No such thing as a free lunch? When it comes to digital and online teaching materials for teachers that’s not true. What’s required is a creative and careful balance between the communications desires of sponsor organisations and the needs of schools.
This week sees the launch of a brand new website, edcomsteachers.com, specialising in free resources for teachers, and from a company that specialises in creating them, EdComs. It kicks off with 40 free, high-quality teaching resources, for both primary and secondary schools, and a competition.
Edcomsteachers.com will bring together all the free materials EdComs creates for schools together in one place. The range available at launch includes online activities, resources for interactive whiteboards, worksheets and games. New resources will be added monthly and EdComs is aiming to create a library of 100 resources within just six months. Teachers registering with the new site before December 15 get the chance to win a place at the Learning Without Frontiers 12 conference in London in January (worth £995).
'Offering members the chance to contribute to paid research and development'
Sophie Bessemer, head of digital communications with EdComs, commented: “We are incredibly proud of the high-quality resources we’ve produced for clients over the last few years but this is the first time we’ve brought them together in one place. We hope that EdComs teachers will provide a key component in UK teachers’ toolbox of excellent free technology and teaching aids available to them online.
"We’ll also be offering members the chance to contribute to paid research and development, and inviting them to workshops and other free events such as the RBS personal finance education teaching training days.”
All the resources on the new site, for use with students aged from 5 to 19 across all subjects, have been tested with teachers. And EdComs wants to involve member teachers in the new website, commenting on new resources. There will also be opportunities to create free professional development sessions and workshops and get involved in paid research and development of future programmes through the EdComs Teacher Panel.
What do teachers think about edcomsteachers.com? They have already been working with the teaching community to elicit feedback and here are three of the reponses:
“As head of ICT, I'm always conscious of website design and ease of use. EdComs teachers can be simply navigated which makes it possible to quickly access first-rate teaching resources, plus they are free!”
Kathryn Loughnan, head of ICT at Avonbourne School, Dorset.
"EdComs has regularly produced some excellent resources for both primary and secondary classrooms that are great for use with an interactive whiteboard as well as for supporting independent student work."
Danny Nicholson, The Whiteboard Blog.
“EdComs’ free resources are genuinely some of the best out there.”
Fiona Henry, lecturer with Vital, Open University.
See also Sophie Bessemer's "Slaves to the system – principles of a free resource" and its teacher checklist for evaluating resources, and her article on how to create quality digital resources, "The anatomy of a free sponsored resource".
Follow @edcomsteachers on Twitter
Edcoms, 11th Floor, Capital Tower, 91 Waterloo Road, London, SE1 8RT
EdComs helps organisations communicate through learning to build sustainable, mutually beneficial relationships with consumers, employees, young people and the wider community. Clients include market-leading brands, Government departments and not-for-profit organisations.
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