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  • Did you know? – Clicker 7 Tips


    Here are some useful Clicker 7 Document tips!

    Did you know you can see what spellings were corrected in a Document?

    To analyse the current Document, open the View ribbon tab and click Analysis.

    The Statistics tab shows data about words, characters and sentences in the Document.

    The Spelling Corrections tab shows an alphabetical list of misspelled words that were corrected by the Spell Checker. Click a misspelling to see the context in which it was made.

    Did you know you can add a Document to your favourites?

    You can add a Document to a list of favourites for easy access.

    To do this, open the Document ribbon tab, click the Favourites (star) icon and then click Add current Document to favourites.

    From then on, you can easily open that Document by clicking the Favourites (star) icon, or using the Favourites section of the Quick Start window that appears when Clicker 7 starts.

    Each user has their own favourites list.

    Did you know you can save Clicker 7 Documents as Word Documents and PDFs?

    You can save a Clicker 7 Document as a Microsoft Word Document or a PDF file.

    To do this:

    1.    Open the Document ribbon tab.

    2.    Click the V next to the Save icon and choose Save Document As.

    3.    In the Save Document window, click the Save as type box and choose Microsoft Word Document (*.docx) or                                       Portable Document Format (*.pdf).

    4.    Choose where to save your file and then click Save.

    To change how Clicker 7 Documents are saved by default, open the Options ribbon tab and click Preferences. On the Document tab, click the Default filetype box, choose a filetype and then click OK.

  • 6 ways to support struggling spellers with Clicker 7


    Struggling spellers are found in every year group, and it can often be hard to encourage them to work independently. Clicker is a valuable tool to support these children and unlock their writing, so here are 6 ways to steer them to writing success!

    1.    Spell check the document

    Spell checking work is not a new idea, but the valuable addition of Clicker’s speech engine means that children can simply right-click on any word in the spell checker to hear it spoken aloud! This truly gives them the ability to independently investigate the options presented and select the one they wish to use.

    Clicker 7 spell checker

    2.    Use the word predictor

    The word predictor speeds up the writing process for struggling spellers, predicting both the current word and offering a choice of next words that might be useful. As it also uses the speech engine to read any word aloud with a right-click, it is perfect for independent work.

    Clicker 7 Word Pool

    3.    Add words to the Word Pool

    Clicker 7 lets you add any word to the spell checker and predictor by using Word Pool. In the example here the child is trying to write I walk through the park, but the spell checker does not offer through as an alternative.

    Clicker 7 Word Pool

    To support children who make misspellings like this simply add the words to the Word Pool with their misspellings. The next time the spell checker is used here it offers through as an option. Targeted spelling intervention in one easy step!

    Clicker 7 Word Pool and word predictor

    4.    Switch on Instant Pictures

    When Instant Pictures in the document are switched on, an image will appear above a word or phrase when it is spelled correctly, an easy way for children to find out for themselves if they are right.

    Clicker 7 Instant Pictures

    5.    Provide a Word Bank

    Offering banks of topic vocabulary or frequently used words will help children with the more difficult words they need to use. They can check the word by listening to it with a right-click and send it to their document with a left-click, removing the frustration of trying to spell it correctly.

    Clicker 7 Word Bank

    6.    Use a Picture Bank

    For some children the addition of a picture above a word will help them to recognise the one they want to include in their writing. The picture does not have to be sent to the document with the word, it can simply stay in the grid to help with word recognition.

    Clicker 7 Picture Bank

  • Clicker Board and Word Banks


    Clicker Board can be used as a classroom tool to collect and organise vocabulary, with the added advantage that the board can be turned into a word bank for children to use when writing.

    While working on a topic, have Clicker Board open on the whiteboard and use it as the place to add important words. To make it more useful you might have a number of pages within your board. For example if your topic is plants, you might have a Clicker Board that looks something like this:

    Clicker 7 - Clicker Board topic tabs

     If you are developing vocabulary to use when describing characters, Clicker Board might look something like this:

    Clicker 7 - Clicker Board vocabulary tabs

    Add words to each tab, and go back and add more over the course of the lesson or lessons as the children come across them.  

    Clicker 7 - Clicker Board tabs

    When you create your word bank, the words will appear on the same tabs.

