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Me at the end of 2019

My work and passion is in learning, teaching and technology, not only in how digital technologies are used as tools in a computing curriculum but in how they can transform learning and teaching and potentially education as a whole. I spend a lot of time encouraging people to join me. 

I’m also a wife, mother, aunt and granny and am involved in the rough and tumble of extended family life.  I have a car, a good pair of walking boots and trekking pole,  a well-thumbed passport, trail running shoes and compass  

My extensive book collection ( I moved to a new house for it) includes food stained cookery books. I’ve access to music, live, streamed and recorded, a Wii and an Xbox Kinect and many ‘robots’.  In spare time I volunteer at a wonderful National Trust property, Woolsthorpe Manor, the birthplace of Sir Isaac Newton and talk to (if they want to)  the amazing, interesting people who come to visit.  Life is indeed good!

A visit to my website would have told more including…..

As an Independent Consultant, my work is wide ranging and varied, engaging with those involved in education at all levels, here and abroad, supporting and developing the authentic use of digital technologies in education and encouraging thinking about the role it can play in learning and teaching. For me, Digital technologies are moving beyond being merely a tool within the current curriculum towards becoming an essential element of new ways of learning and a new curriculum.
I work extensively with students, teaching assistants, classroom teachers and children. At Leicester University I am involved in the ICT aspects of the Primary PGCE course and have a role within the English course, the Classroom Assistants foundation degree and SEN and Early Years Diploma course for teachers. At the London Diocesan Board for Schools  SCITT, I led the ICT module as well as promoting and supporting the use of e-learning across the whole course. Through connections with Local Authorities, the Science Learning Centres, hardware and software companies, clusters of schools and my own contacts I travel the country delivering bespoke workshops and CPD sessions and giving presentations at conferences on e-learning in the  Early Years.
A strand running through all my work is that of  Inclusion both in education and beyond. While my remit has extended beyond this, Digital technologies have the power to create an inclusive environment for learners and give many people who have particular needs access to learning and society. However, it is much underused and more needs to be done to encourage people to think this way. I am on the case.
At management level I’ve met nationally with heads, senior management and other bodies involved in ICT and education, providing support and advice. In association with Granada Learning, I was, until it’s end, a lead facilitator of teams delivering the National College of School Leadership’s SLICT (Strategic Leadership of ICT) courses for headteachers.

The story so far
  • been involved in  education all my working life
  • taught across the primary age range including  Early Years
  • was an Advisory Teacher for ICT with Leicestershire LEA
  • former OFSTED inspector
  • consultant with Becta involved in various projects starting with the online groups for the 1997 Portables Project
  • developed and delivered National Grid for Learning  training with a colleague to teachers in Leicester City,  Leicestershire and Rutland LEA
  • with a colleague  co-organised the face2face ICT Conferences for East Midlands and then Becta’s first Online Virtual ICT Conferences and developed an online conference in association with ENI and SETT, followed by the first  Naace online conference
  • involved in the continuing professional development of peers through Naace,  organising, with a colleague, individual  CPD events and  aspects of the annual conferences
  • worked with  commercial companies involved in education,  Research Machines, BlackCat Software, Anglia Multimedia, Granada Learning, TTS  and others as an educational consultant, developing ideas and supporting  the schools in the use of their products in learning and teaching
  • developed and delivered the  successful Granada Learning NOF training
  • working with Leicester University School of Education, with PGCE students, Classroom Assistants on the  Foundation Degree course and teachers on CPD courses
  • led e-learning at the London Diocesan Board for Schools  School Centred Initial Teacher Training Course.
  • taught on the  PGCE  Early Years, PGCE Primary  and  BA ICT modules at Middlesex University
  • taught on the BA Education and MA Education in Action courses at De Montfort University
  • SLICT (Strategic Leadership of ICT) lead  facilitator and producing online support material with NCSL
  • consultant with IPAS   ‘The independent ICT Procurement Advisory Service for Schools’ advising and supporting primary headteachers
  • travelled abroad to support teachers CPD events, in Romania and the Hong Kong English Schools Foundation.
  • led  an EU funded course for  ICT coordinators in four counties around Timisoara, Romania
  • co-authored Switched on ICT in the Early Years, an ICT scheme for the  Early Years Foundation Stage from Rising Stars
  • taught computing on the Primary  SCITT course and the Teach First course at Nottingham University
  • given presentations at conferences and teacher days  throughout the country on ICT and the Early Years, ICT and Special Needs and general ICT topics
  • co-leader Egyptian Education Technology Programme at the University of Leicester. Looking at technology supporting learning and teaching, and developing new pedagogies for the 21st Century. With colleague planned, facilitated and taught the three month courses for…
    • Teachers of English
    • Teachers of Mathematics
    • Teachers of Science
    • Teachers of Mathematics and Science
  • contributed to University of Leicester based in-service courses for international educators
  • throughout  23 years of independent work involved in many  consultancies, development and training projects with  individual schools, groups of schools, other educational groups and LAs  throughout the country
  • STEM  Ambassador
  • volunteer at National Trust Woolsthorpe Manor (Birthplace and family home of Isaac Newton) as
    • House guide
    • Events volunteer
    • Learning volunteer


Popular posts from this blog

The snow walk

Saturday was to be the day for setting up a new blog, but the prospect of a walk in the park , snow still on the ground and sun bright, was tempting.

I asked my fellow tweeters what I should do first, walk in the park or work on the blog? And the unanimous response of those around was to walk first and then set up blog and write about it. So no couch potatoes there.

Sadly once we were out there it was so good that that we did not return for a long time. No new blog set up :-(

Whilst out I tweeted some photos from the iphone but this was not enough, a blog post was required so here it is.

Instead of the new blog I'm showing the pictures in two ways, first new to me a Photopeach spiral (Thanks Simon Widdowson and Allanah King for sharing this at about the same time) and then using Animoto. I have an education license for this so can make longer films

Enjoy my walk

Snow in the park on PhotoPeach. Use the slider to hear the sound and click on the full screen ico…

Early Years blogs

Chris Smith of the Shambles in S.E. Asia has been asking his fellow Naace members for examples of early years (3 – 7 years) use of web 2.0 technology.

I’ve sent some and followed up others that have been suggested, see below.

Schools all over the world are using blogs and wikis to communicate with parents, showcase the children’s work and introduce the children to the wider world. Are you?? Let me know. Or even have a go.

Learning Together Year 1 at Teyfanty Primary School in Bristol UK

Voyagers Voyagers - Jody Hayes’ class New Zealand

Mrs Cassidy’s Classroom Blog -Canada

Primary Plant Project - wiki set up by Mrs Cassidy where four schools are talking about growing

L1 Bear Exchange the travels of a Scottish bear

A Duck with a Blog a duck who decided to build her nest in the playground of K-8 school -USA

Trout blog a kindergarten raising a tank full of trout fish from eggs to alevin to trout - USA

Early Years Foundation stage

Received an e-mail from 10 Downing Street today.. I'm quite used to digital communications from there as they are also one of my Twitter friends.

The message pointed to the government's response to the EYFS petition.
Details of Petition:“We recognise the government’s good intentions in its early-years policy-making, but are concerned about the EYFS legislation, which comes into force in England next September. Our concerns focus on the learning and development requirements, as follows:
1. They may harm children’s development
2. They will restrict parents’ freedom of choice in childcare and education
3. Their assessment profile requirements may place an unnecessary bureaucratic burden on those who care for young children
4. Recent evidence suggests that government interventions in education generally may not be driving standards up and may be putting too much pressure on children.”
The full response can be read here but two paragraphs to hold on to are:
"The EYFS does no…