World Book Day 2018

World Book Day is a celebration! It’s a celebration of authors, illustrators, books and (most importantly) it’s a celebration of reading. In fact, it’s the biggest celebration of its kind, designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and marked in over 100 countries all over the world.

This is the 21st year there’s been a World Book Day, and on 1st March 2018, children of all ages will come together to appreciate reading. The main aim of World Book Day in the UK and Ireland is to encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading by providing them with the opportunity to have a book of their own. That’s why World Book Day  will be sending schools (including those nurseries and secondary schools that have specially registered to participate), packs of Book Tokens and age-ranged World Book Day Resource Packs (age-ranged into Nursery/Pre-School, Primary and Secondary) full of ideas and activities, display material and more information about how to get involved in World Book Day.

The Wold Book Day website is packed with ideas for dressing up,  resources, and the chance to sign up to watch live streamed shows on World Book Day.

Reading Zone Live from LGfL is the perfect resource to use within your class on World Book day, the site is packed with interviews with authors including: Michael Murpurgo, Oliver Jeffers, Jacqueline Wilson and Cressida Cowell to name a few. Alongside interviews with the authors explaining their inspiration and writing resources, there are also a range of resources for teachers to use in class.  Our next Reading Zone Live event is with the author Mini Grey on the 21st March 2018, you can find out more information and how to watch here.

You can also use the j2etool suite to complete one of the following activities: Why not have a vote on World Book Day as to who the favourite author is in your class or school, ask the children to write a book review or a biography of their favourite author using j2e and finally they could use the tools in JIT to create an alternative book cover. The tool suite includes some templates that can be used on World book day.

Book creator app is a fantastic app to use on World Book day, you can use either the tablet or web based version to get children to create their own books, combining text, image, audio and video to create their own interactive stories that they can share.

The author Jo Cotterill has come up. with a fantastic range of World Book Day Alternative ideas, these include Potato and Egg characters, donate a book and build a book scene in a box you can see these ideas and more here.

Night Zoo Keeper also launch their World Creative Writing month on World Book day, this is a month long competition where classrooms around the world work together to write as money stories as possible. Last year schools from 30 countries wrote over 6 million words. The very best writing is showcased each week with prizes up for grabs – you can find out more about this and how to register here.

What do you have planned for World Book Day we would love to see pictures and work  please share via our twitter or Facebook pages #WBD18

 

The Romans – New AR and VR content.

The Romans in London resource has been a favourite amongst History teachers across the key stages for the last couple of years with over 200,000 page views since it was launched. This comprehensive resource has now  been updated with both AR (Augmented Reality) and VR (Virtual Reality) content.

Using incredible Augmented Reality, you can now see first hand examples of Roman life.  There are 10 trigger images in total that can be used alongside the Romans in London resource, they include working out calculations using Roman numerals, labelling a Roman Soldier, listening as Julius Ceasar takes us through important events as well as firing a first century Roman Balista.

You can see the AR in action in the videos below:

You can download the AR app for iOS devices here and for Android here

The VR element of the resource places the children on Hadrian’s Wall on a cold snowy night, using the app for either android or iOS devices and a compatible head set, the children can be transported back in time and are placed on top of the wall guarding the camp, to enjoy the full experience it is recommended that headphones are used.

The Romans in London resources are structured into the following sections:

  • The Roman invasion and the army
  • Boudica & the growth of Roman settlements in the London area
  • Everyday life
  • Baths & entertainment
  • Religion
  • Transport, trade & industry
  • Interactive Map of Roman find sites

The resource also features an interactive map of Roman London with Google Maps integration and Streetview showing the major Roman find sites. This simple tool allows any child in any location in London to explore the Roman Legacy wherever they live or go to school. 

High resolution images and High quality video resources including:

  • Gladiatorial battle re-enactments
  • The major Roman remains in the City of London
  • Replicas and real artefacts uncovered from archaeological discoveries in London
  • High resolution photographs courtesy of Museum of London Picture Library and Museum ofLondon Archaeology
  • Reconstructions of what Roman London might have looked like, maps and images of artefactscourtesy of Museum of London Picture Library

You can watch a summary walkthrough video below

and also the trailer can be found here:

The Museum of London also offer schools a range of workshops and sessions for schools that are studying the Romans over the next two terms, sessions include: Roman Amphitheatre, Hands on Romans and written in bone, you can find out more about the sessions here.

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.

