It's the last week of term and we're in the middle of Christmas fun and frolics, but I've been using the time in-between rehearsals to allow the children to start to build their very own calculation library.
We've been using video as part of our flipped classroom but I've always produced the videos for the children. I'll certainly keep doing this as I've found it incredibly useful as it allows children to find their next steps and to know which challenge they are attempting each day.
The children have been using Edmodo recently to save and collect work and information and then store it in their online 'backpack,' Edmodo's version of the cloud.
They have found this incredibly useful as they are not losing documents and can post work simply from their backpack without searching for it. It also allows you to link your Google Drive account, which I have found incredibly useful. Easily share work from my library/backpack with the children.
So why ask the children to start creating their own videos and how did we do it?
I asked the children if they could prove to me that they could use the four written methods of calculation for addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Their response was - it's in our books. True, but I wonder if they can verbalise their calculations and show a real understanding, using the correct mathematical language?
Through discussion we also decided that it could be useful to create a video when we got stuck. Basically, "this is the bit where I got stuck, help me!" I liked that idea and set the children to work.
I use Vittle FREE A LOT when creating my short maths video guides. I find limiting my explanations to a minute enables me to get to the point. Its simplicity also stops me from spending ages 'beautifying' the presentation.
I simply speak alongside my screen drawings and then upload them to Edmodo to share with the children. There is plenty of information on my past posts about how we use videos to help us learn.
How do you create the video in one go? You make it look so easy! This was a common comment during the sessions - they're right, I have mastered the skill.
This got me thinking during the session - this could be a great assessment tool as well! Can the children subtract competently using a written method? Their explanation would tell me - I've only watched a handful so far, but from what I've seen has been priceless. I am watching 30 children calculating in real time, I'm not waiting to mark an end product and then trying to work out where they've gone wrong. I can actually see and hear them!
In the future I can see children beginning to use this to build up a portfolio of evidence to support assessment without levels. Pictures of writing with annotations analysing what was good using explain everything; mathematical videos modelling understanding of a skill and a collection of videos and pictures created by me and other children in the class or school.
Further through the day and a rehearsal or two later and the children were still going. Video after video was being uploaded and shared. Some chose to post their videos on their timelines and ask for feedback - instant peer assessment. Some shared via AirServer and we looked at them together.
So what next?
Today's session was more about getting to grips with the technology and seeing how we could use it in the New Year. I want to start allowing the children to create their own EduCanon videos and share them online for others to try.
What have I been up to and what's next for me?
Both my books are on sale on Amazon Kindle, Google Books and Kobo for digital download.
Amazon - Pause, Rewind My Teacher: A Flipped Approach to Learning
Amazon - Technology is a tool to be used not an outcome
The books detail all my work to date around flipped classrooms primary schools.
My article has been published in this months issue of Teach Primary I've written about flipping Art and English lessons in Primary Schools. I'm also writing another article for Teach Primary about using Edmodo in your classroom.
I've also just finished writing an article for Tech and Learning UK - a new education magazine for schools. I've written about the introduction of Computer Science in the new curriculum and how it has begun to impact on Primary schools.
I've been invited to present at The BETT show 2015. I'll be presenting Pause, Rewind My Teacher: Primary Flipped Learning at 10.00-10:45 on Saturday 24th January - see you all there!
I've also been invited to present at The Digital Education Show in London on Tuesday 30th June alongside some great names like Sir Ken Robinson, Sugata Mitra and many others - Find out more.
I'm also presenting at OSPedagogy in Manchester on Friday 13th March. You can find out more about this - http://ospedagogy.co.uk/cloud-pedagogy/
Keep following on Twitter @chriswaterworth