Newsletter Nº4 - September 2013
Serious games presented in the Future Classroom Lab
The potential of games for learners with special needs was the focus of the "Serious games for inclusion" workshop organised on 13 June 2013 in Brussels. The workshop was co-organised by the SENnet Project and European Schoolnet's Special Needs Education Working Group. Games are interesting for SEN pupils as they frequently engage learners in sufficient repetition to ensure that learning takes place; provide life experience, engagement with knowledge and people; and allow pupils to work at their own pace and also make mistakes without irritating others. See an interview with Professor David J. Brown on the use of games in SNE and read more here.
Mainstreaming the ideas for the future classroom
Through the iTEC project, European Schoolnet has worked with its partners towards more solid and concrete ideas to take innovation to classrooms across Europe. iTEC’s innovative practices, pedagogical tools and ways to mainstream them will be presented at the multi-stakeholder conference "Every Classroom a Future Classroom" on 10-11 October in Brussels. The key outputs include a Future Classroom Scenarios course and a toolkit. The course will help teachers to understand a range of innovative and inspiring scenarios for the future classroom and explore how their own school can successfully implement some of these scenarios involving new teaching and learning processes and more advanced pedagogies. The project will also provide a toolkit "Eduvista" which will support a collaborative approach to schools’ self-review and transformation. Read more here
New course for teachers: Future Classroom – adapting pedagogical practice
A new five-day course “Future Classroom – adapting pedagogical practice” will run at the Future Classroom Lab in spring 2014. The course is designed for secondary school teachers and will provide a very practical workshop-based experience to help teachers adapt their current pedagogical practice, and learn new tools and skills. Read more here
Creating innovative learning spaces across Europe
Many schools are developing their own “future classrooms” to test technologies, improve their teachers’ skills and provide their students with more engaging learning spaces. Two of them were presented during an international conference in Crema, Italy, on 27-28 May 2013: ITS Luca Pacioli, Italy, who has set-up a “Classroom 3.0” and ITIS Majorana, Italy, who has developed an interactive learning space based on Apple products. The conference, entitled “When space teaches. Classroom 3.0” and organised by INDIRE, was attended by over hundred teachers and education professionals. Read more here
Guidelines for teachers to adopt social media at school
European Schoolnet published in June the outcomes of the Social Media in Learning and Education (SMILE) Action Research Project. The project, funded by a Digital Citizenship Research Grant from Facebook, was designed as a one-year ‘learning laboratory’, composed of a group of European teachers, to improve our understanding of the major challenges and opportunities that arise out of the pervasive world of social media for teachers, for schools, and for education in general. Read more here
Four new partners in the Lab: Intel, Dassault Systèmes, Oracle Academy and Esri
With the start of the new school year, the Future Classroom Lab has continued to grow to 22 industry partners. Four new partners offering a diversity of new solutions and expertise to the Lab have recently joined: Intel, Dassault Systèmes, Oracle Academy and Esri. See all the industry partners here.
Interested to use our teacher training materials?
European Schoolnet together with its partners has developed three courses for secondary level teachers’ professional development in the digital age. The contents of the modular courses are now all complete and will be offered free of charge to be used by teacher training organisations and other training providers. The courses, created within the EC-funded CPDLab project, have been developed by four Ministries of Education, expert teachers and experienced teacher trainers. Read more here
Three CPDLab courses completed - with "straight As"
A total of 58 participants took part in summer 2013 in three courses aimed for secondary school teachers. The feedback received from the course participants was very positive and encouraging, indicating that there is a need for this kind of training. For example, all responding teachers would recommend the courses to their colleagues (agree/strongly agree). Read more on the evaluation here and see teachers interviews here.
