yesterday evening. Staff had the chance to try out lots of the goodies from his travelling bag – games on the wii, PS3 etc. I wasn’t able to get there as quickly as I wanted (but caught the second half). Prior to this I was up at Cathkin High where they were planning a student project with UWS commercial music students, Calderwood Primary will also be involved – exciting work will culminate in pupils developing a myspace type web presence with their recorded musical artefact. David Scott from UWS as always just fantastic to work with.

Its good to see the Loch moving forward with this GBL approach. Great way to engage youngsters. Their PT talked about her work on planning an interdisciplinary project using Endless Ocean tonight at the PT drop in session, she was also showing how she uses the Glow outcome tool to gather outcomes together into a planning document. Several teachers now playing with this around the primaries in particular in the area and are finding this a great practical tool.  At Loch they’re building up to each class having a GBL interdisciplinary topic per session as a context – eg Endless Ocean, Guitar Band, Eyepet, Wildlife Safari, Nintendogs etc, alongside this they are using their Nintendo DS’ for various ongoing activities. Fascinating inputs from other PTs – other highlights included Stonelaw’s Pete Mulvey and his  ideas around using flipcams and Trinity’s Ian Gilroy talking about positive behaviour, input from Martin Frame on the work ongoing at Cathkin PS where the children run their own bank with the assistance of RBS, Jaye Richards showing how various bits of Glow are really useful in particular Glow Meet and emphasising that take tools/ideas and be creative in how you use them to enhance your teaching and learning.  The best CPD always comes from classroom practitioners.

Learned a lot this afternoon from the area SMPS who did a session with LC HTs on IEPS, ASPs and CSPs. Clarified the reasoning behind certain planning tools in schools which are used to meet pupil needs. Really enjoy working alongside the senior manager pupil support as it fascinates me how much expertise they have in this area and I always come away having learned something new.

A task for me at the moment is completing a round of CP audits in schools, looking at how schools are developing CfE work and their CfE timelines, catching up with PRDs for nursery Heads, and keeping working away with schools about where they are with evaluative statement writing of QIs. Nursery inspection finished last week and Primary one coming up in a couple of weeks. Exciting new additions to my remit coming on the horizon too which I’m going to really enjoy. I could never say my daily routine is dull, always diverse and interesting.

February 2, 2010 Posted by | education, ICT, learning | , | Leave a comment

A new baby

My cats were most put out yesterday. As I become increasingly like the cat lady from the Simpson’s, for instance one of my cats enjoys being snuggled up in to me  a sort of  pashmina thing whilst I’m hoovering….. my cats seem to be becoming more human…This is sad but true as those who know me will testify. Yesterday they enjoyed the PS3 empty box for a wee while but they were not happy with me during the eyepet hatching. There’s been a lot of turning of their backs and evil glares since.

A new baby – Jack Sparrow Reid hatched out. I am learning how to play this you understand, so that I can do a wee spot of training in some of the area nurseries and infant classes. If it makes me squeal with delight then its pretty much a certainty that it’ll provide a great context for some of the youngsters in our area for great learning experiences. I will post up planning materials etc as we work on them. Hopefully we can video some of the experiences – I’m particularly keen to find a way of detailing how the planning and consultation with children is carried out, before during and after the focus.

February 1, 2010 Posted by | education, ICT | , , | Leave a comment

Eyepet Excitement

Got a wee plot up my sleeve for a trial of eyepets in one of our standalone  nurseries. Looking forward to getting my hands on the eyepet when it arrives with the ps3s this weekend! Here’s a brief overview of our wee baby trial.


  • To raise awareness of games based learning approaches
  • To develop innovative contexts for an interdisciplinary focus
  • To enhance consultation approaches with children, parents/carers and staff related to planning learning experiences
  • To provide depth and breadth of learning in literacy, with a focus on emergent writing
  • To further develop partnership with parents/carers which impacts positively on children’s learning
  • To facilitate transition development work for pre-school children

