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ICT in Education Guide September 2011

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Breaking down the tyranny of distance Innovative ICT teachers and support staff have been recognised for helping to transform learning in Queensland schools at the annual Smart Classroom Awards. JO EARP reports.

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ommunication is a vital cog in any successful project, so it’s fitting that this year’s Gold Coast and Townsville Smart Classroom Award ceremonies were connected via a digital link-up. Within minutes, educators at the twin events were congratulating the winners via Twitter feeds and sharing the cutting edge ideas with the rest of the world. Charleville State High School head of department for technology, Tony McCormack (pictured above), was one of 10 teacher award winners, for his work in connecting his students with their global peers and the iCafé professional development project. “We’ve done a couple of units working with a combined class of my guys at Charleville and a class in [Carrumbin] using virtual classrooms to break down those barriers of distance and get the kids talking to people on the other side of the Dividing Range,” he explains. “We also did a similar kind of thing with a class from Ireland, looking at notions of Australian identity and getting the kids to talk to an international audience.” McCormack was also recognised for the

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success of the iCafe project — an informal group that meets fortnightly. “We’ve got about 120 teachers across the cluster (13 schools spread across 300 square kilometres) and a large portion of those are first year teachers. It was really about getting teachers talking to each other and helping to support everybody,” he explains. “We look at everything from digital tools such as data loggers or Bee-Bots, and how to use them across multiple key learning areas, to digital ways of working with things

such as wikis or blogs. We also work through the Smart Classrooms eLearning Frameworks suite and look at how these frameworks can inform teaching.” Each session is a blend of instruction and discussion, and feedback and McCormack says the focus is always on the pedagogy supported by the tool, not the tool itself. The group has started recording each session, meaning teachers in the cluster who are a few hours’ drive away from Charleville can access the PD and join the discussion. All the award winners received $5000 to spend on PD and McCormack says he is keen to attend next year’s ISTE conference (see opposite page) in the US. The other Smart Classrooms Awards for Teachers went to: Ashley Proud, McDowall State School; Rose Marszalek, Peregian Springs State School; Sharon Baker, Hambledon State School; Chris Gauthier, Cleveland District State High School; Hazel Orr, Narangba Valley State School; Judith Hinton, Frenchville State School; Lisa Noonan, Sandy Straits State School; Kristie Blakeney, Hambledon State School; and Tammy Duncalfe, Bracken Ridge State High School. The highly commended teachers were: Anita Bingham, Robertson State School; Lisa Brosnan, Glenvale State School; Glen Bruce, Seven Hills State School; Brad Coey-Braddon, Hermit Park State School; Eric Flamank, Maleny State School; Sharon Furlong, Melany State School; Rohan Hardy, Kedron State High School; Teresa Hogan, Warril View State School; Lisa Mackenzie, Clover Hill State School; Stuart Mackenzie, Worongary State School; Erin McCrea, Hervey Bay State School; Liz Puller, Sunbury State School; Denise Scherer, Clinton State School; Bianca Smith, and Coomera Springs State School. For the first time, IT support staff were also honoured. They were: Darrell Collins, systems technician Cairns Office, Far North Queensland and Matthew MacGregor, technical


US tech conference ‘incredible’

Meg Saunderson was a 2010 Smart Classrooms Award recipient. JO EARP spoke to her about the professional development opportunities she has enjoyed as a result of the accolade.

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fter winning an award for ICT innovation, it’s perhaps no surprise to hear that Meg Saunderson chose to spend her prize money on a study tour that included a visit to the world’s largest education technology conference. The Grade 6/7 teacher at Springfield Lakes State School, Queensland, won a 2010 Smart Classrooms Award for projects which included teaching science through robot technology and videoconferencing with remote educators to pass on her ICT skills. Saunderson (picture above, middle, with fellow Queensland teachers Dawn Clark and Sue Monteath) found the $5000 professional development prize quickly doubled the next day when it was announced she’d also scooped a Peter Doherty Award for Outstanding Teachers of Science. In June, she flew to the US with educators from across Australia for a four week study tour. “It was mind-blowing, I never would have been able to do it without winning the awards,” Saunderson reflects. “We went to big companies like Google, Intel and Apple ... and several schools in San Francisco, New York and Washington and got to meet with teachers and talk to students at the schools and see the sorts of things that they were doing there.”

She says one of the most encouraging aspects of the visit was finding that a lot of the US best practice schools were doing projects and using technology already being used by teachers in Australian schools. “It really reaffirmed a lot of the good things Australia is doing,” she says. “The [schools over there] also had a lot of people coming out here to talk about the sorts of things we were doing. It wasn’t just ICT though, we also went and spoke to teachers about science and literacy.” But the major highlight of the study tour for Saunderson was a four day ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) conference in Philadelphia. “There were 19,000 delegates and 4500 trade displays. We got to go to a lot of workshops that were run by their top trainers. It was unlike anything I’d been to before in the way it was set up. “They had hands-on workshops, lecturetype workshops, forums where you can go and have discussions with experts, they had areas they called playgrounds with different themes and eight or nine stations set up, and poster sessions which people like me could go and put up a display at. “One of the workshops I did was about

using ICT for reluctant writers in the classroom and I also did one with apps for mobile learning as well, and two science ones. You could do training on any key learning area, it was just incredible.” Although there were plenty of ICT tools and resources on show, the focus was on how educators can use them to engage students, and not just as flash bang attention grabbers. “With the reluctant writers workshop there were some great ideas and suggestion — a lot of them absolutely free online activities. One of the difficult things is you often go and learn about software [and other innovations] and you haven’t actually got a hope of getting it in your school because your school can’t afford the site licence or something like that.” Resources highlighted included the Story Staters website, which offers up sentence starter and stimulating pictures, 5 Card Flickr, PicLits, sign generators and the Shake-a-Phrase app. “The one I thought I’d definitely use with my kids was The Word Cloud, which is similar to Wordle,” Saunderson adds. It was also a fantastic chance to network with other teachers and the links she made with one US teacher have since led to her

ICT Guide 2011

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Gamification in education

Computer games give countless opportunities to win rewards and unlock new adventures for the skilled player. What if we applied the same approach to education? STEVE COLLIS explains.

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ave you heard the latest buzz word, gamification? It refers to the application of computer gaming principles to real-world situations. This word is so recent my spell checker wants to correct it, and it doesn’t even appear on a Google ‘Ngrams’ search. The word invokes controversy for some very good reasons. I will argue, below, that insofar as it introduces an explicit and prominent vocabulary for how extrinsic reward systems function, it can be a positive element in a learning program. Where did the word originate? Online you’ll find successful 40-something computer geeks who grew up playing Frogger and watching Tron waxing lyrical about their plan to turn all of life into a computer game. You’ll find these seminal videos on the trend-setting TED and Google Tech Talk websites. Gamifiers have a great deal of attention from investors. Profit making goes hand in hand with psychological conditioning, and since the ‘80s the computer game industry has redefined psychological conditioning as a virtuosic art form. Now, in the real world rewards can be

