This is my second mind map in an attempt to visually display the draft Science Curriculum in England and this time the focus of the Mind Map is Energy. In my previous post on this issue I set out to see how coherently the new curriculum has been written and I suggested that depending on how difficult it would be to mind map the various parts of the curriculum could give an indication of that. I have to say that in this second Mind Map I could find quite a few key ideas that interrelated to other branches quite nicely. However, I felt that I had to separate Conservation of Energy from Dissipation of Energy, even though the new curriculum has them under the same heading (which is fine in the document I think), as I wanted to stress the importance of the Principle of Conservation of Energy. Something I was not too sure about was the inclusion of renewable energy sources and fuel resources under the Conservation and Dissipation section. As a whole I am fairly pleased with this Mind Map and I think the development of this unit is quite coherent. I might have missed something though and I value your comments in that respect.
Posts Tagged ‘Education’
Tags: Biggerplate, conduction, Conservation, Convection, Dissipation, Education, Efficiency, Electrical, Energy, Fuel, imindmap, learning, Mind Mapping, National Curriculum, New NC, Physics, Radiation, Renewable, resources, Sources, Thermal, ThinkBuzan
Tags: Coherent, Curriculum, Education, KS4, Learners, learning, mind map, Mind Mapping, Science, Working Scientifically
I have been looking at the draft Science Curriculum in England and I will post a series of Mind Maps to show the curriculum visually. I hope this will help people to incorporate the new curriculum (when it becomes live) in their existing schemes of work in a more coherent way. I believe this exercise will also show how coherent the draft curriculum itself is. In fact, a coherent document will be very easy to mind map and for associations to be made, whereas an incoherent document will be something of a nightmare to process in a mind map, as it will be inconsistent and with topics and ideas that have little relations with each other and don’t lead to a consistent understanding of scientific ideas and processes that build on each other. What is your guess? Coherent or incoherent?
Tags: Action Movie, Apple, Apps, Education, Fun, Gavin Smart, iMovie, iPad, iPhone, Jedi, knight, master, padawan, star wars, Trailer
It’s no secret that I am a big fan of Star Wars, but my boys passion for the saga, animations, video games and anything with a Star Wars logo on it is even bigger than mine. So, when faced with a new iMovie trailer on my iPhone to fill the time during our holiday, there was no doubt about the theme in our minds
Take a look at the video below and see whto we came up with. The special effects, which look pretty cool and got the boys really excited, were created with the Action Movie Fx app. This app is really good fun to use and you can spend hours messing around with the difference special effects. The ones we used are all free and the great thing is that you can save your action movie to your camera roll, and once a clip is there you can add it to your masterpiece iMovie trailer.
I would be interested to see someone applying these two great apps together in education. I am sure Gavin Smart, who first showed me some great iMovie trailers made by his learners will accept the challenge
Enjoy the trailer below and please leave a comment
Tags: #croesybot, Broadcast, channel, Chat, Clubs, Creative, Croesyceiliog, Education, Hash, Innovative, John Cabot Academy, Learners, learning, Live, Livestream, Motor Effect, Online, Physics, revision, Students, Taf, Twitter
After a long period of hybernation the Croesy Physics online channel is about to become active again with a very exciting project that will see Croesyceiliog Yr13 Physics Students collaborating with learners at John Cabot Academy in Bristol to create and broadcast live online revision clubs!
Helen Rogerson (@hrogerson) is John Cabot’s Head of Physics and she will support her students once a forenight in creating and broadcasting their sessions from Bristol, and I (@asober) will do the same with my students from Cwmbran. We will take it in turn to broadcast on our Croesy Physics Livestream channel and we would love to see many of you watching live and engaging with our students. In fact, there will be a 10 minutes Q&A session at the end of each event for the people who are watching from other schools, or from home. People can ask questions using the Livestream chat on the online channel, or by using the twitter hash tag #croesybot.
Our live revision clubs will be broadcast live every Tuesday between 15.15 and 15.45 and our first event will be on the 15th November with the topic “The Motor Effect”
Each session will also be available on demand after the event and we hope that our service will become a really useful revision tool for our learners as well as for students in other schools across the world!
Please support our efforts by watching, chatting, sharing, tweeting, etc…
For help on setting up a similar activity see these resources I have uploaded on the TES website.
