Teacher Spotlight – Sam Wignell of Ansford Academy

Posted on 12th September 2019

Posted by CENTURY

Ansford Academy is a secondary school in Somerset that has been using CENTURY since 2017. Ansford recently became a CENTURY Flagship School, a programme created to showcase innovation in education.

We sat down with Sam Wignell, Associate Assistant Principal & Head of Science and Technology, to discuss how Ansford’s teachers are using CENTURY to make their learning interventions more effective.

What would be your top tips for schools starting out with CENTURY?

Firstly, learn a bit about what the product is setting out to achieve. It’s important that teachers have an idea of what it’s about before they log in to their account for the first time.

Secondly, find people in the school that are passionate about making it work, have a vision of the end goal, and believe that change is needed. From what I’ve seen, simply handing the responsibility to ‘techie’ teachers doesn’t always work – there also needs to be a desire to drive the change and engage others in the mission.

How have students found using it?

All students are different and of course each child has their own reaction when they first use any bit of technology. Once they’ve got stuck in and used the platform for a while, and witnessed the personalised element as the AI kicks in, they really see the value and see that it’s ‘for them’. Students have found it great when it comes to revision time, as it takes off the pressure of needing to know what to revise and when. I’ve noticed that it has lowered stress levels for both students and teachers, when it comes to revision, as teachers and students are reassured that any remaining knowledge gaps are being identified and filled.

How would you say CENTURY has impacted learning at Ansford?

CENTURY has been great for identifying gaps in student’s knowledge and understanding. It’s also made it faster and easier than ever before to intervene and provide extra support. The English department have been doing particularly well using it, and like the fact that students are embracing independent learning.

How have you personally been involved with the success of the platform at Ansford?

I’ve always been involved in implementing tech at the school, but as of September, my role officially entails managing and encouraging the use of educational technology at the school. Our use of CENTURY all started with the view that it would be good to ‘have a go’. We believed in the idea and mission of the tech, and so went for it on the basis that we shared a view of what was trying to be achieved.

Learn more about how Ansford Academy is using CENTURY to embed digital learning across the school.