Wonderful Winter Olympics

The 2018 Winter Olympics begin this Friday in Pyeongchang South Korea, although the first week of the Olympics takes place in half term, it continues until the 25th February, we have highlighted some resources to use in school to introduce children to these sports and activities based around the games.  Newsround have a great short video to introduce the Winter Olympics to children.

Another great video from the BBC highlights past moments of the Winter Olympics using Lego figures you can watch it here. This is a great way of introducing sports to the children as well as getting them to create their own animation perhaps using the animation tool in JIT or you can use this outline lego figure to get the children to create their own outfit for the GB team, or use the paint package also contained in JIT. Another art and design idea could be to use images from the amazing Skeleton Bob helmets worn at the 2014 games to get the children to design their own ones.

 

 

By the time the children return after half term there will be a range of data that the children could look at, they can use the data tools contained in J2e Tool suite, they could do a medal count tally, vote for their favourite sport or graph timings in a particular sport.  They could also do a presentation comparing Ancient and Modern Olympics or research the athletes competing. The Team GB website has a fact filled website with profiles of sports and competitors. You can also get them to write a report on a particular sport, using the tools in j2office, or j2write, or why not get them to record a ‘live’ commentary and then upload their videos into Video Central HD or film a short segment on what they have enjoyed watching or a recap of the games so far using music from Audio Network to add to their film.

Virtual Reality is not just for the classroom it is also being used by US athletes competing at the Winter Olympics this year in skiing, you can read more about this in a report by the BBC and watch a video of the Virtual Reality run here. Great to use as a discussion with children as to why the athletes benefit from Virtual Reality and why it is being used and what other sports may benefit from using this technology.

The Mascot for the Winter Olympics this year is Soohorang, which took its motif from the white tiger. The white tiger has been long considered Korea’s guardian animal. You can find out more about the mascot here, why not ask the children what they would have chosen as the mascot and why.

 

The Olympic Museum has produced the “Experiencing discovering the Olympic Games: Special PyeongChang 2018” kit which includes:

  • Essential information about the 23rd Olympic Winter Games;
  • An introduction to Korean culture as it affects the Games;
  • Classroom activities for pupils aged 6 to 11 and 12 to 15.

The purpose of this kit is to show how the Olympic values and the culture of the host country have been incorporated into the 2018 Olympic Winter Games. The themes are designed to link with educational curricula in a variety of ways. The Get Set network has produced a range of resources including a quick fire quiz and an assembly and activities on team work, you will need to sign up to Get Set to access these resources.  Teaching Ideas also have some more great ideas to use across the curriculum.

If you use any of the ideas we would love to see the work, please let us know via our  twitter or Facebook pages.

LGfL at Bett


From Wednesday to Saturday next week the Excel centre in London will home to Bett. This is the first industry show of the year in the education technology landscape bringing together 850 leading companies103 exciting new edtech start ups and over 34,700 attendees from the global education community. They come together to celebrate, find inspiration and discuss the future of education, as well as the role technology and innovation plays in enabling all educators and learners to thrive.

LGfL will once again be at the show you can find us on stand D260 and we have lots of exciting events planned.

You will be able to see our latest resources including demonstrations of the latest AR/VR technology from Inspyro, including the chance to get behind a first century Roman Ballista and see if you can hit the target using Virtual Reality, and after firing the Ballista you will then be able to head over to our own Barista for a FREE coffee and chance to chat and find out more about our resources and services from the LGfL consultants and how we can support you in school as well as finding out about free training opportunites that are available to you either in school or at our training centre at Camden CLC.

The consultants will also be offering drop in surgeries covering everything from EYFS, Google, Microsoft, j2e,Send, Safeguarding with the opportunity to have your questions answered or just find out more about the range of resources and how these can help support your learners in class.  It could be how you can use LGfL to promote inclusion, see how we can help keep your students stay safe online, transforming your education practice with the next generation of class based technologies and news on our upcoming conferences that are all free to staff at LGfL and Trustnet schools.

On Thursday is your chance to hear from schools and see how they have used LGfL to enhance the learning for their children.  At 10:30 Oli Trussell will be hosting session all about LGfL and G Suite. Schools already involved in our Google Cloud Champion project will giving micro presentations about their journey so far focussing on key themes you can sign up to attend here: https://goo.gl/forms/zyeT8tPwoSy3Jkpm2

On the LGfL stand at 11 am on Thursday, we will have pupils from St. Peter’s school in Romford showcasing their work using the j2e tool suite to create websites linked to their WW1 topic, so why not come along and talk to the students themselves as to what you can gain from using LGfL tools.

Wednesday

10:45      Expert Surgery EYFS

11: 45      Expert Surgery SEND

12:45      Expert Surgery Online Safety

13:45      Expert Surgery Making the most of LGfL

14:00     Microsoft and LGfL

15:00      j2e updates

15:45     G Suite and LGfL

Inspyro will be on the stand all afternoon – come and chat to them and see how you can use AR and VR in your classroom.

Thursday

10:30     Open to all London schools find out how to get started using LGfL and speak to our Cloud Champions this will be off stand and you can sign up here

11: 00     School Showcase with St. Peter’s school, Romford showing their work using j2e tools

11:45      Expert Surgery Making the most of LGfL

12:45      Expert Surgery SEND

13:45      Expert Surgery Computing

14:00     Microsoft and LGfL

15:00      j2e updates

15:45     Expert Surgery Online Safety

Inspyro will be on the stand all afternoon – come and chat to them and see how you can use AR and VR in your classroom.

Friday

10:45      Expert Surgery SEND

11: 45      Expert Surgery Online Safety

12:45      Expert Surgery EYFS

13:45      Expert Surgery Making the most of LGfL

14:00     Microsoft and LGfL

15:00      j2e updates

Inspyro will be on the stand all morning – come and chat to them and see how you can use AR and VR in your classroom.

Saturday

10:55      G Suite and LGFL

12:45      Keep your kids safe online: sharenting, parenting and co existing with digital natives

13:45      Using LGfL at home

14:30      j2e updates

We look forward to welcoming you to the stand and please share your visit on our twitter of Facebook pages.

Blast into the new term

What better way to start the new term by letting you know about a new and updated resource.  LGfL schools have access to the Just2Easy tool suite and J2Blast has now been updated to include Spelling!

The new Spell Blast encourages pupils to learn spellings while they do what comes naturally; play and compete against each other. As they progress through the levels, the words automatically adjust to the pupils’ ability so that they never find them too easy or too difficult. There is always a challenge, if no other live players are waiting for a game, robots take over, so it always appears that there are multiple players. The scoreboard shows your place in the class, school and world.

Feedback is built into this tool and teachers can see detailed information about the achievements of their pupils as well as which aspects they have found difficult. A word cloud shows commenly mis-spelt words.

As the users progress, they earn points which unlock new premium Pirate based characters. This makes learning fun and increases motivation.

You can find out more about spell blast and the features including being able to add your own word lists in the video below:

J2Blast has been renamed as Tt Blast,Tt blast encourages pupils to learn maths while they do what comes naturally; play and compete against each other. As they progress through the levels, the questions automatically adjust to the pupils’ ability so that they never find them too easy or too difficult.

