Geocube

Geocube runs in English, Spanish, German and Italian. It would be good to get some more languages onto it because it is an amazing tool for learning geography. It makes good use of the visual and graphics capabilities of the internet and our current hardware . It presents material like a Rubrik’s cube. There are 54 pre-prepared topics and it really is a very appealing site. You need to play with it and see what it does.

Augmented reality in class

augmented reality  board gameOr classy augmented reality. The reality is a teacher conceived and created this augmented reality board game because he saw an image on the internet. We are connected. Our ideas are brewing over cyberspace. As teachers we benefit from being connected. This is the best outcome. A teacher has seen something and transformed that into an augmented reality game to be used in Phys Ed classes. Teachers need to be in control of technology in their classroom and they need to be developing digital materials which suit their needs, the needs of their students at the time and then do exactly what collinbrooksie has done – share their ideas. The PHYSEDogogy site is a good place to know if you have an interest in delivering Phys Ed curricula. There needs to be a way now of encouraging those teachers who have or could have the sorts of skills to develop workable materials for class to have time to share and develop their ideas. Mostly it is done out of class , in isolation with the encouragement of an online PLN. Maybe that’s the way it should be done so there is global input ,collaboration and broad peer review. Maybe , also , it needs to be recognized in real time and space.

123D Sculpt

123D Sculpt This app for the iPad comes highly recommended by my year 8s. Those using 123D Sculpt are achieving images quickly, effectively and with a great deal of enthusiasm and interest. I am teaching them French and am always looking for good apps which will create a visual aspect in their work or will be quick and easy to use to enhance their learning because my main focus is French. We are making comic strips at the moment and we came up with a list of recommended apps. My year 8s could not speak highly enough of this app and when I asked them to show me what they had done and then checked again to see what they had done I could see it was very effective for them and they could do what they wanted and get the French going . I have to avoid getting lost in apps which divert them into other things. In another world I could do it differently. It has been such an instant hit I have to recommend it highly to you! What I like about it is that it gets students away from cognitive learning very quickly and straight into the explicit learning phase so that they are creating original things of their own for their own use. One of the good things about using iPads in a classroom setting is you can teach students they are not just toys. They are not just for consuming: they can be used for productivity and creativity as well.

Do you need digital tools?

mac Twitter can do a lot of the hard work for you if you follow the right people and build a good professional learning network. @mrich1911, a maths teacher, left a very useful link to a digital skills list for teachers. Good example of how we can help each other professionally no matter where we live and what we teach. The Educational Technology and Mobile Learning site has had significant work put in by the creator of the site. This person has listed digital skills and then grouped tools under the heading. It means you can see if you are familiar with the tools and whether you have learning gaps. It  also means you can easily find tools to use in class when you want to concentrate on a particular aspect of digital learning. The beauty of this list is that it is current. Basic principles don’t change but tools are changed and updated and new ways of performing digital tasks often follow trends and patterns. The list creates a firm foundation for the 21st century learning environment.

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