Sunday 2 November 2008


The inspirational Adam Sutcliffe led this session, based on his own experiences teaching at The Gordons School. He had loads of great advice to offer about blogging and podcasting both with and for pupils, and shared with us lessons he had learnt...

  • If emails, etc, are included in the definition of literary texts, then we as teachers must use them.

  • It is good to reflect in English on what you have done over the course of the term

  • Safety concerns –blogs are as safe as you make them. If the settings are right, posts cannot go online till approved.

  • 2 stars and a wish / ‘Rocks and Sucks’. Peer assessment of recordings by the pupils is very 'Revised Curriculum', and can produce great results, if prop[erly set up. Teachers should set up a comment bank to help them and provude a tick box sheet to use as they listen. Pupils can then use the tick box sheet to write a comment

PODCASTS - why use them?

  • Access for all, even long-term sick pupils
  • Production of resources
  • Blue tooth vocabulary guides to their phone, for example, if no Internet access at home
  • Excellent use of skill areas for languages. Production of podcast = listening (to it) speaking (production) reading and writing (script)
  • Pupil confidence - set A-level class to producing podcasts on –AR verbs for Form 1.
  • Transferable skills - Pupils don’t realise that the stuff they do on Bebo can be used in their classroom
  • Ease of use - Use podcast gadgets such as Utterli / gcast / gabcast to create a webcam or audio, then call a phone number to post to the blog. This can be excellent when used from abroad, on a school exchange, for example.
  • podomatic – create, find, share podcasts
  • VoiceThread – edvoicethread with unlimited student accounts, so that pupils can post work which can then be commented on orally by many viewers
  • – listen and write with a dictation facility. The big advantage of Voki is the anonymity of the speaker behind the avatar. Other uses include pronunciation of frequently mispronounced words and the spell and translate facility.
  • Exam practice – pre-record questions (set to music) with space for answer, or podcast conversations with the FLA (Foreign language assistant). For examples of this, see the Ashcombe School.

Thanks to Adam for an excellent insight into the work he does. See more at his site:-

1 comment:

Isabelle Jones said...

Hi Amanda

Thank you for sharing your notes from the IOW conference and turning them into great blog posts!