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The newsletter includes news from the Future Classroom Lab and three EC-funded projects: CPDLab, Living Schools Lab and Creative Classrooms Lab.

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Join the Living Schools Lab network

Schools and teachers across Europe aspire to improve their use of ICT in teaching and learning. Both the opportunities and challenges are growing. The Living Schools Lab project is working with schools that have already effectively embedded ICT across the school to share and demonstrate their best practices. Within the project, schools from across 12 European countries exchange those best practices at pan-European and national level. Schools work together collaboratively on a number of topics, while working also on their individual development plans at their own pace.

The Living Schools Lab is now welcoming new schools to join the pan-European network.

The schools within the network benefit from:

  • Regional hubs
  • Collaborative work around ICT themes
  • Learning Snacks
  • The LSL training course for whole school development 
  • ICT audit
  • Opportunity to become a LSL validation school
  • Support for schools’ development plans

Read more here and join!

Mainstreaming successful use of ICT in schools - webinar on the initial findings of the observation visits

Living Schools Lab webinar with Diana BannisterWhat is needed to embed ICT into teaching and learning across the school? What role are playing innovation and change management? What the infrastructure should be like? How to support teachers' professional development? These are some of the questions dealt within the Living Schools Lab project that works with schools that are successfully using ICT across the school or partially.

The webinar held on 4 March revealed some of the findings based on observation visits, interviews, and focus group meetings with teachers and school leaders from 6 different countries.

Diana Bannister from the University of Wolverhampton, who by now has visited 12 countries all together, shared in the webinar the initial findings on those successful school change management strategies and how they could be mainstreamed in other schools.

If you could not join the webinar, you find here the webinar recording.

New teacher training courses at the Future Classroom Lab - Apply for funding through ErasmusPlus

Teacher training courses at the Future Classroom Lab 2014-2015 - Apply for funding through Erasmus+ ProgrammeAre you looking for courses and workshops for yourself or for your school's teachers? Popular two-day workshops on different topics as well as comprehensive five-day courses will be organised at the Future Classroom Lab in Brussels. The workshops and courses are open to teachers from across Europe, so view here our training programme for 2014:

Five-day courses 2014-2015

  • Programming for the 21st century classroom, 13-17 October 2014
  • Collaboration and innovative learning scenarios, 30 March – 3 April 2015
  • Interactive technologies for the future classroom, 29 June – 3 July 2015
  • Creative use of multimedia, games and tablets in school (no date confirmed)

Two-day workshops 2014

  • Collaborative projects in the future classroom, 14-15 April
  • Creative use of multimedia and games in the classroom, 29-30 April
  • Future Classroom Scenarios, 2-3 June
  • Interactive classroom, Sep/Oct
  • Collaborative projects in the future classroom, October
  • Developing an eSafe classroom, November
  • 1:1 pedagogy and devices, December


Read also about Erasmus+ funding for school staff mobility projects, application deadline 17 March 2014

EUN Academy pilot courses will start in March

EUN Academy courses start in March 2014 - Sign up now!The two pilot courses of the European Schoolnet Academy have now starting dates: the "Innovative Practices for Engaging STEM Teaching" course will start on 17 March, and the "Future Classroom Scenarios" course will start on 24 March.

The “Future Classroom Scenarios” course lasts 6 weeks and aims to introduce teachers, head teachers and ICT coordinators in schools to concepts, tools, and exchanges about the future classroom. “Innovative Practices for Engaging STEM Teaching”, lasting 8 weeks, aims to provide teachers, school counsellors and career advisers with resources and ideas to increase pupils’ interest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects and careers.

The European Schoolnet Academy is an online platform for professional development of teachers in Europe hosting open courses for teachers from European funded projects, Ministries of Education and other organisations offering training to teachers. Through the free-of-charge courses offered via the Academy, primary and secondary teachers can receive an introduction to key concepts and ideas that are relevant to developing their teaching practices and have the opportunity to discuss these ideas and share their experiences with other teachers and experts.

If you have not yet, sign up now to either one or both of the pilot courses!


New learning snacks on their way

New learning snacks are on their way, don't miss them! As always the learning snacks are easy to consume (available free-of-charge and online) and to digest (providing practical tips and ideas to be taken into practice in your classroom). Living Schools Lab is organising new webinars and Twitter discussion during the coming weeks and months: sign up now not to miss any!

Watch here the promotion video of the upcoming CPD webinar!


Amazon vouchers increased to 70 Euros and later closing date for feedback on a training course about ICT in the classroom

The European Computer Driving License (ECDL) Foundation is preparing a course for teachers about the use of ICT in classrooms and they are looking for feedback on their syllabus. Use your expertise and ideas in this area and shape what their course will include. As we all know, teacher training is important for effective use of ICT in the classroom, so this is a great opportunity to share your ideas on what a good training course for teachers should look like.

What will I have to do?

The work will require a time commitment of around 2 hours and require you to read through the syllabus and provide comments in the relevant document. If you would like to participate in this validation exercise, please take a look at the following three documents in this order:

  1. The first document is the ICT in Education syllabus.
  2. A. Please read the whole document (it looks longer than it is!).