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hard to come by, inconsistent, and easy to lose: just ask anyone who has tried to lose weight, climb the slippery corporate ladder, or win the approval of their spouse. Not so in a computer game. When I first play a game like World of Warcraft, the environment has been designed to quickly and immediately reward me with extra virtual powers, prettier virtual clothing, inspiring music and shiny lights the moment I do something heroic like slay a ferocious mouse. Soon, very soon, I’ve slain enough ferocious mice to ‘level up’. Ah, levelling up. In many games lights fall from the sky and a mist swirls around your avatar as trumpets blare and trinkets tinkle! It feels like you’re King Arthur wrenching the sword from the stone. When you level up in a game, you unlock new abilities and visual customisations which win you admiration from fellow gamers and the ability to battle larger mice, or even small rats. The process is seductive in that the longer you play the game, and the higher the level you achieve, the harder it is to get the next reward. Often the levelling up process operates on an exponential curve, and the

final level may take months to achieve. So, one sunny day some smart cookie observed ‘Wait a moment! What if we took the rewards systems built into computer games and applied them to real life?’ This process was dubbed gamification. In a gamified exercise regime, you win experience points for each kilometre you run and achievement badges for special events. At thresholds you level up, unlocking new challenges. The whole journey plays out in a bubble of cyberspace where your friends can applaud. If gamification is so effective a motivator, why not apply it in schools, where a lack of motivation is often lamented? My personal response to this is: hold your horses! First, recognise school itself already resembles a computer game, and its very problem is its extrinsic rewards systems. Schooling was gamified well before gamify was a word. Observe as little Johnny shows up for day 1 of Kindy (new player), and is immediately awarded a gold star for tying his shoe laces (music plays). Rewards come thick and fast in the early days, but as Johnny levels up (you’re not in Kindy anymore) the rewards are harder to achieve (you can do better). If


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he plays the game successfully (good boy) he may receive an A, but if he doesn’t (sit still Johnny) he may be required to repeat a year (next player). Reductionist examinations such as NAPLAN or the HSC offer the ultimate extrinsic reward. The HSC or equivalent is required to match the demand for university attendance to availability. It’s a competition. I say these exams offer extrinsic rewards because schools teach to the exam. The exam becomes the important bit, not the learning. Requiring a student to write 15 handwritten pages in an hour is as arbitrary as asking that they juggle tennis balls in a tutu in order to level up to university. Consider this: many students who fail at the ‘game of school’ go on to found successful companies, attain virtuosity in art-forms, change the world, and win acclaim. Many students who succeed at the game of school then drop out of university, lose momentum, and retreat to a holding job where they’re told what to do. Without the scaffolding they slump. The game encourages conformity and dependence on the approval of others. So, schooling is already gamified. In Australia the game of school even has a leaderboard, thanks to the My School site. Of course, many other social systems apart from school have gaming elements to them. When you start looking for it, you find them everywhere. I welcome the new discourse on gamification because it represents a new awareness of how we can deliberately and self-consciously seize control of reward systems and apply them knowingly, even ironically. It’s a quintessential trademark of the postmodern age that we embrace form without mistaking it for substance. There is a playfulness to it. This could represent an opportunity to empower young people to see through the fabric of the games society likes to play. Students could use gaming systems, fully aware of their artifice, simultaneously harnessing the motivational boost they provide, without mistaking them for

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natural reality. This is why I, for one, am not opposed to a measure of deliberate gamification in education. At my school, Years 5 and 6 are participating in a science unit of 10 weeks duration entitled The Ministry of Science. Students dress in lab coats and earn DNA tokens by selecting and completing challenges from a matrix of possibilities. Each week a tax of five DNA fragments is levied and 16 DNA fragments can be cashed in for an ‘amoeba’ token. Many of the challenges require equipment, which must be unlocked at a cost of five or six DNA. It’s a veritable simulated economy! Once students have accrued two amoebas they can apply to level up. The starting level is Specimen Processor and the highest level is Professor, with branching paths on the way allowing specialisations such as Chemist or Biologist. Promotion is not automatic but involves a presentation to peers and teachers. Peer

assessment and group activities are integral. The whole system is light-hearted, and a heck of a lot of fun. It provides a concrete sense of progress for the students throughout the long 10 week unit. Might this extrinsic reward system overshadow the value of the learning itself, rather than kindling a delight in the learning process for its own sake? This is the danger of every extrinsic reward system. No one would want a student to participate in science activities just to get a badge any more than they would want them to participate “because I told you to”. Gamification at its best is deliberately shallow; a thin layer on the outside of a heart of learning (understood by all as a scaffold) and it can’t fix poor teaching. In the Ministry of Science project it provides the over-arching structure that brings cohesion to the chaos of 180 students navigating their own curriculum path. Teachers assist where needed. There’s no one directing, no one dictating, but every student is engaged and conflict is nonexistent.

Post Script: Game Based Learning, and We Can Do a Whole Lot Better

I’ve argued that informed, self-conscious gamification of learning is better than the unconscious gamification that was happening anyway. In the process I’ve portrayed game mechanics in reduced terms as a state-of-the-art reward system. In truth, many virtual environments have already transcended reward system mechanics. Sophisticated and open-ended environments exist without any pre-set pathways for progress at all. Players work collaboratively and creatively to tease out the potentials of the environment, establishing a collective community of expertise. A simple example is the hugely-popular Minecraft game. In our school’s installation I’ve seen students construct simulated microprocessors capable of binary maths by discovering and exploiting the physical laws that govern the virtual reality. Here’s the point: young people may be learning better ‘soft skills’ such as collaboration, persistence, creativity, project management, design, and the sharing of knowledge in the Minecraft space than they are in schooling environments where tightly regimented timetables, behaviour codes, and learning programs require them to march to someone else’s agenda. So, if gamification brings an overdue awareness of reward-systems in schools, the far more exciting step would surely be to transcend such systems entirely, the same way the best computer gaming environments have already done. To do so, schooling needs to go through a singularity event, a paradigm shift. What would emerge on the other end would be infinitely better, and possibly unrecognisSteve Collis is director of innovation, Sydney Centre for Innovation in Learning and learning area manager of languages, Northern Beaches Christian School, NSW.


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ACCE - nothing but the best What is the role of the ACCE?

The ACCE (Australian Council for Computers in Education) is the national professional body for those involved in the use of ICT in education. This includes educators who teach computing/information technology subjects as well as all educators who strive to improve student learning outcomes through the powerful use of ICT. ACCE strives to encourage and maintain a level of excellence in this field of endeavour throughout Australia. ACCE works with federal and state governments and the Australian Computer Society to ensure Australian educators, at all school levels and teacher educators in Australian Universities have access to best technologies, professional development and realistic support.

What is ACCE’s membership?

Each state and territory has an independent association (or Computers in Education Group - CEG) which advances the professional development of its members in the use of learning technologies in education. http://acce.edu.au/about-acce/membersand-affiliations

How is the Association governed?

Through a representative Board. The ACCE Board consists of representatives from the state and territory CEGs and the Australian Computer Society. It publishes Australian Educational Computing and authorises the Australian Computers in Education Conferences (ACEC). It is affiliated with the International Society for Technology Education (ISTE) and the Technology

Tony Brandenburg, President of the Australian Council for Computers in Education. (ACCE)

Short Bio: Tony Brandenburg has taught at all levels of education both in Australia and internationally and has worked with government departments in Australia and the Middle East. At present he works for his home state’s government as Professional Development Manager for the Victorian Institute of Teaching. (The legislative body

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• increase community awareness of learning technology.

What have been ACCE’s recent achievements?

Education Federation of Australia (TEFA).

Does the Association identify its purpose?

