Coláiste Bríde

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8 Responses to Coláiste Bríde

  1. New Year, new systems:

    Implementing Office 365 at the moment- Elearning team are acting as mentors for the new system- helping teachers get to grips with logging in to office 365 and uploading documents to our new sharepoint site. The sharepoint element might be a good topic for a webinar- just how we are designing it etc. Work in progress though- might leave that till after mid term.
    All students have their own individual log in iD which is something we didn’t have before.
    Surprisingly enough- we haven’t had that many issues with it. Lots of girls forgot their passwords but we set them to never expire so each teacher has a copy of the logins and is able to remind the student of their username and passwords. So far so good.
    Have arranged a meeting with AP teachers- we will have a working lunch to formalize and plan how we will document everything- video and blogging will probably suit best.
    Sin é

  2. Office 365 fully implemented now. Teachers are using the lists we set up to communicate by email(teachers, History, Science etc). We are running a whole school behavior program where we teach the school rules explicitly to every class for one class period a day. We were able to email the lesson plan to each teacher daily as opposed to printing out sheets or making them all access the one file from the server at the same time.
    Communication has become much easier.
    All students have their individual logins, and I have to admit it works- 960 girls and I only get about 1 per week who can’t remember her password. Because they are set to never change, most of the time it is just a matter or reminding the student and getting her to write in her journal.
    I did a Webinar on Edmodo, glitches but it went quite well I think. Good to learn how to use WebEx myself.
    Meeting salvo and Maria today to discuss how we will organize our own Webinar for LSL, there is only myself and Teija in the group and we have Online learning Environments- so we could do Edmodo, and Sharepoint but I am going to take the term ” Learning Environments” quite loosely, and include Padlet- which Salvo is using for his Comenius link with Italy and also the technology we are using to collaborate. Salvo will do a video on how he uses Goanimate to teach Italian. Maria might do one on using free resources to teach Maths. we will know more after today.
    Talk soon,
    SJC

  3. Sarah-Jayne Carey says:

    This is a post in response to na Ceithre Maistrí on the topic of CPD. Originally entered November.
    We are doing lunchtime CPD, also every couple of weeks so for us a lot of food gets guzzled- not ideal for those of us trying to be healthy, but it works. First 10 minutes feedback, planning what needs to be done and show and tell/ sharing new practices.
    Also we put out tips on eportal or by email using office 365.
    We encourage teachers to share apps/websites which they find useful and they share this info. Like you we want to encourage teachers to focus on technology to improve learning and practice, not just for the sake of it so when teacher do share something, it would be along the lines of:
    “I used this site to create a quiz for my Home Ec class, based on what we covered last week. It was easy to use and worked well because you could add pictures and attach blank labels which the students fill in.” Then the teacher will attach the link. Slightly different for us in that not all technologies will suit each subject,
    Another method of CPD we are moving towards is using online videos. If I am implementing a new procedure or introducing a new technology or device, I search for youtube or other ‘How To’ videos. I watch them to ensure they good quality, try to keep them under 5 minutes, and send the links to the teachers. That way they can watch while they are on the bus etc. using their smart phone.
    I am setting up a Colaiste Bride CPD group on Edmodo as well so teachers can share within the school.
    You could also make a video yourself and put it on the school server where teachers can access it in their own time. I am always trying to come up with innovative ways to improve CDD delivery, now that we have so little time available to us a group of teachers. And we have a high number of teachers so getting them all together is very difficult.
    We also use the free training given through the PDST, or through our local education Centre. This is the link to the one in Tallaght, and I am sure your own local one has similar courses:
    http://www.dwec.ie/ict/index.html
    One course which looked really good si Creating and Sharing Resources:
    -Using PowerPoint effectively in the classroom
    -Introduction to Google Docs & Google Drive
    -Creating and sharing resources with Google Drive
    -Introduction to Social Bookmarking using “Delicious” to store and share your favourite sites online
    -Using Skype in the classroom
    -Using Google Maps in the classroom
    This is a practical hands-on course. Participants will be provided with detailed handouts during the course
    They will also run the course for you on site if you have over 10 participants I think.

    The model we use at the moment is a mixture of all the above: planned and impromptu lunchtime training sessions, small peer groups for learning- if the DP can cover classes, a team of ICT mentors to be called upon whenever needed, and links/tutorials/How to videos on eportal or via email.
    When we get our sharepoint site up and running we will have an area for CPD where all of our CPD resources and upcoming training sessions will live.

    Sin é

  4. Maria Broderick says:

    I trialled various Interactive Whiteboards and we bought Promethean Boards for all our Maths Rooms. We use Active Inspire software together with Geogebra , Geometers Sketchpad and Autograph to enhance the teaching of Maths. This is particularly useful since the introduction of Project Maths. Initially I attended courses on using these packages and then held a training session in our school for the Maths Department. Most teachers have come on board with this and find it a great asset to their teaching. Subsequently many other Departments have also installed Promethean Boards in their rooms.

    For the past year and a half I have been teaching higher level Maths via videolink to a small group of girls in Warrenmount Presentation Secondary School which is near the city centre. I use Microsoft Lync, a Seinnheiser mic and I have a follow-me camera sitting on my desk. It is very user friendly and takes seconds to link up. Were it not for the Lync these girls would not get the opportunity to do Higher level Maths. They put their homework up each day on Edmodo and I post notes here for them also. I correct their homework on a Tablet in Microsoft OneNote using a stylus and the corrected version is returned either via sharepoint or Edmodo.

