Monday, 24 March 2008

Portable Audacity

Some have you have told me that it can be difficult to install Audacity on a network. Portable Audacity may be an alternative solution and it is certainly great for school journey or for when you visit another computer or suite of computers.
The application just needs a memory stick to run (and a pc/laptop to plug into!), and is a slimmed down, but very functional version of the full programme. I have given it a go on my external hard drive and this week I will be trying it on machines that have not got Audacity installed.
Try it and other Portable apps@

Latest Podcasting Meeting

Thanks to Wendy, for these excellent minutes!

Latest Podcasting Meeting
Wednesday 19th March 2008

Hosted at Redbridge Primary School, with thanks to Lynn and Rob. Attended by Anthony, Lynn, Rob, Lucy, Wendi and Mina Patel of LGFL.

Latest developments:

Redbridge Primary has begun a series of Language of the Month podcasts, covering Swahili and Cantonese to date. They are continuing with their Podcast Club but looking for new ideas & topics to explore.

Manford Primary held a staff inset on podcasting & blogging, notes of which are on this blog. The day went well and enthused staff to make their own podcasts to promote reading. The school blog has been created and contains links to individual class and school event blogs.

Fairlop Primary also held a staff inset on podcasting & blogging led by Nicky Palmer. Staff were encouraged to step outside of their comfort zone by recording a radio ad for a competition to New York (see Nicky’s blog notes below). Fairlop’s blogs are improving, and staff are beginning to update them more frequently.

Mina explained how she would like to make a page for the Redbridge Podcast Network and link it to various other LGFL/newsfeed pages to promote good practice in the curriculum. She has also persuaded the LGFL to purchase 30 portable podcasting devices which will belong to the network. We’ve trialled the Sansa M240 MP3 player for a week or two, which seems to work well and the order will be placed before the end of March. Mina offered 1 days LGFL support to each of the three schools in the network, comprising 2 sessions each. Discussion centred on how best to use this time – either KS1, dual language story books (helping home/school links) and/or video & animation.

The Podcast Network is prepared to fund the remaining cost of purchasing Podium, if each of our schools contributes £200. Anthony is to negotiate with the Softease rep to drive the price down as much as possible!

ICT Conference is Monday 19th May. Two key speakers have been invited – Ewan McIntosh (Learning & Teaching Scotland) and Karl Hopwood of BECTA. From the Podcast’s network viewpoint, the afternoon will be dedicated to a showcase of good practice, involving real children using technology. Each of our schools will need 2/3 children to represent them at the workshop. The students will use laptops to show how to create podcasts and blogs, and demonstrate portable podcasting.

Rob from Redbridge Primary has agreed to manage and organize the afternoon’s tasks, which will take place between 12.15 and 3.00. The workshops will also show the Robosapiens, Nintendo consoles and other new devices used in Redbridge schools.

The meeting ended by bringing our attention back to the end of year focus for the network generally – to produce help sheets & tips and to show/share good resources and practice in podcasting & blogging to other Redbridge schools.

Reminders of To Do Tasks!

Ø Wendi to order MP3 players by 31st March
Ø Anthony to negotiate Podium price with Softease rep
Ø Rob to organise workshop events and timings/feedback to Anthony
Ø Lynn/Rob, Lucy and Nicky/Wendi to e-mail Mina with session dates by 28th March
Ø Write up podcasting and blogging ‘How to’ and Top Tips guides (Audacity, Blogger & Podium)

Date of Next Meeting:

Friday 2nd May between 9.30-3.30 in S4 Teachers Centre.
(This is a whole day session with Mina to support further LGFL school visits from September 2008)

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

Manford Primary School's Staff INSET

Introduction to Blogging and Podcasting
Well done to all the teachers at Manford for a fantastic staff meeting! On Monday night all teachers were taught how to create a blog and how to podcast. It was a jam packed session with hands on activities. All teachers were very enthusiastic and excited at the prospects blogging and podcasting will bring.
Here we are creating our first podcast.

These are two new ways of communicating, collaborating and sharing work and events with a wider audience instantly and I am sure staff will fly with this and begin to build these tools into the curriculum and outside of it. There were some excellent podcasts recorded to promote reading by teachers. Take a listen at the following link (scroll to Redbridge-Manford-Teacher examples) - to access them click the link that follows:
Lgfl Podcasting hosting site

Manford are now fully up and running with blogging and each year group is about to begin their own blogs. After having great success with the blogs created for activity week and Glasbury we have now created bloggs for school events, year groups and much more. Feel free to post a comment on anything that interests you on any of the blogs.
Check out our school blog and links to year group blogs.....

School Website
We have also been working hard at developing our school website. This has been extremely useful and instantly all the links to the podcasts and blogs that we have created have been accessed by children and feedback has been good.

This website along with blogging and podcasting has recently been promoted at our curriculum evening. Parents were very interested in the developments in ICT and were keen to have a go at recording their voices using the desktop microphones and audacity (with help from children!)