The power of Macintosh computers were demonstrated at an Apple Education Day at the Swindon Town Education Centre.
Children from primary schools showed how they had easily mastered the skills to produce cartoons and stop-frame animations on laptops and video cameras after only two weeks’ loan.
Children at Westlea Primary School made a short dragon slayer animation with a set made by teaching assistant Trudy Talbot. Headteacher Suzanne Seaton was so impressed that she has put off decisions on buying new computers until more Apple software is evaluated.
Dominic Stroud from Red Oaks said, “me and my friend Megan made a cartoon and also a comic. I’d never used an Apple but it was easy and quick, we had a lot of fun.”
The County Ground education centre coordinator Martin Turnbull said the facility had been designated an Apple Education Regional Training Centre to help more children from Swindon schools experience the creativity made possible by Macintosh equipment and software.
On the day, Apple educator Joe Moretti demonstrated how even the most musically challenged person can easily create digital music using Garage Band software. He showed how the results can be incorporated in the curriculum and can be distributed across the school and the internet.
Pictured: Westlea children showing off their work to Swindon mayor David Wren with headteacher Suzanne Seaton, Apple educator Joe Moretti, left, and Swindon Town goalkeeper Phil Smith
Technology trip to Oz for local heads
Nine Swindon primary school headteachers and an IT technician spent three weeks in Australia during November studying how schools are using Apple Macintosh based technologies for music, video, animation and the web in their education programmes.
Australia has developed the world’s most advanced integrated use of Macs in the classroom and the heads visited 11 schools in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney, after a four day training programme.
Before departing, Lauren Connor, head of Moredon and Rodbourne Cheney Primary Schools, said, “we want to learn more about how they are using ICT as a delivery mechanism for the whole curriculum, rather than as a discrete lesson on its own.
“We made a short film to present to the Australian Education Department in Sydney, and we are looking forwards to establishing closer links with schools down-under.”
The trip was funded jointly by the National College of School Leadership, individual schools and by the government’s Train to Gain initiative.