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Education Talk Radio: Empowering Student Voice with Twig Create

Twig Education senior curriculum specialist Lisa Larsgaard and elementary school teachers Hayley and Brianne spoke recently to Education Talk Radio to share their positive experiences of using Twig Create in the classroom. They discussed how Twig Create enables students of different abilities to express their knowledge and understanding, its accessibility for students and teachers, and how the platform facilitates the assessment process.

Listen to the full episode here!


We’re currently running a Twig Create Summer Challenge. All you need to do to take part is use Twig Create to make and submit a short video about your local area. The best videos we receive can win a range of pretty special prizes—including an Apple iPad or AirTag, and the unique opportunity for your class to work with the producers of Twig Science Reporter to make its very own episode!

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Meet the Twig Team: Introducing Ross MacLeod-Hammond

Tell us a bit about your role and how you became a part of the team at Twig.

I manage the post production department and technologies at Twig. I joined Twig in 2010 after 10 years of broadcast editing and a production systems background.

In 3 words, how would you best describe Twig Education to our followers?

Fun, challenging, and rewarding.

What is your favorite thing about your role at Twig?

I get to solve problems, create new workflows, and help to establish solid production techniques. Because I work across all departments in Twig, I get to know so many people and meet lots of fun and different personalities. I get an insight into what each department does, their specific requirements, and day-to-day challenges.

What helps motivate you on those days when you need a little push?

I am always motivated! Working with technology and production is fantastic.

If you weren’t working at Twig Education, what would you be doing?

I would be a builder.

If you could go back in time and give advice to your 16-year-old self, what would it be?

Here are the answers to that tricky maths exam.

Could you share an interesting fact about yourself for our followers? Something that we don’t already know about you?

I have saved the lives of 4 people!

New Features and Updates: Twig Create

We are constantly updating and improving our Twig Create platform to provide an excellent student and teacher experience. As you will see, these How to Use Twig Create videos were produced whilst Twig Create was still in Beta, therefore some of the homepage features shown in the videos have changed. These videos are currently being updated, but in the meantime you can review the changes and new features below.

Previously, our titles looked like this:

The image below shows how our titles and icons now appear:

Please note that while the titles and icons have changed, our content remains the same.

See below for a list of these updates:

  • ELA/ELD has now changed to Lessons
  • Bite-Sized Films has now changed to Films
  • Digital Literacy has now changed to Tasks
  • Life/Career has now changed to Life
  • A full Glossary of over 1,000 films has been added to support student acquisition of Tier 3 vocabulary

Transitioning to the NGSS with Twig Science Next Gen

In an article for District Administration, teacher on special assignment Ian Kastelic describes why his district chose Twig Science Next Gen as their NGSS program based on its engaging phenomena and professional development that makes the instructional shifts accessible to all teachers. “As exciting as the new standards are to some educators, it’s a big change to the way we teach science and, as such, can cause quite a bit of anxiety,” says Ian.

The issues in his school district included concerns from teachers about the transition to the NGSS and the changing nature of their roles. He describes how this was made easier for them with the help of Twig Science Next Gen: “We chose Twig Science Next Gen for many reasons, but a key one was that the K–8 curriculum was designed from the ground up for the NGSS.” (1) When transitioning to the NGSS, a curriculum designed specifically for those standards is important as it provides a huge helping hand for teachers who might be feeling nervous about the new standards, content, and style of teaching. Twig Science Next Gen helped the teachers of San Mateo-Foster adjust to their new roles guiding students through science lessons while encouraging students to ask questions and carry out investigations to develop understanding and solve problems.

Additionally, one of the many other reasons that Twig Science Next Gen was chosen by the San Mateo-Foster City School District was because of it’s accessibility for all learners. Ian says, “The English language scaffolding in the Twig Science curriculum is great for English language learners or any student struggling with reading or comprehension.” (2) In comparison to traditional standards, the NGSS as taught through Twig Science Next Gen acknowledges that many students are English language learners or have different language capabilities, and it grants all students an equal chance at succeeding in science.

