teaching with technology1


One thing I love about having been an ICT teacher and currently being a computer science teacher is the technology I get to use. These subjects feed my geekiness, and I love trying out the next piece of kit, the next web app or the next piece of hardware.

I'm sharing my list of the edtech tools I use as a log for myself to look back on, and also to see what others use. So I would love to hear from you if you use something different or better. Over the years my go to tools have changed, so I guess that this will not be the first time I write a post like this. 


"Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm."

Winston Churchill


Although he may not have been the first, it was Malcolm Gladwell that made famous the notion that natural talent wasn't the most important part of success, and that practice, hard work and determination were the keys to excellence. In his book, 'The Expert Learner: Challenging the Myth of Ability', Gordon Stobart takes this message and moves it into the realm of education. 

05 09 2014 powerpoint logo

Somewhere around the world right now, there is someone giving a PowerPoint presentation. The audience are either wondering why the presenter is reading text that they can quite easily read themselves, but at the same time is too small to even be on the slides, or they're writing down the objective and the outcome for that days lesson. All of them are wondering how many slides are left till they can go home. Acording to research, there are in fact 350 such presentations going on this very second! Why?

tts prezi 1

My Awakening

It's 2011, and I'm in one of the many classrooms of the Institute of Education waiting for my training session to start. I don't quite remember what the session was on, managing your manager, or recruitment and retention or something like that. I don't even remember the room much, to be honest, apart from it being a regular looking, verging on boring old University classroom, designed somewhere in the early 1980s. I just about remember the speaker, who was a middle aged, white lady, with blond frizzyish hair, and a slightly weary look on her face.

What I do remember quite well, was the presentation. No, not the content - I couldn't tell you what she was talking about - but the style, the movement, the zooming, the awesomeness and the captivating smoothness of it all, which was now not just a medium of presentation, but was the presentation itself. The wow factor of the presentation was so great, that not only did I not know what she was talking about, but I didn't care! All I wanted to know was what it was, and how I could use it!



Over the last few years, as I've been working with secondary (K-12) age students, I have noticed the skills and abilities that they are able to display, and have wondered about the actual meaning of the term "digital native". According to a Work Design Magazine article:

"Digital Natives have an inherent understanding of digital technologies, as they’ve been integrated into their lives since early childhood. They are part of a tech-savvy generation at the forefront of technological progress and want to be connected when they wish, from anywhere. "

An inherent understanding? Although I agree with most of the article, as a teacher of technology for about a decade, I feel that this statement needs a bit more explanation as my experience is a little different.