Session 107: Tips to Encourage the Local Community to Engage with Education

Session Title:

How could we encourage members of the local community to engage with education?

Thursday 19th July 2012


[pullquote]Have used empty shop windows in town centre to highlight aspects of children’s work.[/pullquote]

#ukedchat started with @gavinsmart sharing the #mygrandadvideo that was the inspiration behind choosing the topic of tonight’s #ukedchat. Gaining over 2500 views in a day, the success of the video convinced me to explore the question ‘How could we encourage members of the local community to engage with education?’
A couple of tweets early on suggested.

James Abela ?@eslweb
Work out what the community really needs, find a way to do it and let Karma do the rest. #ukedchat

Georgina Black ?@GeorgeEBlack
#ukedchat schools should be as open as possible, I’m afraid they should probably give before they can expect to get.
This was an excellent suggestion, which had been overlooked by many and was an excellent starting point. Should the school expect help from the local community if they are not willing to extend their services beyond the fences of the school grounds? Some excellent suggestions about QR codes to school blogs around the towns but the best suggestion was…

George Gilchrist ?@GilchristGeorge
#ukedchat Have used empty shop windows in town centre to highlight aspects of children’s work.

Sharing work with the local community to encage them with the school and the students learning! Excellent idea.

There were many suggestions about students working with care homes, community pay back style schemes and also the opportunity for parents and the local community to visit school for the day or evening to undertake some adult classes.

Following on from this the ‘chat’ focussed on the possible expertise that could be offered by the local community to help students.

Janice Black ?@JanP65
Using local businesses to educate about careers and working life. #ukedchat
? Mark Anderson ?@ICTEvangelist
Survey parents and community asking them what skills they have and invite them to get involved in world of work days #ukedchat
Matt Ellis ?@NQTnewbie
Local people come and teach for a day, school takeover! #ukedchat
James Abela ?@eslweb
Community could give: Expertise, equipment, facilities, cash & motivation. Question is what will encourage them to help? #ukedchat
This is all well and good but how could the community be encouraged to come into school if they are in full time employment.
ASmart ?@AmyG2191
#ukedchat Students learn from real experiences, including those of experts. Any difference between actual visit and virtual visit??
This tweet took us back to focussing on visits and virtual visits of community volunteers that could offer expertise, real life experience and guidance.
Like the #mygrandadvideo previously mentioned which was inspired by sugata mitre’s granny cloud.
David Kempster ?@KempsterD
@sugatamitra has used it many times in his Granny Cloud project… #ukedchat

Another suggestion was to use Skype to Serving soldiers in the battle field during armed forces day to share experiences and for the students to show their thanks and respect to serving soldiers. This could also be done with retired service men and women.

Tim Jefferson ?@tj007
@nicoladarling78 Would skype be an option for the armed forces on tour too, I wonder… #ukedchat
The suggestion into developing a directory of ‘skippable’ volunteers will be investigated.
Cherrylkd ?@cherrylkd
@gavinsmart #ukedchat setting up a directory is a cracking idea. People with time and skills would be proud of being honoured in that way.

Notable Tweets from the Session:
Joe Littlewood ?@joelittlewood
#ukedchat small displays in local supermarket etc with QR codes so community can further explore/comment on work of school at their leisure
Nick O ?@nickotkdIV
#ukedchat parents will get involved if 1. the school is welcoming 2. they feel valued 3 they have something to offer
James Abela ?@eslweb
Cliche Alert: Ask not what your community can do for you, but what you can do for your community! #ukedchat
Alessio Bernardelli ?@asober
Has anyone else used Skype to bring elderly people into the classroom like #mygrandadvideo #ukedchat
? Mark Anderson ?@ICTEvangelist
Organise a community festival of learning during school hols or evenings with staff offering learning opportunities #ukedchat

Tweet of the Week:
I think the best tweet this week was definitely the simple yet so effective suggestion from George Gilchrist below…
George Gilchrist ?@GilchristGeorge
#ukedchat Have used empty shop windows in town centre to highlight aspects of children’s work.
Teachers will be visiting their high street this weekend to check out possible display spaces!

About Your Host:
Gavin Smart is a Teacher of Science and e-learning Co-ordinator at Priory Community School (@PrioryCSA) Weston Super Mare, North Somerset and has been a teacher for 3 years. He writes a personal blog which shares ideas to innovate lessons and inspire learners. He loves using iPads within education and other gadgets and devices which will facilitate learning.

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