I had a week in Hampshire last week finishing off the first Leading Foundation Stage Practitioner project with Jodie, Tim, Helen and Amey. They are all doing some really brilliant stuff. I will post some of what they are doing soon, but before I do, I thought you might be interested in this.
It is a FREE assessment app by Orbit. Not only can you record live events and link them to assessment you can also share your ongoing assessments with parents and carers using a link.
I have not used it or seen it used, but have been sent the link by several people since my last post, all of whom recommend it - so thought it would be worth a look.
How does Orbit work?
Orbit is a secure website, which can also be accessed through Orbit iPhone and iPad apps. All data is held securely in our Cloud and can only be accessed through the website and apps by registered and authorized users.
What equipment do I need to use Orbit?
You can access the Orbit website from any internet-enabled computer, laptop or mobile device. Orbit also has apps for iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad, which can be downloaded free of charge from Apple's App Store.
Why have you made Orbit available free of charge?
We want Orbit to be an inclusive website available to everyone who has an interest in sharing information for the benefit of children. By charging users to access our website and apps, we'd immediately create a barrier preventing some people from being able to benefit from Orbit—so we decided not to do that.
How are you able to provide Orbit free of charge?
We decided that the best way of covering our costs whilst keeping Orbit free of charge for everyone, is to use paid advertising within the Orbit Family website and app. There will never be any advertising within the Orbit Early Years software, but Orbit Family contains some discrete and useful advertising—and this allows us to make Orbit available to both providers and parents free of charge.
What do I need to do to start using Orbit Early Years?
Just register yourself and your early years provider with Orbit then you can begin to use it. It's that simple.
Are there any setup costs?
None whatsoever—it's really easy for you to register your provider. Equally, there's no support or other ongoing charges and we don't plan to introduce any. Orbit is entirely free of charge.
Are there any training costs?
Not a penny—we provide you with access to our Awareness and Training pack when you register your provider with Orbit. The website and apps are simple to use, so there's no need for extensive training.
When is information shared with parents?
As you collect observations and link them to children, they are saved in Orbit. You can then undertake an Assessment against each observation, or choose to save it to the child's Album. Information is only shared with parents when the assessment has been completed, or the observation has been saved to a child's Album.
Do we have to invite parents to link to their children in Orbit?
Although one of the key benefits of Orbit is its ability to connect providers and parents more effectively, providers can use it without inviting parents to link to their children's records.
Can we print a child's summary from Orbit?
One of the benefits of Orbit is that it helps to reduce the amount of paper that early years providers need to use—reducing both the costs and carbon footprint of education. However, we appreciate that some providers and parents might wish to have a paper record of their children's achievements. Each child's record can be output as a PDF document.
How do I link with my child's early years record?
If your child's provider is using Orbit Early Years, then they can send you an invitation to link to them in Orbit. When you receive the invitation, just follow the instructions and you'll be able to link to your child and contribute to their education through Orbit Family.
As always, let me know what you think and if you have any other bright ideas, send them over!
Have a great week.