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Effective Ict In The Classroom


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#1 Andrew Field

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Posted 09 September 2006 - 10:30 PM

In the coming months different groups at my place are running training sessions for the rest of the staff.  I have been in charge of a group looking at ICTAC (ICT across the Curriculum).

What I want to do is put together a really helpful presentation that will enthuse and share ideas about the effective use of ICT in the classroom.  I recall reading about a geography event put on where the presenter (a fellow teacher) ran a session along the lines of "50 ideas in 50 minutes".  I'd like my group to put on "60 ideas in 60 minutes - effective ICT in the classroom".

[Through a quick Google search, I've found a programme of events for an upcoming geography event featuring a seminar with a similar title.  It also even features some members of this forum]

Now, along those lines, I'd really like to put together a collection of effective ICT ideas - short, sharp and snappy ideas that anyone in any classroom can take notice of and consider implementing.

Once put together, this could even form a separate section on this site for future reference for everyone :).  I just think an active training session, perhaps even with a countdown timer, where everyone can be kept on the edge of their seats is an excellent idea.

So, please help out!  Over the next few weeks I'll post my ideas and feel free to post your own.  It doesn't matter if they need developing further, but it will provide a good starting point.

Some (very) rough ideas to start off:
  • Setup a blog - a place to offer additional support, ideas and links to help students' learning.
  • Get students to video their class presentation - really effective use of ICT where students are in control, scripting and preparing a presentation to go online.
  • Create a webquest task for an ICT-based homework - force students to research and prepare materials by following a webquest.  A series of links and tasks to answer which guide students through a topic.
  • Give students a massive Word document and a strict word limit - provide students with a 40 page document full of information and ask them to precis the text to 200 words.
  • Give students a terrible PowerPoint presentation - provide students with an awful PowerPoint presentation about a particular topic.  Make it look awful, include incorrect and worthless information, put everything in the wrong order.  Ask them to mark it and then fix it.
  • Grafitti a source - project an image onto a whiteboard.  Get students to draw all over it with their analysis and ideas.
  • MP3 your work - only accept the next piece of work in MP3 format.  Show students Audacity + a microphone and get them to record their next piece of work / revision
This is the sort of list I'm interested in building up.  Ideas for ICT in the classroom - and there is no problem having more than 60 ;)

#2 Liza Field

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Posted 09 September 2006 - 11:01 PM

How about some of these:
  • Project a video but remove the sound.  For example, play a film trailer without any sound, get students to add their own music and effects to fit.
  • Create a PowerPoint background. Create a PowerPoint for students to perform in front of - adding timing, graphics to make an active presenation more impressive.
  • Create an interactive quiz or game. Using quality software such as Hot Potatoes or ContentGenerator.net to create an engaging starter / plenary activity.
  • Use portable recording devices for interviews. Get students to record short, sharp interviews in mp3 format.
  • Setup a class podcast. Divide students into groups and make each responsible for part of a topic.  Each group has to prepare a podcast.  All the podcasts are then combined and put online as one class podcast for all to use.
  • Save whiteboard notes.  Use a whiteboard for a class mind-mapping session to start a topic.  Save the whiteboard file.  At the end of the topic, repeat the exercise, but then load their initial work to compare and contrast.
  • Sound effects. Introduce sound effects via your laptop.  A good answer? Cue a round of applause.  A silly idea?  Cue some booing.  Make student in charge of playing the effects.
  • Student voice. Put together an online evaluation form - students can complete this to share their thoughts and feedback about the lesson / topic.
  • Project a worksheet. Don't photocopy a tasksheet - project it onto the wall so everyone can see it and save on the photocopy budget.
  • Use a massive digital timer. Project a massive clock onto the board so nobody can be in any doubt how long a task is meant to take.
  • Use PowerPoint timings. Setup tasks using timed PowerPoint slides.  Details fo the first task appears.  Once the time is up, automatically move the screen on.  The teacher can just leave this running, allowing them to focus on the students.