Children’s Mental Health Week 5th – 11th February 2018

Place2Be launched the first ever Children’s Mental Health Week in 2015 to support children and young people’s mental health and emotional wellbeing. Now in its fourth year, they hope to encourage more people than ever to get involved and spread the word. The theme for this year is #BeingOurselves

Some children and young people can find it difficult to think positively about themselves. Low self-esteem affects more than 8 in 10 of the pupils who have Place2Be one-to-one support. Place2Be is inviting everyone – children, young people and adults – to come together and celebrate the unique qualities and strengths in themselves and others. They have a range of resources for both Primary and Secondary schools that can be used throughout the week.

Mind Moose is another excellent resource that can be used within schools, it is a fun, digital platform that teaches children how to keep their minds healthy. Children go on a journey of discovery with Mind Moose and his friends as they learn how to look after their minds, keep their brains healthy, deal with emotions, develop resilience and flourish. The fun, interactive animations and activities are underpinned by theory and tools from the field of positive psychology and beyond. London schools can benefit from a 14 day trial as well as a 25% discount by e mailing inclusion@lgfl.net.

LGfL have a range of resources that can support you during this week. Audio Network has 60,000 audio files to be used within the classroom these can be used as a calming down tool, to uplift or to inspire.  Audio files can be searched either by topic of theme.

Look, Think, Do contains a range of editable social stories that can be used within the class, with groups or individual students.These resources facilitate social development by using reduced language, visual support and images, structure and small steps, a positive focus, and, when appropriate, choice. The photo-based, visual resource is divided into four key sections: Learning to Play; Learning toSay; Learning to Change and Learning to Help Myself. Editable storyboards bring difficult situations to life in a non-threatening manner and enable pupils to discuss solutions and strategies, and alternative and ideal endings.

Young Minds have recently launched their 360° which will support schools in taking a whole school approach and ensure your school achieves best practice in wellbeing and resilience. You can find out more here.

The Islington Mental Health and Resilience in schools (iMAHRS) also sets out the components of school practice and ethos that effectively develop resilience, promote positive mental health and support children at risk of, or experiencing, mental health problems. You can view the framework here.

Last week the Duchess of Cambridge launched the latest initiative from Heads Together to support children’s mental well-being. Mentally Healthy Schools brings together quality-assured information, advice and resources to help primary schools understand and promote children’s mental health and wellbeing.  The site is currently in its pilot phase which will run during 2018 with selected schools. However it will be publicly available from spring 2018. If you would like to receive a notification when the site is launched, please email mhs@annafreud.org with your contact details.

If you are taking part in Children’s Mental Health week, we would love to hear from you on our  twitter or Facebook pages #BeingOurselves.

 

 

 

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.

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.

 

Spotlight on The Tudors

The Tudors in London resource offers a range of resources to support teachers in delivering this part of the History curriculum. It aims to develop an understanding of a historical context in which to appreciate how events of 500 years ago still impact London life today.

Featuring over 140 high-quality videos clips and over 60 high-resolution images from the Museum of London Archaeological Archive, Royal Collection Trust and key Tudor locations in London. The resource also features a curriculum mapping tool and a whole range of lesson plans to support the teaching of this subject at Key Stage 2. 

The video below gives an introduction to the resource:

High quality video resources include:

  • Re-enactment of the eve of the marriage of Kathryn Parr to Henry VIII
  • The major Tudor remains including Hampton Court Palace, the Rose Theatre, Charterhouse and on the streets of the City of London
  • Replicas and real artefacts uncovered from archaeological discoveries in London

High resolution images

  • High resolution photographs courtesy of Museum of London Picture Library and Museum ofLondon Archaeology
  • Reconstructions of what Tudor London might have looked like, maps and images of artefacts courtesy of Museum of London Picture Library and the Royal Collection Trust.

The resources are structured into the following sections

  • The Geography of Tudor London
  • Health and Hygiene
  • Trade and Industry
  • Clothing
  • Entertainment
  • Eating and Drinking
  • Home Life and Houses
  • Religion
  • Royalty and Palaces
  • Crime and Punishment

Interactive Map of Tudor London

The resource also features an interactive map of Tudor London with Google Maps integration and Streetview showing the major Tudor find sites and locations or relevance.

Alongside using this resource, teachers can also make use of the fantastic Audio Network which features a range of tracks that can be used to support your teaching of The Tudors including GreenSleeves and Cloth of Gold. The tracks can be used as a background to presentations, or to listen to and compare with music today and they could also be used within dance lessons.