LSL report on validation requirements published
Living Schools Lab publishes a report that aims to better understand the requirements of both EC-funded projects and ICT vendors that may wish to use the LSL network of schools to validate educational hardware, software, platforms, content and services. The work undertaken also involved an assessment of the expectations of teachers that may be interested in being part of a validation network, particularly in terms of what rewards and incentives would motivate them to be involved in action research projects. Read more here
Snacks for teachers' professional development - A new webinar coming up
Teachers' Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is one of the main focuses of the Living Schools Lab project. The project offers different ways and formats to obtain new knowledge, new skills, share and exchange practice among the participating schools and beyond. The CPD opportunities provided within the LSL network are especially powerful because they are provided by not just the project partners but also by the Advanced Schools and individual expert teachers. The next webinar open to everyone, "Collaboration and Sharing in an Online Community", will take place on 26 September. Read more and sign up here
School observation visits restart in September! Follow up the journey in our blog
The first Living Schools Lab Observation visits took place in June in the United Kingdom and continue in September in the Czech Republic, Finland and France. Each Advanced School will receive a visit between June 2013 and February 2014 as part of the Observation and Documentation of innovative practice. Through Diana Bannister's "travel blog" you can get a feeling of those good practices and see how schools are successfully embedding ICT in teaching and learning. Read Diana's latest post where she challenges teachers to start the school year by updating their teaching practice. Read more here
Follow the spotlight!
Shireland Collegiate Academy, located in an area of substantial deprivation in the West Midlands (United Kingdom), has successfully closed the attainment gap between pupils at the school. Technology has played a significant role in the school’s success. Find out more in the latest "Spotlight on practice" article on how this school is developing a whole-school Flipped Learning strategy through their virtual learning environment. Discover also our previous spotlights! Read more here
The first policy maker scenarios published
Scenarios and Learning Stories will play an essential role in the Creative Classrooms Lab project. Based on the iTEC methodology, the project partners create tablet scenarios that will be validated as ‘policy experimentations’ in 45 classrooms in eight countries. The initial scenarios were created during the 1st Capacity Development Workshop in May 2013 on four topics: collaboration, content creation, flipped classroom and personalisation. Read more here
What our teachers think? Find it out at the Teachers' Blog
The pilot teachers are now posting their plans, ideas and reflections in the "Teachers' blog". Linked with the webinars organised for the project teachers, the blog displays teachers' thoughts, plans, ideas and experience with tablets in the classroom. After each webinar, the teachers will write a reflective post on the given topic. Along the course of the project, this blog will provide an interesting insight into day to day teaching with tablets. Read more here
Tablets in teaching - Literature review published
In preparation of the development of the scenarios, the e-Learning Foundation has carried out a literature review. This first version of the literature review concentrates on identifying evidence related to the key themes and priorities identified by policy makers in the beginning of the project. The idea is to establish an evidence base around the core topics of the pedagogical scenarios, which will be implemented by teachers in all countries during the first set of pilots to be run from November 2013 until April 2014. The core topics identified are Personalisation, Content Creation, Flipped Classroom, Collaboration, and Assessment. Read more here
CCL resources section launched
The resources section aims to give teachers, policy makers, industry partners and other stakeholders an overview on important studies and pilots related to the innovative use of tablets. Read more here
LSL webinar: collaboration and sharing in an online community, 26 September 2013, online
iTEC conference: Every Classroom a Future Classroom, 10-11 October 2013, Brussels
Safer Internet Forum, 17-18 October 2013, Brussels
FCL workshop: eTwinning in the future classroom, 21-22 October 2013, Brussels
European Schoolnet meeting for regions and municipalities, 23 October 2013, Brussels
FCL workshop: Creative use of multimedia, 25-26 November 2013, Brussels
EMINENT conference, 4-5 December 2013, Helsinki
Media & Learning conference, 12-13 December 2013, Brussels
The Future Classroom Lab in Brussels is a fully equipped, reconfigurable, teaching and learning space developed by European Schoolnet, its 30 supporting Ministries of Education and leading educational technology providers. To know more, please see our website at http://fcl.eun.org
The CPDLab and Creative Classrooms Lab projects are funded with support from the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme.
For more information visit our websites: CPDLab http://cpdlab.eun.org; Creative Classrooms Lab http://creative.eun.org
The Living Schools Lab project is funded with support from the European Commission’s FP7 Programme. For more information visit our website at http://lsl.eun.org.
This newsletter reflects the views only of the author, and the European Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.