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Stuart Sutherland and John Sutton ran this discussion about the impact of blogging and other technology on parental engagement. The Ferry Lane blogs were showcased for their good practice, both for their innovative approaches to communication and the quality of work being produced. Click here for the article.

under: Blog development, education policy, Ferry Lane

brainpop article

Posted by: | January 21, 2011 | 3 Comments |

A recent article written for Brainpop.co.uk about the impact of blogging on children at Ferry Lane Primary School. Sharon wrote the bulk of the article (she is 10). Click the image below to read the article.

under: Blog development, Ferry Lane, Uncategorized

under: Blog development

under: Blog development, Chorlton Park

General election in Year 2.

Posted by: | April 15, 2010 | No Comment |

The videos are quite slow to load today, so please click on the one you would like to play, then click again and wait a minute for it to buffer. If you click play once more, it should work better.

Today we talked about what an election was. Some of us knew that there was going to be a general election in this country on May 6th, and that it was a chance for adults to decide on who should run our country.

Then we ran our own election in the class! It helped us all to understand what it was all about. This is what we did:

First of all we chose three party candidates who believed in different things. Here is what they believed in:

Party A thought that people should be able to make money for themselves and their families. It Allowed rich people to keep most of their money.

Party B thought that people who make plenty of money should give lots away to help others. They wanted to spend lots of money on schools and hospitals.

Party C thought that we should put lots of our money into making the world

under: Chorlton Park

I’ve been thinking about what a new primary ICT curriculum would look like if you started from scratch. What would you teach? How would you make the curriculum future-proof (or at least last a few years) whilst still remaining relevant to new developments?

Clearly APP would form the basis for the objectives, starting with the three strands already implemented in the KS3 documents:

  1. Planning, developing and evaluating
  2. Handling data, sequencing instructions and modelling
  3. Finding, using and communicating information

So what would your planning look like? Can people describe projects that they are working on which might sit easily into this sort of framework? For my contribution I would use the Jack and the Beanstalk project we have just completed in Year 2. In this project the children spent half a term researching and re-telling the story, designing 3d storyboards which they then photographed and assembled into a film along with their own voice-recordings, transitions and title music. The finished product, a short film was then evaluated and assessed against their initial brief. The whole project seems to sit well with the above strands of the APP assessment in KS3. Medium term planning to follow.

Can other readers of this blog suggest their own interesting projects which might be used by other teachers?

under: education policy
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Visitor numbers going up…

Posted by: | February 9, 2010 | 1 Comment |

The Year 2 blog stats are going up all the time. So far today we have had 400 individual visitors, the highest ever. Whilst this is great, the number of comments are down (outside school hours). I’m beginning to think about reasons for this, and wonder what other people think. Is it just that visitors are using links and games from the site (which is great if true), that they are not finding anything of interest to comment on (which is not so good) or for some other reason.

Answers on a postcard please!

under: Blog development, Chorlton Park
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The theme at

under: Blog development, education policy
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Blogging with parents

Posted by: | January 18, 2010 | No Comment |

For some time now, I have run blogging clubs for children at Chorlton Park. These have been popular and helpful in getting our kids to engage and learn using the blogs. However, lots of children wanted to do the things we did in school back home. This was harder as the children were often more able than their parents, and the parents had questions and concerns about the blogs. As a result, I have changed the format of these clubs.

Each year group from Year 2 to Year 5 will now get half a term of blogging after school on a Tuesday. I will teach parents with their children how to blog. When I canvased opinion, parents wanted to know about esafety (surprise surprise!), about basic blogging, and some wanted to know more technical things such as how to embed video and photo content. This is a wide range of skills. Perhaps more than I can teach in half a term with only half an hour each week.

As a result, I decided to make a series of video tutorials which covered the range of skills that the parents wanted to learn. I will teach esafety explicitly, and make it a condition of their attendance (important if they are then to learn how to embed video or photo content) I will teach them how to leave a comment, and then let them explore for themselves with the help of their children and the tutorials.

Another reason for changing the format of the club is to ensure that the blogs are continued when I leave Chorlton Park. I have asked a teacher from each year group to come and teach the club with me. It will provide a time and space for them to work alongside the parents and children on making their particular yeargroup blog active and engaging, and hopefully boost confidence in the staff.

I would be really interested in hearing people’s thoughts on this. Have I missed out any critical things to teach? What are your favourite ways of teaching esafety stuff? Do you have interesting resources to share? Do you already do something similar? Please leave a comment and let me know.

The tutorials are embedded below. Please use them in your blogs if you find them useful, but a link to the Year 2 blog and a credit would be much appreciated.

Leaving a comment on a WordPress blog from jacksloan on Vimeo.

Writing a post on a WordPress blog from jacksloan on Vimeo.

Adding a link in a WordPress blog post from jacksloan on Vimeo.

Embedding a photograph, picture or drawing into a WordPress blog post from jacksloan on Vimeo.

under: Blog development, Chorlton Park
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Voicethread is a brilliant tool for commenting collaboratively. It is very easy to use, and children can comment using text, a microphone or even a webcam. This presentation will help you to get started.

under: Blog development, Chorlton Park, Voicethread
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