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Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Never thought I had a list of top apps until today...

Today I learnt about a new app that will be a major time saver. Flick is a free app which I have now downloaded onto all my apple devices. Basically it's an app that makes sharing things like photos from one device to another almost instant. Once you have opened up the app on the device you want to share from, and to (must be opened on both), pick a photo and simple swipe up to the top of the page to share.

Before today if I wanted to share a photo I would have to email it to myself or cross my fingers and hope my iPhotos was playing the game on my slowly-dying Mac. Tomorrow I want to download it onto all our iPads so that the kids can instantly share their work with us. This will be perfect for printing out and sharing their work on the blog quicker. Bonus, the likelihood of sharing will increase dramatically if I can do it right then and there!

The help section is easy and straightforward, just had to check it then to add photos! Once I downloaded the app onto my Mac, an icon appeared on my task bar and flick now runs in the background.


Open flick on both devices.

Select image you want to share and swipe upwards to the tool bar at the top of the page.

It then instantly transfers onto your chosen device.

The help section is easy and straightforward, just had to check it then to add photos! Once I downloaded the app onto my Mac, an icon appeared on my task bar and flick now runs in the background.


My only issue was I had trouble saving the image once it was on my Mac but this wasn't a problem on my ipad. Perhaps something to do with needing an update to the latest IOS?
Great app,, looking forward to using it in the classroom and with the kids.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

Today I attended a short toolkit run by Mark Maddren on 'Universal Design for learning' (UDL). I have to admit I hadn't heard of UDL before, (I know, another b****y acronym to remember!) but quickly realised it was giving a name to a current revelation I am having in the classroom. I've always known the old saying, "if a child can't learn the way we teach, we need to teach the way they learn", but recently it has become blatantly obvious.

One particular child has been like a totally different kid this term. He's engaged, motivated and having real success as a learner unlike ever before and, as a bonus, his general behaviour has improved significantly! The key to this new child? A personal passion, typing, positive communication and hands on activities! To me, this child pretty much sums up the importance of UDL!

UDL is basically a framework for teaching and learning with the main purpose being that everyone is a successful learner. It's around designing learning experiences that are universal and allows everyone to learn, not just the 'average' student.

UDL is based on 3 principles about what research tell us learning really is, the way we pick up information,the way we express and act on information, and our level of engagement.



There are four main components:
Goals: What we need/want to teach; what's important
Materials: the key to learning, what materials will be used to help with this learning
Methods of teaching: how we go about teaching
Means of assessment: how we are sure learning has occurred.

The great thing is I have a third year student on full control so I have a bit of breathing space to learn more about UDL and use this to complement the Learn, Create, Share model we are currently incorporating and developing into our classroom programme.