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ICT in primary science?

Discussion in 'Computing and ICT' started by minnieminx, Feb 25, 2011.

  1. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    I think I'm going to take the plunge and get some ICT bits to use in science at our school, we currently have nothing. I'm science co-ordinator, but not ICT and the ICT provision is dire, with a co-ord who isn't going to make it better any time soon. So whatever we get needs to work sort of as a stand alone system, though we do have an ICT room which all children use once a week.

    Soooo which data logger type things do you use and which is the best for ease of use and encouraging staff not used to ICT in science please?

    Ideally I'd like the same system for use from nursery to year 6...but am not sure if this is possible.

    I can see in front of me Log Box, Easysense Q3 and LogIT. No clue at all which is better and the technical description seems to be in a different language.

    Please help.

    Thank you in advance.
     
  2. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    I think I'm going to take the plunge and get some ICT bits to use in science at our school, we currently have nothing. I'm science co-ordinator, but not ICT and the ICT provision is dire, with a co-ord who isn't going to make it better any time soon. So whatever we get needs to work sort of as a stand alone system, though we do have an ICT room which all children use once a week.

    Soooo which data logger type things do you use and which is the best for ease of use and encouraging staff not used to ICT in science please?

    Ideally I'd like the same system for use from nursery to year 6...but am not sure if this is possible.

    I can see in front of me Log Box, Easysense Q3 and LogIT. No clue at all which is better and the technical description seems to be in a different language.

    Please help.

    Thank you in advance.
     
  3. In the absence of any other reply.....



    In your position, I'd call all three and ask for a demo to check out the ease of use of the software. If they're clued up, they should be able to give you a remote demonstration of the software they supply via logmein, teamviewer or some other remote access tool. We've had several sessions like these with potential suppliers.



    Functionally, all three look the same with auto sensor type detection and a start and stop button so I doubt that one will be significantly more difficult to use than the other two. Data logging in itself is fairly simple, i.e. grab a voltage, convert it to a digital value and store it and as you probably don't need double digit resolution of values at primary level I suspect all three will deliver the goods.



    From a purely non-technical view, the LogIT explorer grabs my interest more mainly due to the quality of their documentation, brochures and the easy way I found everything I needed on their website. They also go on a lot about after sales support and service which is always a good sign and the storage/carrying cases look professional and well designed. They are also however, the expensive. Hopefully the promise will live up to the price.
     
  4. becktonboy

    becktonboy New commenter

    We use Commotion Control boxes with Junior Insight software, which also works with a wide range of other interfaces, such as the LogIt explorer. The latter enjoys the advantage of being portable, so data can be collected from a variety of locations, others require a computer connection. All dataloggers are pricey, the Commotion box has the advantage that it also doubles as a control box and works well with their own Coco software - a selling point for your ICT Coordinator. The trouble with all of these systems is getting enough of the children to actually use them, you wil usually end up with a single set of data produced mainly by the teacher, then made available to the children.
     
  5. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Hmmm Thank you both.

    Buying enough for everyone to use is going to be a challenge. I think it is utterly pointless for the teacher to generate the data for children to analyse, they might as well just make it up or get it from the net. Ideally I'd like the children to be 'doing' science, now I'm not sure these will let them do that. But there is nothing else ICT based in the science catalogues I have.

    I posted this on other boards and someone else mentioned a visualiser...would this be better?
     
  6. I had a demo of a visualiser at BETT and could definitely see the potential for science. On the other hand though, I always found that getting your hands dirty is the most fun way to do such activities. I knew on paper how a petrol engine worked at age 14 but only later, when I actually stripped my first engine down, did I truly understand it.



    If cost and maximising the distribution of equipment is a priority, I'd go for cheapest option and get several of them.
     
  7. madcat

    madcat Occasional commenter

    One quick and cheap way to get ICT into primary science and other areas is to set up an electronic weather station.
    These can log data to a PC; push data to web sites etc and have all sorts of cross curricular uses
    These Oregon stations are easy to set up and pretty robust
    http://www.weathershop.co.uk/shop/brands/oregon-scientific/full/oregon-scientific-wmr88-weather-station.html



     

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