Links for 2015-10-08 []⤴

from @ Ewan McIntosh | Digital Media & Education

Never aggregate ephemeral sheep⤴

from @ John's World Wide Wall Display

Liked Fridge Poetry – Google Sheets as Database on Bionic Teaching
Back in 2013 I built a refrigerator poetry page using javascript. I really wanted to make it so anyone could add any words they wanted in some easy way but didn’t have the skills to do that at the time. It’s been hanging out in the back of my mind since then and the bits and pieces I’ve learned since then now make it pretty straightforward.
Liked Fridge Poetry – Google Sheets as Database on Bionic Teaching
Back in 2013 I built a refrigerator poetry page using javascript. I really wanted to make it so anyone could add any words they wanted in some easy way but didn’t have the skills to do that at the time. It’s been hanging out in the back of my mind since then and the bits and pieces I’ve learned since then now make it pretty straightforward.

It is National Poetry Day. When I was in class I always wanted to do something for this, but only occasionally remembered. Although I don’t have a way with words I like working with poetry in the class. I also occasionally like twitter haiku and the like.

I read Tom Woodward’s blog regularly and yesterday I noticed Fridge Poetry – Google Sheets as Database in my RSS reader. Given that I’ve messed about with fridges before 1, I took a look: Google Sheets – Fridge Poetry.

The really interesting thing 2 about this is that Tom has set it up so that it is easy to make another fridge with different sets of words. He even has a link on his post to create a copy of the google spreadsheet to make your own copy (you need a google account, a low entry bar). The sheet itself has the instructions.

Here is one with a selection of words from Scotland small? by Hugh MacDiarmid.

How do you save something like this? Take a screenshot.

What I really love about this idea, besides the sharing of how to do it, it the easy way it can be extended and used with a different set of words.

  1. That was back in 2002 when I was playing with Flash
  2. The other interesting this is the JavaScript and php stuff.

Learning Journeys⤴

from @

‘Expecting a child to learn only from a textbook is like asking them to look at a travel brochure and calling it a holiday’ – author unknown. Learning outside the classroom. Everyone knows it works. It’s memorable, engaging, motivating; everything education should be. The pinnacle of this experience is the school trip. Think about your […]


from @ fizzics

Satellites are similar to the horizontally launched projectiles we looked at last week.  A satellite moves horizontally at constant speed but also accelerates vertically towards the planet’s surface due to gravity.  Thankfully, the curvature of the Earth means the satellite doesn’t crash but keeps on orbiting the planet.

According to SQA, National 5 candidates need to know about the

Impact of space exploration on our understanding of planet Earth, including use of satellites.

So far this week, we have covered many applications in which satellites are used to study our planet.  Examples include;

monitoring volanoes


weather forecasting
Screen Shot 2015-10-07 at 23.22.35









climate change







Satellites are also used for communication. Some of these communication satellites are part of the telephone network, others broadcast tv signals back to Earth.  Most of these communication satellites are placed in a geostationary orbit.  At an altitude of 36,000 km, a satellite positioned above the equator takes 24 hours to complete one orbit of the Earth.  In other words, a satellite at this height always sits above the same spot on the Earth’s surface.  You don’t need to change the position of your Sky dish because the Sky satellite always sits in the same location in above the Earth.  It is a geostationary satellite.

If you were able to see the Earth from the perspective of a geostationary satellite, your view would look like this.

I have included a BBC programme on satellites.  Please take time to watch both parts (it was split in to due to the file size) during the October break; you’ll need just under an hour to see the full programme.

Feel free to ask questions or discuss the program when we’re back to school.

Watch this one first…

Satellites-part1 from mr mackenzie on Vimeo.

and then this one.

Satellites-part2 from mr mackenzie on Vimeo.

If you’d rather watch the programme in one sitting, you can download the video file attached to the bottom of this post.

If the weather’s rubbish during the holidays, here is another video about satellite monitoring of the planet

Enjoy your holidays!

Mobile in Motion⤴

from @ John's World Wide Wall Display

I’ve posted a few things here in reaction to the idea about banning mobiles in school: tagged: yesmobile.

Here is another reason for using mobile in learning:

I grabbed this video in the park this morning with my phone in the slowmo mode.

I would have though that the ability to do this outweighs the need to address problems of distraction?

