I was lucky enough recently (1/6/13) to be invited to say hello at an MfL event at the University of York. A better view of it is given by Claire Hampson at Thirsk School in North Yorkshire.
This is the second secondary event I’ve been at in the last few weeks and what’s always striking is the outrageous level of commitment delegates have with the only motivation being to share what they know – and in this case on a Saturday too!
By the way, congrats also to Rushcliffe School who won a free 12 months Blippit subscription on the day!
So, because everyone was clearly stacked with new stuff from the day, and Chrome had something switched off causing Blippit to look ‘orrible, I bailed and left the good people to digest their day. Some of the things I had planned to go into are flagged as memory pointers here.
Yesterday Sir Alex Ferguson’s wife Kathy got a special mention in his official retirement statement for “providing a bedrock of both stability and encouragement” over the years. I suspect noone had ever thought of Sir Alex’s support mechanisms much beyond the fans and colleagues but it made me think anew about the fact that everyone needs support and encouragement and this post is about that.
It’s a pleasure for us to be able to give support when we go into classrooms to meet incredible teachers, children and Heads. When teachers introduce app making into the whole curriculum they have to advocate and champion their vision in school on their own often so when we can have chats, share tips & ideas when we visit it always ‘feels’ good. Equally, it’s a pleasure to get encouragement and support back into Blippit and this happens in different ways.
Over the last couple of weeks noticeably year 6 teachers have been telling us that Blippit offers them an opportunity to do something completely different with their classes after SATS. Andy Rigby at St Catherine’s Primary for example expects to see his children seizing the opportunity to get into app making later this month.
MfL specialists will no doubt have already been tuned in to this content rich event that went out today from Liverpool featuring some top drawer speakers & international attendees.
The biggest thrill (for us!) was hearing Blippit mentioned as a great way in for MfL teachers wanting to get children making apps – without having to
go on a course to become a Jedi code master
shift the focus from MfL
If you’ve got some time tune in below to Joe Dale who spoke (in fluent English) at the conference sharing a huge quantity of possible starting points for the gathered folks. Enjoy & get ready with that pause button while you jot down some of these ideas.
It’s very very difficult to beat authentic student voice and to be honest it’s even more difficult to describe the ‘W’ Factor that can come with it AKA the ‘wince’ factor. Students don’t ‘dress it up’ or typically use political speak so try to imagine if you will how I watched these videos through one eye!
The context is that they were taken by MfL expert/teacher Jen Turner @msmfl from Ormiston Sudbury Academy last week during an MfL lesson – not an ICT lesson. Jen originally used the videos in her demo app shared at the Language World conference in Nottingham in a workshop p’unnily entitled “Making it Appen – making a language app with your students.” (See full session lists here – it’s impressive)
So, you can watch these with two eyes and two ears wide open I hope – they’re talking about us not you 😉
Diversity & inclusion was last week’s theme. Will hopefully be able to share more about it in some more detail pretty soon but last week saw a group of high school students with EAL giving Blippit a good workout. The activity they undertook in an afternoon resulted in a justifiably proud Head teacher, class teacher and of course critically proud students. Perhaps, for me anyway, significant was the way in which the school chose to share it’s achievements and who it shared them with ie. on Facebook with parents and students.
The second highlight was the subscribing to Blippit of a leading high school for students with special educational needs. Absolutely wonderful and I can’t wait to hopefully (fingers crossed) get in there to see how Blippit will be exploited in the students’ learning there. Hopefully much more to come on that one soon.
You’ve recently asked for:
html tutorials -handy stuff to make exciting things happen
new ways to present navigation including images, different colours
refinements to the way Admin accounts display certain areas of information about the apps
We’re working to deliver these and would like to thank you again for just taking the time and having a go!! Your effort and feedback are phenomenal and it helps massively to improve Blippit week after week.
A year 7 student recently began work on a German app after finding she was enjoying the subject a lot.
Me: “Ah, so it’s a revision app?”
Student: “No, it’s a learning app!”
(Note: The Google Translate feature is not 100% working reliably and it may I am told be removed but for now it’s a cunning bit of integration and simple coding.