Tags: Acting, App, App Store, Creative, D-T, D-T graphs, Displacement, Distance, Education, Graphs, Innovative, iPad, iPhone, Learners, Motion, Movement, Physics, Time, Tracker, V-T, V-T Graphs, velocity, Vernier, Vernier Video Physics, Video, Video Physics
Last week I finally got round doing something I had wanted to do with my Yr11 classes for a long time. We acted a Displacement - Time graph. This might not sound amazing to you and I have done a similar activity in the past, but this time the difference was that my learners could actually check their outcomes very quickly and without having to guess if their movements reflected the D-T graph faithfully, as they could use what I think is one of the best iPhone/iPad App for Physics, the Vernier Video Physics app!
Indeed, we could have used cameras to record the videos and upload the videos on our laptops to use with Tracker, but the versatility of an iPad and the simplicity of the Vernier Video Physics app made things very easy and intuitive.
So, what’s this activity about? Well, the learners split into groups of 3-4 and analyse the graph below.
Then, they organise themselves to act the graph. So, one person will walk along a straight line to mimic the graph, whilst the others in the group could help signposting important parts of the graph, as well as keeping the time.
You can see how the Vernier Video Physics app renders the video after tracking the object in each photogram. The images at the end are the displacement and velocity analysis after the tracking has been completed!
What do you think? Is this group representing the graph well?
Tags: Aristotle, book, Creative, edu-novel, Education, Equations, Faraday, Fascinating, Fizz, Galileo, Herschel, History of Physics, Inspiring, Laws, Learners, learning, Newton, nothing as it seems, novel, Physics, Students, Zvi Schreiber
I have the great pleasure of introducing my first Guest Blogger, Zvi Schreiber, who is a really interesting Author. He looks at the teaching and learning of Physics from a very different angle with his brand new book Fizz: Nothing as it seems.
Thanks Alessio for inviting me to Alessio’s Blog, to talk about why I chose to present the history and principles of physics in a non-traditional way: through a fictional novel, named “Fizz”.
Years ago I learned physics in the traditional way – text books, equations, lots of exercises. I loved it. But coming back to physics after years in the world of business, I found that my high school and college education had completely neglected other aspects of physics – and that those other aspects are fascinating to a wider audience who perhaps don’t like equations.
Firstly the physicists. Revisiting physics I learned more about Galileo’s mortal struggle with the Pope who had previously been a personal friend, and his battle against the entrenched two-thousand-year-old ideas of Aristotle. As the first physicist, Galileo showed incredible flare for presenting his ideas to a hostile public and willingness to risk his life.
I learned that Isaac Newton spent more time on alchemy than physics, and that his unpleasant personality may have been amplified by mercury poisoning. Michael Faraday, inventor of the electric motor and generator, was an apprentice bookbinder, the uneducated son of a blacksmith. William Herschel’s sister, overcame dwarfism and family prejudice to become an important astronomer in her own right.
These are just a few of the inspiring stories I had missed in school. The great physicists were real people and I wanted to present them as such.
Secondly many concepts in physics evoke an emotional as well as rational response. The vastness of the universe. The strange idea of action at a distance – introduced by Newton, eliminated by Einstein, reintroduced in quantum mechanics. The idea of an orderly deterministic universe attacked with the successive discoveries of entropy, chaos, and eventually random quantum fluctuations. Some hints at a possible multiverse. A novel allows me to explore Fizz’s response, as a young woman, to these weird revelations about the universe we call home.
There was an important precedent for an edu-novel – Sophie’s World – which helped me and millions of others to learn about philosophy in the 90s. I hope that now Fizz will take her turn alongside Sophie, and help a few people to learn more about our universe and about the bizarre series of people who explored it.
Zvi Schreiber is author of Fizz: Nothing is as it seems a new edu-novel about physics – see http://www.fizz-book.com
Back to me now, Alessio , because I would like to give you my impressions about the book. I read it during the summer holidays and it was a really enjoyable and easy read. The book reads very well and it always leaves you with the need to read and learn more at the end of every chapter. I am sure it is partly thanks to Physics, but the way Fizz explores and discovers the laws of Physics is truly fascinating and a great way to learn something about the History of Physics, as well as getting a coherent overview of the laws of Physics which are all connected to each other and not a “modular exam”
I also like the fact that there are virtually no formulae, not because I don’t like equations, but because it helps the learners to focus on the processes and it reinforces Physics concepts without distracting too much from the narration. Moreover, the situations Zvi built in the novel are memorable and give you that sense of awe and amazement the Scientists mentioned in the novel must have felt in those great moments of discovery!
