On being a Geek…

I am very much a geek.

I’m usually told this a few times a week:

by my sister who uses it to mean that I’m slightly weird but that she loves me anyway

by my friends who are the recipients of many iPhone/iPad tips and hacks when their phones misbehave or when I mention I have a Google Hangout meeting.

by anyone who hears me talking about something I really interested in (I tend to get a bit excited about apple devices, most sci-fi especially Doctor Who and Harry Potter and also baking. I’m a total baking geek.)

or when I surprise other geeky friends with my knowledge of Doctor Who/Harry Potter/Star Wars (this is my favourite time to be called a geek – there’s always that tone of surprise, “you’re such a geek, I love it!”)

and though its not said by colleagues it’s implied everytime I get sent for to look at a computer/whiteboard/printer/router or have pupils from other classes turn up at my classroom door saying “can you fix this?”

Its got the point where children now stop me in the corridors to ask me questions like how to download the Match of the Day title sequence to add to their GreenScreen-ed iMovie project.

I like being a geek. I like technology, I like seeing it work to make classroom life easier, more engaging, closer to what life will be like for these pupils in the real adult world. I love it when using technology just works beautifully to extend and enhance the learning that is taking place. Until it doesn’t work. That’s a whole other story. I definitely don’t like that.

Last term in school we had an iPad week, supported by iTeach. It was great. The pupils in P3-P7 had lessons in GreenScreen and iMovie. Parents came in and had sessions with their children, the pupils teaching the adults how to use some of our core apps as they collaborated together. The Parents had their own session learning to use some apps, getting e-safety and set up advice and hearing about how we implement iPads in school.

We aren’t a 1:1 school. Each class has 4 iPads, one of which is normally the teacher’s and apple Tv linked into the ActivBoard. Despite not having a wealth of devices we are still able to integrate technology into learning in ways that aren’t forced or contrived and have real impact.

I’m excited about next year already. I want to get the school coding. I’m hoping every pupil, P1-P7, will be able to complete an hour of code and get a certificate for EU Code week. I want to get the KS2 pupils to start with involved in using stop-motion animation and the FS KS1s boosting their communication skills through podcasting. I want to have digital leaders in each classroom to support the teachers and fellow pupils. I have lots of big ideas that I’m really excited about.

I am such a geek. And I’m quite proud of that.

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