May 7, 2014 10:08 am

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May Turn IT On Curriculum Newsletter

The May issue of the Turn IT On curriculum newsletter is available to view below (if you would like  to sign up to receive this via email, you can do so here).


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Curriculum Newsletter

May 2014

Volume 3, Issue 9

 Top 5 …..

..easy ways into coding.

 1. Sploder

Sploder is a web based activity where you can create and share games.  Have a go at creating your own retro arcade game or maybe a platform game. 

2. Tynker

Tynker is an online programming course that is block based, like Scratch, that has age/level specific lessons plans.  Once you have signed up you can set up your class on their website and then monitor how they are doing.  

3. Hour of Code 

The Hour of Code has lots of coding activities that could be completed in an hour, to give people a taster of what they can do.  There are lots of different activities to choose from and different levels of challenge.  You can even print off certificates once the children have completed some of the challenges.  There are also lots of links and ideas for coding beyond the hour.  A free iPad app is also available.

4. CS Unplugged

No access to any technology but still want to teach a Computing lesson? Don’t worry CS Unplugged is a collection of free learning activities that teach Computer Science through engaging games and puzzles that use cards, string, crayons and lots of running around.


5. Crystal Rainforest

Probably tucked away at the back of a cupboard somewhere many schools will find they have a site licence for Sherston’s Crystal Rainforest.  This is an adventure story in which children have to use programming language to solve problems in order to continue with the story and help save the rain forest.



…. World Fair Trade Day  10th May

  • Create a PhotoStory presentation to show the journey of some Fairtrade produce. Why not add some Google Earth images to show where the produce is grown. 
  • Write and record an interview/podcast with various members of the Fairtrade chain.  Try and get everyone’s opinions including those people who might not like the idea of Fairtrade. 
  • Ask children to see if they have Fairtrade items at home and do a survey of what they have and then research that product.  Put together a presentation of what they have found including facts and figures about what it cost to grow, how much the producer is paid and how much it costs buy in the shop.
  • Use the Fairtrade Foundation’s facts and figures to create a spreadsheet and then analyse the data.
  • Use the Fairtrade logo to create some popart in the style of Andy Warhol. 
  • Design a poster to promote a Fairtrade product of your choice.

Next month celebrate World Environment Day – 5th June 2014 

Smart Notebook Licencing 

Smart have changed their licencing as from April 2014, but what does this mean to schools?

Well, everyone who currently has smart notebook 11.4 is able to continue using it.  The change comes if you would like to use the most up to date notebook software, live technical support or subject-specific add-ons.  Notebook Advantage is an annual paid subscription which does include updates, widgets, add-ons etc.  Licences can be purchased for 1, 3 or 5 years for individual classes or whole schools.  

iPad Apps of the month


Sketch Nation


Creating a game is super simple:  Just draw the in game objects, play around with the customization options and before you can say “Sketch Nation Studio,” you will be enjoying your own self-created game!


Move the turtle £1.99

A friendly Turtle introduces children step by step to the basic concepts of programming in a colourful graphic environment.  

KS1 – Turtle Art

Exploring space and direction by using the screen turtle in 2Simple IVT 2Go to make interesting shapes and patterns, importing them to painting software for filling with colour.

Where to find the lesson:

KS1 Lessons – Numeracy – Shape – Turtle Art

KS2 – Sounds of the rainforest


Creating flowcharts in Flowol to play the sounds of the rainforest.

Where to find the lesson:

KS2 Lessons – Science – Habitats – Sounds of the rainforest

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