Join a debate with our panel to look at how social media technology like Skype and Twitter has impacted the education landscape - bringing new ideas and collaborative opportunities to both urban and rural populations. How are students and teachers connecting both locally and internationally in modern day classrooms and lecture theatres? Is the power and reach of online community changing how teachers teach and students learn? We'll look at programmes like Microsoft's MIE Experts which seeks to join creative and motivated educators together in a community of innovation. Join the conversation at Codebase Stirling - especially of interest to educators, students, community managers and parents.
Fill The Gap Learning
Spy Quest is a series of spy novels and an award winning interactive gaming concept created by British author and games developer David Goutcher. The novels chronicle the lives of a young gamer Sam Rayner, his twin sister Rebecca, and their slightly older mentors Casey Parker and Holly Ross, all of whom are fellow agents within ‘The Spy Quest Agency’. David utilities his unique skill-sets gained from an illustrious career serving as a highly specialist police officer in covert surveillance, undercover operations and devising immersive training programmes, to bring the secret world of international espionage to life in a real world experiential adventure that blurs the line between fact and fiction.
Spy Quest combines exciting immersive technology with traditional books and invites boys and girls, children and adults alike to lose themselves in an exotic world of espionage, where they can save the world on a school night and almost lose sight of the real skills they are developing at the same time. In a world where some children have significantly more contact with a screen than a page, it offers them the opportunity to develop higher order thinking skills: to create, to evaluate, to analyse and to apply skills within an exciting context that motivates them.
The success in education with improving the attainment levels in literacy, has led to international recognition from the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), UK EdTech50, was well as named number one recommendation in a global Microsoft educator poll.
Michael was born in Edinburgh, Scotland but spent most of his learning years on the west coast of Canada. He has more than 20 years of education experience inside and outside the classroom, in the UK, mainland Europe and North America, working with 19 different global standards for curriculum creation. This experience had gifted him with an ability to analyse and interpret the sequence of learning over a range of curricula.
As part of his 5 year degree in education, misconceptions in learning played a major role. With this learning, and as a SEAL practitioner, Michael has been able to assess gaps in learning that need to be addressed before full potential can be achieved.
His varied career has enabled him to confidently start his own company: Michael is currently the director of Fill the Gap Learning Limited. He has the skills and experience to: design learning sequences for young people and educators; identify 'gaps' in learning and how best to 'fill' them to enable future success. He found that trying ‘the new’ has encouraged growth and he has always endeavoured to stay ahead of the curve.
Michael is a co-founder for the Connected Educator Appreciation Day and the associated Connected Educator Monthly Meet-ups. He had helped to source hosts, design content for sessions and share the purpose and accomplishments o the group through social media.
Michael had led training on educational and technological topics for experienced and newly qualified teachers. He has completed the Microsoft Trainer Academy course and is a Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert and was recently selected to co-host one of Microsoft’s monthly TweetMeets.
Michael's previous and current work experience follows:
• As a development officer with the school and cluster, where he taught, he had the opportunity to view first-hand the range of perspectives teachers bring with them when approaching planning, assessment and evaluation in familiar and unfamiliar subjects.
• Working at Sumdog allowed Michael to use his curricular knowledge to create skills, and smaller steps within, to allow for success before progression at a learner's individual pace:
He planned the maths curriculum for 3 - 13 year olds and managed teacher reviews of this for the four countries of the United Kingdom, the common core state standards for the USA and 14 further standards, These areas of learning are being accessed now by learners, teachers, parents, schools, and district management teams.
Michael wrote a sequence of learning for 6 years of spelling, organising them according to the requirements of 13 of the previously mentioned standards.
• He works as an educational writer, editor and course developer, creating and checking lesson content and item questions for publishing and ed-tech companies.
• He tutors pupils and students from primary to university level, encouraging their strengths and addressing challenges.
Tim McDonald guides individuals and organizations on their journey to becoming 21st century leaders. He helps them understand and internalize their role as community builders to deliver their product and/or service through trusted relationships that ignite movements with a customer focus. His experience working with organizations like No Kid Hungry, Cinnabon, Carvel Ice Cream among others, included leading the overall marketing vision, strategy and execution of social media campaigns, including blogger programs and influencer relationships.
Working directly on the No Kid Hungry campaign, GivingTuesday fundraising increased from $56,000 to over $249,000 in 2015, which translated into 2.49MM meals for kids in the US. Prior to that, Tim was the Director of Community for The Huffington Post, where he set strategy and oversaw a team of moderators, support and standards for the leading online news site with over 300 million comments and 70,000 bloggers. He also built and managed a community for Huffington Post's live streaming network, HuffPost Live, resulting in over 9,600 guests from more than 85 countries have joining live on-air and over 1.3 million comments on the platform.
Tim is passionate in his pursuit of purposefully connecting people. He instigates engagement and conversation, turning students into teachers and teachers into students. A skillful conversationalist, Tim encourages new ideas and navigating solid relationships through giving and receiving
Ian is a Glasgow Lad who served an Engineering Technician Apprenticeship with Babcock Power. Mainly Electronics and Computer Control Systems. Been South to Play Rugby with Northampton (I came off the bench for the first team once) and was working as a Service Engineer on Machine Tool control Systems. Moving onto becoming the Service Director.
The Company was bought over and I wanted to come home.
I started an Undergrad in Technological Education. Becoming a teacher in ’97. Learned my classroom practice in the ‘interesting’ place that is Kilwinning.
I went to take a promoted role on the remote Island if Islay in 2001.
The remote nature of the school meant that we had make us of technology to support learning (And develop an appreciation of good Whisky). This is when I first worked with Microsoft. In 2006 The school was one of the first in Europe to develop a one to one platform in partnership with Microsoft, Samsung, Dell and Panasonic.
This was a long term development of the changes and skills that has had a significant influence as a model of change around the world.
This led to being invited on the Scottish ICT Excellence group (Setting the direction for the development of the use of Technology and renaming it as Digital Learning and Teching)
I was then seconded to the Scottish Government’s Digital team to implement the recommendation for the ICT Excellence group.
- Use of Office 365 and Glow (National Learning Platform for Scotland)
- Development of the National (Scotland) Digital Learning and Teaching Policy; Published Sept 2016
This last move meant moving to Edinburgh, where my wife learned to love have a choice of shops and Bars, so now a Weegie in Auld Reekie.
I was head hunted by the Design Thinking Consultancy NoTosh
Using Design Thinking to change how people work.
Though Based in Edinburgh I travelled 200,000 miles a year. I worked with Large Engineering Corporations, as well as International Schools, Private Schools, Universities, Colleges, Academies, Regions and Government organisation.
It was amazing to do but meant I was hardly home. So I decided to try the classroom again. Was head of Design and Technology at The Royal High School of Edinburgh.
Microsoft approached me to take on a support role called Modern Classroom specialist.
I am delighted to have been given this amazing opportunity to support Schools in Scotland the North of England to transform and change how they approach learning and teaching.
Community Program Manager & CMX Book Club host