Introducing the GoPiGo

In a previous post I mentioned that our school had just taken delivery of a GoPiGo and promised to keep you posted on our journey, and just last week, the cling-wrap was removed and the exploration began. We sourced our GoPiGo base kit from ModMyPi in the UK and  this kit comes with everything you need to get started, including a robot body, motors, controls, and a power battery pack.…

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Digital Learning Frameworks for Schools

The Department of Education and Skills (DES) published their new Digital Learning Frameworks on 14 September last. Invitations from schools to express their interest in trialling these new frameworks, 30 primary and 20 post-primary closed last Monday 2 October 2017. These new frameworks are one of the departments key supports for schools in implementing The Digital Strategy for Schools 2015 – 2020 which was first announced nearly two years ago.…

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The Educator Community – Be Part of It!

With the return to the classroom a month or so on, I hope life at the chalk face is returning to some sort of normality for readers after the unavoidable chaos of the first few weeks. With timetables, planning, yard duty rosters and the like, done and dusted, maybe now is the time to take a fresh look at the technology at your disposal and flesh out some new ideas…

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ConneXions – French & Irish Culture meet Digital Technology

Next weekend sees a unique event, Connexions, taking place in Richmond Barracks in Dublin. ConneXions is the first forum to connect actors from culture, education and digital technology from Ireland and France and to allow them to develop new partnerships, business opportunities and innovative projects. The event kicks off in Dublin next Friday, September 29th, with a Hackathon. Teams will compete to solve of the following challenges. Challenge #1: Getting…

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Autumn CPD from TeachNet

For Autumn 2017, TeachNet are offering four online courses, to help you and your school achieve effective ICT integration into teaching and learning. TeachNet’s online courses bring together the expertise of St. Patrick’s College and the practical approach of our course authors. All TeachNet courses are created “by teachers, for teachers” using the best interactive e-learning technology and provide practical ideas for using ICT creatively in the classroom. The feedback…

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My iPad & Swift Playgrounds = Obsolete!

My iPad is an iPad 3; the battery life is still pretty good and the touch sensitive display has no dead zones. All the hardware buttons such as volume control and home button still function correctly and there are no dead pixels on the screen. It works really well and I can’t remember ever having an app crash on it! I kinda knew it was on the slippery slope to…

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STEM – New Plan on its way

Towards a STEM Education Policy Statement and Implementation Plan for Schools The Department of Education and Skills are currently developing a STEM Education Policy Statement and Implementation Plan for Schools. The Department’s work in this area is being informed by the STEM Education in the Irish School System report. The report contains 47 suggested actions that the Department should undertake to enhance the STEM learning in schools. One chapter of…

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Raspberry Pi Weather Station for Schools – Part 3

Having painstakingly assembled the kit and successfully installed the hardware outside, our school’s Raspberry Pi Weather Station has now been diligently recording local weather information for the last number of months. Since then, it has been up to us to ensure its potential for enhancing teaching and learning experiences is maximised. Fortunately there is a wide variety of detailed lesson plans and activities provided in the education section of raspberrypi.org…

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Educational Robotics in Italian Schools

Earlier this month I was on an Erasmus+ visit to our partner school I.C. Toniola in Pisa who are one of the three Italian schools in “Our Digital Journey in Europe” project. Schools in Italy like here at home in Ireland, are also embarking on a new Digital Strategy in education. During the visit I had an opportunity to visit a number of classrooms in the primary school and the…

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Drug Education Resources

Drug education and prevention remains a challenging area of the school curriculum; beyond programmes such as Walk Tall it can be a delicate tightrope walk between what can sometimes appear as scare tactics (drugs = death) to an information based approach (here are the facts = make an informed choice). Few would argue against the premise that we should equip each generation with the skills, knowledge and resilience to make…

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