Saturday, March 28, 2009

THE Assignment!!!! (Saturday 28th March 2009)

I had felt quite proud of myself initially having written an extremely rough, draft copy of my assignment. However, there are numerous alterations to be made and it still requires some additions too!! I feel that maybe I got a little 'cocky'!! Still, having spent a little time on it today and a bi more planning (along with a glass of wine! ..... will that make it better or worse though?!) - I reckon it's coming together quire nicely now. Thre is just so much information I want to include (and even with all the appendices, etc in the world, there's not enough!) I find it rather difficult to decipher the best bits to include and which I should bin!!
Then there's the citations ........... OMG!!!!!!! I have spent nearly as long on those as the actual assignment! Well may be not, but it certainly seems that way sometimes. An absolute maze which I feared sometimes I was lost in for ever, but hey, I think I can see the exit now.
I have really enjoyed this module - I LOVE ICT!!!!! (even if I still have a lot to learn!) and was so glad that I joined the cohort at this time...... late!!
Here's to the next 4 years .......

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Saturday 14th March 2009

I have been subscribing to a whole host of 'alerts' to do with ICT in schools and student related themes. Some have been very informative and others a complete farce! The following is an article from the following link:

I couldn't help but agree with this story - "too much emphasis on particular software packages and not enough time helping the students aquire transferable skills". Read on and see what you think!

Good signs for schools IT spendingFriday, March 13, 2009

An Ofsted report has found that despite schools investing heavily in ICT, there is still no consideration towards its impact on improving learning. The report has noted many gains in schools' IT and has credited the commitment of schools leaders for it. Yet, it found that only half of the schools that Ofsted inspectors visited were actually evaluating the impact of ICT resources on improving learning. Other findings in 'The importance of ICT: information and communication technology in primary and secondary schools 2005-08' included a weakness in assessment, low standards in database usage by pupils and a general restriction on pupils using different software and learning transferable skills. Assessment was the weakest aspect of teaching in IT, the report said, with one in five schools being "inadequate". "The schools visited rarely tracked the progress of individuals in ICT, established their attainment on entry to secondary school or took into account their achievement outside school. Although the use of ICT in other subjects was increasing in secondary schools, the skills were rarely assessed. As a result, ICT teachers rarely knew how well students applied their ICT skills elsewhere," the report said. Although students used ICT well to present their work, communicate their ideas and, increasingly, to manipulate and use a variety of digital media, the report also found that standards in using spreadsheets, databases and programming remained low. Teachers also gave too much emphasis to particular software applications, "rather than helping them to acquire genuinely transferable skills". Higher attaining children in both primaries and secondaries were insufficiently challenged by ICT teaching, the report also found. In Key Stage 4, for example, pupils studying some vocational courses often spent time demonstrating what they could already do rather than acquiring new skills.Christine Gilbert, the chief inspector, said: "Around 77 per cent of the workforce now uses information technology in their job and the demand for these skills is likely to continue to increase. Schools must equip young people with the tools to ensure their employability. ICT needs to be given high status, both by the government and in individual schools, in line with its importance to young people's future economic well being."

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Tuesday 3rd March 2009

Well, having spoken with all involved yesterday in the 'practical part of my assignment' , I aim to use it in the lesson tomorrow, yikes, with their blessings!!!!!
It's certainly been a steep learning curve along the way, from day one to date - what with using the PowerPoint for what I wanted to use it for (and being able to 'programme' it accordingly), getting the soud to work and all the slides to connect. Then when it wouldn't initially work, (and this was only at home!), having to find out why!
Having sussed all that out and taken it into school on my memory stick I had to transfer it onto the school drive, and then the IWB wouldn't work with it ... oh boy! Having never used the IWB before either, I was going to have to learn how to deal with that too - just another hurdle to overcome! But today I am now as confident as can be for tomorrow!
Having gained all this knowledge I am desperate to put it all into practice more. May be I can offer to utilise the IWB more now that it's not a 'green-eyed monster', and I have already been asked about adapting and using the game I 'designed' for a specific phonics group ..... things are looking up!