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Introducing Tapestry


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#1 Steve

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 03:46 PM

Hi all -
Well, it feels as though it's been a lifetime coming, but I'd like to announce the imminent arrival of a new FSF service. It allows you to offer Learning Journals online. I've put an information page up giving much more detail, which you can find here, but essentially it offers an alternative way for managers and staff to develop the learning journeys and special books that you're all more than aware of.

We're currently in testing mode with a few selected FSF members, and we expect to have Tapestry available within the next two to three weeks. We'll be opening a dedicated forum area when people start using it in earnest, but in the meantime we're very happy to answer any questions you might have in this topic. We're enormously excited about this - it's our biggest venture since PRAMS and we've been brooding and obsessing about it for well over a year. Please let us know what you think! :1b

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#2 Cait

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 06:13 PM

HOORAY!!!!!! Well done. It looks really, really good. We have adopted Tapestry for our children's files. It sums up the different threads or strands of learning which go to make up the foundation of children's learning.

This has some great features which I really like, and I'm really hoping to be able to use it, as we've no internet connection at the moment.

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#3 Fredbear

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 06:20 PM

Oh wow this looks really interesting. I wIll certainly be sharing this with our committee ASAP. Many Thanks.

#4 narnia

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 10:39 PM

Looks good, will discuss with my team :)
so take my hand, squeeze it tight, make some light out of the darkness............
http://www.marillion...isten/index.htm

and if you want a real treat:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CI_OlG3FV5s

#5 Rea

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 07:22 AM

Well typically, I thought it was a post by a very ambitious teacher!
Glad you're working hard :1b
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#6 Rea

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 07:24 AM

Even a very quick look is impressive, I will definitely put it to the staff
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#7 Steve

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 07:49 AM

Hah - thanks Rea. No, you'd need to speak to mundia for real tapestry!

Thanks for the replies chaps. Any questions, do ping me - I'm almost completely unable to think about anything else at the moment so it's not like you'll be distracting me...

'There are no ordinary people. It is immortals whom we work with, joke with, marry, snub and exploit.'

 

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#8 sunnyday

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 07:55 AM

Key Dude and fsf team - all very, very impressive! :1b
BE KIND TO OTHERS, FOR EACH OF US IS FIGHTING SOME KIND OF BATTLE

#9 Stargrower

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 08:43 AM

I'm with you Rea! I thought "Really?? Tapestry in Early Years?"

Looks very exciting though and will have proper look over the weekend.
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#10 asdfg

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 09:11 AM

Can I ask a question please, I am not an iphone/ipad user but do have a blackberry. Will I be able to use tapestry on my phone to take and upload photos and later access the programme on my computer and add notes and then make assessment notes etc.

Looks really interesting but don't want to spend any money on new equipment at the moment so it would need to be compatible with what I have.

#11 Steve

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 09:43 AM

Beehive, I see what you mean - on the other hand just think of the PD assessment you could make for a child who could do advanced needlework. In both Moving and Handling AND Health and Self-care I reckon!

Our choice of Tapestry (which we took a huge amount of time over, and which involved eliminating 150 other possible names) was obviously intended to reference the threads, or the warp and weft if you like, of a young life combining to describe their story. We were also inspired by descriptions of the Te Whariki philosophy. More than anything we are excited at the potential for parents and setting staff to enjoy a partnership with regard to their children. The ability for parents to add their own entries (even at times when they're out and about, using the mobile apps) and comment on entries that staff have added is, we think, potentially a great benefit, and again chimes with the name if you think about these differing threads of a child's life coming together in one story. :1b

Parents, incidentally, will also be able to receive automated notifications when a new entry for their child has been made, which will hopefully ensure they are regularly involved and responding to setting observations.

'There are no ordinary people. It is immortals whom we work with, joke with, marry, snub and exploit.'

 

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#12 Steve

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 09:52 AM

Hi asdfg (welcome to the forum - now that looks like a touch typist's username if ever I saw one...)

We may well decide to provide a mobile app for the blackberry in the coming months, although this is some way down the list. We have begun with the Apple OS as this is simply the most popular in terms of tablet AND smartphone, so we currently have iphone and ipad enabled apps. We're now working on an Android version, so within the next month we hope to have a mobile app for Android tablets and smartphones (for example the Google Nexus 7 tablet or Galaxy S3 smartphone. After that we will probably be working on a Windows 8 version - Microsoft are releasing a tablet soon and will have a number of Windows 8 devices in the next year.