Again feedback is built in,teachers can see detailed information about the achievements of their pupils as well as which aspects they have found difficult.

The final tool in the blast series is SATs blast, this builds on the success of TT blast, SATs blast encourages pupils to learn the maths elements of SATA test for KS1 and KS2 in a games based context. With the same feedback involved in both Tt Blast and Spell blast.

So why not use these new and updated tools to blast your students into the New Year.

Remember as ever, if you use these tools i in your classroom we would love to hear from you, let us know using the hashtag #Blast #J2e on LGfL’s twitter or Facebook

 

LGfL Digital Excellence Awards

We are delighted to be launching our new LGfL Digital Excellence awards.  These awards will celebrate best practice and innovative approaches in using the wide range of learning resources and services provided by LGfL.

All LGfL schools are invited to apply for one or more awards from the following categories:

Whole school use of LGfL: Judges will be looking for the use of LGfL resources by the whole school community, with evidence that the use has had a positive impact on educational outcomes of students throughout the school supporting teaching and learning.

Inclusive practice using LGfL resources and services: Judges will be looking for evidence that LGfL resources and services have been used to enable inclusive practice within the school, enabling a wide range of learners to achieve.

Parental engagement using LGfL: Judges will be looking for ways that entrants have engaged with LGfL resources and services in order to promote parental engagement with the school and home learning.

Online safety: Judges will be looking for ways that schools have used LGfL resources to promote online safety throughout the school, ensuring that all stakeholders are aware of the benefits and risks of being a digital citizen

Digital excellence by students: Judges will be looking at how students, these could be digital leaders have used LGfL to support learning in the school, showing leadership and excellence in outcomes.

Use of j2e tools: Judges will be looking for outstanding use of j2e resources both inside school and at home to support teaching and learning within the school.

Schools that enter will build up a community of digital excellence across London, sharing best practice and highlighting the many ways that LGfL can be used to support teaching and learning within our schools.

To enter, head to our awards page, decide which category or categories you would like to apply for and complete the entry form. The closing date for entries is Friday 23rd February at 5 pm. Shortlisted schools will be contacted by Friday 9th March. Shortlisted schools will then arrange to host a short visit from LGfL staff to see their submission ‘in action’, this will take place between the 14th and 28th March.

Winners will be announced at the LGfL annual conference on 30th April 2018.

Bob Usher, LGfL Content Manager said: ‘‘The LGfL Education Awards are a key part of our strategy to share the innovative and effective use of technology across LGfL schools and beyond. We look forward to showcasing some of the best practice across London and inspiring other practitioners to make the most of the LGfL service for to meet the needs of their learners’.

For more information click here

Let us know if you are entering the awards by posting your work on our twitter of Facebook pages.

 

 

The Royal Collection

What’s in a picture? Quite a lot in fact! And thanks to this collection of prints and  paintings from Royal Collection Trust, you will find even more.

Royal Collection Trust looks after the Royal Collection, one of the most important art collections in the world. Their aim,  to ensure that the Royal Collection and Palaces are valued and enjoyed by everyone.

During the months of January and February the BBC will be celebrating the Royal Collection with The Royal Collection Season, a major partnership between Royal Collection Trust and the BBC, bringing both masterpieces and lesser-known works of art from the Royal Collection to audiences across the UK. The Season includes programming across BBC One, Two and Four, as well as BBC Radio 3 and 4 and local radio, over the course of January and February 2018.

To celebrate this and the opening of a new exhibition LGfL are delighted to announce a series of new opportunities for schools in collaboration with the Learning team at  Royal Collection Trust.

Firstly, a curated selection of high-resolution images has been added to the LGfL TRUSTnet Image Bank. The ten images have been specially selected for their relevance and interest for schools, and feature in the latest exhibition ‘Charles II: Art and Power” at The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace (open to the public and school groups until 13th May 2018).

All images are available to download for educational use in super high resolution and are ideal for studying in preparation for or subsequent to a school visit to the exhibition.

We are proud to announce that we are running another of our highly popular training sessions with  Royal Collection Trust. “Painting at the palace: using art for cross-curricular inspiration” This twilight event will highlight the skills needed to question any painting and show how you can pass these skills onto pupils, whether you a dilettante or a master.  This is a unique opportunity to learn more skills in a unique location. Go to our training hub for more information and to book your place.

Throughout the year, schools can arrange visits or attend special workshops with the education experts at Royal Collection Trust.

Developed to coincide  with the Charles II exhibition, RCT is hosting 3 unique sessions at The Queens Gallery, Buckingham Palace with a mix of stimulating and interactive sessions focusing on English, Art and Design, History and Drama. These sessions are free of charge*, run by experts, open to all schools, and are the ideal complement when used with our very own Image Bank or a planned visit.

(* School pupils receive a discounted entry rate of £1 per pupil for The Queen’s Gallery. Full details on www.royalcollection.org.uk/schools)

Dance and Music week: (19-23 February, KS1-KS2) Discover the music, dance and fashion from the period of Charles II’s Royal Court. Pupils will have the opportunity to watch and listen to specialist historical musicians play instruments from the time and explore the amazing art featured in Charles II: Art & Power at The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace.

Pictures with power: A creative writing workshop (available until 11th May, KS2-KS5) Explore Charles II: Art & Power with a published author to inspire your pupils’ writing. Explore the idea that impressions of power can be portrayed through imagery and the collecting of art.

Art or power: What do portraits tell us? (available until 11 May KS2-KS4) Explore Charles II: Art & Power with a professional artist, discover how power was portrayed through the amazing works of art and be inspired to create your own portraits.

You can see all of the RCT education programmes available here.

If you would like to see other images from the Royal Collection Trust, you can view and down load other collections in the LGfL Image Bank.

The LGfL image Bank is an ever-expanding collection of high-resolution images from trusted LGfL partners.

The image collections have been checked for appropriateness for use in an educational context and where relevant, mapped to the National Curriculum. To access these images, just search for resources by programme of study to see if there are any for your subject.

Please do make sure to adhere to the licensing terms of use for teachers and students as this will ensure that content providers continue to partner with LGfL and offer unique resources for teachers and students

Are you using the LGfL Image Bank with your school? Let us know how by posting your work on our twitter of Facebook pages.

 

National Storytelling Week – 27th January – 3rd February 2018

2018 marks the 18th Year of National Storytelling week and is celebrated by all ages enjoying- Folk tales, fairy lore, figments, phantoms, dragons, serpents, storms at sea. The week is held by The Society For Storytelling, their mission is to promote the oral tradition of storytelling which was the very first way of communicating life experiences and the creative imagination.

Storytelling has been shown by studies to aid learning in children for history, increase interest in science and have a positive effect on memory. When the students do the storytelling, it can encourage higher-level thinking skills, such as analysis and synthesis, as well as skills in oral composition.

Remember everyone has at least one story to tell. It exists in the very air around you – Your story is the one you know best and as it is only the beginning, the stories you will tell might begin with…Once upon a time or not in my time, not in your time but in someone’s time…

LGfL have a range of resources that can support you and your students during this week.

