Control, Random and Collide!

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So what happened to fidget spinners? This project enables the children to explore programming the iPad’s tilt function  (the accelerometer) and build it into their own games. These notes are for the @yorkshireRTC that was launched today – Good luck!

Although my skills tend to be in creative media, video, animation, digital photography etc, I’m constantly asked for support with coding. Hopscotch is still my tool, (Swift Playgrounds is good too if Apple are reading!). The joy of Hopscotch, is how with just a few basic concepts, children can design completely unique and original projects and games.

So the above uses 3 simple concepts .

1. Control we program the “hero” parallelogram to move in response to user tilting the iPad.

2. Random the “villain” fidget spinner icon is programmed to move randomly in terms of speed, distance and direction.

3. Collide so here we program  the objects so that when they collide, or in Hopscotch terms “bump” we hear a sound and illicit a “game over” message.

With just these three elements in place children can experiment and begin to build their own games. If you are reading this on an iPhone or iPad, you can download the project and remix it.

Here’s my code. There’s probably more elegant ways to code it, but I’m a learner just like the children in the classroom.

Rock Kidz

The Rock Kidz guys came and totally rocked at Heygreen Primary this week!

Hey! Hey! Hey!

After School Computing Club

We’ve had some fun this term making Bloxels video games. Some of the children have become very adept at designing with this app, adding story/narrative elements and instructions. We were going to enter the Bloxel’s competition (the prize includes a trip to the USA), but the majority of children at school are Muslims, they were very worried that they wouldn’t be allowed into the country.

So we made our own little competition  complete with winner’s T shirt!

We do love America, Americans and we love Bloxels. Shame some people can’t reciprocate the love.

 

Video made with Quik, iMovie and other Apple magic. Weird audio glitch in the middle is good though. Sorry about that!

Handing out and handing back PDF’s in Seesaw.

Ok! yep, I know you can’t edit a PDF in Seesaw. But with the file editing option you can share PDF files to the class , like worksheets and SAT papers, saving time and trees.

More importantly, your class can use another app, in this case Notability to annotate and hand back the completed worksheet or SAT paper.

Here’s how…

 

Trilby TV – Switch it on!

This video shows Y6 St Silas children enjoying the Hour of Code last week. We were using Apple’s Swift Playgrounds. Playgrounds is a good bridge between programming blocks and hard coding. It sits well alongside the Hopscotch app and feels like a very “grown up” experience for Y5 and Y6 learners. The app and content is quite large and needs a relatively new iPad.

The video itself, was made using the Quik app. This (unsurprisingly) is a quick way to combine text video and photos. Sometimes, there just isn’t enough time to shoot and edit a movie. Think –  Pic Collage for  video! Great for busy Teachers and LSA’s.

The video in turn, is shared across school, using the extremely marvellous Trilby TV digital signage. I’ve been wanting to use this tool for ages, but it’s only this week that I’ve had time to start getting to grips with it. Trilby TV lets us share videos across the school, making playlists for and targeting specific Apple TV’s. It’s great for the school foyer screen, but far more flexible than the clunky tools currently available. The fact that teams of teachers can all contribute to the stream of content takes the burden away from one person.  The videos can also be streamed/blogged externally using a nifty Trilby Media player.

It is a very well thought out way of compiling and presenting digital content in and beyond school. Switch it on!

Create an interactive timeline in Book Creator that works within Seesaw!

I get asked a lot about timeline apps. Books Creator has all the functions you need for an interactive timeline. However, if you use Seesaw and want interactivity you will need to share as PDF. Note only text and image will publish as a PDF. For many of us though, text and image is enough!

Of course iBooks with video and audio is great too, but this is about using two of the most popular apps in primary/elementary education and pushing some boundaries.

Organise on Mac, Teach on iPad with Google Drive.

Not all teachers are this lucky. But for those that have access to an iPad and a Macbook, Google Drive (for Education) offers unlimited storage. This combination of Apple hardware and Google infrastructure makes sense for many, many educators!

This video was made for new staff teaching at Heygreen and St Silas Primary Schools in Liverpool.