TV and video to breathe new life into lessons

28th January 2000 at 00:00
ARMED only with a television set, a black box and a remote control, teachers should soon have access on demand to teaching materials covering every aspect of the national curriculum for pupils from reception to GCSEs.

Don't your pupils see the point of Pythagoras? Zap to a video where a film stunt-designer explains the importance of calculating the hypotenuse when a ramp is needed to ensure a car crashes safely.

Is your class bored by biology? Turn to a pair of breathing lungs, with all the bits clearly marked. Then back-up the video with an interactive quiz or worksheets downloaded from the website.

These are among the 3,000 elements supporting the maths and science syllabus for GCSE already on trial in 10 schools as part of a pilot scheme funded by the Department for Education and Employment.

They are produced by Result, an educational digital television service pioneered by Granada Media Group and launched this week.

Part of the pilot servie is a weekly news programme for teachers called Class Act, produced by Granada in association with The TES.

Initial reaction to Result from teachers and pupils has been extremely positive.

"Because you can pick and choose the bits you want to use, it's useful for every different ability group," said Geoff Tunnicliffe, head of science at Feltham community college in London.

"Pupils like it because it's focused and short. You can use it for an entire lesson or a couple of times during the lesson."

Granada pitched the idea to the DFEE, who then decided to put the contract for a Government-funded service out to tender. Granada is now trying it out in competition with the BBC and Anglia (United News and Media), who are each trialling a service in 10 schools.

Ministers' decision will be announced in May and, once they give the go-ahead, the service will be launched next year, giving all schools access to materials in seven GCSE subjects.

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