Why not re tell the Story of Sigurd and the Dragon, a classic Norse tale of how Sigurd killed the greedy dragon Fafnir, using both AR and VR the children can be transported back 1,000 years to listen to this tale and then make use of the green screen pack that is included can re tell this ancient tale.

Children can use Audio Network to search for music that will form the back drop to their own stories, the network features over 50,000 individual audio files, or as a backdrop to stories that they are re telling and then their stories and audio can be uploaded into Video Central. Video Central HD offers an easy-to-use web-based solution which allows teachers in London to share video and audio files with students, colleagues and partner schools.Video and audio files are uploaded using a secure web interface then encoded automatically for fast, efficient web streaming.

Children can also get advice on how to create their stories by well known authors in ReadingZone Live, children can get tips on writing from Anthony Horowitz, Oliver Jeffers and Cressida Cowell to name a few.  They can also listen to stories via Listening books and also Talking stories.  For inspiration in the Early years, why not use Fairy Tales and ask the children to re tell their favourite tale.

The Society for Storytelling also has a range of resources to support schools during this week and there are a range of lesson plans from Mensa for Kids on The Art of Storytelling.

500 Words from the BBC is another great resource to use to help children tell their story, the site has a range of resources and ideas as well as being able to listen to previous winning entries that children can use to inspire their own story writing.

The Wicked Young Writer Awards are also open until 18th March – Now in its 8th year, the Wicked Young Writer Awards is a chance for young people aged between 5 and 25, to write about absolutely anything! It’s their  chance to get creative and write on any theme that interests them. You can find out more about the awards here

We would love to hear some of your stories – why not share them on our twitter feed or our Facebook page.

Free School Meals – eligibility checker

The Free School Meal Checking Service is an online process where parents can check eligibility for free school meals. Parents can conduct a simple online check to determine eligibility for free school meals which in turn may attract the extra funding for each of their children’s schools. Parents are not required to accept free meals but schools appreciate the help with conducting an online check.

What the service does for parents:

After entering a few details into the website, the online application process links to the Department for Education database and gives an immediate ‘yes’ or ‘no’ response.

This system is designed to eliminate the need to apply in person for free school meals and improve the claims process for schools. It also means that if you are eligible for free meals, the school is able to process your application using the information you submit.

There is no need to re-apply each year, as schools can recheck eligibility as required using the data already provided – although if your child moves to a different school then you will need to update your account.

We have made a couple of enhancements to the website, for further information please see the FAQ ‘s, the enhancements are:

  •  A school can check eligibility on behalf of a parent, the parent will need to contact your child’s school, as they can run a check on your behalf.
  •  A parent of a child attending any LGfL or TRUSTnet school can now use this website to check their eligibility.

By way of thanks for your application and support, and regardless of whether the answer returned is a yes or a no, The London Grid for Learning (LGfL) and its connected schools would like to provide parents of children attending LGfL-connected schools with Sophos AntiVirus software, free of charge, to protect the computers used by pupils at home. To gain access to this software, a short registration process is required, at which point other services related to your children’s school will be explained. Don’t worry, its straightforward, there is absolutely no advertising, and you won’t be asked to buy anything! There is no catch, LGfL (a UK education charity) is providing this service to support schools.

What the service does for schools:

As the government has now introduced free school meals for all children in Key Stage 1, it is more important than ever for schools to know how many pupils would otherwise be eligible for free meals as this may allow schools to apply for extra funding. These funds enable schools to take on more staff, invest in additional equipment, resources and activities to benefit all their children.

Schools wishing to encourage applications can promote the online eligibility checker to parents by publicising the following web address: pps.lgfl.org.uk

After parents have submitted their details online, a suitably authorised school administrator will be able to facilitate the submission of claims by clicking on the ‘Administrators’ button and visiting the school administration section. The head teacher is an authorised school administrator by default but would normally nominate one or more staff members as additional administrators via this section of the site. Data will only be made available securely via this site. In order to use this FREE service, schools already subscribing to LGfL 2.0 or TRUSTnet services by ensuring that MIS data is exported regularly and the school has configured an information status in the free OpenCheck service found at opencheck.lgfl.net.

This service is provided by the London Grid for Learning and is available to parents of children attending schools which are part of the LGfL or TRUSTnet service network.

All submitted data is stored securely in compliance with the Data Protection Act. For additional information regarding data please see our privacy statement.

 

Number Day – February 2nd 2018

Join thousands of schools for a mega maths-inspired fundraising day and raise money for the NSPCC, on 2nd February. With new creative activities this year, it’s maths but not as you know it! Whether you dedicate a day or an hour to being a maths maverick, the NSPCC have a range of activities for schools, new for 2018.  Schools can register for a pack including:

  • digital resources you can use in class
  • fundraising tips and ideas to help pupils and teachers raise money
  • maths activities for children of all ages
  • printed posters to promote your event
  • access to teacher resources to keep children safe from harm, supporting your school’s safeguarding.

LGfL have a range of resources that can complement your teaching of Number Day or why not use some of them to turn it into a Number week.

  • j2e Tool suite – has a range of maths tools that can be used in class.  Why not get your students to use Tt Blast to see who can complete the most games and earn the most points on that day? Or use j2Vote to find out what their favourite number is? j2data and j2measure can also be used during the day to look at measuring distances from school e.g. how many places are with 5cm or 10 cm on a map from school?
  • Busy Things – have a range of maths games and quizzes that can be used across the school from EYFS to KS2
  • Maths at home Support for busy parents – is great to share with parents on this day to show them different ways that they can support their children at home.  The site includes short videos as well as activity sheets that can be used at home.
  • Mult e Maths – have both starters and main activities for Years 3 to 6 that can be used on the interactive whiteboard, as well as lesson plans and activities that can be used in the classroom.
  • Maths Raps – why not use the day to do a spot of rapping in class, these raps from BEAM have a range of raps related to Number that can be used, or why not get the children to create their own maths raps, use Audio Network as a backing track and upload your raps into Video Central HD to share with the wider community.
  • Maths Search and Rescue – can be used on the day to give a real live context to maths. Search & Rescue is extensively mapped to the National Curriculum and includes detailed lesson plans and resources to enable pupils to apply their skills in context, solving problems for themselves. Featuring comprehensive and differentiated support materials, topics covered include Bearings,Pythagoras and Trigonometry, Algebra, Vectors and Speed, Distance and Time.

 

Whatever you are doing to celebrate Number day 2018 – why not share them on our twitter feed or our Facebook page.

ReadingZone Live Updates

With Christmas on it way don’t think that LGfL have forgotten you! We have 3 great gifts for you and your students!

In partnership with ReadingZone Live we are proud to announce not one not two but three new updates to our ever-expanding book case of children’s authors.

ReadingZone Live is a partnership with ourselves and Reading zone bringing regular interviews and live videos conferences with some of the best contemporary children’s authors and illustrators to London school, you can see past events here.

Antony Horowitz, Sally Gardner, Sophie McKenzie, Robert Muchamore, Pete Johnson, and Alexander Gordon Smith are among the authors who have already joined us for the ReadingZone Live Programme, which helps to inspire young people to explore new authors and genres and help children to develop their own creative writing.

LGfL schools are linked to our live author events via video conferencing, with one school’s selected to host the author event, during each event, authors discuss their writing process before answering the student’s questions via video.

