Read about what is happening in the academies and other edtech news and updates from across the Trust.
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Esports @ Wilmington Academy
James Marriott, Wilmington Academy
Following months of discussions and planning Wilmington Academy is delighted to announce that the HyperX Esports Gaming Suite is nearing completion.
Background This academic year has seen Wilmington offer BTEC Level 3 in Esports, which has seen a fantastic uptake and looks to continue into the next academic year. The pupils have alongside their studies, acted as Esports managers for the game titles played.
Backed by the trust and with strong leadership from Mr Gore, Wilmington has now created a bespoke one of a kind in the South East gaming arena for both Education and Game play. The suite has 12 high spec gaming pc’s and, after receiving sponsorship from HyperX, has been named the HyperX Gaming Arena. Alongside this GT Omega have also come onboard as partners and have provided us gaming chairs to round of the fantastic facility.
Competition The Esports Sixth Form students along with the help of myself designed and created our Esports logo. Based on the three Wilmington Acorns, we wanted to keep the schools identity but look to develop a fierce competitive side. From this Ninja Acorns evolved and designs were completed by a Graphic Designer know to myself. We then wanted to push into the Merchandise market and alongside Masuri developed our own brand of clothing with a digital shop. The links for this are attached on our link below, and all are welcome to purchase merchandise.
Wilmington Esports have been competing since January (off site) in the British Esports Association Student Championships. We have teams within Overwatch, League of Legends and Rocket League who have all had some success in the championships. We currently have one remaining team left in the Overwatch tournament and we are very hopeful that we can reach grand finals. We have streamed our games via Twitch and have reached affiliate status thanks to the support shown from BEA and the Wilmington Academy family. Students have also developed streamlabs to create a professional streaming channel, and this is something we are looking to develop more on site.
One amazing outcome from the competitive element of Esports was that Wilmington created and competed with the ONLY all female side across the UK. The ladies known as ‘Femme Fatale Squad’ fought hard in Overwatch, and overcame some Toxicity within gaming to just miss out on qualification by 2 points. The ladies were so well respected by the British Esports Association that they featured in a nationwide campaign trailing Women in Esports. We are incredibly proud of our female esport athletes and hope that they can drive more female Esport athletes to join our teams.
Opportunities Moving forward, Wilmington as one of a small number of Secondary schools in the UK competing are to act as a hub centre in the South East for Esports. We have links with Kent Police who are keen to partner with us on the positive ways Esports can be used. Alongside this we, as a competitive school, hope to cement ourselves as one of the best in the country within the BEA game titles.
Within the Trust we hope that we could possibly look to run a inter-academy tournament across all game titles.
We are always looking for new talent and players, and will be offering coaching sessions for each game title via our Post 16 Esports managers after school.
Thank you to everyone who has backed us to make this a possibility. We really do have an arena which is the envy of others.
Click here for all the socials and content associated with Esports here at Wilmington.
Stretching Students with Screencastify
Oliver Hughes, Leigh Academy Blackheath
Screencastify is not just a tool for remote learning. It can be used to stretch students in lessons and give short, highly effective videos modelling procedural knowledge.
Within Screencastify, I have been using the .gif function to create instructional videos for students to watch after demonstrations in lessons. This enables me to check for students’ understanding in a targeted fashion whilst the rest of the class consolidate their learning.
Said videos record the desktop or tab only. With .gif’s there is no need to record one’s voice. .Gifs is particularly useful for students as they may have missed some steps in my worked example; it also comes in handy when thinking about stretching students further by using videos to demonstrate new skills which can then be applied in tasks and activities that have not yet been mastered by the whole class.
I have also been making fortnightly videos that have been shared with staff. These videos have been made as part of a digital spotlight to share best practice, and to give tips and tricks for integrating Google Classroom and tools into all lessons. Link to Digital Spotlight example video for Staff.