    Clicker 7 word bank

    Another way of using this idea is to create a board with alphabetic tabs. This might be useful when you want to create a general word bank, for example about the Romans or Vikings, about rivers, or about interesting adjectives.

    Clicker 7 - Clicker Board alphabetic tabs

    The children then have their bank of words whenever they need it.

     Clicker 7 alphabetic word bank

  • Writing about Hadrian's Wall


    Key Stage 2, History:

    Pupils should be taught about:

    • the Roman Empire and its impact on Britain. This could include the successful invasion by Claudius and conquest, including Hadrian's Wall


    LearningGrids has a lot of fantastic Clicker 7 resources to help pupils write about popular history topics.

    Browsing the History category and looking at Romans shows that there is a ‘Topic’ word bank and also an ‘A-Z’ word bank to support writing about Hadrian’s Wall.

    The topic word bank is great for less confident writers as it provides a structure for their writing and vocabulary specific to the topic:

    Romans - topic word bank

    The alphabetic word bank provides a larger list of words suitable for more confident pupils.

    However, some pupils may benefit from a writing frame to provide further structure and whole phrases that they can use in their writing.

    The easiest way to do this is to take an existing writing frame and modify it.

    I based the writing frame below on the History Frame in LearningGrids which I was then able to change by using the Edit Clicker Set button that appears at the top left and bottom left of the Clicker screen.

    In this case I just wanted the structure of the writing frame so I changed all the grid names and content.

    Creating a writing frame on the Romans

    A writing frame on the Romans

    Of course, you can take any of the resources in LearningGrids and use the edit function to modify them easily in the same way. You may want to just make a few adjustments or make more extensive changes. Once you have done that you can save your version of the writing frame and use it whenever you want.

    It might also be helpful to use Clicker Board at the start of the lesson to provide some initial ideas and gather additional ones from the class.

    Hadrian's Wall Clicker Board

    In this way all pupils in a mixed ability class can use Clicker and each pupil will be provided with all the resources they need to complete their writing successfully.


  • Key Stage 2, History, Year 3:

    Pupils should be taught to study Greek life and achievements and their influence on the western world."

     

    Clicker 7 is such a fantastic support tool to use across all curriculum areas. Due to the range of Clicker Sets available, every type of learner is accommodated for and can achieve success in learning.

    In this post, I will outline how I might plan a lesson on the Ancient Olympics, taking into account the range of abilities in our classrooms today.

    I would begin my lesson by reading The Ancient Olympics – Read a Book with the class, which can be found on LearningGrids.

    Ancient Olympics talking book

    Clicker Books are a superb way of engaging all children in a new topic and generating talk and discussion.

    Throughout our reading of the book, I would use teacher questioning to assess learning and encourage discussion by asking the children to “Think-Pair-Share”, e.g. do you think it was fair that only Greek men were allowed take part in the games?

    The children are now ready to begin some writing. On the interactive whiteboard, I would open The Ancient Olympics Word Bank, also from LearningGrids. This Word Bank is known as a Topic Grid. It contains subject-specific vocabulary to support children in their writing.

    Ancient Olympics Word Bank

    What I love about Clicker is its versatility in the classroom and the many opportunities for differentiation. The children could touch the SoundShift button to listen to each word before using it – this works really well on the interactive whiteboard! It could also be used on a laptop, perhaps by a child working with a TA on a one-to-one basis. Alternatively, I might print this Clicker Set and use it as a table top resource to support group work.

    Printing Clicker Sets

    For children who struggle with writing, the Talk Sets are a fantastic resource to use. I may decide to use Talk About the Ancient Olympics with a small group of struggling writers. Each child gets to share and record what they know by using the Voice Note feature.

    Ancient Olympics Talk Set

    As a plenary, I created a very simple Venn Diagram with Clicker Board to compare and contrast the Ancient Olympics with the Olympics today. As I differentiated throughout my lesson, I would expect all children to participate in this at some level, thereby demonstrating a successful learning experience. 

    Ancient Olympics Venn Diagram resource

  • Clicker 7 lesson plan - animal groups


    Here’s an extract from the KS1, Year 1, Programme of Study: (Science)

    Pupils should be taught to: identify and name a variety of common animals including fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals”

     

    Here is how I might plan a lesson around animal groups using Clicker.

