It’s amazing how fast time moves on when I see I haven’t posted anything since January 18th. It’s not that there isn’t anything to write about, but just the opposite. There’s so much going on, it’s sometimes hard to find the time. Some of the big things I’ve been involved with lately are very exciting.
The submission deadline for the Innovative Education Forum Berlin 2010 has now closed and the level of submissions is outstanding. There is a great mix of Primary and Post Primary entries and I can say from early looks that the standard is extremely high, so it will be interesting to see what wins. Judging will take place on Friday February 5th and the winners will be contacted that evening. The judges are from Microsoft, RTU, C2k, University of Ulster and the Inspectorate.
Good luck to all of those Teachers who took the time and effort to create their VCTs
This year for the 3rd time Microsoft volunteers will be partnering with officers from the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) and the An Garda Siochana from the Republic of Ireland to deliver Internet Safety presentations to Primary school across the island of Ireland. This is in conjunction with the European Safer Internet Day 2010 and their Think B4U Post Campaign . There are almost 50 Microsoft volunteers partners with officers and we’ll be visiting more than 60 schools over 2 days (Feb 8th and 9th). My colleagues in England are all participating and you can get the details from Ray Fleming’s blog of January 25th.
Along with the Internet Safety Day, the planning for the official opening of the Centre for Excellence in Leadership, Innovation and Learning (CELIL) has gotten underway. I 1st discussed this in an earlier post. The opening will take place on May 10th as part of a 2 day conference entitled “Re-imagining Education” where our special guest and keynote speaker will be Michael Fullan (his details on this previous post). This will include a series of sessions to various audiences and will be open to Educators both North and South. There will much greater details on what is happening, what is being covered and how to register in the coming weeks.
Oh, and by the way, I took delivery of a Microsoft Surface which will be in the new Centre. I’m working on getting Education specific applications for it and it’s a real WOW piece of technology.
Microsoft also released a couple of new applications for Education that I felt were worthwhile mentioning.
Mouse Mischief is a tool that Microsoft makes available free of charge, and that allows teachers to work with Microsoft Office PowerPoint to make interactive presentations. With Mouse Mischief, teachers can add multiple choice questions to their presentations, and large groups of students can answer the questions using mice connected to the teacher’s PC.
Mouse Mischief not only gives students the ability to engage, have fun, and learn in new, interactive ways, but it also provides teachers with a more affordable alternative to purchasing expensive student response systems, commonly known as clickers, by letting students use affordable wired or wireless USB mice that their school already own. You can find out more and download it for free HERE
With the imminent rollout of Office 2007 across the C2k estate, the timing of this release couldn’t have been better. Ribbon Hero is a game for Word, Excel and PowerPoint that helps you understand the new “ribbon” across the top of those applications. It works for both Office 2007 and Office 2010 (currently a free download in Beta). Now you can have some fun, compete with with friends and learn at the same time. Isn’t that what education is suppose to be about
These links will be added in the software section on the right side of the home page.