The purposes of the association are to: • establish and maintain a national professional association representing the users of learning technology in education in Australia. • establish, maintain and provide a representative national voice for member associations. • provide a common forum for member associations. • cooperate and/or liaise with relevant organisations at local, state, national and international levels. • faciliate and provide mechanisms for the dissemination of information in relation to learning technology. • provide support for member associations. • organise and conduct conferences, seminars and/or other programs. • organise and/or publish publications with a national focus.

responsible for teacher registration and the development of the profession). He is an experienced educator who has been involved with educational technology for more than 30 years. Along with his ISTE Board commitments, he is a 2011 ISTE International Ambassador, is a member of the ISTE International Committee and wears his ‘making it happen’ jacket with pride. He has spent much of his teaching life working with technology, arguing for better resources and challenging much of the educational status quo in relation to ICT. He believes that passionate advocacy, excellent information and clear goals and objectives are essential when dealing with system and government authorities.

You will find much of our work on our website at http://www.acce.edu.au, including our position paper on ICT and the Australian Curriculum and our paper for teachers on cyber safety. The Council has also successfully led a number of study tours to the United States, with plans for further tours in 2012.

And are there any ongoing projects?

The Council is involved in three major projects, working on the TTF project (http:// www.altc.edu.au/ttf/) and two projects with AITSL (http://www.aitsl.edu.au/) working on the new Australian Teacher Standards.

Does ACCE organise an education conference?

Yes, ACEC is held every two years with the next event, ACEC2012, in Perth in early October 2012. The website is http:// acec2012.info/, we are expecting over 800 Australian educators, plus visitors from all around the world.

Does ACCE have representation elsewhere?

ACCE has representatives on the ACARA ICT reference group, the National Education Forum, IFIP TC3, the AITSL ICT focus group, the ACS Education committee and the ACS Community Engagement Board. He is a fellow of the Australian Council for Computers in Education, the Australian National ISTE affiliate, and at present is in his second year of presidency with the Association. He is a past president of ICTEV, his state ISTE affiliate. He has significant experience with the ‘NETS’, especially in lifting their usage in Australia, New Zealand and the Middle East. In 2005 he was presented with the Australian leader of the year in Educational Technology. He lists his passions as spending quality time with his family, educational technology pedagogy, strategic planning/policy development, travel and snow skiing. (Usually in that order!).


Technology to Engage!

The 21st Century Classroom: Special Guide

E n g a ge y ou r students!


Shift+Ctrl: Princip

Some say these are turbulent and challenging times for principals. MARK SPARVELL argues it’s actually a dynamic and exciting time to be leading and teaching in Australian schools.

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e are the best people to shape agile, responsive learners. Can we change the world between recess and lunch next Thursday? Maybe not, there are some things you certainly can name, but not control. Can I make some small shifts though? Can I reframe my practices as a leader or teacher to start to re-engineer how learning looks and what learners do? Definitely.

Out of Control: It’s all too hard

It is easy to subscribe to and be swamped by the accelerated rate of change in relation to technology. We can’t control this. Shift your thinking — we don’t need everything for everyone, all the time and we don’t need to engage with everything,

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all the time. If we believe that students need to be ‘choosers and users of tools and environment’ then, we should, as a school, be ‘choosers and users’ of the tools/ environments that best suit our

current and emerging needs. It’s not possible for anyone to keep up with the current trends in relation to technology and computers. I use a couple of aggregating environments which pull together and summarise trending data from a range of internet sources: www. popurls.com and www.livehum.com If you haven’t got into Twitter yet, it’s a great way to receive small targeted pieces of professional information. I ‘follow’ TeachTec, OzTeacherMag, MicrosoftPIL, DBCDE and Computerworldau. A couple of other great strategies I employ include emailing out the flipbook version of Australian Teacher Magazine with recommended pages to read (usually my articles!) and subscribing to ICT magazines for staff to read with Post-it


pals as ICT leaders notes to draw attention to particular pages.

Out of Control: We don’t have enough

Sure, there is a tipping point, a certain amount of access to tools and environments that is required to start to explore learning transformation ... but, this is a lot smaller than you might think. My work as Asia-Pacific and International judge as part of the Microsoft Worldwide Innovative Teacher Forum has highlighted time and time again that you can do an awful ‘lot with a little’ and conversely, a ‘little with a lot’. I am a big fan of ‘hothousing innovation’ in my schools. I am not a big fan of any mass roll out. When a tool of interest presents itself with possible learning applications, we secure a small number and establish a micro-inquiry project wrapped around the tool to explore its application, learning potential, robustness and also, to capture unexpected outcomes. Some recent hothouses: • Kodu programming – (http://fuse. microsoft.com/page/kodu.aspx) Could game design for Xbox with a group of four boys and using a public screen be good for the social skills of negotiation, collaboration and articulating thoughts? • Nintendo DS – Could the wireless capability of these devices improve the spelling of identified students by allowing the teacher to discreetly and remotely

provide prompts/revision? • iEtherpad – Could this shared real-time environment improve the efficiency and reduce the time of leadership meetings by encouraging co-construction of agendas? • Skydrive/Dropbox – Can we reduce

reliance on curriculum network for storage and enhance access to shared work by exploring student files on the cloud? Importantly, hothousing innovation doesn’t need to succeed. If we believe that failure IS an option and a damn good one, we should encourage the motto ‘fail early and fail often’. Innovation sits in the spaces between success and failure.

Out of Control: When we all have a new computer, printer and identical desktop, we can innovate This is a personal favourite and a flawed

one at that. We generally work within hybrid environments with multiple and ever-changing devices accessing multi platform applications. Schools are no different. There is a move in some sectors towards BYO devices, recognising that productivity is enhanced when people use the technology that they are comfortable with. I’m quite sure that once robust, reliable web access is a ‘given’, our ‘uniform dream’ will be available on the cloud regardless of which tools access it. This challenge really is a question about the purpose of technology in your school or site. Are you running a printing press? I believe that powerful learning with ICT is public learning. I don’t need a new computer, a printer or a remotely-managed desktop at a minimum, I need a public space so we can ‘think out loud together’ and (preferably) access to further devices as needed. Do I need to print? Stick it on the cloud.

Humans are social and have always expressed themselves through story, there is nothing new here! Certainly the wide-reaching public platform that social media offers changes the impact of such stories and runs the risk of ‘normalising’ behaviours which previously were considered ‘out of the norm’. I wonder if we should be concentrating on strategies on managing online relationships and reputation management. Parents, schools and students need good information about cyber bullying and there are great tools around including the cyber safety help button (http://www.dbcde. gov.au) which should be an addition on all school websites. I have had great success using social media templates in the teaching of history (imagine if Burke or Wills, had access to Facebook while exploring) — search for ‘Facebook template for word’ … it can be fun people! So, in summary: There are forces exerting pressure on schools and systems that we just cannot control. The agile leader keeps their head up and scans the horizons for these. What we can control is the intentional shifts we make to engage with tools and environments to shape learners for this current world who are agile, responsive, reflective deep thinkers who are able to choose and use the tools and environments in ethical ways. You don’t need a class set of iTouch’s and Mark Sparvell is a South Australian principal, 2010 NeiTA national award winner and 2009 Microsoft Innovative Teacher.

Myth: Cyber bullying is spiralling out of control at such a rate that we cannot address it ICT Guide 2011

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Connecting classroo

Former research scientist Dr Rob Sbaglia has created an innovative project linking his primary students with a team of virtual experts. JO EARP reports.

