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Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Topic that people choose are meaningful e.g. arts in schools -- what is going on now?

The topics that people choose to do for their inquiries are often related to 'hot' issues that they find in the workplace…

Before the Easter break I had a talk with Thulani about his final professional inquiry looking into introducing more arts in how work with primary children in schools. His was talking about policy…it is due to change for art and design.

An article form the Guardian started me off this morning after this discussion... about the importance of arts in schools.

Right now it is unclear what the changes will be but Thulani said this year schools have been able to disapply from the art subject area.

10. We want to ensure that schools are able to prepare for a smooth transition to the new national curriculum which will be introduced from September 2014. Disapplication of the current national curriculum in this way means that schools will still be required to teach the statutory subjects but will not have to follow the centrally prescribed programmes of study (and associated attainment targets and assessment arrangements) from September 2013. They can choose to continue teaching the current programmes of study if they wish but will have the freedom to use the flexibility that disapplication offers to plan and prepare for the introduction of the new programmes of study from September 2014. 

So what is the new curriculum going to be?
I found this from the Arts Council

p. 7 

The arts (comprising art and design, music, dance, drama and media arts), design and technology, the humanities (comprising geography and history) and modern foreign language are not compulsory National Curriculum subjects after the age of 14, but all pupils in maintained schools have a statutory entitlement to be able to study a subject in each of those four areas. 

p. 8 The statutory requirements in relation to the entitlement areas are: 
•Schools must provide access to a minimum of one course in each of the four entitlement areas (arts, design and tech, humanities, languages) 
•Schools must provide the opportunity for pupils to take a course in all four areas, should they wish to do so 
•A course that meets the entitlement requirements must give pupils the opportunity to obtain an approved qualification. 

p. 17 Arts subjects within the National Curriculum 
•There is no guidance on Drama and Dance as stand alone subjects or Film or Creative digital media – but these will continue to be offered as GCSEs and will be revised alongside all GCSEs from 2015 
•Schools can continue to offer these subjects – but this is not required – it’s about how schools choose to define their offer within the entitlement areas 
•Dance is mentioned in the PE curriculum and drama is part of the English curriculum 

Can anyone help me understand this better? I think there are some informative final inquires coming up...

Art and design curriculum has been in...

Art and Design is on page 176 for the National Curriculum for Primary… physical education is on page 198.

I found this blog as comment on the National Society for Education in Art & Design (NSEAD)


Also found this

The National Association of Professional Teaching Assistants (NAPTA) is a membership organisation that works with schools and other education settings to realise the potential of support staff, whatever their role. It provides its members with a range of specialist services to help individuals develop as professionals and to deliver whole-school improvement.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Finalist workshop 15th of April 2014 - what we talked about...

Here is a list of what we talked about and a few points we made in the discussion. Attending were Lizzy, Sophie, Danielle and Carla - so you might find more on their blogs. Please comment with questions.

1. artefact - something that is important for your professional audience - don't just do something 'that will do' - this is something that communicates what you did for your inquiry but also seeks to inform people with a purpose- it can be an aspect of the inquiry which would be useful to others to know about

2. structure of critical review - clear- coding of data within practitioner research - yes you need to anonymise as agreed with your participants (some say it okay to use their name - e.g. experts or Directors) and then label their quotes (Teacher A) etc. so we can follow the discussion

3. diagrams - yes you can use diagrams within the text - 1 or 2 examples of data- and then if more detail is useful add this graphs/diagrams in the appendix.

4. sources - the Bibliography is important and has both sources you have used for reference and inspiration. The literature review  in the Evaluation section is a summary of the deb ages and knowledge out there (ball park 10-20 sources). If you have a longer literature review you can add as an appendix. Use these sources to theorise your analysis.

5. findings and analysis - What you found out and what it means - how does your practitioner research and experience compare to the debates in the literature (in your filed or topic area)? Wah tare the implications or impact on your practice/role/workplace?

