Learning Light helps Xoolon find the next Colin Jackson, Sebastian Coe or Sally Gunnell

Learning Light (LL), a non-profit centre of excellence in the use of learning technologies in the workplace, is helping schools around the UK to discover the next generation of this country’s sporting talent – through the application of e-learning technology.

[UKPRwire, Wed Aug 15 2007] Learning Light (LL) has helped Xoolon – a fledgling e-learning business – to launch the Xoolon Sports and Fitness Academy, a revolutionary sports portal designed to improve primary and secondary schoolchildren’s sporting prowess and lead to better targeted teaching. Launched in July, the service is being piloted by schools around the country.

Physical education (PE) staff use Xoolon to evaluate pupils’ key mental and physical strengths. The system pinpoints those sports most suited to individuals and highlights ‘gifted & talented’ as well as low ability students.

The portal also offers the PE department its own customisable online space to access ability assessment, communication tools, bulletin space, advice on health and educational resources and a comprehensive database of local clubs and facilities.

“The Xoolon sports portal combines ICT and education across the curriculum,” explained LL’s David Patterson. “It dovetails with nutrition and Healthy Schools initiatives, maths (in graphical representations of PE results) and biology (analysis of sports moves and impact on body) and can boost overall grading in many areas of Ofsted inspections including quality ICT resources, PE and the overall health and happiness of the school.

“Xoolon’s sporting concept is stunning and, with the preparation for the 2012 Olympics already underway, it really shows some innovative thinking which could easily pay off in terms of Olympic medals and other international sporting accolades,” Patterson added. “LL has used its pool of associates to source additional help and expertise for Xoolon, introducing - in this case Graham Moodie of Hocapito – who has been instrumental in helping Xoolon to market their unique portal through offering the company practical marketing advice.”

An all-round appraisal through a series of physical and mental tests entered onto online ‘Xoolometers’ identifies to which six sports children are best suited, making PE fun for everyone and allowing teachers to gain better knowledge of their students’ abilities.

Pupils and their mentors complete a sports psychology or ‘mental toughness’ test developed with Sheffield Hallam University to identify mental strengths and weaknesses, areas of development and to which sports or positions (such as striker or goalkeeper) children are best suited.

The total ‘Xooscore’ collates each child’s mental and physical competencies, allowing teachers to record results accurately against national curriculum standards.

Children can print a certificate from the website showing which sports (from athletics to lacrosse, rugby, tennis and water skiing) are their ‘top three’, providing a useful confidence boost for those unsure of their sporting abilities. The portal also provides easily accessible links to local sports clubs and facilities, fostering School Sports Partnerships, better links with the community, and making it straightforward for pupils to continue their activities outside school hours.

Access to the Xoolon Sports and Fitness Academy for an entire school is free to all feeder primaries and can be gained via a one off set-up fee for secondary schools. For a per-seat annual sum, Xoolon can also offer easy integration into a range of ten framework virtual learning environments which support the National Curriculum within schools.


Notes for Editors
A case study relating to the use of the Xoolon system at Downend School in Bristol is available, on request, from:
Bob Little Press & PR (tel 01727 860405; email bob.little@dial.pipex.com)

About the Xoolon Sports and Fitness Academy:
• Allows teachers to assess pupils’ sporting abilities quickly and easily
• Gives teachers the equivalent of specialist sports coaching knowledge
• Provides teachers with better knowledge of their students’ abilities
• Identifies Gifted & Talented children and the less able, enabling teachers to better support their pupils
• Provides a useful driver for fostering School Sports Partnerships between schools and clubs covering sports beyond the school range

For more about Sheffield-based Xoolon, please visit: www.xoolon.com

About Learning Light Ltd
Learning Light is a non-profit organisation that highlights and promotes best practice in the use of learning technologies. It also builds relationships between learning technology researchers, suppliers, buyers and learners providing learner-centric information to encourage the growth of learning technologies. By sharing comprehensive research, highlighting successes and failures, Learning Light helps to promote the learning technologies community.

Learning Light provides bespoke and individual services to help both buyers and suppliers of learning technologies. Its current services include:

Research Services
Providing access to expert insights, advice and guidance built on in-depth research. Helping organisations to effectively implement learning technologies (e-Learning) and integrate them within their workflow processes.

Membership Services
Partnering with leading thinkers in the industry and providing a network for all interested in the field to share information, knowledge, insight, experience and expertise, through utilising online community tools, networking events, conferences and guru seminars.

Professional Services
Learning Light’s highly experienced team offers organisations access to range of competitively priced consultancy services supporting buyers with the effective implementation of their learning technology requirements. And, for suppliers, helping to provide a range of services to assist market awareness and generate growth.

Sheffield-based Learning Light is supported by Yorkshire Forward, the regional development agency for Yorkshire and the Humber, and the European Regional Development Fund.

Further information from:
Mark Pittaway/ Kay Simpson, Learning Light, +44 (0)114 201 5703
Bob Little, Bob Little Press & PR, +44 (0)1727 860405

Company: Learning Light

Contact Name: Bob Little

Contact Email: bob.little@dial.pipex.com

Contact Phone: 00 44 (0) 1727 860405

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