TMNottingham 2012

Last night I made the trek all the way to Nottingham for a teachmeet at the LSRI. Although small, it was well worth it and I came away with lots of new ideas. Here are my notes from the evening:

First up was Wendy Hill (@natfantatic) talking about 12 things to do with a stick:

  1. Use stick pencils
  2. Bamboo stick pencils to draw in sand/mud
  3. Make an ice mobile hanging from a stick
  4. Make letters
  5. Can you hide in it?
  6. Make a stick fairy using natural materials
  7. Make a stick tower
  8. Make a tree
  9. What does the tree look like that this tree came from? Draw on playground
  10. Make a magic wand
  11. Read a book – Stanley’s stick, not a stick, (not a box)
  12. Use your imagination – basically, there are hundreds of things you can do, these are just a few to start with.

Marc faulder (@marc_faulder) talked about iPads in EYFS

Puppet pals – Children working collaboratively several at a time. Inserting pictures from a story and retelling. Encouraged the children to use positional language as the characters all appeared the same size at first.

Morfo booth – again, putting story characters in and animating them to say something.

Put stories together in iMovie or creative book builder.

Was really good for children’s speech development.

Maria kontogianni (@DrMKontogianni) talked about using twitter with her psychology students at university.

She had found that not many people express their opinion readily in class. Wanted to give silent observers in lectures a voice. Use twitter. Would send out debate questions. Got more response. Wanted students to debate in a succinct way.

Set up specific rules for tweets eg no swearing. Used a specific hashtag

#whostolethelecturer developed when she was locked out of twitter during one session. This developed into one student’s cat having a twitter account and being held accountable – some fun was had too.

Developed group belonging ness and higher participation.

Students felt more likely to interact on twitter. All felt more comfortable sharing their opinion and said they liked to have thinking time that twitter allowed. Also they like the fact they could participate anywhere. Some students even archived the tweets and referred back to them when writing essays.

Next step is to continue using as worked so well. Pressure to teach in bigger groups so wants students using their phones in lectures. Develop a back channel (like already happens at teachmeets).

Bill Lord (@joga5) talked about gamification of writing.

Gave the children a paragraph as a starting point. Smashed bottle in a box. Chn working in 4 groups. Mixed 5/6 class.

Chn came up with lots of questions but still couldn’t necessarily see the point of what they were doing yet.

The children developed a team planning approach to their writing. Then:

Gave chn a set of cards, face down. Allowed 3 cards of different colours. Had lots of random non-fiction elements which children had to drop into their narratives somehow.

After that the children were given a sheet with 5 squares on it and told to cross one off already. They were then told they would be writing their pieces for 3 weeks and that the teacher would only teach for 4 sessions for the next ten sessions. Every time a child got a bit of one to one support they had to tick off one of the squares. There was a bit of panic about this to start with, especially from lower ability children.

Then introduced the chance card for chn to self assess their writing. If able to prove they had changed/improved they get another chance at help.  Really fired up children. Children were making a real effort to self assess and improve.

Produced piece of narrative based on non fiction. Added lots of types of writing into it eg letters, books. This was done in the run up to SATs.

Even done in year 2- developed a setting then chose two Roald Dahl characters and made them interact in that setting.

Julian Wood (@ideas_factory) – Not having to be an expert to use these tools in the classroom – a presentation about lots of different tools you could use:

  1. Class countdown timer can select your own soundtrack
  3. Block to blow up posters
  4. Panorama photos- can video yourself playing it on the screen
  5. Custom handwriting tracer pages
  6. Random pupil pickers – the hat etc
  8. Learnitin5
  9. Undertenminutes
  10. Stitch it
  11. Duck sauce/

All links at

Wendy Hill – Developing role play in the EYFS

Child based learning. Children dictate where’s the learning goes. What is the learning in your play? All chn trained in purposeful play and able to say what they are learning from their play

What’s the purpose?

Children have planned an earthquake and volcano monitoring station. Wendy told us the development of how the children planned and decided this and where they will take it next.

Julian Wood – Graffiti web2 stylee

  1. Zee wall
  2. Draw here
  3. The graffiti creator
  4. Graffiti widget
  5. Graffiti play dough
  6. Graffiti generator
  7. Graffiti text generator
  8. Graffiti alphabet
  9. Graffwriter
  10. Learn graffiti

All links at

Pete Bevington (@petebevington) – class blogs

Let chn take the lead.

#classblogs hashtag to promote use

Quad blogging

The blogging Olympics- challenges for bronze silver and gold getting family to comment

Teaching purposeful comments

Can now leave audio comments on blogs

Emma Barstow (@iamemmab) Poetry.

Teaches her year 4 class poetry every week. On Friday releases a poem of the week. Orally say it, chn spend time rehearsing it (up to half an hour) take a version home to learn, chn share poem from memory on Monday or Tuesday. Developed vocab and speaking and listening. Based on premise that children need to say a word a certain amount of times in order to commit it to memory and be able to use themselves in writing.

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