Presentation: LRMI – using to facilitate educational resource discovery on the web and beyond⤴

from @ Sharing and learning

Today I am in London for the ISKO Knowledge Organisation in Learning and Teaching meeting, where I am presenting on LRMI and to facilitate educational resource discovery on the web and beyond. My slides are here, mostly they cover similar ground to presentations I’ve given before which have been captured on video or which I have written up in more detail. So here I’ll just point to my slides for today and summarise the new stuff.

LRMI uptake

People always want to know how much LRMI exists in the wild, and now reports this infomation. Go to the page for any class or property and at the top it says in how many domains they find markup for it. Obviously this misses that not all domains are equal in extent or importance: finding LRMI on pjjk,net should not count as equal to finding it on, but as a broad indicator it’s OK: finding a property on 10 domains or 10,000 domains is a valid comarison. LRMI properties are mostly reported as found on 100-1000 domains (e.g. learning resource type) or 10-100 domains (e.g. educational alignment). A couple of LRMI properties have greater usage, e.g. typical age range and is based on URL (10-50,00 and 1-10,000 domains respectively), but I guess that reflects their generic usefulness beyond learning resources. We know that in some cases LRMI is used for internal systems but not exposed on web pages, but still the level of usage is not as high as we would like.

I also often get asked about support for creating LRMI metadata, this time I’m including a mention of how it is possible to write WordPress plugins and themes with schema / LRMI support, and the drupal plugin. I’m also aware of “tagging tools” associated with various repositories, e.g. the learning registry and the Illinois Shared Learning Environment. I think it’s always going to be difficult to answer this one as the best support will always come from customising whatever CMS an organisation uses to manage their content or metadata and will be tailored to their workflow and the types of resources and educational contexts they work in.

As far implementation for search I still cover google custom search, as in the previous presentations.

Current LRMI activities

The DCMI LRMI task group is active, one of our priorities is to improve the support for people who want to use LRMI. Two activities are nearing fruitition: firstly, we are hoping to provide examples for relevant properties and type on the web site. Secondly, we want to provide better support for the vocabularies used for properties such as alignment type (in the Alignment Object), learning resource type etc, by way of clear definitions and machine readable vocabulary encodings (using SKOS). We are asking for public review and comment on LRMI vocabularies, so please take a look and get in touch.

Other work in progress is around schema for courses and extending some of the vocabularies mentioned above. We have monthly calls, if you would like to lend a hand please do get in touch.

OER16 Submissions Open⤴

from @ Open World

oer16_logoI’m delighted to announce that OER16 Open Culture is now accepting submissions for the conference which will take place at the University of Edinburgh on the 19th and 20th April 2016. The call for proposals was launched at the ALT Conference in Manchester at the beginning of September and the submissions site is now open.

Submissions are invited for presentations, lightning talks, posters, and panels and workshops on the themes of:

  • The strategic advantage of open, creating a culture of openness, and the reputational challenges of openwashing.
  • Converging and competing cultures of open knowledge, open source, open content, open practice, open data and open access.
  • Hacking, making and sharing.
  • Openness and public engagement.
  • Innovative approaches to opening up cultural heritage collections for education.

If you have any queries about the conference themes feel free to contact me at / or on twitter @lornamcampbell. Any queries regarding the submission process should be directed to Anna Davidge at ALT,

Further information about the conference is available here and you can follow @oerconf and #oer16 on twitter. Look forward to seeing you in Edinburgh in the Spring!



from @

This is posted later than I planned but the rugby took precedent on Saturday night (What a game!) then life during the week happened. I had my first experience of #pedagoo last weekend at #PedagooWorcs. Nervous and excited were just some of the great, albeit conflicting, feelings I felt before the ‘event’. I was originally […]

OneNote Apps⤴

from @ Mainland Adventures

Yesterday Microsoft released an updated OneNote Class App This has raised some confusion and I have had a few queries around it.

Therefore I have used the PowerPoint 2013 addin to do a screen recording and exported as this video.

I hope that is a useful

A Nation of Innovation in Education: Getting Social⤴

from @ Edu Tech Stories

This post looks at the importance of Scottish schools getting social if the country is looking to become a nation of innovation in education... And in order to get social, some hustle will be required.

So, I'm following the first day of the Scottish Learning Festival via Twitter and a curious Tweet catches my eye. 

The Tweet is from TES Scotland and highlights that in a room full of educators and education stakeholders, only 3 people raise their hand with a question for the Education Minister.

