Sport Relief 17th – 23rd March

Sport Relief is when the British public comes together to get active, raise money and change lives. This time, it’s bigger than ever and there is a whole week of epic activity lined up from 17th to 23rd March 2018.

There are support packs for Primary, Secondary and Nurseries to download, these include challenges including the daily mile, fundraising ideas, posters for schools. a guide for school councils and a new song and dance that pupils can learn ‘Step it Up for Sport Relief!’

Team Marathon for KS1 and KS2 from LGfL can also be used, the resource follows a group ofchildren through a programme of six training sessions leading to the Team Marathon event, which involves children running together to complete the marathon distance. The final two updates cover the event itself and reporting on it. The materials also offer support for a number of cross-curricular activities related to organising and reporting on the event and issues from the SEAL agenda like target setting and teamwork.

Each training session follows the same format:

  • Warm up
  • Stretching
  • Pace activities
  • Sustained run
  • Opportunities for children to reflect and make decisions about their progress and set targets forthemselves

Through the video diaries, you can follow the progress of six children discussing their development through the training, in preparation for the Team Marathon event. There are also opportunities for children to take responsibility for planning routes, recording times and monitoring their progress.

Or why not use the week to focus on dance using the brilliant BalletBoyz resource for KS2-4. BalletBoyz leads the field in using digital technology in its output and to disseminate to wider audiences, and this expertise, in partnership with LGfL, has resulted in new, digital content to aid the delivery of dance in schools in London.

The purpose of this new content is to enable London teachers to access high-quality digital dance resources to assist and enhance their teaching. BalletBoyz has always believed that dance education in schools is most engaging when students have direct access to the performer.

This unique online resource provides tailor-made resources to support both specialist and non-specialist teachers deliver dance at Key Stages 2-4. Resources for curriculum lessons consist of short expert videos with voiceovers featuring company dancers as they break down moves and then show students how to join them together in sequences. Detailed lesson plans are also provided for teachers explaining how to use the videos. In addition, inspiration clips from theBalletBoyz company repertoire are included to further encourage and inspire students and teachers alike.

Premier League Primary Stars  offer a range of resources for P.E., P.H.S.E, Maths and English, teachers can access these resources by signing up via their website. Registration is needed before the resources can be downloaded, alongside lesson plans there are also assembly ideas.  Teachers registered on the site can also apply for free kit for their schools as well.

Also from the Premier League and BBC, is Super Movers the aim of this new resource launched last month is to encourage teachers to adopt an active approach to learning and include physical activity throughout the day.

Super Movers gives teachers video content-led ideas and simple solutions to help children learn while they move – all free, fun, and easy to use in the classroom. No extra equipment is required.

Some of the exciting things Super Movers offer include:

  • Top tips and bright ideas about how to best use Super Movers from active schools and football clubs across the UK
  • Stars from the worlds of football and television will come together to capture children’s imagination in a series of videos that will enhance children’s learning
  • Premier League-inspired rewards including prizes, certificates and stickers to help incentivise children
  • Live Lessons broadcast on BBC platforms

Super Movers can also be used at home too with a range of fun videos and games designed to get children and grown-ups moving together in their living rooms, so parents as well as teachers can join in. Teachers can sign up to the Super Movers newsletter now to be the first to know about latest video releases, get exciting news and information about upcoming Super Movers events and hear from other teachers.

What ever you do for Sport Relief 2018, please share via our twitter or Facebook pages.

 

 

British Science Week 9th-18th March 2018

British Science Week, run by the British Science Association runs from the 9th – 18th March 2018 and is a ten-day celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths. The theme this year is ‘exploration and discovery encouraging young people to think about everyday discoveries and how they affect their lives by exploring science in the world all around us; from their home and schools, to their local area and wider environment. It is also a chance for young people to consider how exploration and discovery can have a positive impact on the future.

The British Science Week website has activity packs for Early Years, Primary and Secondary students, the packs are designed to be your one stop shop for supporting teachers during the week.  The activities include both lesson plans and assemblies.  There is also a poster competition, students can make their poster about anything involving exploration and discovery. The five best posters from your school can be entered into a UK-wide competition with the chance for students to win an array of prizes.

There are several resources that LGfL schools can use during this time.

The first one is Polar Exploration which fits in perfectly with this years theme.  LGfL worked with the Scott Polar Research Institute at Cambridge University in creating this comprehensive resource, which provides a unique insight into the ‘Heroic Age of Scientific Discovery’.

Featuring exclusive access to the historic archive of the most famous polar expeditions of the 20th Century, the resource includes:

        • Video footage of equipment and artefacts from the most famous expeditions, complete with text transcripts of the expert explanations
        • High-resolution photographs of objects featured in the video footage
        • Journal extracts read by a descendant of a member of Captain Scott’s Discovery expedition
        • Interactive map of the Polar Regions with plotted locations of the multimedia assets
        • The opportunity to meet a modern-day polar explorer and hear of his experiences living for extended periods of time in some of the world’s most extreme environments.
        • A wide range of learning materials to support KS2, KS3 and KS4

The entire Primary ‘Switched on Science’ scheme, offering full coverage across Key Stage 1 and  is available to all LGfL-connected schools. Switched on Science is a flexible and creative investigation-based programme with a clear focus on working scientifically a core assessable element of the new science curriculum. It is packed with best-practice CPD videos and supportive lessons to ensure every teacher can deliver the science curriculum with confidence.The package comes with all the additional resources teachers need to teach the entire Science curriculum, ranging from a video for each unit, teacher guide, interactive exercises, pupil workbooks, ideas for differentiation, and much more.