First up is Cath Howe Author of soon to be published ‘Ella on the Outside’ Cath Howe is an author and teacher working in a South West London school writing for, and working with, Key Stage 2 primary age children.
Her first two books were published in 2012 by Pearson in their Bug Club, “The Curse of the Highwayman” and “The Highwayman’s Revenge”. She has won prizes for stories, poems and monologues and even written a musical.

Cath speaks about how her role as an author in residence works and how it can be different to being a class teacher “A writer in residence can focus on a task in a different way to the class teacher who has all sorts of other demands on their time” and how knowledge of the students can help affect to the stories told “You have the children’s voices in your head when you are writing parts of the story as you get to know the children in school so well”

Secondly, we have Roger Stevens who was interviewed as part of his role as National Poetry Ambassador for National Poetry Day.

Roger has written over 24 books and has poem published in over 200 children’s anthologies, He is also the founder of the Poetry Zone website, which encourages children to write and publish their poetry and offers guidance and ideas for teachers on how to make teaching poetry fun and rewarding.

During the interview Roger speaks about how he creates poems and how much music influences his work “The Lyrics of Bob Dylan helped me understand that you could write about real, important topics but in a simple format” he also speaks of the importance of having a notebook to jot down what people are saying around him or when something pops into his head “You need to keep your ears and eyes open to help inspire you to write poems”

Roger also speaks about why National Poetry Day is such an important thing to celebrate “We need national poetry day to show the world that there are brilliant poems out there! That poems don’t need to be academic and can be fun!”

Last up is the wonderful author illustrator Oliver Jeffers who was interviewed by six different schools across London. Oliver spoke about his new book “Here We Are” and shared with the children the book written for his son before he was born and that at its core, has a simple message, to be kind, accept one another and to look after the planet. In the book one page depicts dozens of people nudging up to one another a lady in a burqa; a sumo wrestler wedged between a nun and a punk – and the line: “don’t be fooled, we are all people”.

Oliver was excited to share his creative process and shared with the audience the secret of writing a good children’s book ‘Try and be economic with your use of words. Say what you are trying to say with as few words as possible’ When asked how does an illustrator find their own style instead of just copying someone else he explained ‘Illustrators find their style when they stop trying to copy other peoples’

If you are interested in taking part in ReadingZone Live event or want to just submit questions to be posed to the author just contact contentsupport@lgfl.net

 

Road Safety Week 20th-26th November 2017

Road Safety Week is the UK’s biggest road safety event, involving thousands of schools, organisations and community groups every year. Set up in 1997, the event is coordinated annually by Brake each November, and aims to encourage grassroots action on road safety and raise awareness about the part we can all play in preventing tragedies and making roads safer. The theme for this years Road Safety Week which runs from the 20th – 26th November is Speed Down Save Lives.

We can all play our part in raising awareness about the dangers of driving too fast and this year’s campaign will focus on:

  • speed causes deaths and serious injuries on our roads
  • rural roads are not race tracks
  • 20mph is the only safe speed in heavily built-up areas used by pedestrians and cyclists
  • going slow = stopping in time
  • speed is scary and noisy. It stops communities being enjoyable places for children and families to walk, talk and play
  • speed cameras work. They save lives.
  • Intelligent Speed Adaptation (ISA) is an important development that is likely to be fitted to all vehicles in the future

There are new online resources for educators for 207, free to all those who register using this online form. The free online action pack includes more advice, ideas and resources, including lesson plans, assembly presentations, activity sheets and fact sheets linked to the 2017 theme of Speed Down Save Lives.

Brake, the road safety charity have produced a guide for educators on teaching road safety, as well as specific guidance for road safety with pupils with SEND.   They have  also recorded the webcast below, full of ideas and activities for educators to use during the week:

Thinking skills for Life from LGfL in partnership with Axis education, includes a section on travel and transport,there are 3 categories of worksheets for each activity which require different levels of literacy,thinking and comprehension skills. This includes worksheets which use Widgit symbols to support understanding for many young people with SEND, EAL and lower literacy levels.

Busy things has a template to help children create a poster on how to stay safe on the roads, children could also use JIT or J25 to create either an animation or a poster to encourage parents to speed down, save lives. They could also write to their local council and ask what is being done in their areas to encourage people to speed down and save lives.  Using J2data children could create data on traffic in their local area around schools and use this to encourage more people to walk to school.

RoSPA have also got a range of resources on their website for educators to use including teacher guides, workbooks and travel training for KS3 and KS4. Think from the Department of Transport have websites for Primary and Secondary both feature sections for teachers, pupils and parents.

STARS is TfL’s accreditation scheme for London schools and nurseries. STARS inspires young Londoners to travel to school sustainably, actively, responsibly and safely by championing walking, scooting and cycling. STARS supports pupils’ wellbeing, helps to reduce congestion at the school gates and improve road safety and air quality. STARS is open to all London schools and nurseries. To take part in the scheme, you first need to create a STARS Online account. This will put you in touch with your local borough officer who will support you throughout the accreditation process, help you create a School Travel Plan (STP) and select the most suitable activities for your school to address your travel issues and reach your active travel targets. A great resource to use during Road Safety Week.

Please let us know what you are doing for the week, you can share via our Twitter and Facebook pages, or using the hashtag #RoadSafetyWeek #SpeedDown

 

Managing a sudden death in the school community.

Child Bereavement UK are experts in supporting schools within the context of bereavement within a school community.  Through their work they have identified some of the key barriers for schools in responding appropriately and quickly to the needs of those affected by a bereavement. By working in partnership with LGfL, Managing a sudden death in the school community has been produced. This open access resource has been designed to bring the key information in both a video and text format with a quick and accessible interface.

Grief is a normal and natural response to loss, yet how pupils are supported can have significant impacts on long term outcomes. Young people tell us that how their school responds is something they never forget. This resource aims to provide an accessible support gateway to the effective response to death within school community. Simple, short guidance through quotes, external inks and video interviews with experts helps provide the information you need at the right time to ensure the whole school community can work together to support each other.

There are two ways in which this resource has been designed to be used.

  • General Staff CPD – Preparing in advance
    Raising awareness through staff CPD in advance of a predicted (or unpredicted) death within the school community ensures that when an event occurs staff know where to go immediately to receive appropriate guidance.
  • Use in a time of need
    The portal is designed to provide immediate support for schools that find themselves unexpectedly managing a sudden unpredicted death within their community. The resource is structured to make the guidance clear and accessible for fast assimilation of immediate actions for staff members.

The Support Gateway includes

  • The first 30 minutes
  • Breaking bad news
  • Supporting a bereaved family
  • Supporting the school staff
  • Traumatic deaths
  • Social media and media relations
  • Looking to the future

Video clips, information packs and external links are provided for staff to deliver comprehensive support.

‘This resource development has been an important piece of work to undertake in partnership with Child Bereavement UK. In times of need and extreme pressure following a sudden death within the community, we have utilised the power of online technology to provide invaluable and time critical guidance for different members of school communities. Sadly, recent events in London and Manchester, featured in the media highlight the impact of loss of life and the impact on local and school communities. In reality, many school communities are managing complex situations at short or no notice every day. We hope the format of the guidance through the use of short format video answers to key questions and relevant links and simple guidance can help manage the pressures for school leaders.’