Another really nice aspect of the book is that the main character is a school age girl who has a genuine passion for how the universe works and she is ready to risk everything to satisfy her thirst for knowledge. This will hopefully encourage and inspire girls to pursue a Physics career!
Nothing happens randomly in Zvi’s book and even the many truly unexpected twists that occur are used as analogies to explain Physics concepts and, believe me, one of these twists you will never guess until you get to those pages
Our Yr12 and 13 will be part of a pilot project this year to test the effectiveness of Fizz’s great adventure in motivating students to learn about Physics and in raising standards. So, watch this space as I will post our learners progress and their impressions on the book.
If you have read, or are reading the book, please leave your impressions as comments to this post!
Tags: Audio, Clones, Creative, Darth Vader, Education, english, Han Solo, imindmap, iMindMap 5, Innovative, Learniers, learning, Leila, Light Saber, Literacy, Luke Skywalker, mind, mind map, Mind Mapping, notes, Obi Wan Kenobi, skills, star wars, Story, telling, ThinkBuzan, thinking, War, Writing, Young
In my previous post I showed the first part of my boys’
story mind map, i.e. the mind map we designed together to tell the story they
were creating. We used iMindMap 5 because we wanted eventually to narrate their
story by recording audio comments on branches. That turned out to be a really
effective and creative process. Having the mind map as their main structure for
the story allowed the boys (4 and 6) to not only see the whole picture, but
also to break down the story in little chunks that they could narrate very
easily. In fact, on each branch they could record their voices narrating what
the branches represented. This was telling the story itself and by playing back
each branch’s audio comment they could listen to their story and show Mamma
(Italian for Mum) their creation and impress her!
We couldn’t upload the new version of their mind map (with
audio comments) on Biggerplate, because it is too big, but you can watch a video of their narrated story below.
I believe that this process could be extremely useful in
story writing, as it helps learners to design a coherent story and see how the
whole story unfolds in their mind map, as well as splitting the story into
branches that the learners can narrate. It will then become very easy to
transfer their story from their iMindMap 5 audio maps into paper, or a blog!
Please, leave a comment to my boys mind map, as they will be
very pleased to see others appreciate their work!
Tags: Best, British, Competition, Conservation, Creative, Education, GCSE, help, Innovative, Learners, learning, Linear, mass, momentum, O2, O2 Learn, Physics, Prize, Public, Rate, revision, support, Teacher, Teachers, U.K., velocity, Video, Vote
In this Blog I invite you to support my video entry to the O2 Learn Competition for three simple reasons:
1) I believe some of the videos that are winning the Fortnightly stages give a poor representation of Education in Britain
2) Many teachers who have submitted a video are cheating by creating false accounts to gain extra votes
3) The winning videos will be considered by the public as the best in British education, so I believe it is important that good examples are presented
So, if you like my video and you want your viewing to count and rate it, please follow the following instructions:
- Go to this website http://www.o2learn.co.uk and register (top right), or login if you are already registered. Remember you will receive an activation email and sometimes it might end up in people’s junk mail, so please check in there too!
- Login (top right) and click on this link http://bit.ly/o2learnvideo to watch my video
- If you like the video, please rate it by clicking on Rate this video below the video screen and give it 5 stars
Please remember that you need to be logged in for your viewing and rating to count!
As an educator I believe that engaging in these types of competitions is important to give a good representation of good practice in Education to the public. The teaching profession doesn’t always get a very good reputation from the Media and having good videos in the winning entries can help to change people’s views on teachers and Education in Britain. So, please support my entry only if you think it is a good video that would help learners to understand the topic presented!
Another way in which you could help is by spreading the word and passing on the link to this Blog post to your colleagues, friends, pupils, etc… and ask them to follow the instructions to support my entry.
Thank you in advance for your support and let me know if you are entering a video too, so I can support it!
