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The newsletter includes news from the Future Classroom Lab and three EC-funded projects: iTEC, Living Schools Lab and Creative Classrooms Lab. Click here to subscribe >>

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Expert teachers supporting CDPLab course design

Bringing together the project partners and expert teachers from Finland, Norway, Portugal, Italy, led to a very exciting and productive exchange of ideas, while reviewing and developing the phase one course modules for the CPDLab project. The project is developing three courses – a pedagogical-led Interactive Whiteboard course; a policy-led eSafety course; an implementation-led Future Classroom Scenarios course linked to the FP7, large scale iTEC project. The CPDLab project is partly funded by the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme.

Working in European Schoolnet’s Future Classroom Lab, the group worked on reviewing and developing each of the three courses and first modules to share the wide-range of experience and best practice held within each partner country. The first modules will be piloted in the autumn and offered through the EUN and project partners, with the full courses advertised in the Comenius funded in-service training database from the Summer of 2013. The Future Classroom Lab will be used to bring together those involved in teacher training at national, regional and local level to deliver the courses in a ‘train the trainer’ model, so they can be cascaded within local training models.


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Second FCL magazine published

FCL magazine - Nº2 - August 2014The major pan-European project on the design of the future classroom, iTEC, has come to its close at the end of August 2014. In the project European Schoolnet worked with education ministries, technology providers and research organisations to transform the way that technology is used in schools. Over the course of the project, educational tools and resources were piloted in over 2,500 classrooms across 20 European countries, with the goal of providing a sustainable model for fundamentally redesigning teaching and learning. The project involved 26 project partners, including 14 Ministries of Education, and funding of €9.45 million from the European Commission’s FP7 programme.

The results of the project have been published in a form of a magazine "Designing the future classroom" Nº2, available in five languages. The articles include stories from teachers and project partners, as well as a preview to the iTEC school pilot results and training activities, including the Future Classroom Scenarios course.

The magazine includes also articles on two related projects: Living Schools Lab and Creative Classrooms Lab.

Download the magazine "Designing the future classroom" Nº2 here:

The previous issue of the magazine is available in English (published: Oct 2013)

Trends survey - What will the future classroom be like?

What will the future learning be like?What will learning look like in 2020? How do you see the classroom in five years from now? How will technology be used to support teaching and learning?

European Schoolnet, a unique partnership organisation of 30 Ministries of Education from across Europe, wants to hear your opinion! Make your opinions heard in this five-minute survey and help shape the future classroom. All teachers, educators and anyone interested in the future of teaching and learning are welcome to reply to this survey. All answers are anonymous, but you can leave your email and name if you want to be contacted.

Read more about the Future Classroom Lab at http://fcl.eun.org and about European Schoolnet and trends.

Take part in the survey through one of the links below:

Primary School children visiting the Future Classroom Lab

The Future Classroom Lab, which is mostly visited by teachers and policy-makers, underwent the ultimate reality test on 17 June 2014, when 36 children from the FCL - students exploringEuropean School of Brussels IV spent a morning there doing various activities in each zone.

19 of the young German speaking visitors were 7-8 years old and the remaining 17 were 10-11 years of age. The excursion represented the finale of a project which the two classes started in school about the “school of the future”. 

The children were put into mixed-aged groups and had 30 minutes to rotate from zone to zone and accomplish certain tasks together, such as programming a robot, creating an animation with Lego figures and making a film using the green-screen. They also had the opportunity to use voting devices to brainstorm on topic-related issues, as well as to work with google Earth. 

The sole purpose, however, was not only to do activities in the FCL and see how lessons could be in the future, but it was also to enforce the collaboration between younger and older children. Each of them had a different technological background and knowledge and could therefore bring him/herself in differently. 

At the end, not only had the pupils created their own little film, learned how to make a robot move along a set trail etc. but they also shared their know-how and worked together in a team. 

The children enjoyed their time very much and they returned to their school with a number of ideas on how school could be like in the future and what could be useful for improving their own learning experience.  

