Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Aberdeen Teachmeet 2011

This evening I attended the second ever, my first Teachmeet Aberdeen. Hosted by the University of Aberdeen and organised by Ian Simpson (@familysimpson) this was absolutely invaluable as a form of accessible CPD and sorely under-attended in my opinion. I'm not going to give a breakdown of all the presentations I saw, I'll instead link to the livestream video.

In summary, I learned:

  • About iPad apps as maths resources for secondary (and primary) schools including a random question generator Mathsboard and maths app Times Warp. Also web resources Manga High and games design with Kodu. Thanks to Martin Coutts from Meldrum Academy
  • About Wordle and it's many uses around the classroom. Thanks to Kirsty Marsland
  • Stuart Brown's fantastic collection of ICT resources, pitfall lessons, mobile learning and the benefits of letting Philosoraptor set questions for pupil essays!
  • The concept of a Genius Bar as a short, sharp, focused CPD provision. Having been bereft of a Mac for almost a year, I was intrigued to learn about the Apple Genius Bars in stores. Sounds like a definite model for education. Thanks to Ian Simpson of Inverurie Academy.
  • An introduction to the use of Avatars for both pupils and teachers in schools. I've experienced Voki
    before and found it a wonderful resource for helping children to think about how they represent themselves online. Thanks to Jim McCracken.
  • Ian Simpson presented another presentation introducing great ways to utilise iPod handheld tech in schools. Very useful looking apps like Comictwist, Sonic Pics and others as part of the Aberdeenshire iPod Development Group.
  • And fantastic impromptu presentations by Darren Gibb, Westhill Academy on his use of Glow, Helen Bradley on Purple Mash and The Daily What and a virtual presentation from Colin Graham on Algebra in Primary Schools.

In all, a fairly mind blowing and very positive experience in a really relaxed and comfortable environment. I particularly like the enthusiasm of all participants and the fact that people felt comfortable enough to present on the spur of the moment. Obviously the whole experience was very inspiring. I would urge anyone with an interest in ICT and teaching to attend a Teachmeet. I certainly gained some good ideas and some good contacts.

If you are interested in my presentation on the outward facing classroom and the use of augmented reality, I will post the prezi on here within the next day or so.

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