    Firstly, I would always search LearningGrids for ready-made resources. In Clicker Explorer choose ‘LearningGrids’ on the Files tab and enter ‘animal groups’ in the search box.

    Searching for resources on LearningGrids

    We've found 59 resources! You could narrow these down using the age-slider and/or by selecting specific activity types from the top right.

    To introduce the topic the very first resource in the list is ideal – ‘Find Out About Animal Groups’.

    Find Out About Animal Groups resource

    This set is a great way to introduce the concept of animal groups to the class. I might start by asking if anyone knows which group an animal belongs to and then clicking on the information buttons to get more detail. Depending on the level of the group you can always edit the activity to simplify the description.

    Next we have two Clicker Connect activities. As part of my differentiation I might choose which one to assign on a group basis.

    The first one is called ‘Animal Sorting’. The pupil selects a cell from the first grid and then clicks on each tab in turn to add in animals that belong in that group:

    Animal Sorting resource

    For more confident individuals I would use the ‘Animal Groups’ Connect Set where the pupils can write full sentences about different species.

    Animal Groups Connect Set

    As a plenary I might finish with a Clicker Board to visually sort some animals. I created this by using the paint tool to draw crossed lines on the background and then added cells for the groups and the individual animals.

    Clicker Board - animal sorting activity

    Tip: To align the cells on the board, CTRL and left-click on each box to select multiple cells and then CTRL and right-click to access the alignment options:

    Aligning cells in Clicker Board

    Please get in touch if you would like more information on how you can use Clicker 7 in your lessons.

  • Using Clicker 7 at home


    As part of the Clicker 7 OneSchool Site License, teachers and pupils can install Clicker 7 on their home computers.

    I work for a school. How do we give Clicker 7 to teachers and pupils?

    If the school has purchased a Clicker 7 OneSchool Site License, you can request special serial numbers that will enable teachers and pupils to use the software at home. These are provided in the form of PDF letters for you to print and give out.

    • Visit http://activate.cricksoft.com.
    • Enter your serial number and register if required.
    • On the Clicker 7 License Management page, click Claim licenses for home use.
    • Follow the on-screen instructions.

    The website will generate a single PDF file containing your chosen number of letters.

    Each letter contains a unique Clicker 7 Single Computer serial number, along with information about Clicker 7 and where to download the installer.

    Print the PDF file once only and hand out each unique letter to a different teacher or pupil.

    I’m a parent. How can my child get Clicker 7 at home?

    Please contact your child’s school to check whether they’ve purchased a Clicker 7 OneSchool Site License.

    If they have, they can provide you with a letter containing your own Clicker 7 Single Computer serial number and a download link.

    If they haven’t, you can purchase a discounted Clicker 7 @home license by visiting the home user section of our website.

  • Talking about the weather with Clicker 7


    There are lots of ways in which children can explore their ideas and existing knowledge around a topic using Clicker 7. Working with a talking partner, for example, might be a good introduction to weather in Geography. 

    Learning Intention: To identify different types of weather

    Context: The children will learn about the different types of weather and make associations between the weather and seasons

    Key questions:

    • What types of weather can you name?
    • What is the weather like today?
    • Is the weather always the same?
    • When does it change?
    • Is there certain weather at certain times of the year?
    • Why isn’t it hot in December?
    • What changes when it is sunny, rainy, windy, cloudy?
    • How does this weather change what you wear?
    • What is your favourite type of weather? Can you draw it?

    As a starting point, I used one of my favourite resources on LearningGrids, called ‘Interview Me’.

    You’ll find over 800 ready-made resources here. These can all be used as they are, or can be very easily edited to suit your particular topic or needs. Don’t forget these are regularly added to by our own curriculum team, so it’s worth having a look to see what’s there to tie in with what you’re doing throughout the term!

    I searched for ‘Interview Me’ and then opened it by clicking on ‘Run Now’.  

    Interview Me activity

    This could be used by so many different year groups in so many different subjects. But I decided to adapt it then save my version of it.

    Customising the activity

    I clicked on ‘Edit Clicker Set’ (bottom left) and then selected the Sound and Video tab at the top. Clicking on one of the question marks allows me to type in alternative text that I’d like Clicker to say out loud.

    Edit mode - Interview Me

    I changed the first question from ‘What is your name?’ to ‘What is the weather like today?’. I then replaced all the other questions in this template with my own in the same way. The activity is now ready!