 Bob Usher – LGfL Content Manager

‘From our experience of running a national helpline for over 15 years, Child Bereavement UK is acutely aware of the very real challenges schools experience when they are faced with the sudden, unexpected death of a pupil, a parent or a member of staff.  Many head teachers have shared with us that they feel ill-equipped to respond in the immediate aftermath of these sudden and often traumatic incidents; they are concerned to do their best, but are unsure as to how they should inform staff and pupils and what support to offer. 

Child Bereavement UK has therefore greatly valued the opportunity to work with London Grid for Learning, drawing on their experience in online technology, to create a resource that can enable schools to access information and guidance simply and quickly around the key considerations when responding to a death in the school community.   How schools manage these events is so important; bereaved children and young people tell us that the way their school responds at such a difficult time is something they never forget.’

Dr Ann Rowland – Director of Bereavement Support and Education

16th-22nd November is Children’s Grief Awareness Week UK, this  is designed to raise awareness of bereaved children and young people in the UK, and how providing those affected with free, professional support can make the world of difference to their future. More resources to support schools can be found on our blog.

 

 

 

 

How to be a champion of your subject and introduce LGfL content to your school.

Finding the time to get your subject a staff meeting can be near impossible when many staff meetings are set aside for School Priorities and Moderation. So how do you do it? How can you highlight and show your staff the key updates and content for your subject?

My idea is to use flexible CPD, don’t think about training as solid one hour blocks where all staff take part at the same time, think about your day and were you can pop in small bite sized training sessions that staff can access in easier less time-consuming sessions.

Over my years of teaching I have been a subject leader for various subjects and as a leader, my aim was always the same,  to help promote my subject and give teachers the key knowledge and skills to help push children forward. It can be hard to do at the best of times, but with many schools having less time and funds to let staff go off site and pay for CCPD, in-house staff training can be vital.

The idea of offering staff a different model of CPD was introduced to me by an amazing Apple Distinguished Educator named Aaron Webb, who at the time introduced the concept of ‘Techie Brekkie’ to my school.

Techie Brekkie has been around for many years and is a short (15mins) session which can be organised on a given morning every week to highlight a resource that can be used to enhance learning within the classroom, you didn’t need to go every week or even stay for the whole session, staff can dip in and out as they wish.

I adapted this idea and used it to highlight different resources within my school setting at the time, creating lots of easy to digest CPD sessions, such as “Google Docs and Danish” and “Clips and Cold Brew”, Giving staff a great start to the day by giving them much needed training and a snack!

Why not try this idea with LGfL content you know staff are interested in but lack training in? Perhaps “j2e and Juice” or “Widgit and waffles”.

 

Introduce the content by first going to the information page where you can get a short overview of the content and then model to your staff how to use the resource, remember to allow time for your staff to use the resource themselves and for them to enjoy their Brekkie!

I adapted this idea of flexible CPD to also help promote LGfL content within my school, as many staff within my own school lacked time to dive deep into the amazing content LGfL provides, I am very proud to announce that we are bringing this idea back in an ongoing way. introducing LGfL spotlight

LGfL Spotlight, will focus (or spotlight!) on one key curriculum resource per week, allowing you and your staff to see some amazing resources that you may not have seen before, where possible we will attempt to tie the content with relevant events happening in the Education calendar.

Every week we will adding posts to our social media channels (Follow us on twitter here and Facebook) highlighting one resource per week, the idea is to take this post and find a 5-minute moment during your school week where all staff are together, this could be a morning briefing or at the very beginning of a staff meeting, in this time you can introduce the content via LGfL’s very handy information pages, which offer key information about the resource as well as screen shots and videos to help. During the week, we will also offer more gems of information about our spotlighted resource.

LGfL Spotlight will be supported by the hashtag #LGfLspotlight, if you have organised a whole school session take a photo of it or if you have used the Spotlight resources in school that week we would love to see the results! Post them on twitter or Facebook with the hashtag #LGfLspotlight

 

 

 

Children in Need

LAST YEAR Children in Need raised an incredible £60 million and this year the organisers are aiming to raise even more money.

 

 

The evening of frolics and fundraising fun is fast approaching, but what’s planned for schools? Here’s how your school can get involved.

This year Children in need have created a range of new learning resources, including SEND lesson materials, to involve everyone in fundraising. All resources link to the curriculum and are packed with engaging new activities.

In addition, Children in Need have produced a NEW range of disability awareness lessons and resources. They’re designed to help pupils understand that difference shouldn’t be a barrier to friendship and think about what can be done to make schools inclusive environments for all.

 

One of the teaching opportunities mentioned by Children in Need uses the theme “Why Fundraise for BBC Children in Need?” were Students need to raise awareness of BBC Children in Need’s work among young people by creating a story board and Video, j2e offers a range of resources to help you create animations you could use JIT5 or j2spotlight to make you very own stop animation, which then can be embedded onto any website and if you need music for you videos then look no further then Audio Network, ask children to study other Charity videos and assess why particular types of music have been used and which piece of music would they pick to suit a particular scene and remember the easiest way to store and share you video is with  Video Central HD.

Another lesson “Moving pictures” explores the story of Logan, a child who has cerebral palsy. After listening to Logan’s story the challenge is for students to create a ‘mood board’ on a divided piece of paper to reflect Logan’s feelings before and after his therapy.

To inspire pupils, show them examples from Ben Uri: Portraits & Identity, this resource features a range of project ideas and visual art techniques for exploring the themes of Portraiture and identity.

Another lesson ‘in my shoes’ This lesson focuses on developing children’s empathy. They are encouraged to put themselves in other people’s shoes and think about what makes people happy. They watch a video about Alana, a seven-year-old girl with painful chronic eczema, and find out how she is being helped by a project funded by BBC Children in Need

If you would like to continue exploring this theme then you should explore Growing up around the World, the resources aim is to help UK children to understand the realities of childhood in very different contexts

The money donated is used to change the lives of disadvantaged children and young people in the UK. To date the charity event has raised more than £890 million to help make a difference in the lives of the children who needed it.

It’s not only the children and young people in Children in needs own projects that benefit from fundraising; your students gain so much too. From planning an event to counting up the money they’ve raised, students will be empowered, encouraged and motivated to work as a team.

This year’s Children in Need will be on November 17 at 7:30pm on BBC1.

Please let us know what you are doing for the week, you can share via our Twitter and Facebook pages, or using the hashtag #ChildrenInNeed

National Non Fiction November

National Non-Fiction November is the Federation of Children’s Book Groups’ annual celebration of all things factual. Born out of National Non-Fiction Day, the brain child of Adam Lancaster during his years as Chair, the whole month now celebrates all those readers that have a passion for information and facts and attempts to bring non fiction celebration in line with those of fiction.

The theme for this year is The World Around Us. Focusing on books that explore different natural environments and their flora and fauna. Through their engagement with books, the federation hope that young readers will:

  • be encouraged to look more closely at the world around them;
  • develop their natural curiosity and want to find out more for themselves;
  • expand their knowledge and build their expertise in topics of personal interest;
  • be inspired to take care of the natural world;
  • think about what action they could take to help protect endangered environments and species.

