I have used the earlier version of Quicklink ‘Project Tools’ software to help enhance student’s knowledge at KS3/4 Electronic Products. My school has decided to start GCSE Electronic Products in the summer term of Yr 9 and a new GCSE to school, Systems & Control. I have been busy this half-term planning tasks for these groups (using the software element only). I believe that the upgraded version, as well as the earlier version, gives students a much better understanding of the ‘Systems Approach’ to designing circuits. From past experience, the ‘Systems Approach’ is a part of both these subjects that often causes students difficulty when designing and being creative, especially the Input, Process, Output and Feedback element.
With software as user friendly as this, hopefully it will encourage more teachers to investigate avenues into starting teaching Electronics at KS3. As a founder member of the EASTLINK group based in GT Yarmouth and the support of local electronics company C-MAC MicroTechnology, EASTLINK meets each term with the attendance of several schools in East Norfolk, N Suffolk and representatives from other local electronics companies and our Norfolk STEMNET co-ordinator. Having the industrial input into these meetings, education and industry work together and understand each others requirements to help solve the skill shortage within this field. These companies are finding it difficult to get students at 16 who have electronic knowledge and unfortunately, electronics teachers are on the decrease nationally.
Using the software such as ‘Project Tools’ it is hoped that more teachers will be encouraged to include Electronics to their school DT curriculum.
With school re-organisation taking place in Norfolk and Suffolk this is a great time to investigate a change to your DT options!! You will be fully supported by other colleagues!!
The software is a must for someone who has little knowledge of Electronics and wants to start teaching it and achieve 100% success with projects. If the pre-made circuit boards are used, a good variety of projects can be made.
The name of the game is 100% success with a student’s first practical project.
Get them hooked! We live in an electronic society
KS3/4 Electronics Teacher
Lynn Grove V.A.High School