How our members feel about using the ILD…

As a special school, we found demonstrating progress difficult as so many reporting tools focused on areas of the National Curriculum that we do not necessarily teach.

I worked closely with Jason and the team at ILD to upload our bespoke curriculum ladders. This enabled us to record baseline assessment information, then regularly update the achievement levels as and when progress was made, rather than at the regular intervals that neurotypical learners would generally make.

Although this record was incredibly useful from a teaching and learning point of view, we wanted to extract individual and cohort-based information, over multiple years, and use this to demonstrate progress made by learners with a spikey profile. The development team took our suggestions onboard and worked on creating a new reporting tool which would instantly extract this very information. We met regularly throughout this process, Jason took on board my feedback and ideas, and implemented them. I really valued how well he understood what we required and was able to take my ‘wish list’ of ideas and use these to create a bespoke reporting system. Nothing seemed too much trouble and he was able to create a wonderful tool which really encompassed my vision and more!

Katie Gray, The Avenue School Special Needs Academy

The ILD has transformed our practise, enabling our team to work together more effectively in tracking and documenting the children’s learning moments. The analysis functions provide the detail we need to fully moderate the teaching and learning that takes place and assess the next steps for our children. The interaction from parents is invaluable and we are thrilled to be able to enhance our home/ school partnerships, by seeing and noting skills the children have outside of our school setting. Parents also shared many wonderful learning experiences during our recent extended closure. This allowed us to continue to see extensive learning and skills taking place in a remote way. The ILD support has been amazing and we are really pleased to be using ILD instead of other platforms

Emma Gricmanis, Head of Early Years, Bangkok International Preparatory and Secondary School

At Peckover, we highly recommend the Interactive Learning Diary. It is a quick and easy way to assess our children, share children’s learning with parents and also keep track of their progress and attainment. The whole team at ILD are fantastic. If there is a slight query or question whether it is on an email or the live chat online, they answer quickly and efficiently! We have been using the ILD in early years but now we have started to use it across the whole school with the help of the amazing team at ILD! They have created a personalised curriculum that as a school we have created and this has enabled all teachers across the whole school to assess children in all areas of the curriculum using observations. We absolutely love ILD and would be lost without it!!

Rachel Sutton, Early Years Foundation Stage Leader, Peckover Primary School
I first discovered the Interactive Learning Diary when I began teaching Music to EYFS at Gossops Green last year and soon realised this was the way forward for Music throughout the whole school. The ILD programme enables me now to track the progress of each child on their musical journey from EYFS to Year 6. As most of my assessments are all practical based, being able to share performances & compositions too with parents and carers is an added bonus. I am very excited to have found the Interactive Learning Diary and to be using it this academic year with all my classes for Music. Bill and the support team are extremely helpful with advice and always very quick to respond to any queries you may have.
Caroline Underwood, Music Specialist Teacher, The Collegiate Trust

The ILD is an easy and simple assessment tool which provides opportunities for users to add assessment that suits them and their school. It provides practitioners with the flexibility to develop their observations by the use of approval from the super user which also gives you an insight to CPD needed. Observations are easy to do and provide a clear layout to show whether it is child initiated or adult led. We have found that the parent app having 26 different languages is going to support our parents in engaging in their children’s learning journal. We can’t wait to get started and use the ILD in September

Lizzy Evans, Early Years Team Leader - Burnt Ash Primary School

As a special school we have found the ILD invaluable, as we can upload our own curricula. We can now assess our pupils against more meaningful outcomes and in the areas that really matter to them. Teachers are no longer duplicating assessments, as they can link a single observation to multiple areas of learning. We can clearly see where pupils’ barriers to or gaps in their learning are and provide the support required.

Ellie Webb, Assistant Head, The Avenue School Special Needs Academy

When we used the paper form of learning journeys, we were always struggling to keep them up to date & generally failing. Therefore the planning for individual learning was rarely as a direct result of the learning journeys. Also, we had to cross reference everything to a separate outcomes booklet for each child which was time consuming & a real challenge to keep up to date. Having all of this on the ILD & being able to very quickly link observations to outcomes has made everything far more relevant for planning and assessment. It is actually enjoyable to approve the observations and study the levels the children have reached.