#3 Rob Cha

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Posted 09 September 2006 - 11:08 PM

Hi Andrew

Its late - so only a few for now...
  • Set up a collaborative Wiki - for sharing of ideas
  • Get to students to present their work in moviemaker
    Get students to create animations to show processes (e.g. science / geography) in action - could be using flash or putting together individual video shots making small changes each time (in a Wallace and Grommit style!)
  • Use sound effects to introduce a topic (students could have to guess what the topic is) or to provide the ambience in the classroom - e.g. tropical rainforest sounds; lava bubbling; an earthquake etc..
  • Set up a Department Website to share resources between staff and provide online support for students - get students to contribute and take responsibility for sections of the website; use the website to help celebrate student achievement by adding examples of good work - poems, art work etc..
  • Use whiteboard to teach fieldsketching - project picture in notebook - select and draw round the main 'defining lines' of the features shown - remove picture from the background and annotate the key features
    Use skype or simillar to make a virtual language lab - or making use of MSN or simillar (such as live chat in digital brain) for practicing conversing in MFL
    Video Conferencing - bring experts into the classroom 'virtually' through the use of a video conference
    "Making the News" - encourage students to create news articles / videos to be broadcast / published on line through the Making the News free online publishing system <a
    Use GIS in the classroom - e.g. AEGIS - to develop spatial awareness / help students see spatial patterns
    Create flyovers in Google Earth to help students develop a sense of place / take them on virtual journeys around the world - geotag points with photographs etc..
    Create virtual fieldtrips using image hotspots / hyperlinks to text images etc.. for use both in the classroom and for students to use at home
    Use digital video played through the IWB to pause and annotate video clips and to take still images of the annotations / picture - to build up story board of main points from video for feedback at the end.
    Use photoshop or simillar graphic package to alter / clone photographs to predict change in a landscape - e.g. the effects of coastal erosion or sea level rise. - by creating a series of 'altered' photographs at different stages and then inserting them in moviemaker - a basic animation can be created of landform development. Students could also be given photographs and asked to alter them according to what they think will happen - as well as adding text annotations to describe and explain the processes taking place (sorry very geography orientated!)
will try and add others when I'm more awake!

(Sorry I don't know how to get the bullet point list to work?)
(I've edited it now to include them.  Click the bullet point option at the top right to experiment with them).

Edited by Rob Cha, 09 September 2006 - 11:34 PM.


#4 DaveStacey

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Posted 09 September 2006 - 11:48 PM

Spooky. I was in the process of putting together a similar proposal for our place, although I was working along the lines of 10 ideas in 20 minutes. There's a huge gulf with us between those who are comfortable with ICT and those who aren't, but I've actually been quite impressed by the willingness of quite a few self confessed technophobes to take an idea and use it providing 1)It doesn't move them too far out of their comfort zone 2)They can see how it helps them.

The thing about 20 minutes is that even those people who have little truck with projectors, whiteboards and VLEs can hopefully get one idea without 'wasting' too much time. That said 60 ideas in 60 minutes sounds like a challenge!

Here's what I'd thought of including in mine, although these were (are) still rough ideas. I wanted to include something for people of all abilities and patiences! (some of these have already been mentioned...)

1. Timer - Use the ANT4 Pizza timer to put 20 minutes on the board to show how easy it was to do and how useful it was for pupils in managing their learning.

2. Creating a Wordsearch /Crossword/Cloze test - We've got Hot Potatoes at our place, so I was going to show hwo to create a quiz using that for those that are planning on integrating materials onto the school VLE and also show the tools at http://school.discov...chingtools.html which I think actually create better versions if you're going to print them off on paper.

3. Projecting an image using Powerpoint - Most of our TSAs are now comfortable using the scanners, so I was going to show off importing a picture into Powerpoint resizing it to full screen, then using google images to find, download and importing another.