Tags: Android, Apps, ASUS, ASUS transformer, children, Early years, Education, eee pad, engage, engaging, Foundation Phase, Google Sky Map, Intellijoy, Key Stage 1, kids, Learners, learning, Literacy, Market, Numeracy, skills, Tablet, Transformer, Young
There are a number of really useful and FREE Pre-school and early years Android Apps that really come to life on an ASUS Transformer for various reasons and most importantly because of its size! In fact, the very first advantage of an eee pad Transformer is to have dimensions that are similar to a book, which kids are used to handle, as opposed to a phone (that most parents are reluctant to let a child use, as they “could break it”). My boys can easily hold the ASUS Transformer with both hands, or simply rest it on their laps as they sit on the sofa! But as well as ease of use, my kids appreciate the larger screen, which really helps them to engage with the eee pad Transformer at a completely different level. In fact, anyone would tend to give a child a piece of A4 paper to write/draw on rather that a small notepad! And this is the same for the ASUS Transformer. The size of the usable screen gives them more freedom to express their creativity and they learn more effectively. The responsiveness of the touchscreen make things very easy too and being able to use their fingers to write, draw, or simply drag and drop takes away many of the hurdles that a pre-school child usually experiences as they try to do creative tasks like drawing. In fact, what is easier (if you haven’t mastered the use of your hands very well yet) drawing a circle with a pen, or with your fingers? Which one are children more likely to feel as they draw? And what about the shape of a letter, or a number? Using our eee pad Transformer my pre-school children can do tasks like tracing patterns and letters much more easily that when they try to do it using a pen.
Some Pre-School Apps
So, here are some great apps for Pre-school!
The Intellijoy Series
Intellijoy has created a great series of fantastic apps that really engage young children in key skills like reading, writing and counting.
One of my favourite is Kids Learn to Read which has Tommy the turtle who helps you spell phonetically simple words, like man. You can tap on individual letters to hear the sounds, and also on the walking stick and Tommy starts moving along the bridge that is made by the letter blocks. As he walks past a letter lights up and its sound is spoken out by a female voice (the only problem is that the pronounciation is very American). As the child becomes more confident, he can send Tommy along the bridge with trainers and because he now walks faster, the word will be spelled out faster too! And eventually Tommy can cross the bridge on a skateboard and the word is read at normal speed. This is a lovely progression that teaches young learners how to spell and break down simple words into small bits (in this case single letters) in order to gain confidence in their reading skills!
Kids Shape Puzzle is another favourite of my boys as they love putting jigsaw puzzles together. In particular, my youngest (2) always wants to play with this great app. The different colours of the pieces makes it very interesting for him to drag and drop the pieces in the correct place on the silouette of the image and when the completed image appears he gets so excited and shouts “I did it! I did it!”
Then, there is Kids ABC Letters, which is a great game to learn how to recognize letters. In fact, there is again a jigsaw task where kids need to piece the parts of a letter (both capital and small) together and a lovely fishing game, where the learner helps a cat to catch fish labelled with the letters of the alphabet. The game tells you which letter the cat needs to catch and you need to press on the cat when the fish with the corresponding letter is passing by. At that point the cat lifts up the fishing rod and the hook grabs the fish, so you score points. If you choose the wrong letter, the fish goes free! All these simple tasks are very engaging because they give an immediate sense of reward and encourage the learners to want to learn more! And the great thing is that as they are playing they are learning an aweful lot
There is also Kids Numbers and Math which lets you complete some fun tasks to improve your Numeracy skills. You can start from very simple tasks, like counting up, or down, and number recognition, to more complex tasks like finding the greatest number from a pair, etc… Again, this is a very engaging App that enables very young learners to become excited about Maths and learning numbers!
Here are a couple of very simple, yet very effective, Apps by Sriram Satyavolu! The first is LearnABC which is a simple alphabet which allows you to pick a letter and draw its shape over it with your finger. And here is when using an eee pad Transformer makes a big difference compared to an ordinary smart phone, because size matters after all! In fact, my boys can draw over the letters very well because they are showing nice and big on the ASUS Transformer, and as they draw the start recognising the patterns ready for when they will be in school and do it on paper.
The second app is WordBuilder which gives you the image of an object and the first letter. Then, from the alphabet you need to choose the letters that make up the word and drag them in the correct place. It is a really good way to learn how to spell. When you place a letter in the wrong space it gets crossed and you have a chance to try again until you get the correct order.
Google Sky Map
Perhaps this one is more suitable for older learners, but Google Sky Map is a really nice app that give you a lovely experience of the sky as it is seen at night! By simply holding your ASUS Transformer, you can move the tablet to see different parts of the sky, including stars and planets. The nice thing is that the planets are nice and big, so, although you loose the sense of proportion, you have a way to show young children where the planets are in our solar system and that they are not luminous objects like the stars. You could also use this app to get learners to tell stories about space missions, or star wars like adventures, by jumping from one planet to the next children can tell their story to their peers.
There are many more great apps for young learners and I discover new ones every day that engage my boys. Which apps have you used? Why were they effective? Please leave a comment on the post.