I can’t stress enough how much better school life is with the introduction of the ILD. We are still finding things out and feel that we’re not yet using all the tracking etc to its full potential but that’s just a matter of more time needed to study this part of the ILD and discuss as a team. But the day to day collection of evidence, adding photos, assigning more than one pupil has been completely revolutionised. It used to take such valuable time to print off copies of photos and copy observations, cut them out & then glue them in to books and not particularly enjoyable.

As we are part of a Trust, they were keen for us to adopt the in-house learning diary and be guided by our own IT department. We preferred what you offered and importantly, and I don’t think this can be emphasised enough, we were very impressed from day 1 of the trial, by the support from the ILD. The response is fast and helpful. This really was an important factor in persuading to pay for an ‘outside’ organisation as opposed to the free in-house version. As a team we think it’s been worth every penny of the budget and find we are continually singing its praises.

Alison Cardownie-Claire, Head of EYFS, Brighton and Hove High School

The ILD has delivered significant benefits to our twin form entry foundation unit. Improved information visibility supports higher quality planning, teaching and individual child interaction to accelerate learning. This information access also helps with moderation, staff development and ongoing monitoring. Reduced paperwork creates more time for our foundation team to focus on tasks that provide greater impact on the children, everyone prefers the ILD when compared to the previous paper based model. Our parent / carers love seeing what their children have been doing, it has helped them to better understand the EY curriculum, what to look for and how to support their child out of school, the quality of home observations that we now receive has improved because of this. The company itself is very proactive in listening to ideas from users and the support has been excellent.

Sean Mitchell, Early Years Leader, The Divine Mercy RC Primary School

The ILD has transformed how the Early Years Foundation Stage at Grazebrook Primary School records and evidences children’s learning and progress. It’s a comprehensive tool that is invaluable for staff and senior leaders, as well as parental engagement. It is now not only a key part of our planning process, but also accessible for senior leaders to monitor and compile data analysis. The ILD team is supportive and always willing to take on board new suggestions to make ILD even better!

Helen Khinich, EYFS Leader, Grazebrook Primary School

The ILD has helped us to engage parents in a unique and exciting way with their child’s learning and development. We are committed to providing an enabling environment in which each child has the opportunity to become a happy, confident and independent learner. Active parent participation is important to ensure children receive the support and encouragement at home in addition to nursery. Sharing development achievements, photographs and videos in real time with parents offers a real working partnership between parents, children and staff.

Natalie Chrystie, Operations Manager, Childcare & Learning Group

The ILD has changed our experience of interacting with the nursery. Previously feedback at the end of the day was brief – It gave a high level of what the children had done and what they had eaten but rarely an emotional insight into their days. We only really had a chance to discuss development opportunities and view the previously paper learning journals at a parents day every 6 months. Pick up and drop off times were just too busy and the folders kept away in a cupboard. The photos on the ILD mean that we can see if our children are enjoying an activity, see who they are playing with and it offers the opportunity to talk to them in more depth about their day. When asking our eldest what she has done at nursery she will often respond ‘nothing’ or ‘I can’t remember’. Now we can see that she is having fun, that she is playing with more children than she references in our conversations and we feel we can explore discussions with her about her day in more detail. The photos and videos add an emotional dimension to the feedback that wouldn’t have been possible in the previous verbal only downloads at the end of the day. I also love the suggestions of what the next steps might be for their learning that are provided on the ILD. This is a great source of ideas for us to try at home. We are huge advocates that more schools and nurseries should use technology and tools like the ILD to engage parents in a joint learning journey for their children.

Rosie, mother of Kirsty aged 4 years and Cameryn aged 2 years

We really enjoy looking at the website and we use it as a quick and easy way to keep up to date with all the activities our children take part in at nursery. The staff updates the ILD regularly with their observations, photos and videos, which always make us smile!

Chris, father of Morgan aged 3 years and Dominic aged 1 year

The Interactive Learning Diary is the best thing out there! It is an outstanding piece of software which has helped me to manage the collection, input, correlation and analysis of data to support assessments and target setting. The ILD enables me to personalise the children’s individual learning plans, set targets and track progress of individuals and focus groups in the setting. The charts and graphs are user friendly; giving an accurate picture of the levels of all the children in the class thus ensuring each individual is carefully monitored. In order to provide a reliable, valid and accurate assessment of individual children, a range of perspectives including those of the child, parents, carers and other significant adults should be taken into account and the Interactive Learning Diary caters for this too. I met with one of the developers who was keen to listen to my ideas and took several suggestions on board – THANKYOU! It’s great to see that practitioners ideas are valued and that the Interactive Learning Diary is continually developing – it just keeps getting better and better!

