Lee Garrett

A teaching and learning journey through PE


Another marginal gain: Augmented Reality

There’s been some outstanding posts recently on marginal gains (@BebbPEteach, @learningspy, @fullonlearning @huntingenglish) and the small things we are doing as teachers to contribute to the success of developing and enriching our students. The infectious ‘marginal gains’ which is daily banded around the Twitter teaching community is exciting, motivating yet intriguing at the same time.

In 2003, Clive Woodward and his band of merry men went down under and won the World Rugby Championships. A few years later, I read Sir Clive’s book, titled Winning and was amazed at the small details, Sir Clive went to, to win the Webb Ellis trophy. For example, re-designing the rugby jersey to reduce the opponents grip on his players, using technological software to track decision making and bringing in specialist people to enhance the players psychology, nutrition and strength and conditioning. Ring any bells?  It is no secret now that the dynamic and innovative leader Dave Brailsford and the GB cycling team had heated pants maintaining the temperature of the leg muscles similar to a  Formula 1 car warming the tyres pre-race to increase traction. After the inspiring success of the Olympics, Dave Brailsford openly talks about the importance of the accumulation of the 1% gains.

The use of technology and marginal gains leads me to one of my AFL applications within theory lessons. Augmented Reality (AR). For those who do not know what AR is, it is using an iphone, ipad or ipod with the loaded Aurasma App , pointing at an image and bringing the image to life.




I have been using AR to implement AFL in GCSE PE and A Level. For example, I had an exam question for A2 physiology relating to fatigue. To gain access to the mark scheme, they would use Aurasma which would bring to life an image below the question. In this particular case it would be a videoscribe of the mark scheme and a link to a website for further reading leading to lactate threshold, the main learning objective. See link below.


The engaging factor is a real strength. I think it is important to state that I don’t think “oh I will do an Aurasma lesson”, I am actually trying to embed the AFL process within the lesson. As Hattie states in Visable Learning, “the use of computers is more effective when there is a diversity of teaching strategies” and “there was an advantage for computer work to be a supplement (d=0.45) rather than a substitute or replacement for teacher instruction.  The magic 0.4 hinge point relating to achievement. And that is exactly what I am trying to achieve by using Aurasma. To help diversify my own teaching strategies. As you know this is successfully being achieved thanks to Twitter CPD!

There is so much conceivable uses for Augmented Reality in Education. I will end this post on the list I have created for potential uses of AR.

1). To present student work

2). To show clips of events, fixtures, plays, drama productions without the need for TV screens or projectors.

3). Create instruction cards (E.g. Circuit training cards show real life video for correct technique)

4). Create instruction cues to help solve complex equations. AR could show how to solve such problems.

5). Use as a quiz, starter or plenary

6). Be part of your learning wall

7). C3B4Me – Include AR in that equation

8). Use to Media Studies/English to show video clips of Shakespeare for review

9). Your school letter/bulletin could use AR to inform. A good way of protecting confidential/sensitive information

10). Use as a teaching resource – Be part of reciprocal teaching, cooperative learning,

Thats it (so far), Im sure you can think of other ways to be creative in the use of AR (feel free to share) but remember its just another way to diversify your teaching, engage the learner and even allow the learner to take control.