Sunday, October 16, 2011

This site has a number of science activities.  This one is great for getting children into measurement with standard units.  Students measure their ears, feet and height and enter them.  Afterwards they can compare the length of their body parts with different animals.  A good opportunity for discussion and practise with centimetres.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

ICT integration on a "Food" theme.

I found this presentation delivered two years ago and realise how much we continue to grow with ICT

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

National Standards


The debate continues.  It is unfortunate that professionals with a wealth of experience in the field are not part of this decision making process.  Self review needs to include all those involved in setting up the standards to begin with.  Testing and alignment is paramount to the success of any venture.  Interesting to read that finances are to be poured into encouraging parents to accept and get behind the standards.  Having trialled these, I know I am not alone with the huge number of questions I have. 

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Christmas Ideas

This site has a lot of great ideas for Christmas fun, ornaments, activities and worksheets.

Click on any of the buttons to take you to a range of activities including Craft around the World.

Sen teacher

This site has a range of activities for use with students with special needs.  I have personally used a range of the printable activities for general use with Junior School classes.  There are worksheets and printable resources for Maths and Literacy and links to free downloads  for visuals.  Worth a look if you haven't used it before. 
Many of the printables can be laminated and used on repeated occasions in the classrooms.  I have used the Shopping cards using dollar amounts, laminated and had the children fill in the change you would get.
Worth exploring.

National Standards

This year, we embarked on the task of implementing National Standards, no easy job at the beginning of this year when there were minimal guidelines to support this endeavour.  Revising the formats of the reports themselves to include room for reporting in "plain English" in the three main areas we have succeeded in part to deliver but at what cost.  Staff have found it laborious to record in writing, what could be shown, explained and spoken to, an arduous task indeed. 
Unpacking the Standards which is argued are to a large extent untested was in itself a time consuming task and this will undoubtedly vary from school to school across the country. Despite the difficulties we faced, however, there are positives to be taken from and worked with for the future.  Strong professional dialogue has occurred throughout the year and areas of need in Professional Development has been outlined.  The importance of quality teacher practice with on-going formative assessment can be addressed by all.  In terms of the actual Standards themselves, we can stand up and say that having tried and delivered in the mode set down by the Government that this can be done in a far more effective way than this.  In the Junior School, recognising children's skills and abilities in relation to their actual age at signposts allows an element of fairness to individuals when reporting progress.  As a result of the work undertaken this year, the toll has been great, confusion, time constraints, time allotment to report writing, difficulty unpacking what is working to and at at a range of prescribed levels - BUT  seeds have been planted and these are now ready to sprout and continue their growth as we ask ourselves... "what are our next learning steps?"  and as students, ourselves involved in this learning process, we have pretty good ideas of our own!