Dean Park Primary School, Edinburgh

Introduction

From 2006-2007, Prescience Communications worked with Dean Park Primary School to develop a whole-school approach to educational videoconferencing. We developed a format, which we named videocontact. This format encompasses two key ideas – that a learning environment can be a “classroom without walls” and that the technology can be a tunnel between two working environments. The project ran over 42 days of work.

Inservice Day Training Targets

As a result of inservice day training at Dean Park in October of 2006, we developed the following map of action. Our key targets were to link to local schools in Edinburgh, then other city schools in Glasgow, and finally to link with working environments and international partners.

Overview of Workplan for Dean Park Primary School

The Various Projects

We involved all of the school in different videoconferencing projects, and co-ordinated the links with the outside world. For example, in the links with the Scottish Parliament, and in the link with children in Kuwait and the USA.

Primary 7 Projects

Transition projects and links with cluster schools.
1.Balerno High School, Library – Explore Project. Claire Duncan. (477 7788).
2.Links with Ratho
3.Occassional link with Croftfoot on WWII
4.International Link
a.Sweden - Sandviken
b.Empower Peace – Kuwait (American Embassy), Boston (Polycom offices), Edinburgh (City Primary School)

Primary 6 Projects

Open ended projects developing excellence.
1.Glasgow – Sandaig, Croftfoot Primary (recorded)
2.Edinburgh
3.Possible international link with Grenoble – St Martins Du Uriage, Ecole de la Houille Blanche
4.People who help us

Primary 5 Projects

Only looking for 2 good links for each class.
1.Link with St Columbkille school in Glasgow
2.Food (Possible link with Kevin at All Good)
3.Link between Primary 5 and Primary 4 in annexe – healthy lunch (recorded)
4.Donaldsons Academy (ISDN 0131 347 5502)

Primary 4 Projects

1.Weather
2.Annexe-Main
3.Fair Trade - Africa

Primary 2-3 Project

1.P3 – Tour down the Royal Mile, with St Joseph’s (recorded)
2.Link Primary 3 with Primary 2 to show them the new environment

Primary 1 Project

1.Story-telling

World War Two Project: What You Could Take With You

Results

We managed two significant international contacts, one as part of Empower Peace, where Dean Park Primary School was chosen as the only school in Edinburgh to have the required technology to support a large-scale link. We specially wired the assembly hall for this to be the case, and advised on sound for the conference. The second was to a working school in Sweden, and the contacts are ongoing from that project.

We linked with two working environments in Edinburgh: the Scottish Parliament, and Pollination flower shop. Both links resulted in a tour of works and questions and answers regarding daily activities.

We managed numerous links with Glasgow and Dumfries and Galloway in curriculum areas, and developed a series of “show and tell” presentations which were accompanied with a questions and answer session.

Importantly, we linked with other schools in the local cluster, and with other schools across Edinburgh, again within the curricular context.

Dean Park Primary School International Videoconference

Reaction

The feedback to the educational videoconferencing projects at Dean park Primary was very positive. The school presented this work at Edinburgh's E-live conference, and also at the Scottish Learning Festival in 2007. In 2008, the school performed very well in an HMIE inspection, and the videoconferencing achievements were favourably mentioned.