The Federation of Children’s Book Groups has produced a range of resources that teachers and children can use during the month. This includes a range of posters, bookmarks and suggested books for in the classroom. They have also produced a booklist of 100 brilliant non-fiction books for children and young people.

You can celebrate Non-Ficion November by joining us for our next Reading Zone Live with Oliver Jeffers.

We would love you to join in with this event and there are a number of ways you can do this:

  • If you have access to Video conferencing (VC) facilities you can link with the live event by emailing contentsupport@lgfl.net
  • If you do not have access to VC, you can e mail questions in advance to contentsupport@lgfl.net
  • You can watch the event live from 2:20 pm on the 15th November by clicking here. The linkwill enable to watch the live stream at 2:20pm on the day.
  • Tweet us before and during the event using the hashtag #RZL to @LGfL on Twitter or ourFacebook page.

Oliver has just published his first non-fiction book Here we are:

“It started off as a book about the realization that new life is a blank slate (trying to explain what a door is, and what a kitchen is for), and the strangeness of being a new parent. But as the book unfolded, so did the global events of the last year or so, and it felt like it became more urgent to reinforce some basic things my parents taught me about the simple principles of humanity. I wanted my son to know that while we are all unique individuals, we are all in this together.”

Listening Books available through LGfL have over100 curriculum based audiobook by simply logging on with their LGfL username and password. Two new releases to the LGfL Listening Book catalogue of audio books. “Why is Snot Green? And Other Extremely Important Questions” and “Inventors and their Bright Ideas” You can find out more about Listening Books in this blog post.

Other non-fiction resources available from LGfL include: Ebooks from Rising Stars, Talking stories and Inclusive resources.

Our history topics of The Romans in London, The Tudors in London, The Royal Mews and Polar Exploration all include lessons plans on the retrieval and recording of information from non-fiction sources.

Please let us know via our Twitter and Facebook pages or leave us a comment here to let us know what you are doing for Non Fiction November.

 

Using LGfL to develop IT skills across the Primary Curriculum

IT skills in the Primary Computing Curriculum are as follows:

EYFS: Children recognise that a range of technology is used in places such as homes and schools. Select and use technology for particular purposes. Use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways , thinking about uses and purposes.

KS1 Use technology purposefully to create, organise, store, manipulate and retrieve digital content

KS2 Select, use and combine a variety of software (including internet services) on a range of digital devices to design and create a range of programs, systems and content that accomplish given goals, including collecting, analysing, evaluating and presenting data and information.

Some of the skills that can be taught are listed in the image below.

LGfL have a wide range of resources to support the teaching of IT skills across the Primary curriculum. We have listed some below to help you with the teaching of IT within your schools.

EYFS

Busy Things have a range of games to develop keyboard skills. JIT is the online infant toolkit from Just 2 Easy and has a huge range of tools to support the development of IT skills including: word processing animation, paint and the ability to mix, to combine the above packages to create enabling pupils to select and choose the technology for different purposes. The big day out includes a range of activities that can be used – including researching transport in London past and present and taking a picture in London and labelling it. The Magic school was developed for Early years and includes paint, music and a sand and water room for the children to interact with.

KS1

JIT and Busy Things are both fantastic for developing IT skills at KS1 with the ability to create and manipulate a range of digital content.  There are lesson plans available for KS1 using J2Write for Years 1 and 2 that encourage creativity with writing and using the built in blogging tool to showcase and publish work. Busy things also have a range of templates to encourage writing, there are over 81 to choose from and cover topics across all curriculum areas.  Stop frame animator and Super Action Comic maker are two great tools for children to create digital content as is Picture Book maker.

KS2

J2e5 is a fantastic tool for the children to use that really meets the curriculum objectives for KS2,text, graphics, animations, sounds, videos, and embedded objects can be combined on a single web page. J2e forms can also be used as a way of creating questionnaires to gather data, comments, or other information from different groups. Data can then be displayed, shared, and saved to a file. Busy things also has templates that match the KS2 curriculum with both History and Science templates for the pupils to use.

The Romans in London, The Tudors in London and Polar exploration all support writing across the curriculum, with lesson plans and suggested activities for children to create their own digital content, including Gladiator Top Trumps, Tudor floor tiles and drawing up a list for a polar expedition. Reading Zone live and Grammar explained can be used in a variety of ways to support IT skills, the children could come up with their own questions they would like to ask their favourite author, use the information to create their own Author biographies and use Grammar explained to create their own short clips to explain grammatical concepts for their peers.

A basic knowledge of computers/tablets and or devices as listed below are skills that can be taught within the IT element.

Remembrance Day.

 

Armistice day or Remembrance Day is on the 11th November, it marks the day that World War 1 ended at 11 am on the 11th day, of the 11th month in 1918. Ceremonies are held at the Cenotaph in London as well as at War memorials and churches across the U.K. and overseas. A 2 minute silence is held to remember the people who have died in all wars – WW1, WW2, Falklands, Gulf war as well as the conflicts in Argentina and the Iraq.

King George V held the first 2 minute silence on 11 November 1919 and made the request for the silence to be observed so:

“thoughts of everyone may be concentrated on reverent remembrance of the glorious dead”.

There are many ways of remembering with pupils, for younger pupils Busy Things have a template poppy to paint, for older students they could make their own poppies – from hand prints and then use these to write poetry on.  In Flanders Fields and Ode to Remembrance are two poems that could be shared with older students, they could use copies of these to create their own ‘black out poetry’ this is when a page of text, is coloured over so that only a few words are visible, these words then create a new poem, great to get the children thinking about the choice of their words. Pupils could use J2E to research and write about the impact of the wars on their local community after perhaps visiting their local war memorial.

The British Legion – has an excellent schools page with links for activities in class as well as assembly resources for KS1-5 pupils.

Widgit – have a range of Activities and books on Remembrance Day as well as WW1 and WW2 to support learners in class.

First World War – The Active Worksheet was produced in response to the centenary ofthe outbreak of World War 1. The resource pack uses augmented reality to produce a genuine ‘wow’ moment in the classroom and bring virtual artefacts to the desktop. This is backed up by mapped curriculum activities focussing on history, literacy, music and art. The pack has been designed to make the commemoration accessible to key stage 1 and 2

World War 1 – This collection from BBC schools has a range of videos, activities and assemblies for both primary and secondary schools.

Poppies – is a beautiful animation from Cbeebies following a young rabbit through the poppy fields, great to use with younger children.

Trench experience – this innovative virtual-reality app from LGfL brings life in the trenches to life, and is ideal for History and English teachers covering World War 1 and trench life and warfare in general.

The M roomThe M Room resource from LGfL gives exclusive access to secret World War II listening sites where the British Secret Service bugged high-ranking German Military prisoners. The resource features an interview with one of the original secret listeners and extensive primary-source material from the Ministry of Defence, relatives of those involved, and The National Archives.

Women in computingWomen in Computing from LGfL aims to recognise and promote the achievements of women in British computing within the social context of the time. The work of women as code breakers during WW2 is one of the areas that is covered within this resource.