 
Join our teacher training course on programming

Course: Programming for the 21st century classroom Programming and computational thinking skills are becoming ever more important in our society and working life. It is estimated that there will be a need for up to 900.000 ICT professional on the job markets in 2015. Moreover, computer science skills and competences are increasingly required in many different fields and not only in ICT jobs.

There are a growing number of countries in Europe and internationally, which refocus their ICT curricula on developing students’ computer programming and coding skills and introduce this topic in national, regional or school curricula. Learning to program develops skills such as problem-solving, logical reasoning and creativity, and can help give students motivation in mathematics theory as it encourages them to apply their knowledge.

European Schoolnet will organise a teacher training course "Programming for the 21st century classroom" which will take place on 13-17 October 2014 in the Future Classroom Lab. During the course teachers will learn about the importance of programming in today's society and education, learn ways to introduce programming in cross-curricular work, discover and test different programming tools, explore ways to motivate and encourage students, and develop a lesson plan for their classrooms. The workshop will be organised during the Europe Code Week. 

Esri and European Schoolnet to deliver geographic education

ArcGis OnlineSchool systems across Europe will soon have access to the world's leading online mapping software for delivering better geographic education to the classroom. Esri has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with European Schoolnet, an organization that works with multiple ministries of education to bring innovation to teaching and learning throughout Europe.

The MOU will be active for three years. During this time, Esri will advise the European Schoolnet team members on the use of ArcGIS Online, Esri's cloud-based platform, as well as help them develop a series of related lesson plans. ArcGIS Online will be implemented in European Schoolnet's Future Classroom Lab, a state-of-the-art project that allows educators to explore the latest developments in the evolving educational environment.

"The cloud-based capabilities of ArcGIS Online align very well with the other technologies we are using in the Future Classroom Lab," says Benjamin Hertz, project coordinator of European Schoolnet. "It is a great tool for teachers to help students become enthusiastic about geography and how it is relevant to many other subjects. Lessons with ArcGIS Online bring STEM [science, technology, engineering, and mathematics] education to a higher level."

Read the full press release by ESRI

Future Classroom Scenarios online course - 2nd edition will start in July!

Future Classroom Scenarios MOOC - example of a toolThe 2nd edition of the Future Classroom Scenarios course, by the European Schoolnet Academy will start on 28 July 2014. The enrollment for the course is now open.

The Future Classroom Scenarios course aims to introduce teachers, headteachers and ICT coordinators in schools to concepts, tools, and exchanges about the future classroom. The course is designed in response to the increasing challenges faced by educators around the world to accommodate the rising importance of technology in education and the impact this has on teaching and learning.

The course covers six modules which introduce you to key concepts like 21st century skills and allow you to exchange with your peers about your own experiences of trying out new activities and technologies in the classroom. During the course we will also reflect and discuss the role of technology tools in the future classroom and your current teaching and learning environments. A number of tools are introduced which help the process of innovation in the school and classroom but are equally useful for your everyday teaching practices.

Read more and get enrolled here

If you are a science teacher, don't miss out the 2nd edition of another EUN Academy course "Innovative Practices for Engaging STEM Teaching" which will re-start on 18 August.

10th Future Classroom Lab interview - Anne Looney about innovation in schools

The 10th interview of the Future Classroom Lab series has been published. In this great interview Anne Looney, the CEO of Ireland's National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, speaks to us about innovation in school, student engagement and national digital learning strategy.

The interview was filmed during the Living Schools Lab summer school in Dublin, May 2014. Anne Looney's presentation at the event is available here.

Classroom practice videos - making the most of your IWB

ICT is already being used in many ways in schools across Europe. Some teachers starting to embed technology into their lessons may find it challenging to find tools, ideas and resources that fit their needs. The European Schoolnet's Interactive Classroom Working Group has created a series of videos that present practical and engaging ways of using ICT for teaching and learning. The videos present real-life classroom practice and concrete examples, and are explained through the experience of the teachers themselves.

