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ULearn Breakouts

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By Kate Dare

Here is a summary of breakouts I attended at ULearn 2012:

Collaboratation and Creativity in Year 6-8 Literacy Programme

The literacy programme was based around a shared text (Hunger Games, Boy in the Striped Pyjamas). The programme moved from shared reading to the focus of writing programme with the final outcome as a spin-off novel or book trailer. After each chapter there were comprehension questions to check children's understanding of the text, particularly around the key themes of power and contraol, humanity and identity. For the Hunger Games children used google docs to create a chapter book spin off from Gale's point of view. Thee had to have a good understanding of the original book to ensure consistency between the chapters and authenticity of student voice; they had to keep revisiting the original text to check details. The use of google docs allowed the children access to others work, which they needed to use to ensure the text flowed, and it allowed peers and the teacher to give constant feedback and feed forward using the comment facility.

Tools to Capture Student Voice

A lot of good learning is missed in the classroom as it happens in conversation when children feed off each other. Teachers conference and have a good understanding of what children knw, but there is a disconnect when children have to write their unedrstanding down (e.g. for assessment purposes). Devices to capture student voice make it easier to do this and harness these conversations.

There is a wide variety of devices out there, so the key questions to ask when deciding on the suitability of a device are:

Does it have a camera?

Microphone? 

Internet Connectivity?

There are then a plethora of web 2.0 tools and apps that can be used to harness the voice. A summary of the pros and cons of a variety of these can be found on this presentation: http://dakinane.com/blog/2012/10/15/ulearn-12-breakout-3/.

ePortfolios and eLearners

When introducing ePortfolios you need to consider whether they will complement or replace current reporting structures. Other considerations that need to be considered are time, resources, personnel and parental access. It is also important to consider what an artefact/evidence in the ePortfolio should be like, but this will depend on the purpose of the ePortfolio. It also needs to be considered whether the ePortfolio will be regularly updated and used for reflection or only at certain times.

Microsoft OneNote

A collaborative programme that has vast capabilities. It can be used as a digital portfolio and scrapbook that supports the rest of the Office suite (which can be embedded into OneNote). Mulltiple users can add notes and it records who wrote what. Audio can be recorded straight into OneNote and notes made at certain times are linked to that place on the recording. It automatically references pages from the web or PowerPoints you have used when making notes. Can be accessed through the 'Cloud'.