Cubitt Town Junior School is a three-form entry school with a capacity for 360 pupils, ages 7-11 years. The school is situated on the Isle of Dogs in the borough of Tower Hamlets. It is a Google Reference School looking to use technology to enhance learning within the classroom. The school embraces integrating technology into the classroom as the next step in enhanced learning to give pupils the confidence to use their own initiative.
As Cubitt Town Junior School has been fortunate to have had the foresight and resources to issue Chromebooks to all students from years 2 through to year 6, we have seen the impact that technology has on learning in the classroom, especially with our SEND pupils’ use of different accessibility functions to access the learning in the classroom.
Recently, Year 3 at Cubitt Town Junior School has been given the task of learning new digital skills using Canopy’s Workspace Skills package. As soon as the package was introduced, it became abundantly clear that Workspace skills were an instant hit with the students. Students could be heard asking, “I’ve achieved all of my silver Workspace Skills; can I try to achieve my Gold Workspace Skills now?” time and time again.
Workspace Skills includes 36 interactive tutorials to assist pupils and teachers learn by actually performing tasks to earn digital badges for each Google Workspace tool they learn. The pupils earn badges for each tool (Google Drive, Google Docs, Google Classroom, etc.) in varying degrees of difficulty (Bronze, Silver, and Gold levels) as well as overall badges.
The Younger Generation
Intriguingly, it was the younger year group that has excited us most at Cubitt Town. Since lockdown, we wanted to harness the basic technological skills that our students have learned and move on to using them in the classroom for all lessons across the curriculum. We have seen the Workspace Skills package teach our younger students digital skills, so we are excited to see what our older students can achieve after learning new digital literacy skills when they return in September.
The impact of Canopy’s Workspace Skills has been significant on the learners at Cubitt Town Junior School. The interactive tutorials have helped our students learn new digital skills by practising and implementing them in real-life classroom situations. This approach has given our students the confidence to use the Google Workspace tools to support their learning. Our students can now use the different tools independently and choose which tool best suits the learning within the lesson.
We are excited to try the Workspace Skills package throughout the school and especially in Year 2. We believe equipping our younger students with digital literacy skills will enable them to use technology to its full potential and enhance learning in the classroom. We are excited to be providing all our students with the skills to become the digital citizens of tomorrow.
Rhodri T Smith is Digital integration lead at Cubitt Town Junior School (Google Reference School) and a Google for Education Certified Trainer. He tweets @TechwithRhodri.