Tag Archives: bbc report

Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over…

Update to BBC report and what finally made me feel worthwhile this week:

As mentioned before, I lead Priory’s BBC News School Report. This year we are aiming for bigger and better in terms of the scale and hopefully wider scale influence of the project. We don’t like to only do projects for the sake of it, or to only have an impact on a handful of children. Sometimes it is easy to only target or include the same small groups of students, perhaps Gifted and Talented, or ‘the good ones’. On the other extreme I often see ‘the nice children’ feeling left out when they see exciting rewards being offered to those who are disengaged, so it seems as if poor behaviour is being rewarded. So with us, BBC report is advertised across board to all year 8 students. It is sold as a chance to get involved in something different and unique. We are part of a Rights Respecting School and so there is a spin on the idea of having a right to forming groups, to collaborate, to express opinions. In the end I expect to only work with about 15-30 willing committed students who have chosen freely, expressed interest and proven their responsibility to take part. But everyone gets the chance first.

This year the live day (broadcast day) for BBC school report is 21st March which coincides with World Poetry Day 2013. Interesting! So, because I felt that already running a project that involves coordinating kidsmeet Pompey (with approximately 60students from 6 local schools plus teachers and professionals), writing news broadcasts on the mobile policy, geocaching, Historic Dockyards, and more, simply wasn’t enough (!) I suddenly thought let’s include this theme!

The English Department @prioryengdept is also involved in the report this year so it seemed serendipity to include the literacy link. So the plan is this.

1) Have students back in school research the exhibits of the Historic Dockyard in advance in English lessons and practise the skills of research, analysis and synthesis of poetry.
2) At the Historic Dockyards, students on the live day will work with local poets to write poems for each exhibit – e.g. HMS Warrior, the Mary Rose, the Victory, Action Stations, etc., which can then be laminated and framed to display at each exhibit for the public.
3) Each poem to have a QR code tagged on that links to web pages on local poets, poetry styles, history of exhibits, etc,.
4) The poems and QR links will form in a sequence so that visitors actually get clues to follow a poetry orienteering activity that will guide them around the Historic Dockyard.

What do you think? I’m really excited! I love the fact that potentially we will involve more students this way, and leave a more permanent reminder of our work. Something that will have an impact on a wider audience and scream ‘We’re Priory School and we did this!’. Something cheerful and positive in the midst of slightly turbulent times maybe.

So, if you are / or know a local poet or are interested in this in any way then get involved! Or come to the dockyard after the event and see our work.

I will admit, the last few weeks have been really hard, with me questioning myself and my value a lot, and feeling as if I’m not good enough to be doing a job I consider so important. But in the midst of that, I now have this little hope that if we pull this off (and by we I mean the kids, as from now on it’s all down to them!) then it is the kind of thing that to me is spine tingling-ly exciting. And that’s why I do the job.


How did I spend my Saturday night?

BBC school reportAfter a heavy day of house clearing and cleaning that left me emotionally weary and physically exhausted and grimy I was expecting to have a quiet Saturday evening in with my siblings, some friends, a large glass of wine and a very welcome delivery of Dominos pizza. However, no sooner had the opening credits of the latest Sherlock Holmes movie started rolling than the twitter-sphere starting pinging and I had to force my brain back in gear.

My previous post was about the BBC News School Report and what we have been up to in the past. Well we are starting to gear up again for 2013 and have been considering what projects to include this year. One of our big ongoing whole school projects has been mobile@priory – the introduction of our (at times controversial) Mobile Device policy at Priory School. For more information on this see David Rogers’ blog for various posts, e.g. the Mobile Device cookbook  or Mobile Secret Classroom. Or if you are at BETT on Friday 1st Feb then pop along to the Learn Live session that David is leading with me as the ‘glamorous assistant’ – here BETT Learn live . I’ve written about the use of mobile devices in lessons and we are keen to include them and other tech when it is appropriate and will serve to facilitate learning. Anyway, I digress slightly.

We are lucky enough to be reporting live from Action Stations at the Historic Dockyard in Portsmouth on the BBC news school report live day (21st March) and this is also the venue for TeachMeet Pompey on 6th March. If you are local and interested / involved in education then come along to #tmpompey – informal CPD, share ideas, eat cake – see the sign up page and come along! At the teachmeet, students from Priory School will be sharing their use of mobile devices in lessons and how it has helped empower their learning. Basically students become the teachers for the evening. Then we all get to play laserquest but that’s another story! This will be recorded for the BBC News School Report and be a chance for our students to showcase what they have been up to in front of a ‘grown up’ audience of professionals.

So yesterday evening we were discussing this event via twitter. @fubar2u_2000 is the Education Manager for Action Stations and as an ex-teacher himself understands some of the possibilities and challenges. What started as a simple discussion of this rapidly evolved (with some steering by @daviderogers ) into us deciding we would try something new. For 2013 we are going to attempt to hold what we think will be the first local ‘kidsmeet’Basically, we are inviting local schools to come to Action Stations on the live report day bringing a selection of students and a willing staff member to come and take part in activities based on co-construction and collaborating, to generate lessons / learning activities that will use mobile devices and ‘guerilla learning’. Students will work with teaching staff and other professionals to share their own ideas and experiences, and plan how to use mobile devices in a positive way to enable and empower learning.

Scary? Exciting? I think both. Logistically it will be interesting coordinating so many different parties on an MoD site and still maintaining the BBC School Report momentum. Our roving reporters will record and interview students and staff taking part, and it will all be shared via the final news bulletin (uploaded to school site), a live posterous blog, twitter feed @priorysouthsea and @priorygeography, and will hopefully be included in BBC Radio Solent  and South Today broadcasts.

It gave me a real buzz of excitement last night and lifted my spirits while the twitter feed kept churning through ideas and suggestions – a live stream evolution of unplanned planning! It will be interesting to see how ‘kidsmeet’ compares with ‘teachmeet’. And maybe it will become a regular thing!

Although logistically it may well be a nightmare, it is still hugely exciting. Never a dull day for @priorygeography ! I hope that the quote below would never be true of me or the department I love working in.

“I feel sorry for the person who can’t get genuinely excited about his work. Not only will he never be satisfied, but he will never achieve anything worthwhile.” (Walter Chrysler)

If you are local or want to be involved somehow with ‘kidsmeet’ then drop me an email or DM on twitter or use KidsMeet sign up page. Let’s be controversial en masse! Twitter feed