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Nigel Coutts

Ideas - The Learner's Way - 2 views

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    Ask any teacher what they wish they had more of and the most common answer is likely to be time. Schools are inherently busy places and there is always much to be done. We all want to meet the needs of every student, add value to their education with breadth and depth, ensure adequate coverage of the curriculum and include aspects of play and discovery. Add up all that is done in a day over and above face-to-face teaching and you can only wonder at how we manage to fit it all into the time we have. So is there an answer to this dilemma, is there a secret method to finding more time in our schedules to achieve all that we want to?
Nigel Coutts

A healthy dose of scepticism - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    I want my students to be sceptics. I believe that in the present age scepticism is more important than ever. Easy access to information, ease of publishing, scams and confidence tricksters combine to create a climate where blind trust is dangerous for our security, our finances and our knowledge bases. For students of all ages a healthy dose of scepticism is much needed not just so they may reveal falsehoods but to allow them to discover new truths.
John Evans

Teaching, Tech and Twitter: Gamifying Our STEM Lab. Leveling Up With Challenges, Digita... - 0 views

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    "Our STEM Lab/Makerspace is a HUGE hit with our students. Since I oversee the lab and take the classes in I get bombarded by kids all day asking if it is their day to go to the STEM Lab. They are building, discovering, exploring, designing, problem solving, and having a blast doing it. However, as the kids continued to explore the STEM Lab we began to notice that they had moved past the exploration phase and wanted a bit more direction and challenge. We realized that we needed to up our game a bit to take our lab to the next level so we decided to gamify our STEM Lab with challenges and badges! It took some prep but once the challenge cards and badges were created we were ready to roll. We are happy to share our tips, tricks and resources so that you can gamify your STEM or STEAM Lab too."
Nigel Coutts

Assessment A Powerful messaging system - The Learner's Way - 2 views

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     The role of assessment has always played its part but it is a role that is changing in the present global climate and understanding this shift is important for educators.
John Evans

Ways To Use Lego In The Classroom | Teaching Ideas - 2 views

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    "When I'm not busy working on our teaching websites, I can usually be found playing Lego with our children! It's an incredibly creative toy, but it can also be used to support work in a number of different curriculum areas. Here is our HUGE list of ways to use Lego in the classroom. Many of these ideas have been contributed by our wonderful Facebook community. If you have any other suggestions, please add a comment at the bottom of the page.

    Don't forget that many of these activities could use Duplo too!"
Nigel Coutts

Learning from the journey - The Learner's Way - 2 views

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    There is much to be learned from journeys. From stepping out of our doors and by placing one foot in front of the other making progress towards a planned destination. Journeys are a great metaphor for the challenges we face in our day to day lives and the parallels we draw may allow us to set a goal and achieve it despite the obstacles.
John Evans

This incredible robot (called Root) is teaching kids to code - Daily Genius - 3 views

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    "Root looks like a smoke detector but is actually a sophisticated robot. A magnetic surface, wheels, and an impressive arsenal of sensors allow it to navigate a classroom white board. But Root isn't actually programmed to do anything. Its tasks and functionality hinge on a child's imagination. To operate - Root needs instructions, a line of code.

    Zivthan Dubrovsky of Harvard's Wyss Institute recalls testing out Root with kids for the first time. He asked them this: "Can you make a text based java script line follower? They go 'no that's hard, can't do that', but we can put level one in front of them and they can do it in minutes."


    Level one introduces kids to principles of programming using an interface of simple instruction and pictures. As they become more adept, they jump to levels 2 and 3, at which point writing computer code becomes second nature, according to Dubrovsky."
Nigel Coutts

The danger of teacher burnout - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    Teaching is by nature a high energy profession that demands a lot and while their is much to celebrate there is arena danger of burnout. Taking some time to relax and de-stress is important as is noticing the signs that you are reaching your limit. For all teachers understanding that a break and a change of schedule benefits not just you but your students too can be the catalyst for granting yourself permission for a genuine break.
Nigel Coutts

Why banning technology is not the answer - The Learner's Way - 2 views

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    There is something about human nature that draws us towards dichotomous patterns of thought; an all or nothing, us or them style of thinking in which an option is either good or it is bad. In such a model complexity and subtle nuance with multiple possible outcomes and routes towards a goal are ignored. The field of educational technology is one where such a pattern is evident and recent ban on technology by a Sydney school shows how this style of analysis can have a significant impact on student learning.
Nigel Coutts

The purpose of education - The Learner's Way - 2 views

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    Behind the rhetoric and politics, education is about the outcomes it achieves for its learners. More than being about the nuances of technology, learning space design, curriculum structures and pedagogical practices schools should have effective answers to questions that focus on what they hope to achieve for their learners. How we answer this question should then dictate the measures we utilise to achieve these goals and it is to these ends that we must apply our efforts.
Nigel Coutts

The Power of Teams - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    Sometimes it is worth stating the obvious, giving time and thought to what we easily take for granted. In doing so we name the things we value most and give them the value they deserve. The value of teams is one such ideal, we know that teams have value, we probably even know what it feels like to be a part of a great team but too often we take this feeling as understood and don't stop to consider what makes it worth chasing.
John Evans

10+ Terrific Resources for Teaching Questioning Skills to Your Students - 5 views

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    "Teachers are always on the lookout for ways to foster questioning skills in students. First of all, let's define our subject. At skillsyouneed.com the topic of questioning is covered succinctly in this article. It asks us to consider why we question things. So why do we?
    We question to gather information. It helps us learn. We communicate and understand others through questioning. It helps us explore the world we live in. We also test acquired knowledge with good questioning skills. They are skills that serve us in school and in everything beyond it. Curiosity and questioning are what keep us interested and engaged in life."
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