Teachit Primary gives away downloadable year planner as classroom tool

Teachit Primary, suppliers of teaching resources for EYFS, KS1 and KS2, has created a unique, freely available, downloadable year planner with links to online lesson resources for 2017/2018.

The planner highlights key religious and seasonal dates and events relevant to primary schools, such as National Science Week, anti-bullying week and Roald Dahl day. Each featured event is hyperlinked to a relevant resource.

“What’s exciting about our year planner is that it is loaded with links to lesson resources for specific events in the teaching year. It can save a teacher a lot of valuable time. And if you just want the PDF version, it’s free,” said George Rodd, Teachit Primary Editor.

To access the PDF planner, you simply need to register as a free member. If you choose to become a paid subscriber, however, you can access the Word document version which means you can customise the planner to add your own special dates and links.

The PDF year planner can be downloaded to your computer desktop or printed out for a school noticeboard.

A year planned

George added: “This is a really useful tool to help primary teachers with their planning. It could be invaluable as a way to keep on top of special dates, lessons and topics. It’s worth downloading if you want to get ahead for September.”

Access the year planner at teachitprimary.co.uk.

St Andrew’s students celebrate impressive GCSE results

 

Today, many students at St Andrews Church of England School in Croydon celebrated strong GCSE results.

 

This year’s results saw a good number of students getting level 4’s in Maths and English.*  There has been a pleasing number of A and A* grades (level 7/8 and 9) across a large number of subjects including Maths, English, ICT and Biology. Students studying science have also made steady progress in their A-C grades with 83 per cent studying biology achieving a C or above. Modern Foreign Languages has continued to perform well, particularly in French.

 

Among this year’s top performers were Nana Amankwah with 9 GCSE grades all at A/A* (levels 8/9); Jamelia Greene, Elena Fiderio, Sarah Addy, Jordon O’Dongon, George Dion and Victoria Bailey, all with A-B grades (6-9).

 

Kerry Targett, headteacher at St Andrews said: “These students and many others in their year group have a lot to celebrate today and should be so very proud of their achievements, as all the staff here are.

 

“As a school, we are committed to ensuring that every student achieves their aspirations and it’s reassuring to know that, our students will be able to enter further education and employment, secure in the knowledge that they are building on very firm foundations. We wish them all the best and look forward to hearing of their continuing success.”

 

Over the past year, the school has celebrated a number of successes including its partnership with The British Theatre Academy, giving several students the opportunity to take part in the west end production of The Colour Purple, as well as hosting a range of musical theatre workshops and STEM opportunities for local primary schools in order to prepare them for secondary school life.

 

St Andrew’s School will be hosting a number of Open Evening events throughout October where Kerry and the team will be on hand to welcome prospective parents and students and highlight all the great things that the school has to offer. For more information visit www.standhigh.net

 

*these are unvalidated provisional results

GCSE celebrations in full swing at Altwood CofE School

Today, at Altwood Church of England School in Maidenhead, celebrations were in full swing as students received their GCSE results. 78 per cent of students achieved a pass in English, with 72 per cent achieving a pass in maths. 65 per cent of students achieved a pass in both English and maths.

Over the past number of years, a lot of positive changes have taken place to raise standards at Altwood and these results are a great reflection on the brilliant work and dedication of both staff and students at this successful school.

Neil Dimbleby, headteacher at the school, commented: “I want to extend my heartfelt congratulations to an exceptional group of students, whose hard work and commitment throughout the year has certainly paid off. Massive thanks and congratulations are also due to the parents and staff who have guided and supported our students and who will, no doubt, be enjoying the celebrations taking place this evening. We look forward to seeing these students flourish further in our Sixth Form.”

Altwood School will be hosting an Open Evening on Thursday 14 September, from 6 – 8.30pm. Neil and his team will be on hand to personally show prospective parents and students all the great things that Altwood has to offer. For more information visit http://www.altwoodschool.co.uk

Webinars ‘United Nations style’ capture global audiences with real-time language interpretation streaming via Translate Your World

For the first time, online speeches by business leaders, global trainers, universities, and Internet broadcasters capture increased international audience using groundbreaking software for virtual, real-time, United Nations’ style professional interpretation.  The software also expands inclusion by generating captions for the Deaf and Braille for the Deaf-Blind. 

Translate Your World (“Tywi”), developers of multi-language communication technologies whose inventions are licensed by Intel, Cisco Systems, and global telecoms, today announced the release of its Tywi-Webinar Interpreter, a groundbreaking software that turns any online conference, class, or meeting into a virtual United Nations translation experience.