When teaching The Tudors, a lot of teachers also choose to study Shakespeare alongside this topic.  LGfL have a range of resources to support with this.

Early Shakespeare features Romeo and Juliet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.  The two plays are broken down into one bite-sized sentence per scene, using the first 100 high-frequency words. This allows learners to easily follow, understand and remember the stories, and helps ensure access to the curriculum for all. Pupils can watch at their own pace, and opt to turn on or off the accompanying text and symbols, animated characters bring each scene to life, with differentiated activities to help include all learners.

The BBC has granted access to its collection of TV and radio programmes (over 500 from the past50 years), as well as over 1,000 high-quality photographs of some of the world’s leading Shakespearean actors and actresses in some of the most iconic performances.

The collection is only accessible in school due to licensing restrictions, but the full listings can be browsed from any location (videos and audio will not open outside school).

The archive is now live at BBCshakespeare.lgfl.net

Cambridge School Shakespeare features production photographs from a wide range of stage and film versions, designed to support students’ exploration of interpretation,staging and performance. Fully differentiated for use with students aged from 11 to 19, each play includes over 100 pages ofeditable, printable support material including lesson ideas, worksheets and production reviews.

The Museum of London are running a Tudor London Study day for KS3 students in the spring term next year. The session will cover the following:

It’s 1529 in Tudor London and Henry VIII’s break from the church and divorce from Catherine of Aragon is imminent. Explore our Medieval London gallery and handle real objects to investigate what London life was like at this critical time.

You’ll meet imposing Tudor monarch, Henry VIII, in this performance. Participate as a member of his court – and dare to advise him on the complex issues surrounding his break from the church…

You can find out more about the session and to book here.

If you have used The Tudors in your classroom we would love to hear from you, let us know using the hashtag #spotlight #Tudors on LGfL’s twitter or Facebook

 

Spotlight on BalletBoyz

BalletBoyz leads the field in using digital technology in its output and to disseminate it to wider audiences, this expertise, in partnership with LGfL has resulted in a range of content to aid the delivery of dance in schools in London.

The purpose of the content is to enable London teachers to access high-quality digital dance resources to assist and enhance their teaching.  This unique online resource provides tailor made resources to support both the specialist and non-specialist teachers deliver dance at Key Stages 2-4. All the lessons are mapped to the National curriculum and a curriculum mapping document can be downloaded from the site to enable teachers to plan effectively.

Resources for the curriculum lessons consist of short expert videos with voiceovers featuring company dancers as they break down moves, brilliant for introducing the moves to students and acting as an inspiration. The moves are then broken down into a series of short tasks, again all explained via video and voice over and finally students are shown how to join them together in sequences.  Detailed lesson plans are also provided for teachers explaining how to use the videos.

There are five lesson plans for KS2, K23 and KS4, which can either be used as stand-alone lessons linking to topics e.g. caves and jungles in KS2 linking to the rainforest, or can be used to make up a half terms dance programme for the students.

Introduction videos to the all the units are available for teachers to gain an overview as well as case studies from schools to show the impact that BalletBoyz has had within their schools and how they have used it, an example from KS2 can be seen below:

Inspiration clips are also included from the BalletBoyz company repertoire to further encourage and inspire teachers and students alike.

BalletBoyz are currently crowdfunding to support the partnership with Strathmore school, their local secondary school for students with complex learning difficulties. They have seen the impact that their involvement has had on the students including increased independence, confidence and well-being as well as the students’ increased confidence in communicating and forming relationships with new people. You can find out more about the Dance Together crowd funder project here: http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/dancetogether

If you have used BalletBoyz in your classroom we would love to hear from you, let us know using the hashtag #spotlight #BalletBoyz on LGfL’s twitter or Facebook

 

 

 

 

David Jason’s Secret Service and The M Room

A new spy documentary – David Jason’s Secret Service airs next Tuesday 5th December at 9 pm on More 4 (Freeview 14).  This series links with our resources to support both the KS2 and KS3 History curriculum – The M Room, History of Computing and Women in computing.

Passionate espionage enthusiast Sir David Jason reveals the secret places, the people and the compelling stories behind Britain’s incredible spy history from the 20th century to the modern day. Episode one begins with the formation of the British Secret Service in 1909 by maverick spy master Sir Mansfield Cumming – code name C – who turned a group of amateurs into the country’s first secret agents. Five years later when World War One broke out, their spying was pivotal to the Allied victory. Belgian refugees were recruited as they arrived in Britain and Folkestone became a key battleground for British spy organisations.