The first four videos are:

 

Webinar 5 June - Students' top 10 priorities for education

The recent LSL Summer School was spiced up by a group of student reporters, "Scoop Ducks", formed by Italian and Irish students. During the event they interviewed the participants, took pictures and video clips, sent tweets, wrote blog posts, and contributed to the programme by delivering presentation on "Top 10 priorities for education by students" and contributing on a following panel discussion.

This highlight presentation of the Summer School will be delivered as a webinar by the students themselves to a wider audience. The webinar will take place on 5 June, at 6:30 PM (CEST, Brussels time). Enrol here!

The webinar will be delivered 4 students of the Francesco Redi scientific high school in Arezzo (Italy): Andrea Liguori (19), Lorenzo Giambagli (18), Gabriele Redigonda (18) and Chiara Fraticelli (18).

See also the students' Summer School blog: scoopducks.wordpress.com

 

European Schoolnet Academy courses - A huge success

New teaching methods, innovative approaches in classroom, and original pedagogical tools, are among what teachers taking part in the European Schoolnet Academy pilot courses reported when surveyed at the end of their learning journey.

The first two courses, finished this May, covered key areas of expertise of European Schoolnet: Future Classroom Scenarios and Innovative practice for engaging STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) teaching, and reached out to more than 3,200 participants from 60 countries in Europe and across the world.

Not only were the retention and completion rates high, both qualitative and quantitative feedback of the participants confirmed a very positive experience on both courses.

More than 2,200 people had enrolled in the Future Classroom Scenarios, of which about 60% had actually started the course. Interestingly, the majority of participants had at least 16 years of work experience in the educational field. Retention throughout the course was high with 55% of those who started the course also completing the course. In particular the module completion was very high with more than 90% of those who started a module also completing it. All this is remarkably high if we consider that in average roughly 5 percent of students who sign up for a MOOC earn a credential signifying official completion of the course.

Moreover 80% of respondents to the course evaluation survey rated the course “very good” with another 19% rating it “good”.  “This course has given me new energy and inspiration. I love my job, but every once in a while you need a professional development that gets you reenergized.  So thank you. I also learned [about] many new tools such as Aurasma, Padlet, Tricider etc. that I plan to use in my classroom. I also started to approach my planning process in [the] light of the new ideas from the course.” [A teacher’s comment in the final module with 111 supporting votes]. You can follow #fcscourse on Twitter for updates on the course and also to get a taste of what participants thought and shared during the course (view image below too).

More than 1000 people had enrolled in the Innovative practice for engaging STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) teaching of which 65% had actually started the course.  Most participants were also experienced professionals with about half having worked in the educational field for at least 16 years.
Retention and completion rates were slightly lower than on the Future Classroom Scenarios course but remained comparatively high for a large scale course. Module completion was high in most modules and in particular the later ones, with close to 90% of those who started a module also completing it. Retention throughout the course was also high with 47% of those who started the course also completing the course.
 
Results of the course evaluation survey also suggest a substantial impact on classroom practice with 78% reporting to have tried out a new form of teaching since attending the course and 83% reporting they have succeeded in motivating more effectively their students in the STEM area.
 

Moving forward

Given the successful piloting phase, the Academy will move forward in expanding its course catalogue via courses coming from European Schoolnet projects but also increasingly from other partners.
 
The upcoming courses include:
  • Future Classroom Scenarios - 2nd round (Jul./Aug. 2014)
  • Innovative Practices for Engaging STEM Teaching - 2nd round (18 August 2014)
  • Coding in the Classroom for Secondary School Teachers (20 October 2014)
  • Further information about this course will soon be published.
  • Teaching and Learning 21st Century Skills (Nov./Dec. 2014)
  • Coding in the Classroom for Primary School Teachers (2015)
  • Further information about this course will soon be published.
  • Creativity in the Classroom (2015)
  • Innovative use of Tablets in Schools (2015)

Useful links:

 
 
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