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ideoconferencing is a popular tool for schools, as educators look to connect their classrooms to outside communities and broaden students’ horizons. Skype, blogs and instant messaging programs are easy to access but getting the best out of them can be a tricky task. Dr Robert Sbaglia is ICT coordinator at Castlemaine North Primary School, 130 kilometres northwest of Melbourne. When he joined the school two years ago, having previously worked as a medicinal chemist, he had a target. “I came here with the idea that the ultimate, in terms of use of technology, would be connecting kids with other kids ... and with experts,” he recalls. “Because I used to be a research scientist before I became a teacher, my initial ideas were with science.” Sbaglia decided to put together a team of scientists to provide students with regular expertise in specific study areas. These ‘virtual experts’ now take part in online

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forums, send regular messages and hold Skype sessions throughout the year — 10 minutes here and there. Science is part of the school’s integrated inquiry approach to learning. Students design their own experiments, deciding whether they want to be chemists, biologists, physicists or psychologists. “[Then] we tee them up with experts who can help in the design and analysis of their own experiments — and that’s how we got started,” Sbaglia explains.

Since last year, the pool of experts has grown to a dozen and the innovative link-up has expanded into other parts of the curriculum. “We’ve got scientists in Melbourne and Newcastle, and we’ve got one in Florida in the US. We want our kids to understand that it’s a global world they’re connecting with and it makes no difference if it’s a scientist they’re communicating with in Melbourne or on the other side of the planet. “We’ve also got a couple of local independent filmmakers who’ve provided support for our kids in developing films, we have the Castlemaine Historical Society who have been fantastic, and a graphic artist in Apollo Bay.” As Sbaglia points out, the technology driving the program is pretty basic — the key to it is how the school supports and communicates with the experts. “We’re obviously asking people to give up their time freely so we need to be careful that they don’t [think] they should be putting hours and hours of work into this. “Most of the time it’s not about providing kids with the right answer, but with the guidance to arrive at the right answer,” Sbaglia says. An example of a recent project has been a biomechanist from Melbourne who is helping a group of students look at the most effective way to kick a footy. “They are really inspired by the fact they’re connected with a scientist [Geoffrey Hosford] who has written a book called The Science of Kicking and they are really engaged.” Students are encouraged to arrange their own Skype appointments and online contact, and the aim is make the virtual experts a permanent part of the school learning community. Following the success of the project, Sbaglia is keen to widen its reach by enlisting the help of local high school teachers. “We thought that would be a good way to involve the high school meaningfully in our work and for our Grade 6 students when they go up to the high school to say, ‘Oh, this teacher that I’m talking to now helped me out last year [as a virtual expert] when I was in primary school’ and help that transition.” Educators can visit the Castlemaine North Primary School website (www.thenorthschool.com) or email Sbaglia via contact@ thenorthschool.com for more information.


oms a virtual reality KRYSTAL EVANS, Medical researcher, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, Vic “I’m working on malaria vaccine development. I got in touch with Rob through [the CSIRO project] Scientists in Schools. My institute has also been really supportive, [which has] enabled me to get involved.” “I love the flexibility of the program — rather than having to dedicate a whole chunk of time to go out and speak to a school at a certain time, I can just jump online in between experiments. So, I can go into the lab and do something that needs to incubate for half an hour, come back to my desk and answer a few of the kids’ questions, then go back to the lab. “[Being online] also means it doesn’t matter where I am. One time I was at a scientific conference in Seattle and the class were in the middle of doing their science investigation, so I was logging on answering their questions. “We try and do a mix of both forum and videoconferencing because all the kids learn differently. I want to be able to provide them with answers, but I also want to encourage them to think through the critical thinking steps themselves. “At the moment there is a group looking at memory, obviously they want to investigate stuff they’re interested in so they’re looking at whether chewing gum helps improve your memory. Another student is interested in doing some chromatography science, looking at the different colours present in black marker pen and I’m helping her set up some controls. “The thing I really like about it is the kids are really grasping the science concepts of controls, variables and being able to get a real result. It’s teaching critical thinking. “In a normal week it slots in to my regular schedule, maybe an hour a week but that’s spread over the whole week so it doesn’t feel like an imposition. “It’s all about regular communication and that’s the other thing I like, Rob sends regular email digests and, for me, it lowers the barrier for participation because I know that I can opt in or out [depending on my expertise].”

Photo: Czesia Markiewicz

TIM MOORE, Research engineer, CSIRO Energy centre, NSW. “Most of my work is on grid-connected renewables. We get a lot of school groups coming through the Energy Centre and often give talks on the impact on the climate. “My contact with the project so far has mainly been through the website and forums, the kids will post details of their experiments and send you messages, and you can respond with ideas. “[It’s about] trying to keep them interested without giving away too much — you know, they’ve got a job to do themselves so we just try to keep them onboard and point them in the right direction if you like. “They’re smart kids, so they’ll figure it out themselves no doubt, but to give a recent example they were talking about whether a large or small parachute is going to fall faster. You want to get them thinking about why a larger parachute might slow it down, but you don’t want to tell them exactly that, so it can be challenging. “I had my first videoconference last week where I was introduced to some of the kids that I’m the expert for. It was a big step and good to see them getting direct feedback. “The time I spend on it fluctuates, right now Rob is starting to kick off this inquiry process so I spent about an hour last week seeing if the kids had any questions, but generally not more than two hours a week at most. It’s not time challenging at all. “Rob does a huge amount of work obviously behind the scenes getting everything set up, he’s a very clever guy also! He makes it so easy and sends us weekly updates with a summary of information on what the kids are working on. “It helps to have someone with Rob’s dedication and enthusiasm for science, but it’s great to see the kids really enjoying their science and obviously us scientist nerd-types like to enjoy it, so it’s good to see a whole class getting on the bandwagon.”

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Recognition for participation

Genazzano FCJ College students are among the first in the country to have all of their co-curriculum activities tracked electronically. JENNIFER SHERIDAN attended the launch of the software that is making it possible.

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reviously when Carol Rowland, as director of co-curriculum programs at the Melbourne school, documented Genazzano FCJ College students’ co-curriculum activities she spent two weeks entering data from handwritten forms into a database. Now that chore is gone and student participation receives greater recognition, including a full co-curriculum transcript each year and upon leaving the college, something Rowland (pictured far left in the photo above right) says is becoming more important. “The reasoning or the rationale behind tracking and documenting the student participation really came from a realisation of the value of the activities that the girls were undertaking, and once that was articulated it became almost essential that we document it. “So that was the mission I guess, to work out a system so that we could track every opportunity the girls had whether it was in leadership, social service, volunteering, tutoring, music, sport, rowing. It didn’t seem to matter what the parameter was, it was a matter of recording their participation and acknowledging that, so really what the transcript does is recognise the value of the girls participating,” Rowland says.

26 ICT Guide 2011

Despite co-curriculum being highly valued as an entry criterion for universities elsewhere in the world, Rowland believes that is only just becoming the case in Australia. Because of this she struggled to find any professional development on the topic, and there also was not a software system that could be easily put in place to fulfil Genazzano’s needs. The college instead worked with software company SoNET to purpose-build a system which records student participation in every co-curriculum activity available at Genazzano. Teachers who are activity coordinators create each activity on the system, and then students sign up online to participate in the activity. At the end of each term coordinators mark off all girls who participated in the activity, and the activity is formally recorded on a co-curriculum transcript and the student receives one point. The points accumulate and count towards achievement awards, and when students log in to their co-curriculum page they can see how close they are to each recognition award level. “Feedback has been fantastic. The students have the opportunity to write reflections at the end of the year or when they receive awards, and they’ve really

now reflected on what it means for them. So they will talk about the teamwork, the commitment, the friendships they’ve made (and) the cross-age benefit of meeting with other girls. “Parents really acknowledge it, and students in Year 12 have just recently been applying for internships and have requested transcripts as part of that application process, so they can see that it presents them in a different light,” Rowland says. The system works with the data management system already in place for the rest of the school’s documentation. Rowland says the transition to using it has been smooth and has spread the load of documenting co-curriculum more evenly. It also puts more onus on students. “I think over the period of a couple of years it’s been pretty much an education to staff, students and parents of the value of the co-curricula transcript. I think that message has been communicated effectively, and I think students see now co-curricula for its worth and value. “I’d like to think that this is the beginning of a change in emphasis; every school does co-curriculum but I don’t think they’ve articulated why they do it and the value of it, and that’s what I think we’ve done,” Rowland concludes.


