Our Breakfast Morning involves 2 teachers sharing some ideas and examples to use in the class. Any teacher is welcome to attend the sessions while the 2 teachers present andand they are immersed in a classroom situation where they can test out the tactics that they may use with their students. We have had a key focus this year on introducing helpful and useful apps for the effective use of our iPads in the classroom while also sharing cooperative learning techniques that can also be used.
Today Mairéad introduced the use of two apps, “Blooket” and “Wordwall”. Blooket is an app that incorporates interactive learning techniques in the form of questions that need to be answered as part of an online competition. This encourages accountability per student, so everyone gets involved but also infuses a competitive nature into the mix to get the students excited about getting to an end point. We had a lot of fun in the “Gold Quest” Challenge where we were collecting gold blocks for each correct answer in our quiz, while we were also stealing gold off each other to add to the tension to the game. The second app that was introduced was called “Wordwall”. We were sent a link to our devices where the app generated a series of Irish terms where we had to try and drag and drop the correct english word into it. This was in the form of a time challenge and it showed us our time and also how many phrases we got correct in the game. This was more of an individual task with a similar outcome at the end to help assess what was learned in the class.
We ended the session with a demonstration of how “Inside/Outside Circles” work. This activity is a model based on collaborative group work with the main aim of starting a discussion and sharing personal points of view. It starts off with half the group starting on the outside of a class in a “circle” with the rest of the class lining up in front of a partner in an “inner circle”. A question is put up on the board and the pair are asked to discuss and then feedback is given at random back to the class as a whole. Then one of the circles is asked to rotate ( all in the same direction) so they have a new partner to talk to, a different question is put up on the board, both students discuss and the process of gaining feedback is repeated. The topic of conversation for the teachers today was very fitting for our current situation whereby we had to discuss and reminisce about what our favourite holidays were, where are we staycationing in Ireland this summer and if we had the chance to go anywhere in the world tomorrow where would it be. We all divulged in some of our happiest memories and fed the information back to the group of teachers to actively demonstrate how the activity would unfold in the classroom scene. This activity can be altered for any subject specific task at the start middle or end of a lesson.
This is fourth and final Breakfast morning this year and we received a positive response with the attendance and feedback on the workshops that were delivered throughout the year. We look forward to assessing the success and improvements that need to be made for next year to progress the content and efficiency of our breakfast mornings which is a valuable resource for any of our teachers here in NCC who are looking to introduce anything new into their classrooms.
Some quotes and feedback on the session by some of our teachers about this morning's session:
“ Really informative and innovative idea this morning. So practical and user friendly. We do this stuff already but the wordwall lets the student's have so much fun while doing the activities'
Great fun, competitive streaks came out and injected energy into the topic
“It’s great to try out all of the apps and activities to get into the mindset of the student. Once we are involved in a classroom like situation, we can really see how an activity unfolds in the student lens. This helps plan and incorporate new things in our own learning environments. If we like the activity as teachers, why not use them in our own class for our students? “
“The sharing of best practices between our own teachers is a powerful resource and tool to help us develop our own classrooms.”
“Thanks so much for this morning, have already many ideas in my head how to use the strategies and Apps”
- M. Piare