    Children click on the question marks to hear each question, then click on the microphone icons to record their responses. They could work individually or in pairs. They have plenty of time (up to a minute for each recording) and can listen back and re-record at any point if they wish. Their recordings will be saved when the activity is saved.

    My final question was ‘What is your favourite type of weather? Can you draw it?

    Clicking on the paint brush icon will open Clicker Paint and enable pupils to illustrate their ideas without the inconvenience of having to go into another piece of paint software – they simply stay in Clicker!

    adding pictures to the weather activity

    Demonstrating understanding with recordings and pictures

    In the next stage (or in another lesson) we can listen again to all the recordings and review the picture, before having a class ideas storm using Clicker Board, the new planning and mind mapping area in Clicker 7. Simply double-click anywhere on the Clicker Board area to create a text box. Then, just click in the box to start writing.

    Creating a mind map with Clicker Board

    Many teachers have told me they love the way in which the whole class remains engaged as they see everyone’s contributions and suggestions instantly appearing on the whiteboard.

    Weather mind map example

    It’s a great way to use Clicker as a whole class teaching tool!

  • Clicker 7 and the water cycle


    Here’s an extract from the KS2 Programme of Study: 

    Key Stage 2 – Geography – Place Knowledge – Physical Geography

    Pupils should be taught to; understand key aspects of physical geography including climate zone, biomes, vegetation belts, rivers, mountains, volcanoes, earthquakes and the water cycle."

     

    In this post, I am going to focus on ways in which Clicker could be used to support learning about the water cycle.

    I would start by creating a KWL chart on the whiteboard using Clicker Board, asking the pupils to tell me what they already know about the water cycle, and what they want to know:

    A Water Cycle KWL chart

    I would then move to ‘The Water Cycle – Read a Book’ Clicker Set, which you can download from our LearningGrids site. I would display this on the whiteboard and talk through the different processes.

    I would also make this available on individual laptops or computers for my struggling readers so that they could utilise Clicker’s speech feedback and listen to the text themselves.

    The Water Cycle - Read a Book activity

    Next, I would look at two writing support resources from LearningGrids, the aim being for all the children in the class to create a piece of structured writing about the topic.

    I would ask my lower ability learners to use Clicker 7 to re-create the water cycle processes with the help of ‘The Water Cycle’ Connect Set:

    The Water Cycle Connect Set

    This would ensure that those learners have a suitable level of support to tackle this task successfully.

    For the remainder of the pupils I would print off the ‘Stages of the Water Cycle’ Word Bank from LearningGrids and ask them to write their own version of the water cycle, incorporating as much of the topic vocabulary as they are able to.

    Stages of the water cycle - word bank

    Lastly, we would come back to the KWL chart as a class and fill in the ‘what I have learned’ section:

    Updating the KWL chart

    For those learners who require an alternative way to demonstrate their knowledge, I would use the talking activity ‘Talk About the Water Cycle’, which focuses on first identifying the stages and then describing them.

    Talk About the Water Cycle - speaking activity

    The recordings can be saved to the activity as a record of achievement / progress.

    If there’s a particular topic you’d like to use Clicker to teach, please do get in touch – we’ll be happy to advise on available resources and activity templates.

  • Key Stage 2, Year 4:

    ‘pupils should be taught to draft and write by composing and rehearsing sentences orally (including dialogue), progressively building a varied and rich vocabulary and an increasing range of sentence structures’

     

    Clicker 7 is a fantastic way of giving children the opportunity to try out different ways of structuring sentences and be experimental with language use. Why not try making a Connect Set with a very basic sentence at the top of the grid and a bank of interesting vocabulary below.  This will give the children a chance to improve sentences with adjectives or interesting verbs that have been provided for them.

    Using Connect Sets to encourage more adventurous vocabulary use

    As an extension from this, why not use some of our ready-made Sentence Sets on Learning Grids and ask the children to improve them by putting the sentence together and then free typing to add additional content.  They could work in pairs to allow them to discuss the vocabulary they could include.

    Combining sentence building activities and free typing

    To look at the variety of ways sentences can be constructed (including the use of fronted adverbials) I have created a simple Connect Set.  

    Clicker Connect Set example

     If you need any advice on how Clicker can be used to develop specific literacy skills please don't hesitate to get in touch with us!

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