Activehistory – There are a collection of Remembrance Day materials here for Years 7- 13, including an assembly, put together by Russell Tarr.

Remember you can share any work with us on either our Twitter or Facebook pages.

 

 

 

Listening Books Update

The long standing partnership between London Grid for Learning and Listening Books ensures that LGfL teachers are able to have access to over 100 curriculum based audiobook by simply logging on with their LGfL username and password.

If you are not aware of Listening Books, it is a charity providing a service for people with print impairments. Reading is essential for any child’s success. All too often, the barriers faced by children with difficulty reading outweigh their desire to read and, without proper guidance, they never may never overcome them. Listening Books offers audiobooks which can be used with children and young people who struggle to read books in the usual way due to an illness, disability, learning or mental health difficulty.

Listening Books are proud to announce 2 new releases to the LGfL Listening Book catalogue of audio books. “Why is Snot Green? And Other Extremely Important Questions” and “Inventors and their Bright Ideas”

Children with special educational needs such as dyslexia often find ‘decoding’ words can be a barrier that gets in the way of their understanding and enjoyment of a text. They can end up feeling left behind, dejected and lacking in confidence. Audiobooks remove these barriers by replacing the written word with a spoken voice, enabling pupils to visualise a story and glean meaning from the words. Reading along with the audio can help with word recognition and reading speed while being able to keep up with peers can have a visible impact on self-esteem.

Listening Books support the National Curriculum from Key Stage 2 to A-Level and have a huge range of fiction and non-fiction titles for both adults and children. Listening to audiobooks allows children and young people to listen to the same books their friends and peers are reading, improve comprehension and word recognition as well as helping to instil a greater understanding and enjoyment of literature. For older members, audiobooks, as well as being an enjoyable activity, can for some provide welcome relief from pain, boredom and loneliness, lifting them out of what are often challenging circumstances.

There is a great range of fiction and non-fiction available to support pupils from Key Stage 2 up to A-Level, including:

  • British History Makers: King Henry VIII by Leon Ashworth
  • GCSE English: Of Mice and Men: The Text Guide by Coordination Group Publications
  • Secrets of the Rainforest: Predators and Prey by Michael Chinery
  • Matilda by Roald Dahl
  • An Inconvenient Truth: The Crisis of Global Warming (Young Adult Version) by Al Gore
  • Dates with History: 6th August 1945 The Bombing of Hiroshima by John Malam
  • My Friend Walter by Michael Morpurgo
  • The Elements in Poetry: Poems about Fire edited by Andrew Fusek Peters
  • The Colour Purple by Alice Walker
  • Face by Benjamin Zephaniah

All you need is to enter your LGfL username and password and this will bring you straight through to the Listening Books library. All of the titles here are available to stream 24 hours a day.
Any questions please get in touch.

CodeWeek.EU

“Everybody in the world should learn to program a computer, because it teaches you how to think”— Steve Jobs

Coding is for all, not just for programmers. It’s a matter of creativity, of computational thinking skills, of self-empowerment, Nothing boosts your problem-solving skills like learning how to program a computer, learning to code boosts your attention to detail, having a high level of focus can improve any part of your life, Decomposition is another key skill learned when coding. In decomposition, you break a big problem down (like a complex program) into several smaller problems or actions, Decomposition is another incredible life skill.

Our National Curriculum computing programmes of study tells us“A high-quality computing education equips pupils to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world” Coding isn’t just the entering code into a device, it’s about teaching students how to identify and understand problems or needs in the real world and using creativity alongside logic reasoning to improve the world around them. It’s about teaching them what is behind their screens and boxes and how the modern world works. With this knowledge, they can begin to see the possibilities so that they can create innovations that could one day change the world.

EU Code Week is a grass-root movement run by volunteers who promote coding in their countries as Code Week Ambassadors. Anyone – schools, teachers, libraries, code clubs, businesses, public authorities – can organise a #CodeEU event and add it to the codeweek.eu map.

Europe Code Week is now launching the “CodeWeek4all challenge” to contribute to increase the penetration of coding in schools. Schools are invited to register online for free to get a unique code to be added to the description of all Code Week events organised in the school preferably between October 7th and October 22nd 2017, you can see here a list of all UK events.

The challenge consists in getting involved as many students/pupils as possible during Europe Code Week 2017. The unique code associated with the school will allow Code Week organisers to sum up all the participants to the events organised in the same school and to compare the sum with the total number of students declared in the application form. Schools achieving a participation rate greater or equal than 50% will be awarded a personalised “Certificate of Excellence in Coding Literacy” and will be announced in the Europe Code Week website.

Apply now, share the unique code with all the teachers in your school, and ask them to provide a coding experience in their classrooms during code week. remember to fill in the application form here

We will be being looking at how LGfL content can help support EU Code week each day on the blog so please do Come back.

Tell us what you are doing for EU Code Week in your school and share your work either on our Twitter or Facebook pages

World Mental Health Day – 10th October 2017

10th October is World Mental Health day, the charity YoungMinds is calling on schools across the country to take part in #HelloYellow to show young people they’re not along with their mental health. Schools that register for #HelloYellow will receive a free pack, including a mental health assembly plan as well as a range of activities.

Mind Moose have produced an assembly that schools can use. It introduces mental health in the context of being as important to look after as physical health before discussing ways that we can all look after our mental health. It also discusses how children and adults in a school community can help each other to look after mental health.

The PHSE association has a comprehensive DfE funded Guidance on preparing to teach about mental health and emotional well being – as wells being a core guidance document it also includes a range of lesson plans for KS2 and KS3 pupils.  It has also produced a mental health teaching checklist as well as ground rules for teaching about mental health and emotional well being to ensure the safety of pupils when discussing this subject.

The Anna Freud National centre for families and children have produced an excellent booklet for supporting mental health and well being in schools – you can download it here: supporting-mental-health-and-wellbeing-in-schools. They have also produced an excellent animated video below to encourage talking about mental health in schools, great for use in assembly and in class:

Adolescent resilience – LGfL have teamed up with Public Health England to provide links to some school-ready resources from a range ofdifferent organisations. These include information on academic research, materials for whole-school approaches as well as lesson series and one-off resources, plus targeted support for specific problems, and signposting. Links do not imply endorsement of one approach over another.Please note that not all resources have been formally evaluated, although many have beendeveloped with schools and experts in the field. This resources are suitable for KS3, KS4 and KS5. 

Public Health England have a range of resources to support children in schools, they have a lesson plan and activities based around online stress and FOMO(Fear of missing out).

You can also download a range of calming music for use with either meditation, assemblies or in class from Audio network.

When I worry about things is another excellent resource from BBC Teach it is a collection of animated films that use personal testimony to explore mental health issues from the perspective of children. Alongside each, there is more information about the content of the film, and suggestions of how it could be used in the classroom. These resources are suitable for use with pupils aged 8-13.

Tell us what you are doing for mental health day on either our Twitter or Facebook pages.

 

 

World Space week 4th – 10th October 2017

World Space week runs from the 4th – 10th October, World Space Week is an international celebration of all things SPACE and focuses on science and technology and its role in the past, present and future of mankind, a way of not only promoting the work that countries do together to explore space but also how important space technology is to life on earth.

