The government agency for technology in education, Becta, recently held a ‘Show & Tell’ education workshop, in which parents and teachers came together to experience the advantages that technologies, such as learning platforms, can have on the learning process. The location for the event was at Grays Infant and Nursery School, where staff and parents were keen to share their stories on how learning platforms have changed and are continuing to change their children’s learning for the better.
The Infant and Nursery school, located in Newhaven East Sussex, recently won the Extended School Engagement award for the University Awards in Excellence, the Becta ICT Excellence Award for Leadership Management and Collaboration, as well as being the first Infant and Nursery school in East Sussex to gain the ICT mark. Grays School’s Head Teacher, Christine, is a member of her Local Authority’s advisory board, ensuring that other schools in the East Sussex area are able to learn from her experiences of using learning platforms.
The interactive event began with an introduction to Grays School’s learning platform, presented by the Head Teacher. A learning platform is a combination of various technologies that work together as a whole in order to provide opportunities for extending learning inside and outside of school. Students, parents, carers and school staff can access resources, online storage and tools for communication, collaboration and showcasing.
“I think overall the learning platform has enhanced the school here. It has supported the pupils’ engagement with their learning and it is building their self esteem. We use it to celebrate achievement and to celebrate progress, and for our children to see their learning and be proud of it,” expressed Christine Terrey, Head Teacher at Grays Infant and Nursery School.
Grays School’s learning platform aims to support and add value to the work that the pupils already do by presenting them with opportunities for extended learning after the school day has ended. Even the nursery school pupils are able to login to the learning platform, using a series of picture icons rather than words. Uploading lessons to the learning platform, within minutes of a lesson ending, means that children can reflect on the work they are doing and can share their day’s activities with their families.
Learning platforms can be unique to each individual school depending on its wants and needs, but most typically include pupil information, online learning resources, pupils’ work files and communications tools. However, all learning platforms provide pupils, parents and teachers with a combination of services that are safe and securely available over the school intranet or the Internet. School staff, children and parents can do this by logging in with a password to access the various services, materials and resources.