I had the oppatunity to chat to Joe from Browser Media about technology and education this week. It was a great chat which you can watch below. I have included an extract from the original article as well as a direct link to the interview.
For episode 10 of The Digital Brew, I went back to the classroom.
To be more specific, I was chatting to Matt Britland, Director of IT and Digital Strategy at the impressive Alleyn’s School, about the impact that digital technology has had in education. Digital technology has changed all our lives but I was interested to explore how education has evolved during the digital revolution.
I really enjoyed chatting to Matt and we clearly failed to hit our target of 20-25mins for our chat, but there was still a lot that I was hoping to discuss that we didn’t find time for.
Grab a brew, turn up the volume, sit back and enjoy Matt’s words of wisdom:
Since I started our 1:2:1 iPad journey we have searching for digital textbook platform to provide digital books to our students and teachers.
We were lucky enough to be introduced to Classoos last year. After seeing the product we decided it was the platform we had been searching for. They have been able to provide an excellent solution that has enabled us to use one platform across the school.
Digital textbooks can have layers of information added to them by teachers or students. These layers can be text notes, web links or video. Each textbook can be customised to the needs of each teacher and students. If a teacher add a video to their book, they can choose to send it to their class so the students get the video added to the copy of the book on their iPad. These layers can also be shared with other teachers.
Classoos uses information from the schools MIS to populate classes saving a huge amount of time for teachers and the IT department. I use Firefly as our learning platform and Classoos has set up a single sign on to make logging in quick and easy. Time spent distributing and collecting books should be reduced and we know that we will have the most up-to-date books as the digital copies up date with out the need to buy new paper books.
Teachers also have the ability to upload their own resources to the platform. They appear to students like any other digital books and layers can be added in the same way.
Photocopying and printing costs schools a huge amount of money and the Classoos platform can help reduce that by distributing resources digitally.
Classoos Is an excellent solution for any school wanting to adopt a digital textbook platform.
I wanted to design a Computing room that moved away from the traditional layout. For decades IT rooms in schools have been arranged with rows of computers and have tended to be a very uninspiring rooms to learn in.
The Student Gateway development has given us an excellent opportunity to create an innovative, exciting and inspirational room that will wow students, teachers and parents alike and be an excellent learning environment. It will show Computing as a creative subject that will give students a chance to work in somewhere similar to that of technology companies or universities.
It will contain different areas to provide flexible learning spaces for students to work individually and collaboratively using a range of technologies.
At the front of the classroom is where students will sit to work on their PCs. All students will be able to see each other as well as the interactive flat screen. This will give the room more of an inclusive feel. Student are also able to sit on the soft furnishing at the front for teacher demonstrations and class discussions or to work on their iPads.
At the top left is a breakfast bar style piece of furniture facing a flat screen. This can work as both a collaborative place for students to work as well as a place for the girls to sit and work individually. Students can sit and work on their iPads, work in groups as well as being able to mirror their device to the flat screen to show work for example.
The area in the top right is for physical computing and soldering, several students can work on this table at the same time. The table also splits in two to giver the space area more flexibility. The flat panel display in this section can be used to connect computers or iPads to.
This article was published on the Barclays Life Skill website in March 2016.
You might have seen the news that the BBC micro:bit is now being sent out to all year 7 students. The aim of these mini, programmable computers is to inspire students to develop creative and digital skills through coding, and get more young people interested in science, technology, engineering and maths. It is clear from this alone that coding has become the hot topic for technology in the classroom, having been made a part of the curriculum as of September 2014 . With over 12 million people in the UK unprepared to fill the looming digital skills gap, it’s no surprise that coding has been highlighted as such an important aspect of current and future teaching models 
Though coding may seem very technical and sometimes daunting to tackle, confined to the realms of the computer labs, I’d like to dispel this myth. Granted, the digital skills learnt from coding are a major benefit to the changing needs of the labour market; in today’s digital world, it’s not enough for the next generation to know how to use programmes and software – they also need an appreciation for how these things are developed and how coding is used to produce them. But we shouldn’t consider it a teaching practice exclusively designed for computing lessons.