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Pupils’ iPad passport

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It may have just three classes, but one of the smallest schools in the Borders is using cutting-edge technology to forge new global links.

A composite class of Primary 5/6/7 pupils at Ednam Primary now has its very own Apple iPads, helping it link to schools all over Europe and beyond.

Being able to email ‘ePals’ as far afield as Australia has not only widened the world view of the youngsters, but also honed their computer technology skills.

And all of this has been made possible due to the passion and drive of P5/6/7 teacher, Tom Pike, who is currently co-ordinating his second Comenius Programme project, which runs until 2015.

Mr Pike told us: “Ednam Primary School has always had international links, with places including Brazil, the USA, Japan and Palestine.”

The Comenius Programme - named after Jan Amos Comenius (1592-1670), often considered as the father of modern education - is run by the British Council, and enables schools to link up with their counterparts all over Europe.

It provides funding for expenses, which includes paying for travel so that the partners can meet up, and has also allowed Mr Pike to purchase the 20 iPads.

The pupils have been able to use the iPads to keep in touch with the their Comenius partners, which include pupils at schools in Italy, Turkey, Romania and Bulgaria.

Mr Pike has put in many extra-curricular hours, from generating the original idea for the projects and getting other schools interested, to filling in all the paperwork required.

He explained: “Our first Comenius project had four partners; this second one has nine other schools involved.

“The children still Skype a French school they worked with on the first Comenius project every Tuesday, and speak to them in French.”

 

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