Sunday, 7 October 2012

Thing 18 and 19

Still playing catch up and a bit daunted by Thing 18 as I haven't really used much screen capture software e.g. Jing or podcasts, but I have looked briefly at Screen-cast-a-matic and Goanimate as ways to interact more fully with the students at school and to engage them a bit more with the LRC and its resources.  The concept of the 'flipped classroom' is one which I am focusing on at the moment, particularly for post 16 students as this ties in with my Assistant Head of Sixth Form role as well.  The idea behind the flipped classroom is that teachers or educators are now using technology to 'lecture' or teach the content to the students at home which then frees them up to do the real learning at school with the teacher.  In the past the lesson would have consisted of the teacher delivering the content with the student then doing the work at home unsupervised and with no support from either the teacher or their fellow students.  

The first way I thought about using screen capture software was as an LRC Induction.  Often when we have done inductions in the past I have felt that I have wasted precious time on Dewey, opening hours and everyday minatue like how many books can be borrowed.  For the past several years, we have used question dice to get the students to ask the questions they want to know about the LRC, a more cooperative version of Cephalonian Method? which makes the Librarian more of the Meddler in the Middle role and not the Sage on the Stage.  So this year we experimented briefly with Goanimate; making an animated video of cartoon characters 'discussing the LRC' which could then be put onto YouTube with a link from our Oliver homepage. I had seen some really good  uses of Goanimate by our Head of English who had created some fantastic revision videos of texts studied at GCSES and had gained a very large following of students across the country with some of his videos having half a million hits in the run up to exams.  Once we had got over our giggles at our first attempt, our characters were just that bit too stilted, we decided that Goanimate would be something we would return to in more earnest and definitely create a video which would serve as a reminder of the induction lesson and reinforce the more boring, but necessary side of the LRC.  

The other piece of technology that I have taken a look at recently and which is (I think) quite similar to Jing is Screen-cast-o-matic which allows you to capture each screen at a time so you can create a video showing a particular process, e.g. how to use a piece of software etc.  In the past I, and many many others, have created Word documents with screenshots to demonstrate a particular process through a piece of software, but Screen-cast-o-matic does this, but in video form which again can be put on Youtube with a link from your library's website etc.  My immediate thought again was how I could create this 'flipped classroom' concept by creating videos showing students how to access and use some of the resources that the LRC offers.  We have recently purchased online access to the Philip Allan Review periodicals including the archives so as to provide post 16 students with some really pertinant information, written by the exam boards themselves.  We have purchased the magazines themselves for about 11 years, but providing online access to the archives is definitely a step forward, particularly for the teachers themselves who are really pleased!  Using Screen-cast-o-matic, I hope, will make the resources seem that bit more relevant to the students and ensure that they can access and use them appropriately so as to make good use of them. 

As far as Jing goes, I think the two I have already mentioned are good enough replacements for me to pursue, however I did find a good example of how Jing is being used in the flipped classroom at where a teacher encourages her students to take screenshots of themselves solving maths problems both in and out of the classroom.  As far as Thing 19 is concerned, this was all about looking back at how we might have integrated some of the previous 'Things' into our working habits.  For me, it has really been the reflective nature of CPD23 which has made a difference to me and how I hope will in turn, become part of my chartership portfolio.  That, and how it has opened me up to new bloggers and blogs and my blog to others in return.  I also didn't really see how reading about graduate traineeships, LISPN - the new professionals network set up by Ned Potter etc (Thing 10) was really relevant to me at this stage of my career, but a week or so ago I was asked to meet up with  a recent graduate of Egyptology, who was considering moving into libraries and I was able to use the information gained from Thing 10 to guide and 'persuade' her!  I now just have to get to the end of CPD23!

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