Congratulations to Hanham Abbots Junior School in Bristol

Congratulations to Hanham Abbots Junior School who win a full classroom pack of StoryStarter with their story “Hanham Abbots LEGO Adventure”.

We loved their really creative adventure and particularly loved the scary witch! Well done for using your imaginations so vividly :-)

We have had some fantastic entries to our #myStoryStarter competition so far so thank you to all the schools who have taken part. We hope you enjoyed using StoryStarter in your classrooms – it certainly looks like you have!

Don’t forget, there are still 4 more opportunities for you to win a full classroom pack of StoryStarter for you school in September, October, November and December so what are you waiting for – take a look at our YouTube page and be inspired!

Here’s details of how you can enter our #myStoryStarter competition.

Good luck!

LEGO Education introduces a new way to learn for Primary Teachers

LearnToLearn

Developed for teachers by teachers, LEGO Education LearnToLearn provides an introductory look at how LEGO Education’s hands-on Primary Solutions impact daily learning

• LEGO® Education LearnToLearn is a hands-on educational tool that helps primary school students experience the possibilities of what can be learned using LEGO Education solutions within design and engineering, language arts, mathematics, science and social studies while also building and reinforcing the most fundamental learning skills of the 21st century: collaboration, communication, creativity, critical thinking, and problem solving

• The brick set and 15 simple activities were developed for teachers by teachers as a cost-effective whole-class solution that coaches educators on how to easily get started with LEGO Education in the Primary classroom

• LEGO Education LearnToLearn is aimed at Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 children and is complete with age-level modifications that enable educators to scale the activity complexity up or down, depending on the student’s learning, experience or age

BILLUND, DENMARK – September 15, 2014 – Today, LEGO® Education announced the availability of a new resource for Primary classrooms: LEGO Education LearnToLearn, an introductory instructional tool that helps teachers and students achieve curriculum goals within core subject areas. Real-world educators were an integral part of the development process. From brick selection to activity development, including defining the lesson structure, the learning areas to be covered and the classroom management tricks to be incorporated, we worked with current Primary teachers to create a tool that is simple, relevant, cost-effective and extremely usable in today’s classroom.

The solution comes with 28 individual sets containing 72 LEGO bricks packaged in reusable storage bags to be distributed to each student. Also included is a downloadable curriculum pack that contains 15 activities across five learning areas and a variety of teacher support materials.

Each activity in the areas of science, literacy, math, social studies and design and engineering includes specific learning outcomes and provides samples of what is possible when using LEGO Education to teach a variety of core subject areas.

There are three activities included for each learning area covered in the activity pack. The activities are designed to be completed in a 30- to 45-minute timeframe.

Like all classroom solutions from LEGO Education, the LearnToLearn set is based on Constructionism, a school of thought that starts with the conviction that children learn best when they experience things firsthand and within a meaningful context.

“We believe students are more successful through playful learning experiences because students are more engaged and the experiences promote a positive mind-set to learning by building life skills as well as knowledge and in that way better prepare students for their future,” said Jesper Just Jensen, Senior Director Preschool and Primary Marketing, LEGO Education. “From the very first lesson with LearnToLearn, students are motivated and encouraged to stay curious, work together, be creative, and think critically.”

The solution and its curriculum are available in 13 counties, including Brazil (Portuguese), China, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands, the US and the UK.

Please visit www.legoeducation.co.uk/learntolearn for more information about the LearnToLearn solution offerings, teacher quotes and LEGO Education learning approach.

Great week for LEGO Education!

We have had a great week here at LEGO Education.

Firstly, we added to our awards tally by winning the ‘Education Award’ at the eLegacy Awards for our Partnership with National Instruments.

Then we got to visit Parliament for the IET Skills Event that invited MPs to work with their local schools to inspire more young people to take STEM subjects.

The event saw Skills Minister, Nick Boles, launch a £30 million fund to increase the supply of engineers. He said “a guaranteed supply of skilled engineers is essential if UK engineering is to compete on the world stage.”

We got great support from the MPs as they signed the IET Skills pledge to support engineering and they also had a bit of fun with our LEGO MINDSTORMS Education EV3 robots and our LEGO ducks.

Here are some highlights of the week.

Brand new competition to win £2,000 of LEGO Education resources

We have got some really exciting new developments to announce over the next few weeks and we start today – with the launch of our brand new competition!

We are giving away £2,000 worth of LEGO Education resources for your very own LEGO Education Innovation Studio.

