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Chimp Fu and Nessy

Just in time for summer hols, Nessy Learning Ltd have released a new app on both iTunes and Google Play– Chimp Fu! Chimp Fu press release

Chimp_Fu_app

Chimp Fu takes an aspect of the Nessy Learning System and provides a games-based graded approach to ‘chunking’ or segmenting words into syllables. The player is introduced to strategies to help break up words then can play a series of games. I’ve played it with some of my pupils and they seem to enjoy the games and progression. The neat thing about Chimp Fu is that if you have a Nessy.com account, Chimp Fu will sync to it allowing pupils to pick up progress on any device. The App costs £1.99 on iTunes but is FREE on 17th July for 24 hours, don’t miss out!! It’s £1.79 on Google Play.

|||***If you use the code ‘Red Dragon‘ for ANY Nessy product, then you will receive a 10% discount***|||

Chimp_Fu_word_chop

 

Whilst it’s aimed at KS 1 & 2 pupils, many older struggling readers may benefit from using the App.

The Nessy Learning System is now available online as NESSY READING and those of you who use Nessy Learning System will welcome this extension. Pupils can access the program from home, with the 1000s of worksheets and printable card games included in the program, it’s a steal. Even better with the 10% discount, just quote Red Dragon.

Nessy Reading is a pretty comprehensive online teaching resource and whilst nothing’s perfect, it ticks lots of boxes for engagement and motivation for those struggling with literacy and the humour running throughout is an endearing feature. There is plenty of overlearning and repetition of patterns and strategies. Don’t be put off by the KS1 & 2 focus, I’ve had plenty of KS3 pupils happily using the games and worksheets to reinforce lesson content.

You can play for free here

 

NB. I have delivered training for Nessy but receive no commission for sales, I just think it’s a good tool.

 

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#Naace Award and Las Vegas

On March 7th this year, I went up to Leicester to the Naace conference as I’d been nominated and shortlisted for the Inclusion Impact Award by Drew Buddie, whom I’d met briefly at the Teachmeet at BETT last year. I didn’t think I stood a chance, but went up as I wanted to congratulate the winner and also out of courtesy to Drew. I was truly and utterly gobsmacked, as anyone who was there would have seen, when I was announced as the winner, I am still so mightily proud today. There were so many other fabulous people nominated and they are all winners in my eyes and I’m truly humbled that the panel recognised something in my work. Many thanks to Cricksoft for their sponsorship of the award.

Here is the Prezi of what I submitted after being shortlisted – Finding The Key.

In the Prezi I refer to some work I do with the Kinect device, and here is>>>> some video <<< from a Teachmeet explaining the basics of the work.

I am presenting a paper based on this work at The 15th Annual Conference on Human-Computer Interaction, in Las Vegas in July.

My great friend Tony Brooks initially invited me to submit as he thought it would be good to show my work in the States. I’m very chuffed to be attending however I need to find some funding from somewhere.

There are some top people doing similar work here in the UK e.g. Anthony Rhys, James Winchester, LittleAngelsSch and Andrew Walker, and it would be great to be able to give their work a plug too.

I’m delighted, deeply grateful and thrilled to announce that the TES have very kindly offered to sponsor my trip to the States. Huge, huge thanks to Ann Mroz and Magda Wood and all at TES.

DSi and Games Based Learning – More developments

Last week I asked my pupils  to bring in their Nintendo DS games consoles in to lessons and some of them did this week. On Tuesday, my small (3) group of pupils (all identified as having SpLD) used them to play a spelling game using the Pictochat feature. I gave 1 pupil a word to give another (ck endings in this case), the pupil wrote it down and zapped it into the Pictochat screen. The asker then copied the word and also zapped it into the screen. All the pupils could then see if the spelling was correct. The next pupil took his turn and so it went on. The pupils reviewed and acknowledged success and helped correct inaccuracies with not so much a sense of ‘that’s wrong’, more of a ‘it’s right this time’ positivity. I felt a great satisfaction from removing myself from the scene once they were up and running, the pupils’ motivation and engagement in the task was, to say the least, intense.

Obviously the same task could be done with pencil and paper, but I firmly believe the fact they were holding these little boxes increased their participation and sense of  ‘flow’ in an activity that I had previously not witnessed. As only one pupil had brought his in, the other two said they had lost theirs ‘in the house somewhere’. It will be fantastic if they find them for next week!

There was a similar pattern to lessons on Wednesday, but today was probably the most exciting development.

H, (am keeping her anonymity for the time being, hopefully the PTB will assent that I can start these pupils blogging asap but there appears to be some red-tape to pass through first….) is a year seven pupil I have taught since September. She is very timid, almost an elective mute, rarely speaking but reads quite well albeit barely audibly.

The week before last she asked were we bringing our DS’s in? I said yes but last week the whole school was on ‘theme day’ so I didn’t have any pupils. This week, the other pupil who attends with her was absent. She  had been learning spellings with the ‘or’ letter pattern and sat down and immediately got her DS out and fired it up. I noticed a picture of a hamster on her start-up screen. She wrote this with no prompting;-

Pics from first foodie blog

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Foodie stuff

My mate started doing a food blog so as I’m rubbish at 365 and regular edu blogs thought I’d give it a go. This was a fairly quick repast of stir fried leek, Courgette, cabbage, bean sprouts with garlic, chili, ginger, sweet Thai sauce and seasoning with rare steak pan fried with soy and Mirin, tasted ok.

Primary Wall 2.0

The new Primary Wall 2.0 is out with some great new features http://primarywall.com/.

You can now change the backgrounds and range from plain colours to a variety of different scenes, these could be used as a writing prompt for example.

Some of the backgrounds; there are over 50 to choose from.

PWbckgrnds

You can also choose from a variety of funky fonts to perk up your pages.

There are 4 colours of notes you can choose from, great for sorting/classifying activities.

It’s an excellent collaborative sticky-note board that can be shared with anyone you invite, share notes, links, photos etc.

Password protection is available so only invited contributors can post, walls can be read-only so they can be used as message boards for homework activities, word lists etc.

Give it a try!

Testing out Posterous

Twice upon a time there were four bears.
best regards
Ceri Williams

NGFL-Cymru/Microsoft Innovative Teacher Award Winner 2011
twitter.com/cerirwilliams
twitter.com/torfaenjazz
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