About Me

My name is James Winchester and I have worked as a teacher in a generic special secondary school, teaching a range of subjects to MLD, SLD and complex needs students. My main subject is ICT/Computing and I enjoy looking at ways to make the curriculum accessible for all learners. I have a particular interest in how technology can aid all learners to reach their potential with a particular emphasis on the Gesture-Based Technology.

I am now Assistant Headteacher in the same and I enjoy the challenge of playing a integral role in leading the college in ensuring that the young people who attend have the opportunities to achieve to their potential.

The purpose of this blog is to share some of the ideas and technology I have used in the classroom and give my view on them – I will also be sharing the some of the excellent work that is happening in my school.

Hope you find it interesting and useful and would appreciate any comments and feedback.

Email – jwinchester25@gmail.com

Twitter – @jwinchester25

Google + – jwinchester25

Below are some of the conferences and events that I have been involved in as I have started to volunteer at various events and thought I better keep a track of them.

Westminster Education Forum – Preparing for the new Computing Curriculum 26th Feb 2014 – Computing and SEND

Sheffield E-Learning Team – SEN Computing Day 6th Feb 2014 – Computing and SEN

Teachmeet Sussex 10th October 2013 – Gesture Based Technology – Somantics and Visikord

Sussex E-learning Conference 2013 – Gesture Based Technology – Promoting Engagement and creativity.

Ipads in SEN – Hirstwood Conference 2013 – Gesture Based Technology – Promoting Engagement and creativity.


  1. Interesting to read your blog.Keep up the good work

  2. Please can you help i work for a special school and i need to decide on what to research for my diseertation plesae can you help i wanted to base my dissertation on SEN and ICT. however just can think of something to do. Plesae help

    • Should be able to help, maybe looking at the impact of iPads on SEN might be some interesting research especially with them being used as communication aids for Autistic students.

      • What type of research would you conduct eg qualitive, quantative…..

      • Hard choice there, depends on what you are wanting to find out. If it mainly the effect on students progress then quantitative but if you want to look at student participation and effect on well-being then qualitative. Quantitative may be difficult to do as the technology is only just being brought into schools many only have a few of the devices.

  3. How would you monitor progress if idid choose to look at that?

    • Sorry for late reply been away for a week, for the qualitative research I would monitor with the use of witness statements and comments from students. This could be used with progress made, in areas such as communication, English and maths.

  4. Hi, fabulous blog, informative (verging on geeky which suits me!) and just what is needed, well done…. we’ve been looking at Po-Motion for our multi-sensory room (www.facebook.com/yourspacewales or http://www.blackparkchapel.org.uk), could we contact you for more details? Alas it looks like we can’t use the software on a raspberry pi 😦

    • Thanks, great to hear you find the blog useful. No problems with you contacting me about Po-motion we are to upgrade to the paid version so that we can get more scenes. So far initial feedback from teacher and students has been positive.

  5. Hi James, I also have code questions about your Kinect Processing Sketches(great!) on kinectSEN: circleflowfollowingclosestpoint and SlugMonster.

    How to switch the gesture tracking to mouse tracking? – Can I use void mouseMoved() and keep the same parameters on the sketches?

    I attached sound to the sketches using SoundCipher but the sound get choppy.
    Try to apply volume range for x movement, speed(freq.)for y.
    What’s the best way to sooth the sound and apply sound parameters to the sketches?

    This is for my study using kinect and tracking pad I mentioned to you in my other inquiry.
    Email or reply me via this blog if you don’t mind sharing your thoughts.

  6. philippa wright

    Hi this may b a huge ask but I know very little about apps for Ipads as we dont use them in my sch, A parent wants to buy their 16yr old MLD student some educational apps – I assume for numeracy & literacy he id NClevel 3 -they have asked my advice can you suggest ANYTHING ? just a few will do !
    Many thanks in advance

    • At that level I would suggest apps like Fractions, Math Drills, Fractions and Decimals , 100s Boards and Mathemagics. Very difficult for MLD students to find apps that are age appropriate.

      For literacy, possible apps to use could be Dragon Dictation for recording notes and sentence construction, dictionary app and Abilipad uses lots of different tools to support writing,They also do a Mice and Men app if he is studying that book. (Our students are currently). In addition mind mapping like Popplet also good for organisation. The new Clicker apps are suppose to be good for supporting writing though have not tried them yet.

      Have a look at the CALL Scotland PDF on supporting literacy available here -http://www.callscotland.org.uk/Common-Assets/spaw2/uploads/files/iPads-for-Communication-Access-Literacy-and-Learning.pdf – lots of great suggestions.

      Hope that helps.

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