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Tech advanced remote schools

Technology is opening up a range of opportunities for students and staff at some of the country’s most remote schools to make connections across the world. JO EARP reports.

M

aningrida School, 500 kilometres east of Darwin, may be in a remote location but it is home to the same wireless technology and gadgets that are transforming learning across Australia. “It’s very remote, obviously during the wet season all the rivers flood and the only way in is by plane ... it’s sort of like living on an island for six months of the year,” former ICT coordinator and teacher at the school, Pamela McGowan, explains. Given the location, McGowan says excellent online technical support is one of the keys to ensuring the ICT tools and infrastructure runs as smoothly as possible. “We have a fantastic service desk. For people that wish to be ICT coordinators at [Northern Territory] schools there is an online course that can be completed. “It steps you through some of the hardware and how that works, and also troubleshooting, as well as the different tools systems other information processes that occur, such as roll marking, reporting, computer asset management, password creations and all those things. “So, there is really good online support and information that people can access and read when necessary. There’s also a fantastic service desk that we can call up, log jobs, and talk through problems with.

They have the capacity to remote into computers as well and have a look at things that can’t be solved over the phone.” In terms of face-to-face help, the school gets two whole day visits per term by a technician and McGowan says it’s important to make the most of the opportunity. “That’s a time where you plan in advance and make sure that if there’s anything you’re having troubles with you have it all lined up ready for the guys to have a look at and talk you through that process. And, they’re really friendly and helpful. “It comes down to making sure that there is a school system for what happens when things aren’t working properly, and on top of that [saying] ‘OK, we need to make sure people are aware they are arriving and that all jobs and issues ... [are flagged up] so the guys can get as much work as possible done in the time that they are here.” Part of McGowan’s role was to oversee the introduction of interactive whiteboards to the school and ensure teachers have access to the tools needed to integrate and implement ICT into their lessons. “There are a number of initiatives running in the school. Every classroom has an interactive whiteboard and it’s something teachers are very passionate about. The whole school has wireless network

coverage and we also utilise tools like flip cameras, Easi-Speak microphones and also online tools such as Blogster.” McGowan believes it’s important students and staff have access to the same cutting edge technology that is available to people living in regional areas or major cities. “Most of our students don’t have a computer at home. We’re trying to give our students access to technology so that they are job-ready when they decide to either get a job or when they go ahead and complete their NTCE.” On a personal level, McGowan prides herself on using ICT to engage in professional discussions. “I use tools like Twitter, I also have great connections with other staff in the department, whether they be sitting in offices in Darwin, or at schools in other remote places in the Territory. I really try to work collaboratively to get the best information and then I share those [skills] with staff as well, so they also know how to search and access information.” She is also delighted that students are using ICT to create, preserve and host their culture and language online. “It’s about tapping into those tools and utilising them to have that collaboration and collection of information and knowledge, and preserving that for future generations.”

ICT Guide 2011

29


The New iQ 32 Cart


The interactive whiteboard Introduction THE interactive whiteboard (IWB) is an evolving piece of technology gaining currency in Australian classrooms. Not all classrooms have one. Should they? As long as we have classrooms with four walls and a teacher, there will be a need to teach to the whole class “from the front” at critical times — there will be a need for a teacher’s teaching space. When teaching the whole class “from the front”, hopefully teachers will use more than a blackboard or an ordinary whiteboard. The community expects teachers to use technologies that reach beyond the four walls to bring the outside world in, to improve teaching and learning. A teacher’s teaching space that is resourced only with a blackboard or ordinary whiteboard has not been designed for 21st century learning. Bring an IWB into a teacher’s teaching space for that critical whole class “from the front” teaching. Whether your strategy is to use the IWB on its own, or to use it in conjunction with other complementary strategies such as mobile learning, one-to-one laptop programs and individualised tuition – there is no doubt

that the IWB has an important place in effective teaching and learning! Even though IWBNet is an advocate of an IWB in every classroom, in the end it is not about the technology — it is about teaching with the technology. Every teacher should do their utmost to engage in good teaching practice when teaching with an IWB so that students can develop their full potential as learners. Using an IWB will not in itself improve teaching practice. It may make it worse if you fail to consider and build into your practice the essential elements of good teaching. There are many theories about what makes good teaching practice. IWBNet believes the most powerful elements include: • Encouraging intellectual rigour in all learning. • Providing, meaning, relevance and significance for all students. • Creating a supportive, quality environment for learning. • Embracing diversity and community. If you are using an IWB without considering what makes good teaching — you need to reflect on how you can improve things!

A few key considerations: • (Leadership) How is the IWB integrated within your school? • (Maintenance) Who is responsible for updating the IWB software in your school? • (Access) Does the classroom layout need to change for your lesson? • (Classroom management) What individual activities have you planned for the lesson? • (Professional development) How do existing practices and any new ideas get shared? • (Learning and teaching) How do you prepare activities suitable for different learning needs? • (Resources) Have you thought about copyright and the use of Creative Commons’ Licences?

Have you seen? There are many great products and solutions available to schools and teachers embracing interactive digital technologies. Here are just a few from some of IWBNet’s Partners.

Finger touch technology

2Touch interactive solutions use optical touch technology developed ‘down under’, to provide natural finger touch control over a shared space. Response Systems, slates, digital clipboards and software as well as professional development solutions also make 2Touch a great choice. Go to www.twotouch.com

30 ICT Guide 2011

Interactive TVs

Portable and affordable IWBs

Superior lesson building tools

The world’s largest online interactive learning technology community

Interactive LCD panels are the latest thing to hit Australian classrooms. No calibration, no shadow, no data projector, no glare, no installation issues – they just work! Eduss Learning has a great range and is selling them by the truck load. Go to www.eduss.com.au

Interactive whiteboards, panels and wireless tablets underpinned with a dynamic set of teaching and lesson building tools is what sets the Hitachi StarBoard apart from the others. Go to www.hitachistarboard.com.au

Turn any standard whiteboard into an interactive whiteboard — instantly! The mimio solution is unique in its simplicity. It allows you to create innovative lessons and access everything you need to deliver a highly engaging lesson. Go to www.mimio.dymo.com

With one million members, Promethean Planet is the world’s largest online interactive learning technology community. Go to www.digitalclassroom. com.au and www.prometheanplanet.com


and 21st century learning How teachers are using their interactive whiteboards • Making science classrooms come alive — searching and sourcing information, communicating and sharing results and findings, interacting with animations, recording movies, classifying and modelling. • Coupling an IWB with EasiTeach and Multi-e-Maths to facilitate early childhood education, assisting preps to play and learn from the first day of school. • Finding multiple uses for an IWB in mathematics: teaching numeracy groups, mathematics strands (statistics, measurement, geometry), problem-solving strategies and integrating mathematics into other areas of the curriculum. • Making the best use of an IWB in science and mathematics using quality web-based resources that are a hit with students and which cover challenging concepts such as

chemical equations and formulae — and to test understanding running a quiz through Promethean ActivExpressions. • Using IWB resources designed for use with the music curriculum and the underlying pedagogy which makes these resources effective tools. The emphasis is on effective integration of audio, notation and the interactive functions of Notebook 10 to produce fun, engaging and student focused material for music classrooms. • Looking at alternative uses of the IWB in the secondary social science classroom focussing on useable and easily accessed resources that support inquiry skills such as critical analysis, bias and comparison. • Exploring the benefits an IWB can have for students who speak English as a Second Language.