4. Using the pen tool in Powerpoint. We don't have IWB's at our school, and I never knew (until Ben Walsh showed me) that if you right click during an Powerpoint Slide Show, you can select a pen tool to annotate whatever is on the slide. It won't save your scribblings, but it can still be quite a useful tool

5. Interactivity without an IWB - Getting people to interact with what's being projected by using a wireless mouse and/or or bluetooth tablet

6. Improve an existing essay - put a wordprocessed piece of work on the school network and get pupils to download and improve it. This could then be commented on by another class member using another colour text

7. Setting up a learning blog - Using free blogging software (such as livejournal - which I prefer as it doesn't have the 'next blog' link at the top) to create a class blog to encourage pupil discussion and involvement

8. Adding a picture into a worksheet - Yes, I know to us it might be basic, but I wanted something that those staff who are just getting comfortable doing their own typing could use to jazz up their work sheets. This would cover cropping, changing brightness and contrast and controlling layout.

9. Adding music - Using itunes to create playlists of various types of music - calming, concentrating, urgent, time keeping etc

10. Creating a learning game - Showing how easy it is to create a quiz using the content generator software that we've just bought!


Other things I'd considered for the second course

  • Automatically advancing slides in Powerpoint - useful for creating timers and self testing quizes
  • Creating .swf files with Open Office - Open up a Powerpoint in Impress and exporting it as an swf
  • Setting up a learning wiki - Using free wiki software (like pbwiki) to set up a class wiki that pupils create and develop articles they can then use for revision.
  • Drag and drop flash exercises - using the example that Andrew showed off at his flash training course
  • Collaberating online - Showing online resources like this one, the History Teachers Forum, the Shareforum and other places where teachers with similar interests come together to share ideas and workload.
  • Radio Documentaries - using audacity to record pupil writen reports. This could be extended, and combined with a learning blog to show people how to set up podcasts.
I was also going to ask people to suggest things they'd discovered and used effectively, to try show just how much (and how well) ICT is being used to support really good teaching and learning across the school.

The other thing I'd decided to create was a 'how to' guide for each of the things being showcased, so staff could go back and try them out later on.

However I've already doubled the number of ideas having read this thread, and I have a suspicion more ideas will follow!

#5 Andrew Field

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Posted 10 September 2006 - 12:11 AM

This is great - a marvellous response already.

It certainly doesn't have to be 60 ideas in 60 minutes.  I do think a really pacy presentation is the way to do things like this.  Perhaps 60 suggestions in 20 minutes might be better?  Quick, snappy suggestions work really well.  With an accompanying handout those attending can always ask for more if they like something specific they see.

60 suggestions in 20 minutes - one idea every 20 seconds.  It could be done :)  :huh:

Have some more ideas:
  • Provide ICT scaffolding - a word document template that helps students put together an essay plan / answer
  • Hamburger ICT template - picture of a hamburger split into its component parts - student literally uses the images as background to help them identify all the component parts of the essay.
  • Mindmapping software - use mindmapping software instead of drawing notes on the board
  • Getting students to use their mobile phone - with all the new features on phones there are so many possibilities.  Recording voices, sharing ideas via bluetooth, texting answers etc.
  • MP3 treasure hunt. Provide clues to help students find resources / information etc. that is provided on mp3 players as audio.  Hide these players around the classroom / area.
  • Use a large digital die. Project a large die / dice onto the board.  Use these to supplement an existing activity.
  • Flickr photos. Get students to record a trip / presentation / event and upload images to Flickr
  • Immense copies of work. Get students to use Rasterbator to create a wall-sized version of their work - simple and easy mega-poster maker that uses an original image (i.e. digital photo of their work etc.)


#6 Rob Cha

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Posted 10 September 2006 - 08:30 AM

Couple more whilst I think....
  • Using a drag and drop macro in Powerpoint to make powerpoint a more interactive teaching / learning tool;
  • Using the record function on a IWB to prepare tutorials which can be put online
  • Embedding video and flash into powerpoint to make them more interactive
  • Text analysis using smartboard notebook and the highlight functions
  • Set up an online photograph gallery / library for students to contribute to - to build up a collection of copyright free images - e..g. of geographical landforms, different places, cultures etc.
and I figured out the bullet points - bonus!