Virtual Experiments for Years 1 – 6, these ever popular online resources are ideal for demonstrating difficult scientific concepts with the added benefit of:

  • Minimising the time, mess and fuss involved in experiments
  • Allowing you to repeat, slow down or vary the conditions of experiments
  • Being useful for revisiting key work pupils may have missed or forgotten

Busy Things has a wide range of resources and games for use in Early years, KS1 and KS2 there are over 100 activities that are linked to the science curriculum that could be used during your science week.

Widgit Symbols are simply drawn, colourful symbols designed to illustrate a single concept in clear and concise way. They cover a range of topics (including science) wide enough to make them suitable for symbol users of all ages and abilities. Already used by many SEND departments and schools, the entire symbol database of over 15,000 images is now available to all LGfL TRUSTnet schools to search and download. The use of these symbols increases the accessibility of written text by giving readers of all literacy levels greater access to information. As they are designed specifically for written information,Widgit Symbol users can develop a real independence in reading and writing

The ever popular j2etool suite can also be used during Science Week, pupils can use the data tools to collect their data and use  j2e5, JIT and the j2office tools to write up their experiments or complete a fact file on a famous explorer.

What ever you are doing for British Science Week we would love you to share your work on our  twitter or Facebook pages #BSW18

Fair Trade Fortnight 26th February – 11th March 2018

Fairtrade Fortnight aims to put a spotlight on trade. When trade is fair it has the potential to improve the lives of the farmers and workers who grow our food. When trade is fair, it can make the world a better place. Together we have that power, so why not get involved and be part of the difference.

Through Fairtrade, millions of poor farmers and workers are already coming together to demand a change. They are working hard to close the door on exploitation and transform their communities, supported by Fairtrade.

For 2018, the theme is to ‘come on in’ to Fairtrade to stand with farmers and close the door on exploitation.

Whether it be a pop-up café, a school assembly or an exhibition, share your love of Fairtrade with parents, the community or other schools by inviting them to come on in. Schools can also enter the Fairtrade Fortnight Award with a chance to win £350 to spend on your future Fairtrade activities – there’s more information here.

 The Fair-trade website also contains a range of new resources, these resources are all completely free and cover their usual subjects areas like PSHE and Geography but also new ones including Music, Black History, Business studies and English. There are the following resources on the site:

 Introducing Coobana Banana Co-operative – quiz and discussion to introduce Central America, Panama and the Banana trade.

  • Songs and Poems of Banana workers – Songs like Harry Belafonte’s Day-O (The Banana Boat Song) are great for assemblies, now learn what they mean and gain an understanding of the struggle of Banana workers to gain respect and fair working conditions.

Traidcraft also has a range of resources for Key stages 1-5 to support the teaching during FairTrade fortnight as well as ideas of how to involve the students including a Fair Trade Bake Off! Other ideas include selling Fair Trade produce during school snack times and visiting local shops to see how many Fair Trade products that they stock.

If you are looking for recipes why not use Cookit the main purpose of this resource  is to improve pupils’ skills, understanding and enjoyment of food and healthy eating.The site provides support for the teaching and learning of a wide range of basic skills and processes. It encourages and inspires learners to explore cooking and to create and share their own recipes, using both the site and mobile devices.

The site also has strong cross curriculum links to History (Prehistoric to Modern), Citizenship,Sciences, Literacy (instructional writing), Maths (measures) and RE (celebrations), as well as a rich bank of modern recipes ranging from simple “no cook” recipes to complex, multi-step dishes.

Growing up around the world from LGfL can also be used during this fortnight to support your teaching. Over more than two decades, the charity tve followed the lives of 11 children in 10 different countries to make a series of groundbreaking films. A precursor to the BBC’s “Child of our Time” series, this resource provides a unique insight into what it means to grow up in different parts of the world; the challenges, hopes and dreams of the 11 children and the impact of the world around them.

Growing up around the World aims to help UK children understand the realities of childhood indifferent contexts. Strikingly, many of the struggles and challenges the children encounter are universal, from the UK to South Africa to India.

Designed for use in Citizenship, PSHE or Geography lessons, the videos introduce Key Stage 2, 3and 4 pupils to human rights, building an understanding of the issues facing people around the world. The resources come with a comprehensive teacher pack with full lesson plans, starter activities, sample worksheets, a dictionary of key terms and tips for expanding on the material provided in the resource.

The tve:Relay resource offers an insight into how young people across the world communicate their ideas about the environment.

Originally produced in partnership between tve and Bloomberg, the original tve: Relay saw 22young people from across the global create short videos about issues of concern to them about the environment. The relay started in the UK and then the relay challenge worked its way around 22 different countries. Each video provides a different focus, style and message, offering a unique insight into a range of issues that matter to the next generation. Some videos are made about concerns in other parts of the world, and other focus on issues closer to home. Some humorous, some minimalist, some complex and some simple…each video offers a unique message about issues of concern to children around the world.

Whatever you have planned for Fairtrade fortnight please share via our  twitter or Facebook pages #fairtradefortnight

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

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 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.

 

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.

 

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

 

 

 

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.

 

 

 

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

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.