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Mary Immaculate shares international best practice in digital competency with cutting edge Beacon technology

South Wales-based Mary Immaculate High School is sharing its experiences of using cutting edge ibeacon technology within the classroom, with schools across the world who are interested in how the Bluetooth-powered technology is transforming classroom learning. The school has been working with education

technology company Aspire2Be for the past six months to set up beacon technology across the school, to enable pupils to access learning

resources and exercises related to their lessons, through an application on their phones or tablets. They are one of only a handful of schools in the UK, and the first school in Wales, to use the technology, which will allow students to access a more engaging and personalised learning experience. Beacons are Low Energy Bluetooth emitting

devices which can push out messages and provide information to individuals by connecting with an

application on a phone or tablet. It is a simple

and low cost way of sending tailored information to school pupils and is proving successful in enriching the learning experience as teachers are trained to develop lesson plans and resources which can make use of the technology available. A bespoke application was developed by the IT

department within Mary Immaculate High School which enables students to access a range of learning materials to complement their studies across all curriculum subjects. The school’s involvement with the project has been shared as an example of best practice with interested schools as far afield as Dubai in the UAE. Rhys Corcoran, Geography teacher at Mary

Immaculate High School was involved in developing the project with Aspire2Be. He said: “For teaching staff, the package created by Aspire 2Be has allowed us to really change the way we deliver lessons here at Mary Immaculate. It allows us to present information in a variety of ways, and therefore enables students to access far more information, in different formats during their lessons. We can bring together websites, videos, interactive quizzes and opportunities for students to record their own audio visual resources, with more traditional methods of learning, to give our young people a fully blended experience. The use of beacon technology makes our pupils’ learning journey far more stimulating and we are already seeing an impact on achievement when these teaching modules are assessed.”

New website launched to engage young people across the UK in the energy debate

From heating homes, to powering gadgets and fuel for transport, energy underpins our modern lives and the demand for energy is growing on a global scale. A new interactive website has launched designed to engage 11-16 year olds across the United Kingdom in a debate on our future energy supply - how demand for energy can be met reliably, at an acceptable economic

and environmental cost. Visitors to OurFuture.Energy will discover the science behind the critical issues we face in balancing our energy use and supply to meet demand. Interactive games and quizzes, animations and

videos, as well as current news stories will give young people an engaging and immersive digital experience. Users will learn more about energy sources such as oil and gas, nuclear and renewable power so they can form their own opinion on the energy mix. Visitors to the site will hear from people

working in the industry, get back to basics to discover how things work and voice their opinion in debates. Featured topics include the sustainability of clothes in ‘How Green Is Your Outfit’ and striving to reach equilibrium in “Balancing Our Energy Future.” Young people, parents and teachers will also be able to access authoritative and credible information based on scientific evidence for homework, projects and to find out the science behind the headlines. OurFuture.Energy will encourage young people

to pursue an exciting and rewarding career in the energy sector by nurturing an interest in the core science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects. An informed society and skilled


workforce is vital for the UK to confront the challenges we face to deliver a secure, affordable and cleaner energy future.

u April 2016

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