#7 DaveStacey

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Posted 10 September 2006 - 09:28 AM

View PostAndrew Field, on Sep 10 2006, 01:11 AM, said:

60 suggestions in 20 minutes - one idea every 20 seconds.  It could be done :)  :huh:

Hummm... It might work at your place, but I tried that they'd glaze over after the first 5 minutes. I'd rather have enough time to sow how it could be useful and how easy it was to do.

(Having typed that it dawns on me you might have been joking. But I'm not sure, so I'll leave the comment there and ready myself for the tomatoes!)

View PostAndrew Field, on Sep 10 2006, 01:11 AM, said:

Flickr photos. Get students to record a trip / presentation / event and upload images to Flickr

Have you seen slide.com? It allows much better integration of photos into website that Flickr. One of our D&T teachers showed it to me, he's using it to generate a banner of photos of GCSE work that runs across the top of the deparmental website.

#8 Rob Cha

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Posted 10 September 2006 - 10:10 AM

Nice find Dave - hadn't seen slide.com -but will be checking it out!

#9 Doug Belshaw

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Posted 10 September 2006 - 01:46 PM

What a wonderful and rapid response! I've had a look through everyone's suggestions and off the top of my head can't think of anything else which I'd recommend to beginner/intermediate users of ICT. Well done everyone!  :teacher:

:plane: Doug

#10 Andrew Field

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Posted 10 September 2006 - 03:37 PM

Dave - I was half joking with the timing.  It would be much better to explain the simplicity of the idea.  Then again, if there is a supporting handbook (or even better a section on this site) where teachers could get further details that would be most effective.  I think teachers need to have lots of ideas flung at them and then be given the time themselves to investigate further.

Excellent suggestion about slide.com - I have often been looking for a good gallery solution.  I shall investigate.

Doug - you can't get away with that response - we need some more ideas ;)

#11 Andrew Field

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Posted 10 September 2006 - 07:32 PM

Lets have a few more ideas:
  • Use a wireless mouse - hooked up to the laptop & projector, this is a great way to give students control of the lesson - they have to get involved.
  • Setup a teacher e-mail account to share with students - as long as you are following the correct guidelines, this is a great way of allowing students to e-mail their work to you.
  • Use Excel to create a drag and drop - using coloured textboxes in Excel you can easily create a drag-and-drop exercise that can be extended further with just a little thought.
  • Use Excel for 'weighting' exercises - give students a collection of causes or important aspects for a topic.  Ask them to add a number from 1 - 10 under each one to identify how significant it was.  Then highlight everything and press the graph button and you have instant graphical analysis!
  • Use your own Publisher templates - provide students scaffolding in Publisher - but take advantage of the ability to drag items actually off the paper.  Surround the outside of the paper with too many ideas, images and headlines.  Students than have to select their own choice to drag into the Publisher document.  Add in an evaluation task i.e. why did you select the image etc. to take the whole activity to the next level.
  • Deciding not to use ICT - In the push for ICT-based lessons the learning opportunities can sometimes get left behind.  If you evaluate a lesson and identify no added value by using ICT, taking the proactive step not to use ICT is the best thing to do!


#12 DaveStacey

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Posted 10 September 2006 - 10:36 PM

View PostAndrew Field, on Sep 10 2006, 04:37 PM, said:

... Then again, if there is a supporting handbook (or even better a section on this site) where teachers could get further details that would be most effective.

Well as and when I get round to running the session, I will definately prepare some back up materials, similar to the one's I produced when I reran bits of your flash training course.

Would there be some mileage in setting up some kind of central place for these guides on the site, so we're not all doing the same thing? While some detail may vary from network to network, as long as we were posting editable versions I can see us dramatically cutting into our workload!!!

#13 Andrew Field

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Posted 10 September 2006 - 11:00 PM

View PostDaveStacey, on Sep 10 2006, 11:36 PM, said:

Would there be some mileage in setting up some kind of central place for these guides on the site, so we're not all doing the same thing? While some detail may vary from network to network, as long as we were posting editable versions I can see us dramatically cutting into our workload!!!

Yes - most certainly.  I will get something sorted and update you.

