Blog

Scottish Learning Festival 2008

Just had a couple of wonderful days in Glasgow at SLF2008. We have evolved the festival into a showcase for Scottish education over the last 9 years and I think we now have a model that works pretty well with continuous improvement built in by design. This year the focus was very much on Curriculum for Excellence and innovative classroom practice. The highlights for me this year included:
  • The Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning, Fiona Hislop, responding to questions from the floor of the conference for over 30 minutes. Welcome to living in a democracy and.
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Ewan McIntosh: Teacher, Communicator and edublogger

I am in our Dundee office today trying to catch-up on a few tasks before the Scottish Learning Festival. It's a beautiful clear day here with blue skies and the River Tay shimmering to a warm gentle breeze as my only distraction... well apart from email, the phone and a to do list that keeps getting longer as the day progresses. Tomorrow afternoon, in the LTS Glasgow office, I am going to be saying a few words at a presentation for Ewan McIntosh. [Ooops - just checked my diary and it has been postponed.] .
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LTS in the Media: Computer Games and Learning

Derek Robertson My LTS colleague and friend Derek Robertson (see Man From Uncle picture above) is once again in the news.  This article in The Sunday Herald is another example of how Derek's work has moved on the discourse around computer games in the classroom from 'how much damage they do' to 'which ones can we can explore to improve pupil motivation and enhance learning'. Read more about Derek's work in his Hotmilkydrink and Consolarium blogs or if you are in Glasgow later in the week hear.
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Visit to Ireland

I spent a couple of days in Dublin this week with former Becta Chief Executive Owen Lynch. Owen is working with LTS to benchmark what we are doing with ICT in Scotland against the policy and strategy of other countries across the world. The Irish Government's Department of Education and Science recently published two reports the first 'ICT in Schools' is a very thorough description and evaluation from the schools inspectorate.  The second 'Investing Effectively' is the report from the ministerial strategy group which suggests that Ireland's 7 priorities for  investment 2008-13 should.
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US Visit 4 – Partnership for 21st Century Skills

21st Century Skills We came across the updated Framework for 21st Century Learning when we were in the US.  Nine of States have live projects exploring the model and there seems to be a growing movement of educationalists, politicians and employers happy to sign-up to what amounts to a radical departure from normal practice in US schools.
 
The mission statement (see below) makes for interesting reading. Need to explore it much further to.
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LTS Website: New Partnership with Employers Resource

Over the last few years we have been using more high quality video to help support the development of professional practice in education. The latest addition to the LTS website is the  Partnership with Employers resource, funded by the Scottish Government's Determined to Succeed programme. This project has been managed within LTS by Fiona Andrew and is a great example of successful partnership working, both internally and externally. This is one of our best rich media CPD resources and supports the highly successful national ”Employer Engagement” training programme which LTS has also managed on behalf of DtS. If you.
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US Visit 3 – The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Edutopia One of the objectives of the visit was to build on our existing relationship with The George Lucas Educational Foundation, and find out more about their flagship publication Edutopia. We had the opportunity to spent some time with Milton Chen, Executive Director and Steve Arnold, Vice Chair/CFO.  We were also able to brief GLEF staff on LTS, Curriculum for Excellence and Glow and get some insights into the latest educational developments in the US. I picked this text up from the Edutopia website and really like it: 'Kids today. No.
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US Visit 2 – Mercer Island School District, Washington State

 Gary Plano One of the many highlights of our visit to the US was the opportunity to spend some time with Gary Plano Superintendent of Mercer Island School District and elected School Board member Lisa Strauch Eggers. Mercer Island sits in the middle of Lake Washington - a 6 square mile suburban community 10 minutes drive from downtown Seattle. According to Gary, Mercer Island is the home of 'the most expensive dirt in Washington State'. It would therefore not surprise you to find that  in terms of attainment it.
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Visit to the USA – Overview

I spent last week in the States with my friend and colleague Andy Pendry, LTS Glow Technology Adviser . The purpose of our visit was to: •    Help develop our thinking on how we might evolve Glow over the next few years (Glow v2) •    Explore trends in the use of technology for learning •    Get a better understanding of how the educational landscape is changing in the US (and how that change is being managed and supported). •    Take the opportunity to the visit the George Lucas Educational Foundation and follow-up the recent recognition of Glow as a world leading educational programme. Our itinerary.
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Andrew Carnegie

 Andrew carnegie Another book I picked up on holiday was Andrew Carnegie's autobiography 'My Own Story'. What a remarkable story of the man born in Dunfermline in 1835 of 'poor but honest parents, of good kith and kin' who becomes one of the richest people in history (a good story in itself) and then gives it all away. After his father's home based steam weaving business collapsed the family emigrated to the USA in 1848. Andrew started off working as a bobbin boy in  factory then delivered telegraphs before building investments in.
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