  3. The second document is the feedback form, this is an Excel spreadsheet.

  4. A. Use this document to provide feedback to each of the different parts of the syllabus.

    B. Take a moment to get familiar with the document.

    C. Work through each of the tabs in the spreadsheet (on the bottom left) from left to right. You will find instructions on how to complete the form in the first tab.

  5. The third document is for your information regarding any intellectual property rights questions.

We might ask you to participate in a follow-up discussion via a Webex meeting to explain or elaborate further on some of your ideas. There is no obligation to participate in this. The deadline for sending back the completed feedback document is the 29th January. Please send your completed document to

What will I gain from participating?

70 Euro Amazon vouchers will be sent out to the first 20 respondents. We will post an update on the LSL website if no more vouchers are available. You will receive the vouchers via email. If you are not living in a country where Amazon services are available, you will receive a voucher from an Amazon site which is located close to your country.

This is also a great opportunity to shape a training course on the use of ICT in the classroom. The ECDL Foundation is a worldwide recognized organization and its courses will teachers all across Europe. Share your expertise to ensure this will be a valuable experience for all those teachers who will take these courses.

Students as digital leaders

Students very often have more digital skills than teachers. However, in many cases this digital expertise is not used at its full potential for the benefit of all stakeholders in a school. Students can play an important role in the professional development for teachers and in a change management plan for a school.

In a recent webinar LSL team's Bart Verswijvel presented two models for the students' involvement as digital leaders on a school level. Here you can watch the webinar recording and for more in-depth information read an article Integration of ICT for Developing Distributed Leadership in learning Networks (written by Bart Verswijvel, European Schoolnet, Belgium & Aelita Skarzauskiene, Mykolas Romeris University, Lithuania).

The webinar took place on Tuesday 17 December 2013


Interim report on Link Observation Visits published

The interim report on link observation visits draws on the information and observations from telephone interviews and visits with half of the Advanced Schools identified in the Living Schools Lab project. The report, written by Diana Bannister from University of Wolverhampton, focuses on the case studies being developed following the visits to the first 6 countries (Phase one: UK, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Norway and Italy).

One of the biggest challenges for the education system is the significant differences between schools both within and across countries, all of which are affected by multiple factors including different and ever changing political structures, funding, leadership and governance, training and professional development. Inevitably, this leads to changes in staffing, resources and the curriculum. The observation of these Advanced Schools in the LSL project provides a unique insight into these leading schools showcasing innovative practice and demonstrating to all schools the mainstream use of ICT.

The initial findings are divided in four areas:

  • Innovation and Whole School Change
  • Infrastructure
  • Teacher Professional Development
  • Curriculum and Pedagogy

The draft recommendations address three different levels: National Co-ordinators and the Regional Hubs, the Advanced Schools and the Advanced Practitioner Schools. In principal, these initial findings and recommendations feed into the second phase of the observation visits and the development of a CPD course for teachers. The final report on the LSL link observation visits will be published in summer 2014.

Diana Bannister will lead a webinar in early February about the findings within this interim report.


Spotlight on Practice - Leadership at Belgian schools

Who should take initiative in schools and show the way? Is it only the head teacher who can lead the innovation process from top-down? Or do teachers and students have opportunities to take forward their own initiatives? The new edition of ‘Spotlight on Practice’ focuses on leadership at school through the examples provided by two LSL Advanced Schools in Belgium: GO! Middenschool at Ieper and De Grasmus-De Klare Bron. Read the full article here.

‘Spotlight on practice’ is a series of articles presenting the schools participating in the Living Schools Lab network. Don’t forget to have a look as well at our previous articles and find out how our Advanced schools in Portugal, Ireland, Italy, United Kingdom and Finland are enhancing their teaching and incorporating the use of technology across the school curriculum.

Do you want to learn more about the two Belgian Advanced Schools? Enjoy the new two articles on Diana Bannister’s Observation Visits journal: Mathematical Movies, Stop-motion and a Countdown to the Finale in Space and Active Learning in Ieper Across the Curriculum.

Advanced Schools webinars - Addressing the challenge of collaborative learning

Using technologies to enable collaborative ways of working provides a new challenge for schools. How does the teacher organise the classroom to facilitate new ways of collaborating? Are the students able to decide on their outputs collaboratively?

In some of the Advanced Schools within the Living Schools Lab network, teachers are looking at how students can collaborate in the classroom using technologies such as Learner Response Systems or web-based programs which allow synchronous and asynchronous learning. As part of the series of six webinars AS lead teachers are developing until March 2014, Xavier Garnier (Lycée Pilote Innovant International, France), Skevi Demetriou (Geroskipou A’ Primary School, Cyprus), Virginija Birenienė (Klaipėdos Simono Dacho progimnazija, Lithuania), and Aurika Jonauskienė (Kauno „Varpelio“ pradinė mokykla, Lithuania) led an online talk last 28 November.

During the webinar, the teachers presented the main collaborative learning tools they are using in their schools, such as Weebly, for designing webquests; Edmodo for iPad classrooms; Socrative, for supporting group work, and Class Dojo, for collaboration among teachers, parents and students. They also explained the biggest challenges their schools have to address in order to bring ICT closer to modern pedagogy and enhance collaborative learning.

Many resources, tools and new ideas were shared during the webinar. If you could not join it, find below the recording, and all the outcomes on the Snack Bar page. 




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