#14 Doug Belshaw

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Posted 11 September 2006 - 06:41 PM

View PostAndrew Field, on Sep 10 2006, 04:37 PM, said:

Doug - you can't get away with that response - we need some more ideas ;)
Oh, OK then...
  • Wireless keyboard - pass a wireless keyboard round the class for a fairly sedate brainstorm/mindmap (even better if you use mindmapping software)
  • Theme tunes - use music through speakers to motivate students (in collaboration with countdown timers this can be especially powerful)
  • Storyboarding - get students to storyboard a non-written assessment using Powerpoint or similar and then film it in short sections using the video function of a digital camera.
  • Teach old hardware new tricks - find old computers, whack Linux on them and use them in the classroom!
  • Homework Checker - show students that you're keeping tabs on their homework/attendance/effort/whatever with conditional formatting in Excel.
Erm... I'll keep thinking! Oh, and I'm going to be blogging about these types of things over the next few weeks in my new 20 Ideas series. :king:

:plane: Doug

#15 Andrew Field

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Posted 11 September 2006 - 07:05 PM

View PostDoug Belshaw, on Sep 11 2006, 07:41 PM, said:

Oh, and I'm going to be blogging about these types of things over the next few weeks in my new 20 Ideas series. :king:

:plane: Doug

Doug this is a good extension of the concept.  Can you start a new thread on this forum for each one - I'm sure we can help develop each one.  You might have to rename the concept something else though - 20 ideas is mere chickenfeed.  :lol:

#16 DaveStacey

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Posted 11 September 2006 - 08:44 PM

Could we maybe have a new sub forum here? Then we could start a thread on each topic as we develop them - especially if we're producing 'follow up guides'.

#17 Andrew Field

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Posted 12 September 2006 - 05:44 PM

View PostDaveStacey, on Sep 11 2006, 09:44 PM, said:

Could we maybe have a new sub forum here? Then we could start a thread on each topic as we develop them - especially if we're producing 'follow up guides'.

Certainly could do - although we've got quite a few sections here alreadly.  Perhaps we could get started and then adapt as we go on?  We need more suggestions here first!

#18 lindab

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Posted 12 September 2006 - 06:25 PM

"  can't think of anything else which I'd recommend to beginner/intermediate users of ICT. "

Well. there are beginners and beginners - how about something simple like using split screens for note taking, comparing texts etc.

#19 Andrew Field

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Posted 12 September 2006 - 07:35 PM

View Postlindab, on Sep 12 2006, 07:25 PM, said:

"  can't think of anything else which I'd recommend to beginner/intermediate users of ICT. "

Well. there are beginners and beginners - how about something simple like using split screens for note taking, comparing texts etc.

Sounds great.  Excellent :)  These are exactly the kind of tips and suggestions that teachers need.

Keep them coming!

#20 Chris Higgins

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Posted 18 December 2006 - 05:40 PM

Web cam - use a web cam to enable subject specialist to be hotseated by different classes at the same time, or use the web cam as part of a role play activity in which the individual comes through on the screen with an eyewitness account of a key event from history as if they have just witnessed it
Magic answers- when taking feeback from students on a particular task in which oyu reveal the answers if they are correct or not, first type in the answer on a Word document, then colour them white. When students give you their answer, highlight the apparently blank section of the sheet where oyu have typed the answer in white, and change the font colour back to black. It's magic!
Email an expert - ask students to prepare questions on a given subject, possibly coursework, and as a class choose the best 5 to go forward to an expert in the field, possibly at a museum or educational establishment. I did this on Vietnam, using war veterans listed on John Simkin's Spartacus website and the responses were fascinating
You say we (don't) pay - fun variation of Richard and Judy's game. Project images of famous figures or keywords from the topic under study behind a student or group of students sitting at the front. The class describe the image or keyword and the student at the front must guess what is on the screen.
Highlighting text - simple activities like this in Word enable some challenging, higher order thinking. Give students a text / source and ask them to highlight in a given colour all the evidence which suggest a certain theme, for example are the evidence in the text that the other is a supporter of a particular view in green and a critic in red. Also good for getting students to identify opinion or fact by highlighting these in different colours




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