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London Aquatics Centre for three days

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Three days, with a 7.15 am poolside start each day with some 20+ swimmers from our club Mid-Sussex Marlins. 'Working' poolside rather than just visiting as a tourist or even a spectator meant I experienced something of the buzz around competitive swimming.

8 Sessions, 7 to 20 swimmers in each. Every stroke and every distance, from 1500m Freestyle to 50m sprints. Quite a tasks to coral the swimmers onto a patch of the poolside which all the London clubs mark out with beach chairs. I had just the one. It was easy to get squeezed.

The 2 hours between warm up and a swim had many swimmers setting off for trips around the Olympic Park with their parents and then doing a poolside warm up before their race - not ideal.

Work on their underwater phase is paying off, with great distances. Often they are the last to surface and do so ahead of the pack.

All of this tied in with an Institute of Swimming 'Certification' which I have been completing on the ePortfolio 'Pebblepad' that I was first introduced to here in 2010 as part of the MAODE - it has changed considerably. It is a sophisticated, detailed Workbook with multiple test sheets and 'evidence' to be submitted - often via the App 'Pebblepocket' so that a video or audio clip, or photos can be uploaded easily. The downside is the volume of material that is easily generated and the need for both a mentor/supervisor rather than simply an assessor looking over my work.

 

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Design Museum

eLearning in Practice

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it is one thing to have a go with PepplePad as an MA student 7 years ago, it is quite another to be using it in the Front Line, first as a student, and then as an educator.

Getting up to speed with something takes time, thought and practice. In this instance I am pulling together evidence of my knowledge of swimming and swim coaching. PebblePad is my ePortfolio, my noticeboard and interface with my supervisor and examiner. There are pitfalls, it is rarely seamless, it can be off putting to some. 

Having easy access to this via a phone looks like is should help. PepbblePocket is an App that lets me take a note, add an entry, or reflection, take photos, video or record a conversation and upload it. As ever, getting it to upload to the right place, in the right way can become an additional struggle, Once you have it all working and are confident with it I am sure I is great. And the time to get through this is the year before, certainly months before - You do not become a competent rally driver by getting into a rally car on first day of a series of race. First you learnt to drive, then you nudge up towards the requirements of driving at speed safely.

Nonetheless, I have uploaded some 21% of what is so far needed to pass by Level II Swim England Swim Certificate (something I ought to have completed in 2011). 

Where I see PebblePad and PebblePocket being used is with students on vocational courses such as carpentry, construction, publimg and electricals, perhaps catering and theatre where demonstration of multiple states learnt and put into practice is regularly required. I'd like to imagine students not only permitted to have their phones in the workshop, but be shown their use in a learning content to gather evidence and build knowledge. 

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