Mondays are difficult!

18 02 2008

It was hard going today, I was saying at 3pm that it would be nice to have a support assistant on a Monday as I think that would help split groups up etc but unfortunately I don’t.

After playtime we had the laptops and I asked the pupils to go on and read the other schools in the clusters blogs and make sure they left some comments.  However this proved quite difficult as the laptops were really playing up and I would say the morning felt quite disasterous in the end.  They were having problems logging on and then getting onto the internet and by the time they were all engaged with the task it was time to stop!  I had wanted to go on GLOW as well but we ran out of time for this.  I am going to be able to buy three webcams to use with GLOW for video conferencing which will be really good.

In the afternoon they went on with writing their fiction stories in pairs.  I would say this is a case of extremes – either they are doing really well, or doing really poorly.  The ones doing poorly is a lot to do with who they are paired with, I felt myself groaning at who ended up together in some cases!  I found it hard to get round and help by myself yesterday so I am glad I will have my support assistant to help tomorrow, I know exactly which couple of pairs I am going to ask her to concentrate on and it frees me up for the rest of the class.  I don’t know what I would do without her.

We stopped before the end of the afternoon and started doing African flags for our display, this proved harder to organise than I thought as well as none of our atlas books had flags in them that the children could find so I ended up doing lots of searches on Google images.

All of the teachers met this afternoon that are involved in the rich task and most of us said the same thing – that the fiction work was not going as well as the non-fiction which was reassuring.  We also managed to share a few ideas for world book day.  I felt better after that was over than I did at 3pm!

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Glow

31 01 2008

I spent Tuesday and Wednesday having mentor training for Glow.  I had already set up quite a bit before I went to this with the help of the area mentor since we are an early adopter school and so it was nice to feel a bit ahead of the game – I still feel so unconfident in some areas that it was nice to feel I could do something.

I am really starting to see what the benefits will be of using Glow but it will be a while before it is all up and running, indeed there are some things I still cannot do that are available without RM coming in to do an update of Java.  I have been promised it this week!

I thought the video conferencing looked great and is about the only thing that is available that I had not tried or set up yet.  I am looking forward to trying this with Auldhouse Primary soon, as long as we can get some webcams.

I was asked to show to the rest of the group what I had set up already and it made it sound much better that I had thought it was when everyone sat and related it to Curriculum of Excellence.

My class survived without me very well and were able to tell the deputy head what they were supposed to be doing with their rich task so they were allowed to do it!  I was really impressed when I came in today and saw what they had achieved.  Their non-fiction books, although still needing a lot of work, look really good and they made some excellent african masks (we stole the idea from South Park).  It was great to see them all working really hard today and wanting them to look good.  The group that had worked together least well in doing their research had a book that looked really good.  It was obvious that they had thought hard about how to lay out and present it well.  They told me it was the best they had worked together so far and I am sure they are right.