Tywi is quick, easy, requires no downloads, and permits every attendee to enjoy the full, rich webinar experience while listening comfortably to interpretation by a professional interpreter located anywhere in the world.  Compatible with all web conferencing software (Webex, Zoom, Adobe Connect, Skype…), audiences click on a link to add real-time human interpretation for their online event.  A tiny window appears that overlays the event carrying the voice of the interpreter.  The audio mixes like a newscast, with the original audio softer in the background and the interpretation louder in the foreground, thereby recreating the vibrant atmosphere of a live, in-person conference.

Using Tywi-Webinar Interpreter is simple for everyone.  Interpreters translate from their home or office in any city or country, and their voices arrive online instantly as high quality HD audio.   Webinar speakers and meeting organizers only need their normal laptop or desktop – nothing else.  And participants and attendees just click a link for a popup with the interpretation.  Moreover, for the first time, attendees can chat back questions and comments in their native language, translated for the speaker.

Sue Reager, president of Translate Your World, who has a history of inventing language communication solutions, explains,  “What is revolutionary about this new approach to audio distribution is its global reach, accuracy, and professional user experience.  Corporations are using Tywi-Webinar Interpreter for global company conferences, some of which are hybrid of on-site and online.  Universities are signing up adult business students in South America, Europe, and Asia for interpreted online classes.  The voice of the interpreter can be recorded, and then blended with the webinar video for later viewing.  The translated video is ideal for delayed listeners in other time zones, and can also be resold.”

Voice To Subtitles

Perhaps the crowning achievement of the software is the add-on feature that turns the interpreter’s voice into subtitles to display on walls, monitors or personal devices.  At a click, the subtitles can also be automatically translated into other languages for smaller groups of attendees from other countries.  Instant captions for the Deaf can also be generated by the software from the original speaker’s voice, as well as Braille for the Deaf-Blind.  This composite creates an environment of total accessibility worldwide regardless of language or ability, while increasing international audience attention and sticky time.

The Way It Was

In the past, online interpretation approaches (mostly dial-in telephone) have annihilated the original language experience by switching translated languages to different audio channels, thereby silencing the original audio stream and creating a sound vacuum through which the international listeners only heard a semi-monotonous interpretation voice.  Tywi-Webinar Interpreter has volume balancing control, so the audience may lower the volume of the original speaker to about 30%, and continue to hear the personality, passion, applause, music, and laughter, while the interpreter’s voice shines through at full volume, sharing a perfect translation in the listener’s native tongue.

*  *  *  *  *

About the author:
Sue Reager is president of Translate Your World (http://TranslateYourWorld.com) and columnist for Speech Technology Magazine.  Reager speaks 10 languages and codes in 4.   Her previous inventions are licensed by Cisco Systems, Intel, and others and used by communications companies around the world.

 

Specialist careers advisors ready to help families on GCSE results day

Top 5 tips for parents to help their teenagers through this testing time

 

The UK’s only specialist ‘pop-up’ exam helpline for students is open for worried teens and their parents receiving GCSE exam results on Thursday (Aug 24, 2017).

 

The Exam Results Helpline (0808 100 8000) is a specially-formed team of expert UK careers advisors who come together at the UCAS head office in Cheltenham once a year for the sole purpose of helping young people who receive unexpected exam results.

 

Created nearly three decades ago and funded by the Department for Education, the helpline provides impartial advice to anyone who receives GCSE results and wants to talk through their options.

 

The helpline is open on Thursday morning from 7.30am and remains open until Thursday August 31st. Full timetable can be found here https://www.ucas.com/ucas/undergraduate/apply-and-track/results/exam-results-helpline.

 

On average, a quarter of the calls placed to the helpline come from parents asking the all-important questions about next steps.

 

Nick Hynes, a careers adviser who has worked for the service for more than 25 years said: “We are here for everyone who has questions but, in particular, for those people who want to find out all of the options available to them as well as sixth form.

“There are so many choices now and apprenticeships are growing in popularity as well as professional options and going to local colleges.

 

“Often it’s parents who want to help their children – this is an incredibly stressful time for some young people and it’s really important they don’t panic and call us as soon as they need to and we can work things out together.”

 

The Exam Results Helpline has already helped thousands of students since A Level Results day both on the phone as well as Facebook and Twitter.