Estelle Hood, Head of Early Years, King Edwards Pre-Prep and Nursery School

We highly recommend the Interactive Learning Diary as the best tool to use for recording a child’s development, partnerships with parents and effective monitoring.  We trialled various other online observation/monitoring systems and found that only the ILD ticked all the boxes to meet our needs. This is not the cheapest on the market, but you get what you pay for. There is no messy handwriting or spelling errors, which reflects a professional standard that we strive for.  It is a simple, easy to use, effective system.

It has enabled us to provide up to date information to parents on their child’s development, whilst linking observations into the EYFS outcomes.  It has been particularly useful when a new child starts at the setting; parents are able to log in and view photos and videos of their child and are reassured that they are truly happy and content whilst in our care.

From a management point of view, the monitoring aspect is time saving and professional – we have been able to monitor children’s progress and identify any areas of concern at an early stage, with evidence at our fingertips to support this.

The ILD Support Team are friendly, helpful and very efficient – they have endless patience (especially for someone with limited IT skills, like myself).  They are constantly developing and improving the system and continue to do so.  We have even had personalised Report Templates designed to meet our requirements.

In summary, the ILD is effective, professional, easy to use, secure, time saving and cost effective!

Jane Freeman, Director, Little Faces Childcare

Our experience of working with the ILD team has been nothing short of outstanding for both the product and their amazing support.  We have strong policies in place to support our ethos of ‘working in partnership with parents’ and the ILD has really underpinned this for us. Working in partnership with our parents opens the lines of communication between staff and parents, putting the child at the centre of everything we do. Sharing observations and development milestones in real time with parents creates a very real partnership, allowing parents to upload observations and comments from home and ‘share’ their child’s home experiences.  Children have ownership of their learning journals and are supported to choose their next steps in their own development with support from staff and parents.

Vicki Cartney, General Manager, Great Western Pre-Schools

I would recommend the ILD unreservedly. We use it from playgroup to year 6. They have allowed us to edit the curriculum throughout the school to suit our international context. The level of support that they provide is outstanding. I have used other platforms but have returned to the ILD because of the level of data analysis is more detailed and intuitive. They continually improve their product and are very open to feedback.

Hannah Bennett, Primary Principal, Bromsgrove International School

I have to say that you guys still always offer the best support with regards to tailoring the ILD and I will be renewing the ILD again. Things seem to be moving forward all the time with the ILD which is great because the Early Years sector is constantly evolving.

Nikki Field, Early Years Teacher & Subject Leader, Stoke Prior First School

I would like to take the time to say thank you for your help and support with the integration of the foundation swimming curriculum into the Interactive Learning Diary. The Interactive Learning Diary has raised the profile of the swimming curriculum with both the staff, TA’s and parents. The ability to capture evidence of key water skills and assessments and tag them directly to a specific learning outcome has been such a powerful tool. It has made our planning and assessment much more reflective and useful for gap analysis. The foundation class teachers have more awareness of the ability of individual students and are able to see visually the accomplishment of specific students tagged to specific outcomes without even visiting the pool! Additionally, the class teachers are now able to see the full water skills progression for the whole swimming curriculum and see specifically where each student is on the progressive curriculum. More importantly the class teachers have been using our videos and photos to show and better inform parents of the progress of their students in swimming and we have already had a lot of positive feedback from parents. Thank you so much from the swimming department and we look forward to a successful year working with foundation.

William Preston, Swimming Coach, Bangkok Patana School

The ILD site is fantastic and it’s great to see how happy and engaged my daughter is at school. Myself and her grandparents love seeing the pictures, videos and notes documenting her activities and achievements. It’s a great way for the school to portray insights and activities to parents in a far more effective manner than can be conveyed during a parents evening or afternoon pick-up. Through the teacher’s updates, I get a real feeling of being current with the daily activities and it helps promote conversation and discussion with my daughter about what she’s done at school. The mobile phone app works very well and delivers a superior mobile experience over the desktop site.

Ray, Father of Henrietta aged 4 years