Tomorrow’s scientists and engineers are sitting in your classroom today, just waiting to be encouraged and inspired! Having a dedicated LEGO Education Innovation Studio in your own school can lift not only science and maths but the full range of curriculum subjects from the pages of a textbook and bring them to life.

An Innovation Studio provides a unique ‘hands-on, minds-on’ environment that supports and enriches the entire learning and teaching process. It will stimulate the students, motivate the teachers and enhance the wider academic reputation of your school.

Watch our video to see exactly what a LEGO Education Innovation Studio looks like then enter our competition to win £2,000 worth of resources to create your very own LEGO Education Innovation Studio by answering 4 simple questions.

Good luck!

René Lydiksen speaks in Parliament

Rene at Parliament

This afternoon sees René heading to Parliament to speak at the IET Skills Event in front of Nick Gibb, Minister of State for School Reform, Nick Boles, Minister of State for Skills and Equalities and over 40 MPs.

The event will showcase the IET and LEGO Education’s work to inspire the next generation of engineers and we will be encouraging as many MPs as possible to commit to supporting us.

We will be challenging the MPs to a simple MINDSTORMS EV3 programming task! They will also be asked to sign a pledge board supporting engineering in four different ways:

  • Encourage girls and boys to consider STEM careers
  • Promote the value of vocational STEM subjects
  • Encourage employers to engage with local students
  • Promote STEM careers to parents

We may even try out our ‘LEGO duck’ challenge with them!

We will blog about René’s visit to Parliament later in the week.

Fantastic StoryStarter Review by Forbes

ForbesWe hope everyone is adjusting back to ‘normal’ life and has enjoyed the first week back at school.

We thought we’d share this fantastic StoryStarter review we had in Forbes over the summer.

Jenn Choi, reporter at Forbes wrote the article ‘What Cutting Edge Looks Like in a School’ and this is what she had to say about StoryStarter:

LEGO Education StoryStarter and StoryVisualizer and Curriculum Pack: Why give them toys? Why can’t they just write an essay?  My answer: yes, writing is important but so it telling a story and there are many ways to do that. We live in a highly visual world today where the T.V. screens in an average home might be wider than the coffee table.  Thus, to limit students to storytelling in this one dimension is exactly that- limiting. LEGO bricks and pieces can magically bring out brilliant stories in even the most reluctant writers. We want children to practice expressing themselves as much as possible and schools like  in New York City are using the LEGO  pieces and software on iPads, Androids, and computers to allow children to flex as many storytelling muscles as possible.”

You can read the full article here

If you want to see for yourself what StoryStarter is then we are running a series of workshops over the next few months to show you just how much impact this can have on Primary children. You can also request a free StoryStarter sample kit via our website.

If you would like further information on our workshops or StoryStarter, please get in touch via the website or email sales@legoeducation.eu

Welcome back!

So that’s it. The summer holiday is already a dim and distant memory and there are lots of excitable and some nervous children heading back to school for another school year.

This term is a very exciting term for us here at LEGO Education Europe. Without spilling the beans before we’re allowed, you can look forward to some fantastic new product news and some more brilliant competitions to win lots of LEGO Education resources for your schools.

Speaking of competitions, don’t forget our StoryStarter competition is still open until the end of the year. Visit our website for full details and to claim your free LEGO Education StoryStarter sample kit. We have received lots of videos from you but we are looking forward to seeing a lot more now that the children are all back at school.

This month sees the introduction of the new computing curriculum and a whole new way of teaching children computing in the classroom. A lot of teachers still feel they have received insufficient information about the curriculum and Computer Weekly reported yesterday “65% of parents are still unaware that primary children are set to learn coding at school”.

It is clearly a hot topic that still warrants a lot of discussion.

As such, our UK Sales Manager, Matt Parkes, is going to join an online Twitter discussion about the new computing curriculum, hosted by @UKEdChat tomorrow evening (Thursday 4th September 2014) at 8.00pm.

@UKEdChat have asked: “The New Computing Curriculum is here. Are you ready?”

As this subject is close to our hearts, we thought we’d join in to see what you think. Matt will be joining under the @LEGOEducationUK Twitter account so if you have any questions for him, follow us and @UKEdChat on Twitter and join in the discussion.

We wish you all a very happy and fun-filled new school year!

Congratulations to all the Teach Secondary Technology & Innovation Award Winners

bannerWe would like to say huge congratulations to all of the Teach Secondary Technology & Innovation Award winners!