    When they miss class for some reason, I use a Smartpen on which I can record a lesson and my voice, upload it to my computer and send it to them by email. They can then see the execution of the lesson line by line and hear my voice.

    I attend Parent Teacher meetings and have meetings with their Principal via the Lync. This is a really good system and I am learning new ways of communicating all the time.

    That’s it for now.

  5. scacciato says:

    Ciao a tutti,

    One of the tools that I use in my Italian classes is http://padlet.com
    It is a platform where teachers and students can sign up for free and I find it to be a great space to use for collaboration projects. I came across padlet when it was still called wallwisher, as I was looking for tools to use in one of my projects that involved collaboration with an Italian school. I knew about the Microsoft product one note, but I wanted something more attractive and intuitive for students. Padlet is effectively a digital notice board, a blank canvas where one can put up ideas, links, pictures, videos etc.

    The first thing to do is create a new wall: you can personalise it by giving it a name, choosing the background and adding a logo; you decide who to invite to share the wall and set up privacy settings for all members (from public to password-protected and from view-only to moderator, they are customisable), then you’re off: when a user double clicks on any area of the screen/wall, he or she is presented with a rectangle where they can enter their name, the title of the post or any other text. Also in the same rectangle are three very intuitive icons: one is for linking a URL, one is to upload material from the hard drive and one to instantly take and upload a picture with the webcam.

    The uses are multiple and only limited to students’ and teachers’ imagination. I used it firstly to establish a link and create some reciprocal curiosity between our two schools and our students (in addition to Edmodo groups). Currently, we are using it as a platform where the Irish students teach English to the Italian students, and vice versa. The teaching input and the feedback is provided by the students, with the teachers acting only as facilitators and moderators (posts require approval by the moderators before becoming visible on the wall). We are having great success, with students from both schools learning new vocabulary, grammar and phrases that they then use in situation-based role-plays in the target language. The videos of their “acting performances” are also posted on the walls and comments invited.

    The following is the link to one of the bilingual walls (top half is in English, bottom half is in Italian) created by me where the final role-play is called “At the clothes shop/In un negozio di abbigliamento”. The students used PowerPoint, Prezi and Goanimate to teach each other the necessary vocabulary; they acted out role-plays in their native languages; and finally performed role-plays in the target language. Following this link you will be able to view the wall, without being able to edit (you can click on each item and see/play it, but nothing will happen if you try to double click an empty area on the wall)

    http://padlet.com/wall/roleplay1

    Basta per ora. Alla prossima,

    Salvo

  6. hublinkie says:

    Love it Salvo, great use of Padlet for learning and collaboration! Seems to me you have a great eTwinning Project possibility here, have you thought about joining eTwinning? http://www.etwinning.net/en/pub/index.htm

    • scacciato says:

      Ciao and thanks. I am currently using it as part of a Comenius bilateral partnership project with an Italian school. We established a first contact through eTwinning three years ago and have been working together since. We have already completed am eTwinning project, based on the use of Skype in the teaching of modern languages. Working with a school from abroad adds a lot in terms of students’ motivation and I would certainly recommend it to any language teacher.

  7. Sarah-Jayne Carey says:

    My last entry before our observation visit. I am just tying up supervision and making sure we have enough batteries or the camera:)
    I am looking at our steps plan again.
    It seems to be evolving every week!. Initially, we were going to focus on technology across the school, and then narrowed it down to virtual learning environments( Edmodo) and eportfolios/CPD and then at the end of last year it became evident we would have to replace our whole school network so that took over all of our attention. We set about replacing all of our switches, installed a new firewall, implementing Office 365 and installed a wireless network. So this in a way took us back to technology across the school.
    But it has allowed me to experience moving from one system to another all over again- (seven years ago we had to design the network from scratch when we moved into our new building but it was never meant to take 100meg broadband) so in a way, although it was a stressful summer there was a sense of excitement and renewal- ” We could do wonderful things if we had ….)
    We researched various solutions, dealing with vendors, trialling and prototyping, selecting suppliers, implementing, rolling out training programmes, dealing with teething problems, getting staff on board, retraining etc. At this stage I think it has settled down. At the time I thought it was a million miles away from any STEPS plan but actually it is definitely something I could share with other schools in Ireland.
    I now want to know how using office 365 in tandem with Edmodo and the other tools we use will enrich the learning. Can they all work together? Do they work for all learners, subjects and teachers. Can I encourage the whole staff to start uploading to sharepoint and collaborating in a more meaningful way.
    I plan to start using our wireless network with students- at the moment some students use their own devices but not in a formalised way and not with all teachers, We need to change our policies. We have given tablets to staff members so they can investigate how useful this could be in their classes and plan to start using a set of iPads this term with two groups.
    In terms of support I know there are some schools in LSL who have implemented or are starting to implement what we are trying to achieve with our wireless network so we will be looking to them.
    I find there is always help online through CESI (Computers in Education Society Ireland) and Twitter is always good for a quick response to any issues you may have- the #edchatie and CESI communities here are very encouraging and helpful and there is a real sense that the other educators want to push you on and support you.
    We now have managed services which means we have a tech helpdesk and of course the other teachers and students here in the school always have really good insights and ideas.
    So tomorrow I see the observation visit as the next step in the journey and no doubt our Plan evolve even more.

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