Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Design Brief

Design Brief Population Pyramids
Population pyramids for many developed countries highlight the reality of an aging population. The inevitability of growing older brings with it many challenges to everyday activities. This calls for new and innovative thinking to enrich the lives of our elderly and ensure facilitation of the emotional, physiological, and social needs that guarantee an independent, dynamic and stimulate life. Reinforcing the link between technology and society: Design and model a device/artefact that will enhance the quality of life for an elderly person.

  • A structured ePortfolio is to be developed using a combination of class wiki pages, social bookmarking software and student blogs

The ePortfolio must contain the following headings:

  1. Design Brief
  2. Analysis of Brief (completed first on class wiki page)
  3. Investigation/ Research (investigation will utilise the internet with the use of social bookmarking software and will be recorded primarily on the class wiki)
  4. Possible Solutions
  5. Working Drawings
  6. Manufacture
  7. Evaluation

The portfolio can contain text, pictures, video, voice recordings or any other medium you wish to include

*This design brief has been adapted from the 2009 PN4005 Design Brief authored by Dr. Niall Seery

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Class Newsletter

A class newsletter is a great way to get pupils involved in the classroom blog. You can ask pupils, individually or in small groups, to write a class newsletter. This newsletter may be weekly, fortnightly or monthly and can include many aspects of what has/is taking place in the classroom at that time. This gives the pupils a chance to write in a different manner than they ordinarily can in the Design and Communication Graphics classroom and will allow them to be even more creative than they can be by drawing and designing.

This newsletter can be as long or short as you wish and can either be written straight into a blog post or could again be uploaded to scribd.com and embedded into a blog post.

Adding the tag "Newsletter" will mean that you can record every newsletter the pupils have published and makes them easy to find.

Class Handouts

You can upload your handouts onto the classroom blog. The simplest way of doing it is to upload your handout as a pdf to the blog so that pupils may simply download it and store it on their computer or print off a new one. This means that if pupils misplace handouts or wish to complete them again it will not mean that they need to ask the teacher to photocopy more.

An easy way of uploading your handouts to your blog is to:

  1. Create a free scribd.com account
  2. Upload your handouts to your account
  3. Embed your files into your blog using the embed code provided
The advantage of using scribd instead of a file hosting website is that their the file and be easily read on the blog post and can then be downloaded, a file hosting service does not give you this option.

Below is an example of a handout that has been added to this post as per the directions above

Pedagogic Topic Analysis of Surface Geometry

Adding the tag "Class Handouts" will mean that you can record every handout given to the pupils and also makes them easy to find.

Homework Assignments

You can post each homework assignment which you give the pupils on this section of the blog also. This will lead to the pupils visiting the blog more regularly, as they may have forgotten to take down their homework in class and it will avoid the excuse of, "I didn't know Sir/Miss".

Posting each homework assignment on the blog also means that the pupils' parents can see what their son/daughter should be doing for homework each evening.


Adding the tag "Homework Assignment" will also mean that you can record every piece of homework given to the pupils and also makes them easy to find.

Motivational Posts

A nice idea for encouraging pupil participation in the classroom blog is to ask a different pupil each day/week to write a motivational message for the class. This could take the form of a written message, a picture, a video or a voice recording. A good example of a simple motivational picture is:

Self, Motivation, Self Motivation

It is nice to add some humor to these messages to engage the pupils and to help the blog to be a fun area as well as an area for work