World space week is set between these dates as the 4th October marks the anniversary of the launch of the world’s first satellite Sputnik 1 in 1957 which began the Space Race. The 10th October is the anniversary of the signing of the Outer Space Treaty in 1967.

The theme for this year is Exploring new Worlds – this could be the start of some great discussions around where astronauts should visit next, what other worlds there are and what they could look like.  Children could use J2e to produce information books on their new worlds, or have a vote on if there are other worlds out there they could also use the paint feature in Busy Things to create these, both available via LGfL. Busy Things also have a range of labelling and fact sheet templates all around the Solar System and Space

If you are running an event in school, you can register this on the World Space week website as well as finding a whole range of resources including: A Space nutrition activity sheet and an activity leaflet from Tim Peake.

Or why not get pupils to build their own space craft to explore the new worlds and they can even train like an astronaut in P.E.

You can find lesson plans and activities from Switched on Science – Out of this world Unit for Year 5 via LGfL.

Remember we would love to see your work for World Space week – you can share via our Twitter and Facebook page.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black History Month 2017

 

October is Black History month and 2017 marks the 30 anniversary of the month in the UK. Every Generation Media in partnership with Sugar Media Marketing Limited are relaunching 100 Great Black Britons 2017. The campaign provides an opportunity for students to reflect on what makes a Great Black Briton.  Nominations are being sought for unsung heroes and community champions which is a great chance to involve your students in the process.

As well as thinking about significant figures in this country, the month also gives students the opportunities to look at significant figures throughout history:

George Bridgewater – art, liberty and slavery:  In this website and resource pack from LGfL  it enables students to take a close look at George Bridgetower and his relationship with Beethoven. Students can also examine other artists, writers and musicians who were working at the same time as Bridgetower, with a special focus on their relationship to the anti-slavery movement. This resource can be used with KS3 and KS2 pupils.

The life of Nelson Mandela –  from CultureStreet.org this resource and lesson plans focus on the life of Nelson Mandela using  the work  of South African comic book company Umlando Wezithombe.  This resource can be used by KS1 and KS2 students.

Walter Tull – Was a professional football and he was the first British-born black army officer and the first black officer to lead white British troops into battle. The video below tells his story and is perfect for KS2 and KS3 pupils looking at WW1 and the impact that Walter had.

 

As well as researching significant figures, this month provides pupils the chance to reflect on tolerance and inclusivity in society, Developing British Values from LGfL – looks at this topic and provides short video clips for discussion in class. True Tube provides videos that cover RE, PHSE and citizenship and have a collection of videos that can be used as discussion points for Black History month.

Other ideas could be involve the children in cooking, asking family members for recipes Cookit have recipes and information on foods that can be used in class. Students could create play lists from prominent artists to share in class or at assemblies, Audio network could be used to look at Jazz and Blues music.

What will you be doing for Black History month? Please share your work with us via our Twitter and Facebook page.

 

European Day of Languages 2017

Next Tuesday the 26th of September is European Day of Languages. It aims to promote the rich linguistic diversity of Europe and raise awareness of the importance of lifelong language learning for everyone. It was set up by the Council of Europe and was first celebrated in 2001.

The European Day of Languages website has a range of resources for teachers including lessons plans and short activities to help you on the day.

LGfL have a range of resources to help with your language teaching within school these include the following: Rigolo (primary French) and Vamos Unit 1 and 2 (primary Spanish).

Newbury Park primary school in Redbridge have an excellent resource entitled Language of the month – which includes resource packs to be used in the classroom, activity packs and interactive video clips showing children teaching their home languages.

What are you doing to celebrate? We would love to hear from you and share your celebrations via our Twitter or Facebook pages.

Primary assessment changes

The DfE have published the new teacher assessment frameworks for both Key stage 1 and Key stage 2.  Alongside this they also responded to the primary assessment consultations with a number of key reforms:

One of these is to:

  • introduce an online multiplication tables check, to be taken by pupils at the end of year 4, from the 2019 to 2020 academic year onwards.

There have been no details released yet as to what the new tests will look like with the first of these being the online multiplication tables check that will come in, this has now been confirmed for the end of Year 4.  Schools within LGfL have access to the excellent J2E Blast  which has online times table practice as well as practice tests for both KS1 and KS2 arithmetic papers. Another tool to help with this via LGfL is Busy Things  which have a range of tools including time table practice games among other tools all linked to the National curriculum

Other reforms will:

  • improve the way that writing is assessed, so that teachers have more scope to use their professional judgment when assessing pupil performance
  • introduce a new assessment at the start of reception from September 2020 to act as the start point for measuring progress, so we can give schools credit for the progress they help pupils make in reception, year one and year two
  • remove the statutory status of end-of-key stage 1 assessments at the earliest possible point, from the 2022 to 2023 academic year, once the reception baseline is fully established
  • reduce burdens for teachers by removing the requirement to carry out statutory teacher assessments in English reading and mathematics at the end of key stage 2 from the 2018 to 2019 academic year onwards
  • improve the early years foundation stage profile, including revising the Early Learning Goals to make them clearer and align them more closely with teaching in key stage 1

Further guidance and exemplification materials from the STA will be published later in the autumn term to assist teachers with assessment.

Michael Tidd has produced an excellent blog post highlighting his thoughts on the changes and Third Space Learning have produced a blog post for SLT detailing the 9 important changes that relate to maths.

What are your thoughts on the changes?

Reading Zone Live and National Poetry day 2017

National Poetry day is on the 28th September 2017, the theme this year is Freedom.

To get you ready for this, LGfL are hosting a special Poetry themed Reading zone Live with Roger Stevens on the 27th September at 2:30 pm. Roger Stevens is best known for founding and running the award-winning Poetry Zone website.  His most recent poetry collections include It’s Not My Fault (with Steven Withrow) and an anthology called Is This a Poem. Reading zone live is an excellent way for you and your class to engage with an author and hear how he creates poems and ideas as well as asking questions either before the day or during the event.

We would love you to join in with this event and there are a number of ways you can do this:

  • If you have access to Video conferencing (VC) facilities you can link with the live event by e mailing contentsupport@lgfl.net
  • If you do not have access to VC, you can e mail questions in advance to contentsupport@lgfl.net
  • You can watch the event live from 2:25 pm on the 27th September here
  • Tweet us before and during the event using the hashtag  #RZL to @LGfL.

 

 

 

There are a number of resources that can be used to help you plan and deliver lessons on or before National Poetry day based around the theme of Freedom:

  • Read or perform a poem – there are a selection of poems on the National Poetry day website that can get your class inspired.
  • Posters to put up in class or around school and on your website to highlight the fact that you are supporting National Poetry day.
  • Lesson plans for KS 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5 from the National Poetry day website to get you started, including a toolkit full of ideas and inspirations.
  • Use Perform a Poem from LGfL to get tips on performing poems including resources for teachers.
  • Use J2launch via LGfl – why not blog about your favourite poem on Freedom, use J2e5 to write your own poem relating to freedom and use j2vote to vote for your favourite class or school poem.

We would love to see the work you do around Reading Zone Live and National Poetry day via our Twitter and Facebook pages.