So that's the way we're thinking at the moment. We'll be guided by requests and feedback though, so I've noted your preference for RIM devices. :1b

'There are no ordinary people. It is immortals whom we work with, joke with, marry, snub and exploit.'

 

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#13 asdfg

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 10:12 AM

Hi asdfg (welcome to the forum - now that looks like a touch typist's username if ever I saw one...)
So that's the way we're thinking at the moment. We'll be guided by requests and feedback though, so I've noted your preference for RIM devices. :1b


Thanks Steve, if one finger counts as a touch typists then that's me!

I am showing my ignorance now as I didn't realise I had a preference for a RIM device (oh I have so much to learn).

I am assuming I can of course just use a camera and upload images as I do now but add them to Tapestry instead of printing them out and sticking them in a book? If the answer to that is yes I am thinking that Tapestry cost versus ink cartridges/paper makes Tapestry seem a very good price.

#14 Steve

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 01:34 PM

I am assuming I can of course just use a camera and upload images as I do now but add them to Tapestry instead of printing them out and sticking them in a book? If the answer to that is yes I am thinking that Tapestry cost versus ink cartridges/paper makes Tapestry seem a very good price.

Yes absolutely. If you're using a normal computer (desktop or laptop) you just connect up your digital camera and upload to Tapestry observations while you're creating or editing them. Or if you normally upload your camera contents to a folder on your computer, just browse to that folder and upload them from there.

If you're adding photos from a smartphone or tablet you just run the mobile app, login to Tapestry and either take the photo then and there and submit it along with the rest of the observation (notes, EYFS tag, CoL etc), or you can select it from the camera roll if you've taken it earlier.

'There are no ordinary people. It is immortals whom we work with, joke with, marry, snub and exploit.'

 

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#15 asdfg

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:57 PM

Thanks Steve, that sounds perfectly doable. I am going to go and have another read through all the information again now that I know I could use it with the set up I already have.

#16 Pimms o'clock?

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:33 PM

Oooohhhh, I think I am in love! :wub: :wub: :wub:

This looks fantastic, just what I have been looking into but have been terrified to take the plunge - but this, and the price what a bargain. Please, please let me know the very minute this becomes available. :1b :1b :1b

I don't sound desperate do I? :blink: :blink: ;)

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#17 sunnyday

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:46 PM

I don't sound desperate do I? :blink: :blink: ;)


Errrrrr.........ahem.......well just a bit! :o :blink: :lol: :lol: :lol:
BE KIND TO OTHERS, FOR EACH OF US IS FIGHTING SOME KIND OF BATTLE

#18 jules2382

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 07:50 PM

WOW!! It looks AMAZEBALLS ::1a

Edited by jules2382, 07 September 2012 - 07:51 PM.

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#19 Steve

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 09:47 PM

I certainly will Pimms, thanks for asking. We'll obviously be letting members know quite prominently when it's available. The contact list on the information page is mainly for guests and visitors to the FSF who might not be regular visitors and won't receive newsletters. :1b

'There are no ordinary people. It is immortals whom we work with, joke with, marry, snub and exploit.'

 

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#20 SueJ

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 06:09 AM

Oooohhhh, I think I am in love! :wub: :wub: :wub:

This looks fantastic, just what I have been looking into but have been terrified to take the plunge - but this, and the price what a bargain. Please, please let me know the very minute this becomes available. :1b :1b :1b

I don't sound desperate do I? :blink: :blink: ;)


Ditto :wub: :wub:
Sue

#21 Mouseketeer

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 07:00 AM

I am loving the look of tapestry and have been thinking about introducing something like this....BUT to be honest I have no concept of how this type of thing works on a practical level ie do all staff have their own device (either tablet or phone - not their own phone im Presuming for obvious reasons) or do you just have 1 or 2 in setting that anyone uses ?, as the manager can you access all key worker activity ? Do you find all staff are happy/able to use this type of system (I have a couple that still need step to step instructions every time they use the photocopier !) so any advise would be great.


#22 Steve

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 09:45 AM

Hi mouse -
Nice set of questions, thanks! Let's see how I get on with answering them:

1 Do all staff need their own device?
No not at all. The current iphone/ipad mobile app requires a login, which you set up for your staff while creating their accounts. They will then use whichever device you provide (if you have more than one then they can login to whichever one is available, but if the setting has only one ipad, then they will share that. The app is designed to time-out after a period of activity, after which there is a shortcut 4 digit pin to log back in. If you don't want to identify the particular member of staff in the observations, you can set up a generic account for all staff to use - although I think the personal nature of an observation identified to your own keyperson makes it desirable to use individual logins.