6. Feedback - points out what is working and not working in your draft - which is a work in progress - send in drafts - don't worry about word count for this

7. quoting - quotes are you data/evidence so they identify instances that are important in your research - so label (Participant A) - you can put in like a long quote - so indented, single spaced, no quotation marks

8. appendices - these are for important details - think of the report/reportage style - so details that you did not have room for in your report - refer to them with explanation in your text

9. report format - so title page, contents page, critical review in 4 sections with subheadings, Bibliography, Appendices (sometimes with sheet like content page saying what they are). The Bibliography and appendices are not in the word count

10. oral presentation - more news after the 13th May submission - info on Paula's blog already

11. being academic - yes well - these writing and communication skills are ones at a high level - you have had preparation and should do fine - work with your adviser and feedback to get this right before you submit your work

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Networks and what they can bring you?

A brief blog about networking for the modules. In getting together a presentation /paper for the University Association of Lifelong Learning annual conference I was reviewing some of the LinkedIn networks.

Simply put, we use networks and the idea of joining with peers as a way of defining and measuring our own practice. The communities of practice (CoPs) concept from Lave and Wenger was a way of looking at how we see our groups and develop strategies to learn with other people. Because of the internet, learning form others often happens in a virtual space as well as face-to-face, but sometimes this way of communicating implies an awareness about our professional practice that takes time and effort to evaluate and change (or bring up to date!) as we develop and grow.

A good example form LinkedIn is:

Jo Clarke

Small Business Professional

So I have some questions to start the ball rolling...

Do you have a LinkedIn identity?

Are you in any groups that have been helpful to you before you started BAPP )Arts) ?

Have you been involved in any groups after you started BAPP Arts?

How else are you connecting?

You can comment or send information directly to

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Writing up advice - communicating and the academic voice

Communicating what you have thought about on the course usually comes at the end of the module when you 'write up' that document and/or portfolio of work for assessment .

Sorry Peter could not be with us this week but please see a link to a previous presentations about writing:

The topic was going to be summing up, so here are a few pointers for everyone. 'Summing up' is when you write up how the ideas have come together in your mind - so anything you have read from experts (often called literature) and other practitioners to develop a consensus in you own mind about meaning. In an academic style - you use evidence and example to 'back up' what you are saying to convince your 'reader' that you have a particular slant or point of view (your argument) about your the topic you are speaking about.

Each module has specific writing up criteria that are in the handbook - but structuring the writing can be important. This writing is often more formal that the blogs because need to get across specific ideas in a limited amount of space. Remember writing can include diagrams and images! In digital writing you can put in hyperlinks.

Although we use the 'reportage' style (so report writing) the essay style is also a good source for writing because it structures your work. A basic structure is at least 3-5 sentences per paragraph with an introductory sentence, key points and concluding sentence. Don't have paragraphs that last too long. You are writing  in the first person for this style - but it is more neutral/balance in tone with examples and evidence.

An example of a paragraph:

As an academic I use social networking as a way of communicating and developing digital literacy. There is now a greater presence of digital scholarship (Weller, 2011) in the work of academics that in turn is monitored as evidence and is a part of our job for learning and teaching and/or research. This way of working should acknowledge the private/public ethical issues of learning in a Web 2.0 world and beyond. Devices such as institutional phones with Virtual Private Network (VPN) access (e.g. Cisco system) extend the campus-based facilities into virtual workspaces beyond the campus. To work this way I need to have the technical devices that allow me to work anywhere, in the office, commuting, and at home. The use of the ‘smart’ mobile phone and portable laptops mean that academic activities are no longer restricted to ‘nine to five’ connectivity.

A bibliography at the ending of the writing would look like this in Harvard Referencing:

Weller, Martin (2011) The Digital Scholar How Technology is Transforming Scholarly Practice, London: Bloomsbury. 

If I used a quote I would add the page number or online if it was from the web. 

You may take several drafts - then send one to your adviser for feedback. 

Here are links that might help you write up your work in this style. Please comment with any additional questions.

Skills for study resources on MyUniHub

Online resources from the LDU


Referencing guide form the IWBL