 

Advisers have been talking to callers about re-sits and retakes, gap years, Clearing, Adjustment, apprenticeships, funding and student accommodation.

 

The helpline number is 0808 100 8000 or find the Exam Results Helpline on Twitter or Facebook.

 

Further information including opening hours at https://www.ucas.com/ucas/undergraduate/apply-and-track/results/exam-results-helpline

 

Top 5 tips for parents to help their young teenager through this testing time

 

In preparation for results day, Exam Results Helpline careers adviser Nick Hynes gives his top 5 tips for parents on how they can help their teenagers:

  1. Don’t panic – do reassure: We take calls from students who are panicking that they haven’t got the results they need and the first thing we tell them is to try to stay calm. This goes for parents too! Try to remain positive, whatever the results. Your child may need reassurance from you that everything will work out and it will all be OK
  1. Don’t get ‘FOMO’ (Fear of Missing Out) and rush into anything: There is no need to make quick decisions. Give your child time to reassess and have a good think about what they want to do before they start making the next steps into their future education outcomes
  2. Know the options: Your child is legally bound to stay in full-time education or training until they are 18. Their three main options are: 6th Form; College; and Apprenticeships. With thousands of courses on offer, there will be something to fit your youngster’s personal tastes
  3. Think local: There will be variations in your local environment so take some time to speak with local colleges and see what apprenticeships are available in your area through https://www.findapprenticeship.service.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsearch

Pick up the phone: If you want to find out more information, clarity, support or advice don’t forget that the Exam Results Helpline is here to help parents as well as the students themselves so give us a call on 0808 100 8000 or Twitter @ERHelp or facebook.com/examresultshelpline

UK TEACHERS FIND INSPIRATION AT PRESTIGIOUS CALIFORNIA TEACHING EVENT

6 tech-savvy primary school teachers will be inspiring their pupils this term after spending part of the summer break at a celebrated teaching event in California.

The Discovery Education Summer Institute is held annually in the US, and attracts educators from all over the world. The UK teachers – from schools in Birmingham, London and Hertfordshire – were chosen for their enthusiasm in using new technology in the classroom. They were flown to San Diego in late July, where they joined over 100 educators for a week of professional development at the University of California.

Chris Nash, Head of Community at Discovery Education UK, explained how they were chosen: “Through a video submission the teachers needed to demonstrate the desire to learn something new, connect with other educators and share their experiences.”

Now in its 12th year, the Discovery Education Summer Institute gives teachers new digital strategies and techniques to transform everyday lessons. Delegates gain entrance through a competitive application process, and the exciting summer programme is the flagship event of the Discovery Education Community – one of the world’s largest education networks with an audience of over 4.5 million members.

One of the UK teachers chosen was Melissa Chandler, from Abacus Belsize Primary School in North London. Speaking upon her return from the US, Year 2 teacher Melissa said:

“Attending the Summer Institute in California was an amazing opportunity. The professional development was like nothing I’ve experienced in the UK and I can’t wait to take some of the ideas, enthusiasm and exciting new technology back to my classroom.”

Fellow delegate Emma Wooldridge, a year 3 teacher from Christ Church C of E Primary School in Croydon said:

“The Discovery Education Summer Institute has given me a new lease of life for teaching! Not only did I learn new digital strategies to try with my class, but I made connections with other educators from all over the globe, from Canada to Egypt. I’m excited for the next year of teaching and looking forward to implementing some of the fantastic ideas and technology we heard about.”

Leon Blake, a teacher at Greet Primary School in Birmingham said:

“My time in California was a real adventure. Everyone was so welcoming, and I gained an abundance of knowledge to take back into my classroom. The professional development was completely different. It was a true celebration of teaching and so positive. I’ve got lots of new technology ideas which I’m looking forward to implementing in every lesson – and even in Sport!”

Joining Melissa Chandler, Leon Blake and Emma Wooldridge were: Emma’s colleague Julia Elfred, Nikhil Glazelle from West Lodge Primary in Harrow and Hayley Evans from Woolenwick Infant and Nursery School in Stevenage.

The 6 teachers returned to the UK in August, after an unforgettable week in California. The group explored the latest classroom technology, took part in interactive workshops and networked with colleagues from North America’s leading digital schools. Using digital content to boost learning and achievement was a key focus – particularly in relation to literacy and encouraging reluctant readers.

Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Innovation at Discovery Education said:

“We were delighted to welcome 6 teachers from the UK to our 2017 Summer Institute in San Diego. Their commitment to using technology to help pupils reach their highest potential is amazing. I know that their schools will benefit even further from the new ideas, resources and energy they’ve taken away from this great professional learning opportunity.”

The Discovery Education Community is one of the fastest growing professional teaching networks in the UK – connecting teachers through events, social media and events, and providing a gateway to teaching advice and inspiration from around the world.

To learn more about the Discovery Education Community and Discovery Education’s award winning digital learning services visit www.discoveryeducation.co.uk

Altwood CofE School cements place as one of the best in the area with impressive A-Level results

Sixth Formers at Altwood Church of England School were once again celebrating impressive A-Level results.

Building on the success of previous years, the 2017 results saw a pass rate of 98 per cent, with a remarkable 35 per cent of entries achieving A* or A grades, and a further 67 per cent achieving A*- C grades.

Among this year’s top performers were our Head Boy Noah Murray with A*AA who is off to read Law at  Warwick University, our Head Girl Alissa Chohan A*A*C who is off to read History and Philosophy at Royal Holloway and Brandon Mabaisa with AAAA who is off on a gap year before studying medicine at university in 2018.

Headteacher Neil Dimbleby, commented, “I am incredibly proud of our students; all their hard work has certainly paid off! It’s a credit to them and the staff at Altwood that such a significant number of our young people have successfully gained a place at the university or apprenticeship of their choice. I am thrilled for them and would like to take this opportunity to sincerely wish them every success in the next phase of their life.”

Today’s A-Level results have further cemented the school’s place as one of the best schools in the area.

Altwood School will be hosting an Open Evening on Thursday 14 September, from 6 – 8.30pm.  Neil and his team will be on hand to personally show prospective parents and students all the great things that Altwood has to offer. For more information visit http://www.altwoodschool.co.uk

Langdon Park students celebrate impressive A-Levels

Today, students at Langdon Park School in Poplar, London, were once again celebrating impressive A-Level results.

 

Building on the success of previous years, this year’s results saw a remarkable 20 per cent of entries achieving A* or A grades, and 48 per cent achieving A*-B grades. Nearly all students achieved grades C and above and no student achieved any grade less than a D.

 

Among this year’s top performers was student Tajwar Aziz, who achieved A*AA.

 

Richard Fitzgerald, headteacher at the school, commented: “I want to extend my heartfelt congratulations to an exceptional group of students, whose hard work and commitment throughout the year has certainly paid off. Massive thanks and congratulations are also due to the parents and staff who have guided and supported our students and who will, no doubt, be enjoying the celebrations taking place all over Poplar. We are reminded on a daily basis how difficult it is to make your way in the current economic climate, but our students will be able to enter higher education and then employment, secure in the knowledge that they are building on very firm foundations. We wish them all the best and look forward to hearing of their continuing success.”

 

In the past year, the school has celebrated a number of successes including having the highest value added score for English Literature A-Level in the country; finalising plans for a new building to accommodate the growth in its increasingly popular Sixth Form; successfully obtaining four of the only 60 places available nationwide at a Mathematics summer school at Oxford University; and implementing enrichment programmes with local business for students including one with Clifford Chance Law Firm, Tower Hamlets Education Business Partnership (THEBP), and Barclays Bank to name but a few.

 

Undoubtedly, today’s A-Level results have further cemented the school’s place as one of the best schools in the area.

 

Langdon Park School will be hosting an Open Evening on 19th October where the headteacher and his team will be on hand to personally show prospective parents and students all the great things that Langdon Park has to offer. For more information visit http://www.langdonparkschool.co.uk/

The rise of the invisible classroom

Tutoring might be one of the world’s oldest professions but it cannot escape the rising “Uberisation” of modern life.

Plato tutored Dionysius, ruler of Syracuse, while Aristotle instructed Alexander the Great. But students and parents, in the stress of the exam season, can now turn to a tutoring industry using online technology. Lewys White is part of the team behind the newest educational platform on the block – Teach9 – who hope that their new bespoke mobile and desktop app Power By The Minute will herald the beginning of a virtual online community that removes the restrictions of geography, time-zones and commute for any student who needs to find the right tutor suited to their needs.

“The understanding of student needs and behaviour allows us to challenge convention and push boundaries.” – Lewys White.

The Teach9 team are on the cusp of the launch of a mobile app that allows students to ask questions, share resources and deliver access to the tools they need to act as a complete substitution of offline classes.