The historical consultant for the series is the eminent historian Dr Helen Fry, who was our consultant and lead presenter for The M Room, this resource gives LGfL and Trustnet schools exclusive access to World War II listening sites, as well as featuring an interview with one of the original secret listeners and extensive primary-source material from the Ministry of Defence and the National Archives.

The M Room was so secret that only the secret listeners who operated it and some intelligence officers knew of its existence. The letter M stood for ‘miked’ and reflected the fact that the room was set up with the latest listening technology. Access was gained through two locked doors and the keys given only to designated staff. From here the operators could listen into the conversations of the prisoners in their cells or in one of the interrogation rooms. Sometimes the interrogations were recorded if prisoners started to give away important military information.The monitoring of prisoners’ conversations continued every day of the year, including Christmas Day, so that nothing was missed.

The resource targeted at the KS3 History curriculum features 50 high quality video clips filmed on a range of locations including declassified military sites as well as images of personnel, maps, locations and previously classified documents.  The resource also includes a curriculum mapping section including lesson plans for Key Stage 3 and 4.  A trailer of the resource can be viewed here:

The history of computing also includes a section focussing on code breaking during WW2, looking at the impact of Alan Turing and his work at Bletchley Park, a place of exceptional historical importance as it is the home of British code breaking and the birthplace of modern information technology.  It played a major, yet highly secret role in World War II, producing intelligence which had a direct and fundamental influence on the outcome of the conflict. The role of women during this time can also be looked at in our Women in computing resource.

It’s that time of the year ! Using Christmas media with LGfL content

It’s that time of the year when like or not we are all exposed to Christmas media campaigns, be it advertising for a movie or supermarket. Over the last week I’ve been exposed to two campaigns which on the face of it have little or no link, but when looked at more closely, all share an important message. So, how is an advert for a movie, supermarket and LGfL content linked? Read on.

Just before I hopped on a train at Paddington station this week I couldn’t help but notice the many Paddington Bear promotional material around the station. What drew my eye the most was the latest issue of The Big Issue with a striking cover with Paddington Bear being showcased as a ‘Migrant British Icon”

Inside the Magazine Kiri Tunks vice president of the National Union of Teachers and who teaches a Global Perspectives class at her school in Tower Hamlets, tells why she had used Paddington Bear in her teaching of British Values.

Is Paddington a migrant? A refugee? What is the difference between the two? Does it matter?

These questions were being debated in the classroom, with Paddington acting as a symbol of immigration in order to introduce children to issues surrounding refugees and immigration.

“It’s one of the popular lessons, kids really like it,” she says. “I was looking for a way of getting into the refugee question, and tackling the issue from a slightly abstract angle rather than using real-life stories, it is quite useful in representing the other view that sometimes refugees are seen as.”

“It makes the point that when you talk about people in an abstract sense, it’s easy to see them as a threat and different but once you know their story you start to relate to them.” You can download the lesson plan here, and for more Refugee resources created by the NUT go here.

At LGfL we have created a range of resources that can help support the idea of knowing the person behind the label,  Developing British Values offers unique, high quality, safe and relevant teaching resources that foster deeper understanding of keys issues that are raised with the concepts of immigration, tolerance and inclusivity. Celebrating Us looks at issues relating to cultural diversity and identity, rights, roles and responsibilities, online safety and good citizenship. Real Voices is a series of three short interviews with Syrian refugees living in Jordan; they talk about their experience having to leave home, their journey to safety and life in a refugee camp.

And if your youngest students want to go on more bear related adventures PB Bear offers stories that offer starting points for cross curricular work allowing children to make connections in their learning and to put them in to a relevant context.

And finally, Tesco’s Christmas campaign “Everyone’s Welcome”

In the clip, different families are seen celebrating the festival as they dig into a turkey. Commenting on the campaign, Alessandra Bellini, Tesco’s Chief Customer Officer, said: ‘This year, our campaign will celebrate the many ways we come together at Christmas It’s important to remember that no matter how different we are, we have more in common then we think”

To explore this idea in more depth why not use Espresso Faiths to look at different communities and ask your students to explore the common links that they can see in religious celebrations? If you wanted to look at this in the wider context you could use Growing up around the World, which aims to help Children in the UK understand the realities of children in different contexts, the resources show that many struggles and challenges are the same from South Africa to India.