In terms of using personal phones/devices, this will arise as a result of your own mobile policy. It may be that your policy allows capturing of observations via the manager's phone, for example. I would imagine most settings will end up with a dedicated tablet/phone in the near future as they are becoming pretty much the standard way of accessing the internet. I appreciate they are quite expensive but they are beginning to come down in price as Google, Apple and Microsoft are beginning to actively compete with each other.

2 Can a manager view all activity?
Yes, think of the manager as the 'owner' of the website (each Tapestry account is effectively its own website, with its own database and web address). The manager will set up accounts for staff, parents and children, and give varying levels of access to the staff. S/he might, for example, want to allocate manager status to one or more deputies, so they can share the admin work between them. They will then be able to view all observations, add or edit parents or children, and carry out other admin functions. Anyone allocated staff status will only be able to add observations. You will be able to set whether observations appear immediately, or require your approval. You have a number of different views, one enabling you to review the most recent, editing if necessary. As the manager you will also have a screen showing you any observations that have been submitted or commented on by parents, allowing you to respond if required.

3 Are all staff happy/able to use this type of system?
In all honesty I can't answer this question. We don't have enough experience to comment. I think there will always be some people who don't want to engage with this sort of technology ( and on occasion I share their view....). However, the process of submitting an observation, whether via the mobile app, or directly into a desktop or laptop, is no more complex than completing any webpage form, so if your staff use the internet at all to order things, then they ought to be able to use Tapestry.

Hope those replies help. Let me know if they open up new cans of worms! :1b

'There are no ordinary people. It is immortals whom we work with, joke with, marry, snub and exploit.'

 

@EYFSF


#23 Cait

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 09:56 AM

One of my staff asked if you and Matt will have access to what we do, or whether our accounts are totally private systems.

The nice thing about living in a small village is that when you don't know what you're doing -someone else always does!

Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here, we might as well dance


#24 Steve

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 10:43 AM

Hi Cait -
Good question. Because we will be maintaining and managing the databases and webspace that are created for each individual setting, we will technically be able to look into your data and therefore have access. This is an unavoidable byproduct of us looking after the data (as opposed to PRAMS, for example, where each manager is responsible for their own data, held on their own computers - which has, I'm afraid, caused no end of problems with lost material).

However, we have no access via a master login, for example, so we couldn't directly access your journals without you giving us permission and login details. In any support necessary, we would probably prefer to remotely access your computer as we do with PRAMS. This involves you being at your PC and giving us explicit permission with the click of a button, on each occasion. You will be able to see exactly what we are doing on your computer.

The caveat with all of the above is that ultimately you need to trust the provider - despite these assurances, it is of course possible that Matt, and the other FSF members and I have some secret evil coding access. However, in this regard, the same goes for any services you use from Google, Amazon, and all the online organisations whose products we all use...

'There are no ordinary people. It is immortals whom we work with, joke with, marry, snub and exploit.'

 

@EYFSF


#25 Mouseketeer

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Posted 08 September 2012 - 11:23 AM

Many thanks for your reply, especially liking that I can choose to check/edit before info is sent out to parents from kw's, it's not what they write but sometimes how it's written that would concern me. Thanks again.

#26 Rea

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 06:52 AM

Once its all set up, will internet access be necessary?
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#27 Steve

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 07:16 AM

I'm afraid so. This is one of the ways it differs from PRAMS Rea. Holding the data locally PRAMS was available offline, whereas Tapestry requires an internet connection as it's a web based service.

'There are no ordinary people. It is immortals whom we work with, joke with, marry, snub and exploit.'

 

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#28 gingerbreadman

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 07:49 AM

Oh my this looks fab! I can see this being of great benefit in helping making observations more appealing and exciting; especially to the current generation where smartphone/technology is more comfortable than pen and paper

We've noticed more engagement from parents when we share by email/technology so I can see a huge benefit to parent partnerships too. Love the facility for wider family to be able to engage :-D

Feeling very excited!

Can photos be inserted on the page alongside the words; much like you can do with a ppt or word document? Will there be any scope to upload word/ppt docs to include as one of the child's pages. Just thinking in terms of variety for the reader so it doesn't become samey


#29 Rea

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 10:08 AM

Ok, I'll have to look into that then. I really do like what you've done :)
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#30 narnia

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 10:41 AM

Ok, so ladies and gents: cheapest/best internet provider for a small preschool set up???
so take my hand, squeeze it tight, make some light out of the darkness............
http://www.marillion...isten/index.htm

and if you want a real treat:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CI_OlG3FV5s




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