We are delighted to be part of the first year of these Awards that specifically focused on technology and innovation in the classroom and recognise products and resources as well as teachers, authors and bloggers.

The final judging decisions were made by a high profile panel of education experts, including our own European Sales & Marketing Director Gareth Boldsworth. Other judges were Vic Goddard (featured on Channel 4’s Educating Essex); Fiona Millar (Guardian journalist and co-founder of the Local Schools Network); Lydia Beaton (global head of the James Dyson Foundation); and Ollie Bray (Naace).

The full list of winners and finalists will be published in the first edition of Technology & Innovation magazine that will be launched on 5th September 2014. Presentations will be made at The BETT Show 2015, 21-24 January, Excel London.

Congratulations to all 5 category winners!

Best Teacher: Chloe Davies, head of science/biology teacher, East London Science School
Described as a ‘fantastic teacher who consistently uses technology in her lessons in genuinely useful ways’, Chloe has had an extremely positive impact on teaching across all departments at the East London Science School and beyond, thanks to her Twitter feed and blog. Vic Goddard says “All of the shortlisted teachers showed just how much potential the use of technology has in the hands of great teachers who understand that just using it doesn’t automatically make lessons more interesting.”

Best Author: Carrie Anne Philbin, for Adventures in Raspberry Pi (John Wiley and Sons)
Carrie Anne was nominated many times for her fun, accessible and enormously inspiring book designed to help teachers get young people coding with the Raspberry Pi computer. She is now working for the Raspberry Pi Foundation as Education Pioneer.

Best Blogger: Mark Anderson, ictevangelist.com
“All the shortlisted blogs are very good,” says judge Fiona Millar, “but ICT Evangelist felt, to me, the most polished, easy to navigate and comprehensive for a non-expert, non-techie and non-teacher/Governer like me.”

Technology & Innovation Ambassador: Terry Freeman
Recognising an individual who has made an exceptional contribution to the progress of technology and innovation in education, this year’s award goes to ICT in education adviser Terry Freeman, who says; “Whether as a teacher, ICT advisor, Principal Officer at QCA, Ofsted inspector, independent consultant or in articles on the www.ictineducation.org website, my view has always been that just because you can do something, it doesn’t mean you should, so I suppose I would describe myself as a cautious innovator, not one of the ‘gung ho’ variety!”

Technological Innovation of the Year: GCSEPod
“GCSEPod does what all the best products do: it makes you ask, ‘why didn’t I think of that?’ Providing excellent quality content in an easily accessible audio file means that students can study a topic simply by popping in their headphones, all without disturbing their day-to-day activities. It’s so simple! Genius.” Judge, David Morgan, @LessonHacker

We would also like to say well done to all the Runners Up and those Commended.

Runners Up: EyeTeach, Hue Animation Studio, LearnPad, TAG Assessment

Commended: DisplayNote NEC edition, FrontRow JUNO, FUZE, Groupcall Emerge, Lucid Exact, Texthelp, Vocab Express

Amazing results from thinking outside the box with StoryStarter

Working with StoryStarter

Working with StoryStarter

We know there are fantastic teachers out there doing some amazing stuff in the classroom with LEGO Education, our team are fortunate to meet them on a daily basis.

One of the most exciting experiences for us is when we meet teachers that take the solution and use it in a totally unique way to engage students.

Mathew Sullivan, author, blogger and LEGO Master Builder is one of those teachers.

Mat took StoryStarter, our literacy product aimed at KS1 & 2 students and worked with his older students to create something really special.

Have a look at Mat’s blog www.inspiredminds.eu where he documents all of his work-it’s a great source of inspiration!

You can also follow Mat on Twitter @InspiredMind5

We love to hear stories of how teachers and students are using our solutions by thinking outside the box, so if you know of anyone, please let us know!

Software Producer, Lilian Spiertz, returns from Vietnam & Cambodia

This week our Software Producer, Lilian Spiertz, returned from her trip to Cambodia and Vietnam where she spent her summer holiday educating disadvantaged children using WeDo and LEGO Education MINDSTORMS EV3.

Lilian and the team had an amazing trip and they have shared some fantastic photos, stories and videos via the LEGO Education Community website. Please take a look at this inspirational journey …

https://community.education.lego.com/t5/Great-Initiatives/Diary-from-Cambodia-and-Vietnam-using-WeDo-and-MINDSTORMS/m-p/4175#U4175