• Incorporating digital and visual literacy through online resources and IWB applications such as Tag Galaxy, PicLit, Fotobabble, Word Clouds, YouTube and SMART technology. • Using IWBs to enhance the library program — working with students from prep to Year 7, in SOSE, literacy and science. Students use the IWB to reinforce concepts and ideas; the document camera; and individual response systems to demonstrate understanding. • Exploring a range of IWB techniques to support thinking skills and Bloom’s and SOLO thinking taxonomies. • Using the IWB as an inclusive learning tool through multimedia, text to speech, speech to text etc. Rather than singling out students with learning difficulties for additional individual instruction, lessons are created which can involve all.

Professional learning opportunities available in 2012 Green Screen Technology

Anyone can create fabulous digital movies and photographs with Engage Learning’s new Green Screen Solution. The solution is entirely portable. Call them on 1800 647 324 for more information.

Ninth National Interactive Teaching and Learning Conference Date: 9, 10 and 11 August 2012 Venue: Presbyterian Ladies’ College Sydney NSW Sixth National Leading a Digital School Conference Date: September 2012 Venue: Gold Coast QLD Second ITL Masterclass National Conference Date and Venue TBC

Online literacy resources

Prepare children for their future by providing quality digital education, learning that actively engages, is user friendly, intuitive and fun. Contact Ziptales on www.ziptales.com.au for your free 30 day trial.

LIFT Online IWB Course Duration: 26 weeks online Cost: $495

Stay up-to-date with all of IWBNet’s professional learning opportunities by subscribing to our free online monthly newsletter - IWBNews. Go to http://www.iwb.net.au/iwbnews or email team@iwb.net.au to receive further information.

Contact IWBNet Pty Ltd PO Box 5975 Minto BC NSW 2566 Web: www.iwb.net.au Phone: 1800 760 108 Fax: 1800 760 908 Email: team@iwb.net.au Twitter: @iwbnet

ICT Guide 2011

31


Listings NATIONAL KEEPAD INTERACTIVE Introduction to ICT in the classroom Online; Training Room Sessions available in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide & Perth; free; www.keepad.com/contact.php Using technology to enhance pedagogy Online; Training Room Sessions available in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide & Perth; free; www.keepad.com/contact.php Accessing and developing digital content Online; Training Room Sessions available in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide & Perth; free; www.keepad.com/contact.php Dynamic teaching and learning for the 21st century classroom Online; Training Room Sessions available in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide & Perth; free; www.keepad.com/contact.php IWBNET Fifth National Leading a Digital School Conference Sept 1-3; The Crown Conference Centre, Melbourne; Three days $1395, two days $930, one day $465, three days $995 if three or more people from your education network register together; margo@iwb.net.au IWB Solutions National Conference 2011 Sept 15-16; Australian Technology Park; $465 for two days, $255 for one day, free for school communities registering two or more members; margo@iwb.net.au IWB online training Flexible dates; online; $495; team@iwb.net.au

ACT ACT ASSOC FOR THE TEACHING OF ENGLISH Tripping the Metaverse – Exploring Education in Virtual Worlds Sept 8, 4pm-5:45pm; Hedley Beare Centre for Teaching and Learning,

32 ICT Guide 2011

Stirling; Members $20, Non-members $40; info@actate.org.au AUS COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA AUTHORITY Cybersmart Outreach workshop Nov 10; Canberra venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx

NSW ELIT, THE PRIMARY ENGLISH TEACHING ASSOC A Web 2.0 toolbox for literacy Aug 27; St Michael’s Primary School, Belfield; Members $160, Non-members $215; pd@elit.edu.au Making IT happen: Using IWBs in literacy lessons (beginners) Sept 12 & Oct 17, 2:30pm-6pm; West Ryde Public School; Members $160, Non-members $215; pd@elit.edu.au Making IT happen: Using IWBs in literacy lessons (intermediate-advanced) Sept 15 & Oct 27, 2:30pm-6pm; Kensington Public School; Members $160, Non-members $215; pd@elit.edu.au AUS COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA AUTHORITY Cybersmart Outreach workshop Sept 13; Sydney venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx Cybersmart Outreach workshop Oct 20; Ingleburn venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx Cybersmart Outreach workshop Nov 23; Sydney venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx INFORMATION COMMUNICATION TECH EDUCATORS OF NSW ICT and Computing Inservice Oct 17, 4pm-9pm; Epping Boys High School; Members $30, Non-members $45; www.ictensw.org.au

NT AUS COMPUTER SOCIETY What is the National Broadband Network? Sept 8, 5pm; Darwin Central Hotel; cost TBA; www.acs.org.au/index.cf m?action=load&temID= eventsall&type=edxn

ASSOC OF HEADS OF INDEPENDENT SCHOOLS OF AUSTRALIA Forum: The Complexities of Social Media, Kids and the Classroom Oct 17, 9:30am-3:30pm; Brisbane Sofitel Hotel; $395; sharon@ahisa. edu.au

QLD

SA

AUS COMPUTER SOCIETY What is the National Broadband Network? Sept 13, 6pm; Level 13/333 Adelaide Street Brisbane; Members free, Non-members $10; www.acs.org.au/index.cf m?action=load&temID= eventsall&type=edxn

AUS COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA AUTHORITY Cybersmart Outreach workshop Sept 15; Barossa venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx

AUS COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA AUTHORITY Cybersmart Outreach workshop Sept 15; Gympie venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx Cybersmart Outreach workshop Oct 27; Townsville venue TBA; free; www. cybersmart.gov.au/ outreach.aspx Cybersmart Outreach workshop Nov 7; Brisbane venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx QUEENSLAND SOCIETY FOR INFORMATION TECH IN EDUCATION State Conference Sept 29-30, 8am-4pm; St Aidan’s Anglican Girls School; Members $352, Non-member $396; www.qsite.edu.au HOME ECONOMICS INSTITUTE OF AUS, QLD Walking the curriculum talk and Walking the ICT talk Oct 8, 9am-3:30pm; St Margaret Mary’s College, Hyde Park Oct 17, 9am-3:30pm; Mackay North SHS, Mackay North Oct 29, 9am-3:30pm; Cairns venue TBA Oct 31, 9am-3:30pm; Roma venue TBA Nov 19, 9am-3:30pm; Bundaberg SHS, Bundaberg Members $120, Non-members $160; zzdmcman@westnet. com.au

Cybersmart Outreach workshop Nov 17; Adeliade venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx AUS COMPUTER SOCIETY EdXN - A Nat. Broadband Network for Australia Sept 28; Microsoft Innovation Centre, Level 2 Westpac House, 91 King William Street, Adelaide; Members free, Nonmembers $15; www.acs. org.au/index.cfm?action =load&area=9005&tem ID=eventdetails&eveID= 10206519462055 COMPUTERS IN EDUCATION GROUP OF SA Stage 2 information technology examination revision workshops for students and teachers Oct 13-14, 9am-4pm; Adelaide venue TBA; $122 per day, $10 early-bird discount before September 9; http://cegsa.sa.edu. au/2011/06/examrevision2011/