 What we will do

  • The early years staff and home school partnership worker involved will be trained in the use of PS3 Eyepet
  • Consultation around a focus planner using Eyepet will be completed and documented (this will identify experiences related to literacy in particular emergent writing)
  • Evaluations, observation, assessment will be documented as an exemplar for future development work
  • Parent workshops will be organised by the home school partnership worker to look at the possibilities of games based learning in the home to enhance learning
  • Parent prompts will be developed around a variety of games based learning programmes
  • Early years advice and banks of ideas will be prepared to assist in future use of Eyepet
  • A follow up transition programme will be developed with a link primary school, using the Eyepet to ensure enhanced bridging across the stages
  • Dissemination of the project will take place at the area early years forum
  • All EY Area establishments will be invited to a GBL awareness raising session March 2010 with consolarium input

January 26, 2010 Posted by | education, ICT | , | Leave a comment

Learn to Learn

I’m not at all sure what my oldest son does at his work. He’s twenty two and it has something to do with money. Anyway this evening he said its time I sorted out what people learn at schools. I think he overestimates my actual role and abilities….Also understand here that he’s had a lifetime of switching off when I go into school chat mode….

We’ve had a hoot over the past few days with Derren Brown’s exploits and for years we’ve watched repeats of many of his shows over again, working out the minutiae of what he does. Both of us enjoyed his book with memory training stuff in it – all the visualising stuff etc, but the bold boy puts it into practice. So at the moment he’s been studying for some investment type exams – really dull stuff (to my mind at least) and he’s been waxing lyrical about how helpful these techniques have been to his studying. The point he made was to do with practising any such technique (which he’s been doing and I haven’t), and he referred me to Gladwell’s Outliers (which I reminded I’d bought him!). He asked why he hadn’t learned this stuff at school. Now I think his schools did a great job of developing his ability to learn, but I also think we’re getting even better at it now. What he suggested we need to do is help people learn how to learn and really push that! Is that not CfE in a nutshell? And does it maybe not also remind us that what we’re trying to do is build on the great practice out there, becuase they did a pretty good job with him before CfE? When quizzed further on this he said that they had done stuff similar to this at school but the thing was they never got to try it out – so maybe in primary he’d been taught some mnemonics but they never got to make up their own and he reckons that’d have made a difference. Active learning maybe?

Meanwhile I’m feeling busy at the moment lots of HMIe follow through activity, training, improvement plan visits and the like. But finding, thanks to a wee push from Jaye Richards and Ollie Bray that I’m loving twitter. It’s really helping my job and helping develop my personal learning network further. I don’t think you have to use such things to develop your pln and learning but I do think (and this becomes an even more embedded thought as time goes on) that the technology itself is not just a tool, or add on to what we do as teachers. The act of using the technology develops something quite different and important in our learning and gets us right to the core of what our key purpose is. Have a look at J Connell’s recent article, his way with words is ever so much better than mine. But also his article talks about the “creepy treehouse” syndrome and I do think we need to consider that really carefully. When the younger son spies me cavorting around on my laptop – he and his pals snort and say – aha “Momma Reid on twitter, Momma Reid on myspace..Momma Reid playing with i google” and they see my efforts as the worst kind of that syndrome, because for them anything I am catching up to understand is for them already past tense….

September 18, 2009 Posted by | education, ICT, Uncategorized | | Leave a comment

Ollie Bray talk at Camglen Area

Ollie Bray has uploaded the slides he used with area staff recently in the Canbuslang Rutherglen Area re 21st Century teaching tools. Lot of very positive feedback from his talk and Jaye’s warm up routine.

September 2, 2009 Posted by | education, ICT | Leave a comment


So I’m trying hard to twitter…

August 30, 2009 Posted by | ICT | Leave a comment


Enjoyed my jaunt to a wedding over the weekend just outside Budapest. My cousin Stuart was getting married to Henrietta who is from a small town near Visegrad. Glorious weather, hearty goulash and stuffed pancakes and lots of cake. Loved all the traditions during the wedding and reception with the master of ceremonies. Just wonderful.

Busy couple of days at work we held an HMIe preparation event yesterday where “talking heads” who have recently had HMIe visit their schools talked about their experiences. As with anything, its all about making connections and sharing with others. Everyone got a pack with bits and bobs which might be helpful.

This evening Cathkin Primary hosted a talk by Ollie Bray. He was ably intoduced by Jaye Richards and has promised to embed his slides on his website. One HT phoned me afterwards to say it was inspiring, and I’d have to agree.

August 26, 2009 Posted by | Creativity, education, ICT | , , , | 1 Comment