If we can take one message from the many campaigns and resources is the theme of Diversity and Tolerance, and the idea of coming together as a whole, because we truly do have more in common then we think. Or as Dr Seuss wrote“Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn’t come from a store”

Are you using Christmas media with LGfL content in your school to inspire your students? If so let us know by posting them on LGfL’s twitter or Facebook

 

 

 

 

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

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.

Code week.EU

There is still time to join with EU Code Week before it closes on Friday, you can use a range of LGfL resources to help support your coding activities, today we are going to focus on resources within Python Tutor and Web Tech tutor.

Combined both resources offer 50 coding projects presented in single simple stand-alone lessons. Students understanding is initially developed at a conceptual level by allowing them to drag and drop parts of the code, but later they can refine their skills with specific code creation in activities.

Students watch a short introductory video. Which presents a key coding concept or problem. They then can carry out a series of related short tasks using the software, after each task is complete, the software will then present the next task in the unit.

When using these resources, it is important to understand that simply using this resource in isolation will not give your students the depth and breadth of computational skills needed to become independent Computational thinkers.

Using and moving code within these resources does create a solid scaffold for students to explore unfamiliar concepts and gives them quick on-screen results but it’s important for students to have freedom to create code outside of this scaffold, the idea of the resource is not to “copy code” but to gain practical knowledge of key concepts.

Computing Inspector and advisor for Hampshire Inspection and Advisory Service Phil Bagge talks about using coding schemes of work:

 “I often start with examining the module and asking what computational thinking and problem-solving attitudes it is building I then explore ways that they might adapt that planning, chopping the instructions up, asking the students to predict what parts will do before they use them”

All videos within the tutorials are downloadable and can be used outside of the resource, one way of using this would be to allow all students to complete the standalone lesson, but then let the students have freedom to impairment the key concepts but for a different purpose, creating their own projects.

Coding was introduced to help drive creativity within students, using these resources can help build up student’s confidence so that they can translate it into innovative and creative outcomes. We look forward to seeing your students doing this for EU Code Week and please remember you can share your work either on our Twitter or Facebook pages

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

Cold War VR Update

Einstein wisely stated, ‘The only source of knowledge is experience’.

As a teacher, we are always thinking on how can we deliver new experiences to students within the limitations of our school space and time, with many teachers finding it harder to go on school trips because of expense and time wasted travelling, we need to look at how technology can provide a range of immersive and engaging experiences that couldn’t normally happen within a normal school day.

The ClassVR by Avantis Whitepaper tells us that:

Virtual Reality, by its pure definition, can deliver experiences and interactions for students that are either not practical or not possible in the ‘real world’, provides an unparalleled way to immerse and captivate students of all ages. Virtual Reality helps students feel immersed in an experience, gripping their imagination and stimulating thought in ways not possible with traditional books, pictures or videos, and facilitates a far higher level of knowledge retention. “

With this in mind LGfL and the amazing team at Computeam have looked at updating our Cold war resource, so that it offers an experience that cannot be found anywhere else, that of a Virtual Reality Nuclear blast!

I spoke to Phil Birchinall Education Director at Computeam Ltd about this exciting update:

“Our challenge was to create a scenario that presented pupils with a realistic experience of the genuine level of fear that existed in the country during the late 70’s and in to the 80’s. Most people then considered it to be a matter of when not if, nuclear Armageddon and ‘mutually assured destruction’ would take place. We wanted to portray how life could change dramatically and instantly in the case of a nuclear strike. At the same time we don’t want to leave students traumatised! Our goal is to provide just enough jeopardy and threat to leave them feeling they have just experienced something significant.

 Also, this is a teaching resource so it has to be loaded with prompts and questions for further study and exploration. We made sure that the context is accurate. The sounds are all genuine sounds from the period, even the date it’s set, 18th July 1981. The bunker is an accurate recreation of a DIY bunker layout produced in the 1960”

 Finally, implementing VR into your curriculum fully can be hard and making sure it has an impact on learning as well as having the wow factor is vital. LGfL with help from ClassVR by Avantis have produced a prompt sheet which can help you on your class journey.

 

 

You can find the new Cold War Nuclear Strike app iOS here or for Android here

Tell us how you use VR in your class by sharing 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.

 

 

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.

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.