25 March 2018

Let’s get serious about Climate change

Let’s get serious about Climate change

This is most probably one of the hottest topics at the moment...

About three months ago, I finished editing 17 videos about the SDG’s.  
The unusual thing about this group of videos is not that they are all 
teachers who recorded the videos, but the truly amazing thing is that 
the teachers are from various countries from around the world who all 
met at the same place to record the videos.  Although there were language 
barriers as not everyone spoke a common language, we produced a video 
on each of the SDG’s.
(The videos can be seen at http://wsparrow.blogspot.co.uk/p/sdg.html) 

My philosophy is that one person can make a difference.  Regardless of 
how big or small that difference is, it can start with you and me.  The beauty 
behind this is if you make a small difference to one person, and that one 
person makes a difference to another person, exponentially, very soon 
it will be a huge difference. 

One of the group members who I worked with in creating the SDG’s, 
was Koen Timmers.  He is one of my greatest inspirational and 
innovative teachers that I know.  Last year he created a global project 
called Climate Action project.  (https://www.climate-action.info)

This was a digital group project where 250 schools in 69 countries 
worked together to learn about climate change.  The project ran over 
5 weeks and each week the students conducted research, brainstorms 
and discussed various ideas before presenting their finding via videos 
or online presentations.  This was a brilliant student centred approach 
where students where learning from each other from various parts of the 

(Koen Timmers has once again created another global project that starts 
in April concentrating on SDG 4, 6, 7 and 11 and if you are interested, 

For me, I decided to allow my students a bit more free reign and allowed 

them to create videos about their own topics.  The students created videos 
about anything that they felt strongly about.  The videos in essence gave the 
students a voice to be heard, a video that allowed them to give their own 
views and opinions.  Although I gave them time to research their topics, 
this was not based on facts, but more about feelings or impressions that 
they wanted to convey to the world. 

The videos that the students created covered poverty, gender equality, 

health, peace, but the surprise to me was that the largest number of 
videos that the students created was about climate change.  Is this a 
sign of the times that even though I had not given the students a specific 
task, climate change came through as the most featured topic?

There are incredible resources that you can find online that you can do 

easily with your class and there are global projects that involve 
thousands of students and cover many continents. 

The choice you need to make is an easy one.
How are you going to make a difference?

How are you going to take action against climate change?
#TeachersMatter  #MIEExpert  #Education #RubinWorldEDU 

10 March 2018

Micro:bit Create a beating heart

Micro:bit Create a beating heart

Have a look at the different parts of the Micro:bit

Go to http://microbit.org and click on Let's Code.

Step 1
Create a beating heart

Watch the video below to see how to do this.

#MIEExpert  #MSFTEdu #technology #edtech #MIEExpert #TeachersMatter #coding

08 March 2018

BBC MicroBit

BBC MicroBit

Dice Roll Activity
Click below to see the video and code

Create a report on what you have created.

Create a New Google Doc
Rename the file name to yourname BBC Micro
Create a table with 3 columns 
Insert a screenshot of the program.
Explain what happens
What did you learn?

What could you have improved?
Choose a different program and do the same as above.

How does the block code differ from the python code?
Which is easier?
Which one can you do more with?

07 March 2018



Simple Encryption:

Public and Private Keys:

Open this worksheet:

23 February 2018

Health, happiness and well-being

Health, happiness and well-being

Regardless of where you are in the world, children have very similar dreams and aspirations.  I love walking into kindergarten classes and seeing the passion and enthusiasm that the children show when they are asked what they would like to do when they are older.  Unfortunately not everyone gets their fairy tale in real life. 

The catch for educators is to know the students in your class well enough to give them the support they need so that they can turn their dreams into reality.  You might not always understand the complexity of the student's situation, but the student needs to feel that they can confide in you without feeling that you are judging them.

I love enrichment clubs where you are able to get to know the children on a more one to one basis outside of a formal education setting.  I especially like to step back and allow the students to take control of their own learning during this time, allowing them to choose their own topics and do something that they feel is important to them.

With my one enrichment group of 11 year old's, they decided to make a video about healthy eating.     Even after completing the video, they took the project further when they decided to start a campaign to convert the tuckshop in our school so that it would only sell what was approved by the heart foundation.  Although it took a little while, they were victorious in the end.  The indomitable spirit of this group of 11 year old’s was inspiring!

One of the great things about being an ICT teacher is that you have a little bit of flexibility with what you are producing, which also allows more creativity in my classes.  With the new software / devices / apps there is always the option of creating something new and inspirational which can be shared with other schools or countries.  

On the other side of this, which is equally as important is your own well-being.  When you are feeling down, exhausted, sick, how are you expected to be teaching inspirational lessons?

There are little tricks that I try and do with my class where I can distress / relax at the same time as them.  One of these is in the morning to have quiet time and reflect on the day ahead.   I find that we all need timeout from technology during the day, oops I should never be saying this as an ICT teacher …. Playing soccer, hand tennis or table tennis not only gets you active, but it also creates a bond with your students.

Being a teacher is about having relationships and to me is more important than teaching a curriculum that they might forget about in 10 years time.  This is about a connection, allowing the student to feel that they are important, that they matter and that you care.

With ICT, students need to be given a voice to share what they think is important.  With the Internet there are so many global initiatives that they can be part of.  Fairly often the students come across other students with the same difficulties living half way across the world.  So often students feel that they are the only ones with a problem and being able to share their feelings with others seems to make them feel more human and that they are not alone.

Being there, actively listening, being supportive and knowing the students you teach can go a far helping them to believe in the fairy tale  that is their life.  

#TeachersMatter  #MIEExpert  #Education #RubinWorldEDU 

18 February 2018

Office 365 and what you can do

Office 365 and what you can do

There is so much that you can do with Office 365.
Click on the link below to see what you can do.

08 February 2018

Part 5 Python Coursework GCSE Computer Science Python Quiz Coursework Project

Part 5 Python Coursework GCSE Computer Science Python Quiz Coursework Project