1. https://districtadministration.com/how-the-ngss-can-set-your-students-and-teachers-free/

2. https://districtadministration.com/how-the-ngss-can-set-your-students-and-teachers-free/

Meet the Twig Team: Introducing Guy Baillie-Groham

Tell us a bit about your role and how you became a part of the team at Twig.

Producing Twig Science Reporter each week sees me decide what topical science stories will best fit into the week’s episode, before then writing the script and working closely with an editor to fit the film together. Before joining Twig, I worked on TV history documentaries. So focusing on science content is a refreshing change of scenery.

In 3 words, how would you best describe Twig Education to our followers?

Friendly, imaginative, and busy.

What is your favourite thing about your role at Twig?

Learning about different scientific ideas each week and then fashioning them into something completely new.

What helps motivate you on those days when you need a little push?

Remembering how dull some of my school science lessons were—so trying to save a few students from the same experience… and coffee.

If you weren’t working at Twig Education, what would you be doing?

I’d quite like to go an a cycle trip to Greece sometime, so maybe that.

If you could go back in time and give advice to your 16-year-old self, what would it be?

Learn how to cook better, it will save you loads of money and make you loads of friends.

Could you share an interesting fact about yourself for our followers? Something that we don’t already know about you?

I once hitch-hiked from Detroit to LA—it’s the best way to see America!

Interested in learning more about our team? Click the links below!

https://learn.twigeducation.com/meet-the-twig-team-cheryl-de-la-vega
https://learn.twigeducation.com/meet-the-twig-team-anna-coombes
https://learn.twigeducation.com/meet-the-twig-team-yasmin-wong
https://learn.twigeducation.com/meet-the-twig-team-hazel-johnstone

Meet the Twig Team: Introducing Hazel Johnstone

Tell us a bit about your role and how you became a part of the team at Twig.

I’m the Customer Services Manager at Twig Education. I lead a great team that provides customer support for all Twig products plus two external contracts with ACER (SNSA and SOFA). I joined Twig Education in November 2018 after working with Glasgow Caledonian University for 14 years. I remember leaving my first interview with Twig feeling like it was a really friendly and happy company—and it still feels like that!

In three words, how would you best describe Twig Education to our followers?

Exciting, dynamic, and considerate.

What is your favorite thing about your role at Twig?

I get to see the difference we make to teaching and learning for staff and students across the world. With the exception of the Twig Sales teams, the CS team has the most contact with our customers and we see first-hand how good experiences and innovative technology can assist their teaching and learning.

What helps motivate you on those days when you need a little push?

A wee cup of tea, a check-in with the team, and some time to reflect on the hard work we’ve achieved so far. All three provide a much needed boost to get things back on track.

If you weren’t working at Twig Education, what would you be doing?

If this is one of those ‘”dream job” questions where money is no object, then I’d love to be doing something practical and physical. I’d have a farm, or a working sawmill. If it’s a more realistic question, then I think I’d be working somewhere where I can help deliver and drive improvements to customers, ideally in an educational establishment.

If you could go back in time and give advice to your 16-year-old self, what would it be?

Don’t stress so much about school exams and going to university. Good grades can only take you so far, but the skills and knowledge that you’ll learn from the jobs you’ve had over the years will help you develop as a person. Everything you encounter in life is setting you up to be where you are right now.

Could you share an interesting fact about yourself for our followers? Something that we don’t already know about you?

I have a tattoo of a traditional pin-up girl with the head and tail of a velociraptor on my leg.

Interested in learning more about our team? Click the links below!

https://learn.twigeducation.com/meet-the-twig-team-cheryl-de-la-vega
https://learn.twigeducation.com/meet-the-twig-team-anna-coombes
https://learn.twigeducation.com/meet-the-twig-team-yasmin-wong