TAS AUS COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA AUTHORITY Cybersmart Outreach workshop Oct 13; Hobart venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx

VIC VICTORIAN INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY TEACHERS’ ASSOCIATION Annual Conference Leading and Learning from the Edge Aug 29-30; Caulfield

Racecourse; Members $385-525, Non-members $575-775; www. vitta.org.au/conferenceinfo/vitta-annualconference-2011 ICT Industry Bus Tour Aug 31, 8:30am-4:45pm; Departing & returning from VITTA, 134 Cambridge Street, Collingwood; Members only, free; www.vitta.org. au/events/event/ictindustry-bus-tour HOME ECONOMICS INSTITUTE OF AUS, VIC ICT in the Home Ec Classroom Series Aug 31, Nov 24, 4:30-6pm; Shelford Girls Grammar; Members $50, Non-members $65, costs are per session; heiav@heia.com.au ICT IN EDUCATION VIC GIMP: editing images Sept 7, 9:30am-3:30pm; Statewide Resources Centre; Members $159, Non-members $189; http://ictev.vic.edu.au/ events-pd Geelong Region Study Tour, integrating ICT in the middle years program Sept 8, 9am-3:30pm; Starting at Geelong High School; Members $160, Non-members $190; http://ictev.vic.edu.au Drawing across the curriculum: Inkscape, GIMP Sept 14, 9:30am-3:30pm; Statewide Resources Centre; Members $159, Non-members $189; http://ictev. vic.edu.au/events-pd Digital publishing for mobile devices with InDesign CS5.5 Sept 21, 9:30am-3:30pm; Statewide Resources Centre; Members $159, Non-members $189; http://ictev.vic.edu.au Develop gaming skills of middle years students: Gamemaker 8.0 for beginners Nov 24, 9:30am-3:30pm; Statewide Resources Centre; Members $159, Non-members $189; http://ictev. vic.edu.au/events-pd AUS COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA AUTHORITY Cybersmart Outreach

workshop Sept 14; Castlemaine venue TBA; free; www. cybersmart.gov.au/ outreach.aspx Cybersmart Outreach workshop Sept 15; Melbourne venue TBA; free; www. cybersmart.gov.au/ outreach.aspx Cybersmart Outreach workshop Sept 22; Warrnambool venue TBA; free; www. cybersmart.gov.au/ outreach.aspx Cybersmart Outreach workshop Oct 27; Mildura venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx Cybersmart Outreach workshop Oct 27; Yarrawonga venue TBA; free; www. cybersmart.gov.au/ outreach.aspx Cybersmart Outreach workshop Nov 10; Melbourne venue TBA; free; www. cybersmart.gov.au/ outreach.aspx VIC ASSOC FOR THE TEACHING OF ENGLISH Using smart phone and iPad applications to develop literacy Sept 20, 4:30pm-6:30pm; VATE Conference Room, Collingwood; Members $55, Nonmembers $70; www. vate.org.au

WA EDUCATIONAL COMPUTING ASSOC OF WA Conference Oct 6-7; Canning College, Bentley; Members $77-110, Non-members $148.50-181.50; conference@ecawa.wa.edu.au AUS COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA AUTHORITY Cybersmart Outreach workshop Oct 26; Kalgoorlie venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx Cybersmart Outreach workshop Nov 30; Perth venue TBA; free; www.cybersmart.gov.au/outreach. aspx


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CorelCAD CorelCAD™ is the smart solution for day-to-day design work that requires precision and detail. With native DWG™ file support, industry-standard CAD features, and customizable 2D and 3D design tools, it lets you work more productively, communicate ideas clearly and collaborate effectively. Discover the solution that makes high-level CAD design affordable—CorelCAD.

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r Optimized for Windows® and Mac OS® – work quickly on the platform of your choice Corel has partnered with Graebert GmbH, a leading CAD developer with over 25 years of industry experience, to develop CorelCAD for a wide audience of users. As a result, existing CAD users will enjoy an intuitive environment with familiar command bars, aliases, menus and toolbars. In addition, CorelCAD provides excellent compatibility, working natively with the AutoCAD® DWG™ file format and eliminating the need for an import / export process to read and write files in the industry standard format.

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Corel Painter 12 The world’s leading digital art software Corel® Painter™ 12 is the world’s leading digital art software. Its combination of inventive drawing tools, Natural-Media® brushes, image cloning capabilities and virtually unlimited customization options give you total freedom for creative expression. Internationally recognized for its RealBristle™ brushes, Painter offers the most realistic form of digital painting available in the digital art realm. And with the introduction of new Real Watercolor and Real Wet Oil brushes, plus exciting creative features exclusive to this version, Painter continues to change what’s possible in art! EDUCATION PRICE $99

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For more information or to purchase, please contact your preferred software reseller, or contact Scholastic at 1800 665 774 or customer_service@scholastic.com.au www.scholastic.com.au/technology


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$2,000 To find out more call 1300 118 350 or simply visit schoolsdirect.com.au/about


Installing Video Projectors or Interactive WhiteBoards? You need JED controllers! JED Microprocessors, Melbourne, designs and builds low cost wired remote controllers for video projectors in classrooms, laboratories, meeting rooms, churches and lecture theatres. They can mount on a lectern, desk or wall using Clipsal 2000 hardware. The JED T460R (right) is a simple projector control panel with just four clearly labelled buttons. Compare this with complex, hand-held remotes, which get dropped, lost or stolen. The ON and OFF buttons turn the projector on and off. (The ON button also scrolls between up to eight sources). The other two keys control Audio Volume or Mute and Freeze. Available in metallic (shown), white or blue front. The controller is pre-programmed with the codes for over 1600 different projectors or flat screens, and can be updated with new codes. It has a new bright yellow OLED display showing status: Warmup, Cooldown, and up to eight sources (VCR, Computer, Camera etc), Audio Volume and Lamp Hours. The JED T440 (left) is a low-cost, simple controller, with just 4, 6 or 8 buttons labelled by function, and status LEDs. It teams nicely with whiteboards, and is simply setup with switches on the back.

The JED T430 (right) is a very simple two-button controller for, one or two source, whiteboard installations. All units have built-in timers, which, if you value the run-time costs of projector bulbs, can pay for them (and save power) just by preventing the projector from being left on when a PIR detector finds everyone has gone home. The 439 (right) is a USB switcher for use in IWB classrooms. It switches between the desk computer USB and the teacher’s laptop’s USB to control the Interactive WhiteBoard. A T441 and T461 audio mixers can control the audio if the projector doesn’t. The T465 is a microphone pre-amp/mixer. A T464 Ethernet Box has a CAT5 connection for remote monitoring of A/V equipment rooms by the techs.

http://www.jedmicro.com.au JED Microprocessors Pty Ltd Boronia, 3155 (03) 9762 3588


Transform your existing whiteboard into an interactive learning space!

eBeam Classic Pod Pod eBeam Classic

WITH

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Interactive Whiteboard

E n g a ge Enygoaurges! stuydoeunrt !

students

Export your eBeam Scrapbook files to multiple file formats for easy emailing and posting to the web

Whether you want to project to your interactive whiteboard, capture dry erase marker notes to your computer or do both at the same time - eBeam is the smarter choice! eBeam has all the tools you need in an easy to use wheel palette, including “BoardCasting,� which allows you to share your whiteboard with other classrooms, student netbooks and remote participants.

