Looe Community School, UK

AVerVision355AF makes learning in technology class easier than ever

Looe Community School, located in the city of East Looe in the UK, is a friendly, caring school, which expects high standards of achievement, effort and behavior from all its students. It provides opportunities for building confidence, team work, commitment, performance and fun. It has been awarded high performing specialist school status; and, its new specialism of Mathematics and Computing translates to an exciting new challenge, new resources and an increased commitment to community learning. It states that as a school they are always looking to the future and responding to the challenges of a changing world. Their motto is “To create and sustain a caring, learning school community of high quality, where everyone is valued for who they are and what they may become.”

The visualizer alters the way class is conducted

Looe Community School is a small comprehensive school on the Cornish coast in the UK. An AVerVision355AF was recently trialed with KS3 students in technology classes, run by technology teacher, Mr. Mike Turpin. The visualizer (document camera) was regularly used in lessons to allow students to create/design their work so it could be presented as a ‘work in progress.’ The students were keen to work in this way, since they were both willing and eager to ask each other questions and make suggestions as the work progressed. By using the visualizer (document camera) in this way, the students became much more accustomed to the notion of ‘class critique.’ Across all classes it soon became the norm for students to review each other’s work and accept the opinion of other students – the students came to recognize the visualizer (document camera) as one of their normal learning tools.

“Do not be afraid to use the visualizer regularly. It should not be treated as a precious object and hidden away. So far, the visualizer has proved to be a really robust piece of equipment and despite a lot of handling and use there is no sign of any problems.”
- Mr. Mike Turpin, Technology Teacher, Looe Community School

Examining circuits with the AVerVision visualizer

The visualizer (document camera) was used to great effect when producing electronic circuits. Initially, the visualizer (document camera) was used to show where the various components needed to be added to the circuit and their correct orientation. Traditionally, this would have been carried out slowly, with a large proportion of students finding it difficult to see where components were being placed. The visualizer (document camera) gave the teacher and students the freedom to view the demonstration from a distance without sacrificing image quality – a great advantage in the classroom. Students could place their own work under the visualizer (document camera), or the teacher could leave an example on display so that students could check their own work against the standard.

A closer look leads to a broader discussion

The visualizer (document camera) proved invaluable when carrying out product evaluations. For example, when the students needed to take a close look at the engineering of some cameras, the visualizer (document camera) made it possible for them to take an overview of the product and then gradually zoom in to show finer details such as textures, fastenings and materials. As they delved deeper and deeper into the details of the product, the students’ enhanced view aided them in providing intelligent responses to the teacher’s questions, which then gave rise to other lines of questioning. The ability to react and focus in on specific areas of a product in real-time, and in 3-D, proved to be a really useful tool, especially when compared to the old method: observing from fixed view points and images.

“I want to improve the way students capture and access their own work at any point within a lesson… The basic operation of the camera is so straightforward students will be able to use this in conjunction with other technologies.” 
-Mr. Mike Turpin, Technology Teacher, Looe Community School

Simplicity and versatility make the visualizer a valuable teaching tool

Students enjoyed putting their work under the visualizer (document camera) and it was very clear that the whole class shared work much more regularly and effectively. The success rate in terms of producing functioning circuits increased when the visualizer (document camera) was employed to demonstrate where to position the components. The students thought the ability to put objects under the camera was a great advantage and were enthused by the prospect. The visualizer (document camera) was also used to take snapshots of the students’ work. These snapshots were then uploaded to the VLE (virtual learning environment), so that students could access them during later lessons. The AVerVision355AF can be used to perform simple tasks, like sharing written/visual documents, showing real objects and working in three dimensions, but it can also perform advanced operations, such as capturing stills easily and recording video to a USB flash drive. It is therefore a really valuable tool for any department. One major advantage of visualizers (document cameras) over existing technology is that they are easy to operate. Mr. Turpin allowed his students, including the younger ones, to make use of the visualizer (document camera), and they happily suggested new ideas for how it may be used in class.

Our thanks to Wendy Delf at Cornwall Learning and Flic Hampton, Advanced Skills Teacher, Cornwall Local Authority, for leading the pilot across all eight schools and enabling teachers to come together to share good practice at regular intervals throughout the duration of the project. The project would not have been possible without their commitment and hard work, and AVer are indebted to their continuing support for the use of visualizers across Cornwall Schools. AVer would also like to thank Steljes Limited for helping to collect this case study.

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