We spent a productive and thought-provoking day last week, among the bright orange beanbags at Mozilla’s London HQ on our S2R Medals co-design workshop.
Educators, students, academics and technologists put their heads together to discuss three burning questions:
1. What skills should S2R Medals recognise and reward? How do we evidence and asssess these skills?
2. What’s the process to gain and display S2R Medals?
3. What value will they have to learners, teachers, employers and others?
This was not a briefing session on Mozilla Open Badges and how S2R (Supporter To Reporter) is going to deploy them. It was action research, an opportunity to ask our community how best to make medals work and enhance our sports reporting project.
Questions tackled included?
- How do we list and rank the soft and hard skills that S2R participants gain?
- Which of these do universities or employers rate and acknowledge?
- How, practically, will admissions tutors or employers access and accept badges?
Tony Archdeacon from Liverpool Hope University filled us in on forthcoming education policy: ‘oracy’ (speaking and listening) will be given more emphasis, alongside the well-established literacy (reading and writing). S2R interviewers are practising, developing and evidencing oracy.
Karl Royle from Wolverhampton University told us how, to engage pupils, learning has to be ‘authentic’ – representing real-life activity, not classroom simulations.
Ormiston Venture Academy’s Steve Sorrento gave us an anecdote from a school, where a pupil was found using eBay in a lesson. “What are you doing?” “Buying and selling gig tickets. I’ve made £1000 this week.” “Why are you doing it in this lesson?” “I can’t do it in Business Studies. It’s just about making business plans.”
A Youth Sports Trust colleague asked “How, practically, will a university admissions tutor see a badge? How do badges come into their assessments, which might be paper-based or use a closed system?”
Pupils from Coleshill School, who had reported from the School Games at the Olympic Park, broke down the skills they felt they had learnt from the experience, and helped us see what value badges could have for them.
Mozilla’s John Bevan and Doug Belshaw were our friendly hosts. They gave us the space to work, relax and mingle with Mozillans. Doug offered a popular session the end of the day, to talk more generally about Open Badges and the possibilities they hold.
To find out about open badges, visit www.openbadges.org
Students can earn their first badge by creating an Olympic Sports Report: '2012 Reporter Medal'
Twitter: @_S2R #S2RMedals