CONTACT US FOR A FREE DEMO & QUOTE S Y D N E Y - B R I S B A N E - M E L B O U R N E - A D E L A I D E - P E RT H

1800 463 279

www.keepad.com


The CoCurriculum software is an ideal, comprehensive tool to promote and manage co-curricular activities as they become ever more important. There is a growing emphasis on co-curricular activity participation – activities available outside the classroom, such as sporting and volunteering efforts - in addition to traditional academia, in order to provide students with a more rounded education. CoCurriculum software records not only which activities a student has undertaken but it notes and identifies which skills and competencies a student has consequently gained. The ability to create a Co-Curricular transcript provides students, teachers and employers with verified and accurate records of student’s experiences.

Business Benefits • Organise your activities, students, and staff within one system, customised to your own needs. • Improve the impact and credibility of co-curricular activities through official ‘points systems’ and Co Curricular Transcripts (CCT) • Creating a tangible record of a student’s co-curricular history promote the advantages of these activities, motivating students to take part. • Communicate the range of transferable and employability skills students have gained through co-curricular experiences through a CCT to future employers and higher-education institutions. • Monitor the success of co-curricular programs to create the best possible offerings for your students.

Features Student Management

CoCurriculum software allows student profiles to be easily added or removed from the system and provides scope to record the details of a large student body, such as a university. Each student’s profile provides an accurate and verified account of his or her co-curricular history, ‘points’, and awards received. The profile may specify how many ‘points’ a student is required to collect within a specified period, or any compulsory activities.

Activity Management:

Activities may be simply managed in the system as they are created or removed from cocurricular offerings. Activities may be assigned with points, which are then collected by students undertaking that activity. The popularity and success of activities may be assessed based on student numbers.

Co-Curricular Transcript (CCT)

The CoCurriculum software allows you and your students to access and create an official Co-Curricular Transcript. With employers and admission teams increasingly requesting records of students’ co-curricular involvement, a CCT provides a complete and certified record of a student’s co-curricular history and achievements and highlights the skills gained from certain activities, for example, leadership and organisation.

Awards

An awards system runs parallel to co-curricular records, allowing activity coordinators to assess who is eligible for an award as well as record awards-won in a student’s own history.

Customisation

The software may be easily customised to suit your organisations co-curricular offerings and structure. Administrators can create their own range of activities, point systems and awards. They can easily assign activity coordinators and the number of ‘points’ a student will receive for successfully completing an activity.

tel. +61 3 8533 7700 fax +61 3 8533 7711

www.sonet.com.au


EDUCATE WITH THE EPSON ULTRA SHORT THROW PROJECTOR It’s one less thing for students to get their head around.

n

100 90 80 70

N = M (1 + r) - n1 Or N = A n r (1 + r) (1 + r) 70%

15%

60 50 40 30 20 10

With Epson’s unique E-TORL lamp technology and a high precision short throw lens which reduces glare in the presenter’s eyes and minimises shadows, the Epson ultra short throw projector delivers big, bright images that bring lessons to life! Low power consumption and a long lamp life saves you money and reduces impact on the environment. With the Epson ultra short throw projector, Let nothing get in the way of your student's work.

Epson, Engineered for Education.

For information on our range of projectors call 1300 130 194 or visit epson.com.au


Contents 24

Smart Classrooms Teacher Awards

10

US tech conference amazing

11 12, 14

Gamification in education ACCE - nothing but the best

Photo: Czesia

Shift & Ctrl: Principals as ICT leaders

22-23

Connecting classrooms a virtual reality

24-25

Recognition for participation

26

Tech advanced remote schools

29

The interactive whiteboard and 21st century learning Professional development event listings

Introduction THIS year’s ICT in Education Guide has some fantastic examples of innovative classroom, community and professional development projects in Australian schools. Our feature on the Smart Classroom Awards (p.10-11) includes a look at a digital PD project helping to unite teachers in a cluster of Queensland schools. We also travel to Victoria, to report on a groundbreaking ‘virtual expert’ initiative (p.24-25). And there’s expert advice on making the most of your interactive whiteboard, and top tech tips for teachers and principals. How do you use technology in education? Email ict@ozteacher. com.au and your school could be in our next ICT Guide. JO EARP EDITOR

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ICT Guide 2011 is published by Tempo Media Pty Ltd | ACN 100 789 848 Tel: (03) 9421 4499 | Fax: (03) 9421 1011 | Address: 2-4 Bond St Abbotsford, Vic 3067 Postal: PO Box 1079, Richmond North, Vic 3121 For advertising enquiries, please contact Sandra Colli (advertising@ozteacher.com.au) Printed by: Rural Press NSW. Distributed by: Speedy Print & Distribution Service Pty Ltd Disclaimer: The views expressed in this supplement do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher Privacy Policy: To receive a copy of our privacy policy write to the address above

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ICT Guide 2011

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30-31 32


Canon puts the fun back into scientific calculators Colourful, environmental and BOS approved!

Who says serious scientific calculators have to look boring? Not Canon — and we think they should be good for the environment and easy to use! The new Canon F717SGA brings the scientific calculator into the 21st century, offering students and teachers the best in design and functionality. Quality and reliability are a given thanks to Canon’s 45-year heritage in calculator design. The layout is familiar too, because it’s been designed with the needs of Australian teachers and students in secondary and tertiary studies in mind! Fully Approved*1 ✓ Board of Studies NSW School Certificate and HSC ✓ Queensland Core skills tests ✓ Requirements for all other states and territories ✓ New Zealand Qualifications Authority for high schools Vibrant colours, customisable case Australian students love colour choice when it comes to classroom equipment*2. Enter the Canon F717SGA, available in bright

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ICT Guide 2011

blue, racing red and stylish black. Also, the protective hard case allows for customisation with a convenient image slot – perfect for anything from a photo to a class timetable. Environmentally friendly. Now you can do some good for the environment, while doing well at school! True to Canon’s Lifecycle Assessment Approach of produce, use and recycle, the F717SGA is made using recycled materials sourced from other Canon products at the end of their useful life*3. Moreover, Dual Power means that efficient solar energy drives operation when light is available and a mercury-free back-up battery is there when light is not — An antibacterial coating on the operating surface is applied to prevent and inhibit the build-up of bacteria, making it clean as well as ‘green’. Big buttons, large screen and familiar layout The buttons are where you expect them to be but they’re bigger and firmer so you know when you’ve pressed them. No annoying mistakes! Also a large 4-line,

18-digit display makes the numbers easy to see on screen. Join the Canon revolution! Suitable for high school and university subjects across mathematics, science, engineering and design, the Canon F717SGA is being used in schools across Australia. Why not add some colourful fun to your classroom, while also making a difference to the environment? Available through OfficeMax, Harris Technology, Schools Direct and other retail and online stores nationally.

Approved for use by the New South Wales Board of Studies in the School Certificate and Higher School Certificate. Generally suitable for use by secondary school mathematics, science and engineering students in all Australian states and territories at time of release. Approved for use in New Zealand by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority. Canon Australia Pty Ltd and Canon New Zealand Ltd has made best efforts to ensure accuracy of information but is not responsible for any changes in approval processes and recommends for any specific course or examination requirements that you confirm with your relevant education authority.

*1

Findings from a research study performed by Buzz research in June 2011.

*2

A minimum of 20% of each F717SGA calculator is made of recycled materials sourced from other Canon products.

*3


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NEW Canon F-717SGA Scientific Calculator Cifc*iNEW tFor infietmore niceSiCanon cinformation ASGASG7S1F-717SGA 7call 1-F71800 -nFon oanCScientific aW CE WNENEW N Calculator Canon F-717SGA Scientific 021 167 or visit canon.com.au

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ICT in Education (September 2011)