Autumn seemed to arrive very quickly this year and schools have swiftly got back in the rhythm of the new academic year.
Over the break Wandsworth City Learning Centre (CLC) were enthusiastically engaging with Apple’s Community Education Initiative (CEI) about the successful outcomes of the integration of iPad in two Battersea Primary schools – Sacred Heart and St Mary’s. With the support of CEI, the schools are tackling under-achievement through teaching digital skills to students and teachers, and have had a positive impact on skills and confidence.
The highly successful pilot technology programme has now been extended to reach additional schools this academic year. Each school will receive iPads with Apple Pencils and a storage cart, as well as engineer time to set up the new devices. These resources will help ensure that pupils and teachers can master the knowledge and understanding to become digital creatives and coders, and provide them with the skills needed to work in the technology industry.
Wandsworth City Learning Centre and Apple Distinguished Educators have been busily creating digital content and resources to support the schools throughout and beyond the programme. The team are preparing easy to use lesson plans and collaborative tasks to help teachers deliver their computing curriculum using iPad. Additionally, CLC tutors will be trained to deliver lessons and academic mentoring for staff and students.
Reaching beyond the classroom, the programme will also offer essential digital skills classes for adults and families to ensure the broader community has access to, and recognises the need and benefit of digital skills. These directed sessions can lead to volunteering and work experience opportunities in the technology field.
In September, Apple CEO Tim Cook, along with Apple’s Vice President of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives Lisa Jackson, visited St Marys and spoke with the staff and students whilst they were enjoying a morning of coding with Apples Swift Playgrounds application. The fantastic morning of programming allowed the enthusiastic learners to show-off their coding skills. The students displayed their knowledge and excitement of the use of technology through some challenging questions to Mr.Cook, who was clearly impressed by their enjoyment and fascination of the digital world, stating that he was, “Looking forward to seeing them and their fantastic ideas come to life with Apple!”
With the ending of a truly memorable experience, the positive message was that there was more opportunity and more partnerships emerging from this relationship. The success of this fantastic programme will be felt for many seasons to come, and will allow more schools and our wider community to celebrate the fruitfulness of technology in the classroom and in our Borough.