|Makey Makey in action|
Some time ago I wrote a blog post on innovative teaching
- where teachers take risks, stand back to let students learn for themselves, and provide challenging and engaging experiences. Well, that is exactly what some of my student teachers practised this week when we crossed over the river to spend the day in one of our local primary schools.
After taking a whole school assembly on 'staying safe online' in front of 400 children at Carbeile Junior School in Torpoint
, they set about engaging the children with a range of technologies.
|Bluebots and numbers|
The children quickly and enthusiastically got to grips with Makey Makey
(where they made a piano keyboard out of grapes, and eventually musical instruments out of each other!), Lego
We Do robots controlled by Scratch
(where they learnt the physics of how to make the robots take penalty kicks and to save the penalties too), as well as exploring numbers and algorithmic thinking with iPad controlled Bluebot floor robots
. Oh, and our vintage Bigtrak roamers
also made an appearance out on a race track in the playground.
The challenge for the children was to discover for themselves how to make these technologies work and to learn from their use. It goes without saying that they energetically went about exploring these tools for themselves and they very quickly discovered new and exciting ways to apply them. My students had very little to do but scaffold the learning, and occasionally give some specific advice and explanations when one or two children came up against a problem they couldn't solve on their own.
|Scratch controlled Lego footballers|
The key ethos of Carbeile is that children use their 'Learning Powers' to Learn, Grow and Achieve, and this they did with enthusiasm. In fact they surprised us with the creative ways they found out for themselves, and made the technology do things we hadn't planned or considered.
It was a joy to work alongside such confident, polite and engaged children, and, as I am sure my student teachers will agree, it was a trip well worth making, just to see these children use their learning powers.
Photos by Steve Wheeler
Use your learning powers by Steve Wheeler
was written in Plymouth, England and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Posted by Steve Wheeler from Learning with e's