Formative Assessment Ebook on the iBooks Store!

This year at school we launched a new  Professional Learning program, where we are encouraged as teachers to research topics of interest to us in order to reflect and record our own professional development. The final outcome is a book produced in iBooks Author and then published to the ibooks Store.

I have always been interested in publishing and you can read about my experience using the great BookCreator App here. My role as a learning technologies coach means I get to work with teachers and share ideas, helping them implement them in their own classrooms. This has led me to co-publish with Maria Ruiz my own book on the iBooks Store!

The experience has also served as preparation for the book I will produce at the end of the school year, reflecting on my own professional development as well as my teaching. I now feel better prepared to make an even better book next time!

If you are new to the use of technology and would like to read some easy to implement ideas for starting to use formative assessment in your digital classroom, please download the book here!

The whole process is not complicated and made easy by the step by step publishing, making it possible for anyone to become a publisher!

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The Smart Talk – Family Contract

Working in a 1:1 iPad school, one of the top concerns shared by parents is how much time their children are spending on digital devices. This is completely understandable and something which should be discussed openly.

As a school community it is important to involve parents and invite them to participate in this discussion. When I have met parents and talked about this topic I have always tried to explain that the technology can be used in so many positive ways, I feel very passionate about opening the possibilities of what children can do in their free time at home, other than play games or watch youtube videos.

In my meetings with parents we discuss responsible use and how to encourage children to use the technology to create content, be it their own videos, podcasts, books, etc.

If you would like some more ideas on how to encourage children to use technology creatively, then have a look at the Essential Creativity Guide for some ideas from Common Sense Media.

There are tools that can help parents manage ‘screen time’ like for example the Ourpact application that allows parents to limit screen time on a device by blocking internet and app access. Another option is TheSmartTalk, a website that produces a ‘contract’ which can be customised by parents and children and then printed and signed.

If you would like some more information regarding screen time and finding the right balance for children and the use of technology please do visit Common Sense, a very valuable resource for parents and teachers!