Power By The Minute differs from other products on the market in three main areas. Firstly, and of vital importance to any University student (especially those struggling with their debts) is that Power By The Minute is free at the point of download – and then charged for, by the minute. (Hence the name!)

Students can decide how much time they need to spend with a tutor after they have downloaded the app and there is no fixed subscription basis of membership. This is good news for wallets and purses from London to Pakistan and ultimately gives students back control of the tutoring they need – when they need it.

“We want to give back control to our users – and to tutors too. Everyone has a stake in their education, and we want to enable them to claim it.” – Lewys White.

Users sign up through the app with no need for any long-winded website registration. They then get free access to a world of resources: whiteboard sharing, video content, polling features, screen shares, audio/video lesson recordings and document sharing.

The Teach9 team are confident that they can retain their users with the quality control of service they provide. The Teach9 team personally vet their tutors and pay them a higher rate of commission to teach. This almost delivers on that famous mantra ‘those who can – teach’ – but here, Teach9 are putting their money where their mouth is.

“Our tutors all come from top Universities. We have been there ourselves, every one of us – so we know the issues and understand that people need to have a quality seal when
they use online educational services. We are the first company to guarantee this.” – Lewys White.

Mmantsetsa Marope, director of UNESCO’s International Bureau of Education, highlighted just recently in a 2017 report that 263 million young people lack access to education worldwide and for many more, the quality of education they can access is not of the standard it needs to be.

“The question is: what is so mysterious about this industry of ours that somehow it is not delivering?”

Under standard teaching models, the world would need some 6.6 million teachers to provide comprehensive access to education up to University level, estimated Marope.

“We can no longer proceed with teacher policies that speak of student and teacher ratio in the old way of assuming there will be one teacher per 40 students,” she urged. “[Instead] we need to explore how to leverage technology to pool the few effective teachers that teach the world and not to teach the number of students that are in front of them.”

However, it is not only the number of teachers that is a problem. “Most education systems are not producing the level of quality in terms of learning outcomes that is desired,” she said.

“The success of any education system today lies in our ability to innovate.” – Lewys White.

The third area where Teach9 is leading the market on the eve of its launch, is in its unflinching passion for technology and innovation. The Power By The Minute app is a flexible and evolving piece of technology that Teach9 see as being the beginning of a global learning environment – and one that students think is basically cool and on-message with its tech credentials.

Rigid models of assessment often stifle innovation in teaching and learning and the emphasis on rankings has led teachers to spend a lot of time on testing at the expense of teaching.

“Education systems are designed to keep education in and everything else out – it’s the same with assessment” said Andreas Schleicher, director for education and skills at OECD, nodding to closed exams that require students to answer questions in isolation, remembering facts and without the ability to collaborate or use external research tools.

The current system generates “students who are great at problem solving, but can’t share knowledge”, he said. Instead, education must act as a compass enabling students to “navigate” and make judgements, he argued.

The launch of Teach9’s first app – Power By The Minute is imminent. Watch this space.

Free IT Training and Expo from JSPC

Schools, SMEs and charities invited to attend event at Brighton and Hove FC’s Amex Stadium

 

JSPC Computer Services announced their latest roadshow event will take place on Friday 24th November at the home of Brighton and Hove football club, the Amex Stadium.

Tickets are free, but JSPC are urging delegates to sign up early because they expect high demand given the range of topics presented, including key IT challenges such as GDPR, cyber security and safeguarding in schools. During expert talks and question and answer sessions, a wider range of topics will be addressed including advice on hardware, wireless solutions, single-server solutions, installations, tablet devices and anti-virus software.

JSPC owner James Stoner said,

“We know that it can be hard to keep up with the latest technology. That’s why we bring it all together in our roadshow, with a chance to hear some great speakers on the latest developments and regulatory requirements. We also bring together a number of major providers and give everyone a chance to see some live demonstrations and get hands on experience of the latest kit.”

The event will also be addressing a hot topic in the IT world, young people and online responsibility. The speakers will discuss the issue, including opportunities for greater education and understanding about where responsibility lies and how this issue can be addressed. Whether you’re a teacher, a parent or simply interested in this complex topic, JSPC will be bringing together expert speakers with some young people with first-hand experience of some of the darker aspects of the net.

The event will also offer all delegates the chance to take a free tour of the football club after the talks conclude; this is a rare opportunity to get a behind the scenes look at the day-to-day operations of a premier football club.

Tickets for the event can be booked via the website at jspc.co.uk