Crick Software US Blog

RSS Feed
  • Teacher Notes in Clicker 6



    Are you making the most of our Clicker 6 resources? We know many of you download the free Clicker 6 activities published regularly on LearningGrids. Do you make use of the Teacher Notes which accompany these resources? If this is something you’ve never used, I’d recommend you take a look – it may get you thinking about how you could be making more of these resources to support you, and your students’ learning.

    The notes are presented in a specific format, and are designed to give an overview of the learning intentions, suggestions on how to introduce the activities, and ideas for further work. Let’s take Frog Life Cycle – Read as an example to illustrate this.



    On the start page or grid, where the resource title is displayed, click on the "i" button (you can see this highlighted in the screenshot above). A pop-up containing the Teacher Notes will open. Generally, these are set out in three clear sections.



    The first section, About the Clicker Set, outlines the activity and the ideas covered.

    The next section, Introducing and using the set, suggests simple steps to help you introduce the activity to your students. It offers some ideas for getting you started and tips for using the resource.

    The final More Resources section highlights other resources which may be of interest to you – these may be linked to the theme of the resource or to the activity type. A search term is suggested to help you find similar types of activities, or activities on the same theme. This section also lists any resources which have a direct connection to the current set. This means you can find and download differentiated or alternative activities related to the content, helping you to address the needs and abilities of all your students. Sometimes, additional “Powered by Clicker” resources are referenced which may be useful if you’re looking to go into a particular topic in more depth. And for those of you who like to create your own resources, there’s a note about Templates or Wizards which could be used to create similar activities.

    We appreciate how busy school life can be and we want you (and your students) to get the most out of our Clicker 6 resources. Hopefully, our Teacher Notes will help you to make full and meaningful use of the resources, as well as inspiring further ideas.

  • ESU Awards Update



    We’ve just heard back from the English Speaking Union’s Awards team – our Clicker Sentences app has been chosen as the runner-up for the 2013 ESU President’s Award!


    The ESU’s annual awards celebrate innovation and good practice in the field of English language teaching and learning. The ESU President’s Award recognizes and encourages the widespread and successful use of technology to enhance English teaching and learning worldwide.


    The expert panel judging the ESU President’s Award were very impressed with Clicker Sentences, describing it as “Clean and concise, with an effective and engaging design providing a real ‘fun factor’ for young learners. It makes good use of iPad technology and has a range of features to help young learners in their use of English, with particular emphasis on spelling and sentence structure.”


    If you’ve not yet had a chance to take a look at Clicker Sentences, you can visit our website to watch an introduction video.




  •  


    In our tools designed for elementary school students, we have included the Sassoon font - a font researched and developed specially for children.


    The Sassoon font makes a real difference for a number of reasons:


    • The font is based on letter formations familiar to beginning readers and writers, for example, rounded letters. Therefore, a potential confusion with letter recognition is avoided as children establish their reading and writing skills.

    • The font is closer to the way children are taught handwriting, including such features as exit strokes at the base. Thus the link between reading and writing is emphasized.

    • Features of the font also contribute to its legibility on-screen. The slightly longer ascenders and descenders help with letter recognition as well as defining the word shape, and as such aid with word recognition.

    • The line spacing is also very slightly bigger than some other fonts, which promotes ease of reading since the text is less dense and the lines of text are more defined. 

    Within our software, children will be reading both their own text and other on-screen books, and this subtle support is really helpful for both young children and special education students.


    By including the Sassoon font, we are adding an additional option that enables you to fully take the needs of your students into account.  Of course, you can choose any other fonts too – as children’s skills develop, allowing them to choose their own font can also be a useful strategy to motivate them as they write.