Encoding and Decoding

Anyone connected to ICT and education is familiar with the word "code" - and recently "Teach the kids to code" is all the rage. It usually implies that we should teach kids the fundamentals of computer programming. (In this post I'm going to use the word "kids" as a code word for "learner of any age".) But if you think about it, we also teach kids to code, as in reading and writing, all their lives, all the time.  Let's explore this ...

New presentations for students, parents and teachers from OSC

One of the ways that OSC gives back to the IB community is through our free worldwide school visit programme. In recent years our IB consultants have been giving interactive and engaging presentations to parents and students on a range of different aspects of the IB Diploma, with hints and tips for success. Scores of IB schools around the world have benefited from visits from our OSC School Visits team. When we visit your school, one of our experienced IB experts ...

Universal Design for Learning in the DP

This morning I read a brief blog post by Jennie McKenzie titled More Universal Design for Learning (UDL) needed in the IB, which I quote here in it's entirety, as the author has asked that readers share the link : "I just finished reading a summary on the need to employ more UDL in IB schools. One of the main challenges for the DP is the very nature of the limited assessment format... which is under pressure from higher education's limited assessment format. Here is ...

A guide I use for students to prepare their oral presentations

In my teaching universe we are currently going through the second practice for our students at the oral presentation. Our process introduced them to it in December, where they prepare a series of slides on a sequence addressing the full pressie assessment criteria (well, all except the socio-cultural context). This is a weighted assessment task for semester one and helps determine semester performance grades. At the beginning of semester two our students, acting on detailed feedback from their slide 'presentation', ...

Are these in your Google Docs universe?

In a clever post from the Google for Work Official Blog, Looking back at Marie Curie’s radical discovery: How the Mother of Modern Physics might have used Google Apps, "we imagine how Marie Curie’s discovery of radioactivity, which won a Nobel Prize and revolutionized modern cancer treatment, might have played out in a Google Apps universe."  I encourage you to follow the link, and read the post. Most of us are aware of the Google Chrome extensions and add-ons: did you know that ...

Teaching and Learning with Technology: the document

flickr photo by Rexton shared under a Creative Commons (BY-NC) license At the beginning of December 2015 the IB published a new document online, Teaching and Learning with Technology. You can read the whole document online as a web page, or download an executive summary as a pdf file. The first paragraph of the summary introduces readers to the premise: "With technological change comes new environments to navigate, new sets of skills to learn and, as a result, curriculums to develop. Across the ...

Separate the wheat from the chaff

In June I wrote a post for this blog titled Can this be real? about altered images, or misrepresenting images. Today in my ECIS Library Forum discussion thread,  a colleague in Switzerland posted about the explosion of fake academic journals. In the IB world, we are all involved in promoting digital citizenship, responsibility, honesty and integrity: We often use unusual but authentic, hoax, or "joke" websites like the following to teach or learn about "reliability" on the internet: Improbable Research: Feline Reactions to ...

Creating Silence-Spaces in Schools

I just recently purchased good noise-cancelling headphones to block the roar of motors and the general noise whenever traveling on planes. The headphones are simply brilliant because, not only do they block in-coming noise so that the sound from on-board systems can be clearly heard, but they also block other passenger from being distracted by what I am listening to. Without these headsets I found that I was forced to turn up the sound controls to full volume and was constantly ...

Exercise exploring film making techniques – Shot selections

The following is one in a series of simple exercises to encourage film students thinking about the mechanics of film making, and reflecting on creative choices made by film makers as conscious and intentional. My intention is that these exercises slot into the first semester of IB Film. Hopefully they will be a useful resource towards discussions leading to production portfolios, oral presentation and introducing the basic idea of supporting analytical ideas with actual examples of film language, the lingua franca ...

Have you enrolled in a MOOC?

What is a MOOC? This video from Dave Cormier will explain:   [videos file="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eW3gMGqcZQc" width="450" height="253"] As with so many things, when looking for a good beginning introduction, I come to Wikipedia for a basic definition of  MOOC: "A Massive Open Online Course (MOOC; /muːk/) is an online course aimed at unlimited participation and open access via the webIn addition to traditional course materials such as videos, readings, and problem sets, MOOCs provide interactive user forums that help build a community for students, professors, and teaching assistants (TAs). MOOCs are a ...