My first thought is "That sounds like a culture and/or trust issue." This maybe isn't exactly news or an original insight given that educators are on the verge of industrial action.

#SLF15 Stats
But I wonder what the data has to say on the issue. I make a note to check the profiles of people who are Tweeting on the #SLF15 hashtag after the event… The results are a little surprising! What's surprising here is the lack educators voices at the event. Out of 545 people posting there were only 24 schools and 71 educators.

94 Suppliers
88 3rd Sector
84 Central Government
71 Teachers
28 Council 
24 Schools
2 Students

Out of over 500 people posting on the hashtag, only 20% are people who are in the classroom today. 

These stats remind me of an event I went to that was designed to help stakeholders engage with the areas local schools and there was a room full of 150-200+ people and when someone asked "How many people are here from schools today?" ... four hands went up. It was hilarious and depressing at the same time.

Perhaps there just aren't too many Scottish Educators on Social Media I think to myself. 

Raising a Digital Nation? Then Get Social!
Then on Friday I watch Chris van der Kuyl's keynote Raising the Digital Nation and I'm blown away, everything that Chris advocates for are things that I have been working on in education... However, the challenges are significant.

If anyone is looking to act on Chris' call to action then, in my experience, a big priority will be for schools to "Get Social." I’ve been looking at these issues for a while and have had projects that have been successful and others that failed. I have a good idea of why the exact same approach worked in one area of education, but didn't in others.

In my opinion, whether or not Scottish educators are able to become "Connected Educators" will have a big impact on how quickly change can be made. 

As a random sales person the best (Indeed the only) way to demonstrate this is to get data that supports this suggestion. This week I pulled together 610 Scottish school Twitter accounts and started curating and analysing the data.

Scottish Schools Twitter Data

In forthcoming posts I will be exploring this data in detail. There are three things that I hope to demonstrate is that;

1) Adoption of Technology
Technology does not roll out in a linear fashion and that, whether looking at education suppliers or government initiatives, the way things are done at the moment could be massively improved.

These improvements are pretty much what Chris advocated for when he addressed the Scottish Learning Festival delegates.

2) Social Media Training
The dates when school twitter accounts were opened and number of Tweets and followers that each schools has varies a great deal. The dates varying is normal and to be expected. 

52 accounts have more than 1,000 followers 
76 have less than 100 and 
53 accounts appear to be dormant. 

One school @KirnPrimary has 1,200 followers but has only sent 268 Tweets, while @Stirling_High has 1,900 followers after sending 10,300 tweets out.

What are the factors here? Will the data suggests that there may be a training issue with social media?

Something I am sure I would find curious is if I were to compare the followers that these groups have with education decision makers (MPs) + how often MPs visit the school / the number of times the MP has discussed social media with educators or students. 

Just before the General Election I curated the number of followers that candidates had as I wanted to assess the correlation between the election and Twitter followers. Collectively the 558 MPs on Twitter had almost 7 Million followers (But they also had more budget and may have had a dedicated social media advisor)

3) Raising a Digital Nation
Based on my experience and research, there are a number of factors that lead me to believe the things that Chris van der Kuyl discusses are possible... that Scotland can become a nation of innovation in education. It is also my belief that this could be achieved within a relatively short space of time, that is IF Scottish educators can become more social. 

One aspect of my work in the US has been to discuss the sales process and how technology gets adopted with my education contacts.

I hope to use this data set of Scottish Schools on Twitter to discuss the value of understanding things like "Network Effects," "Feedback Loops" "The Technology Adoption Cycle," "Product Market Fit," "Net Promoter Scores" and customer profiles.

The next link that you click is my attempt to put "social proof" to work to encourage more schools and educators to get onto social media and connect with colleagues. Check out this map of how many Scottish Schools have a Twitter account

268 Primary Schools & 246 Secondary Schools on Twitter

I'll be mentioning a few tools, resources and ideas in follow up posts but if seeing the number of schools who are now on Twitter has encouraged you to open an account, here are some suggestions for you to get started.

1) Open a Twitter account
2) Download the Tweachmeapp
3) Join the New Teachers to Twitter group by following the #NT2T Hashtag

4) October is Connected Educator Month, so check it out
5) Follow all these Twitter accounts to connect with other schools
6) Check out this list of EdChats and connect with colleagues who you have shared interests with.