Applications and Software

Sir Linkalot’s 3 Rs: Results, Reactions and Remote learning

'Linking' in lockdown pays dividends as Andy Salmon, creator of the award winning app Sir Linkalot, explains

Industry News

Remote learning is a term that all teachers and parents are now very familiar with. Getting children’s attention in class, i.e a learning environment, is tricky at the best of times but trying it when they are at home has taken it to another level. Boy, what a challenge!

Sir Linkalot discussed this issue with Julia Hartley-Brewer on talkRADIO breakfast show. Have a listen here ..Sir Linkalot on talkRADIO

When the little people are at home, they feel it’s downtime. Therefore, homework is often a battle as they have all sorts of fun stuff winking at them: television, tablets, video games, toys, sofas, fridges, gardens, the snack cupboard, bedrooms, as well as siblings to annoy. Thanks to technology they have immediate non-stop entertainment at their fingertips, literally and this means their attention spans are getting shorter and shorter. Combine this issue with a teacher trying to remote teach, or the parent being a surrogate member of staff has made climbing Everest feel like a walk in the park.

During this lockdown many teachers and parents have told me that bringing the usual classroom resources into their home just isn’t cutting the mustard. The blame lies at no one’s feet: not the government, the school or the parents. We are in a unique situation which means we need a unique solution.

Enter Sir Linkalot, stage left…

Education + fun + audience participation = Holy Grail

Rote learning is dry and takes time. It doesn’t work for many students and they can’t participate. Rebranding it ”Look, say, cover, write, check” certainly makes it more appealing but changing the book cover does not alter its content. Linking is a blast that is quick, interactive and works almost every time. All you need to play is an imagination: no rules, no system. Nothing.

Students who find learning an issue are excellent linkers. Rote learning simply doesn’t work, so, they have to explore their imagination to find a way to commit something to memory. Sir Linkalot has a term for students who have dyslexia….multi-lateral. Interestingly, children who can recall something on just hearing or seeing it once, i.e linear learners, aren’t necessarily accomplished at linking. Sir Linkalot tells us that, of the hundreds of links he has received from children, many are created by children with a learning difficulty. To quote him… ”It’s a genuine game-changer for them’.’

Take a look at the immediate impact it has made on these three extremely sweet dyslexic children (Maisie steals the show)…Sir Linkalot’s 3 Rs: Results, Reactions & Remote learning

We can all play

Audience participation is a fundamental part of learning and Sir Linkalot encourages it, in spades. Anyone can submit a link to him in the hope that their creation will appear on the app along with their name. We all love our name in lights. Take a look at 7 year old Tom’s bit of genius that has kicked Sir Linkalot’s effort in to a cocked hat (Linky’s words not mine). His parents have said that Sir Linkalot has transformed his life because spelling was a real stumbling block for wee Tommy boy but not anymore! But here he is, spelling a very difficult word, especially for a 7 year old…autumn.

Tutorials for teachers and parents

When a school buys the app for their little people, Sir Linkalot hosts Zoom demos for schools and parents who are given the school access code gratis to enable the child to practise at home. He shows them around the app and how it works as a classroom resource calling the 5 to 10 minute daily sessions Sir Linkalot Time. Take a look at this excerpt from a recent parent & children demo; it’s incredible….A 5 and 6 year old spell manoeuvre thanks to Sir Linkalot

Linking knows no bounds.

Here they are for you to watch and share. They are 45 minutes long but you’ll be laughing within 30 seconds as Sir Linkalot is as mad as a box of frogs:

Sir Linkalot tutorial for teachers          Sir Linkalot tutorial for parents  

Sir Linkalot and Lady Lexicographer (Countdown’s Susie Dent) rack up 75 lessons with plenty more to come

Having done 45 lessons during last year’s lockdown, he restarted them in November with two shows a week on Tuesdays (Levels 1 & 2 – Rec & KS1) and Thursdays (Levels 3 to 5 – KS2 & KS3) at 4.30pm often featuring Lady Lex. These are proving to be a great hit in class and at home. He talks the children through his eight linking techniques and challenges them to think of links with the best ones getting a shout-out in a subsequent lesson and winning all sorts of ‘merch’ (badges, pencils etc). Take a look at the brilliance of 8 year old Ellie at the start of this one:

Lesson 3: Things that look like letters

Susie appeared in this recent lesson talking to Sir Linkalot about why we shouldn’t spell words phonetically to make spelling easier (her slot starts at 11 mins 30 secs)… 

Lesson 78: Acrostics (Levels 3 to 5)

New material gets uploaded to the app periodically with the latest addition being a bundle of Susie’s Stories for the meaning of certain prefixes. Here is a smorgasbord to whet the appetite….Omni   Para  Peri   Philo   Sub  With 90% of children, the reason why they struggle is purely down to confidence. This where Sir Linkalot comes in. Give him a try.

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