Skip to main content


Showing posts from May, 2014

Learning to Podcast in Our after School PD Session

Our after school PD sessions kicked off again today and I have decided to do a few weeks of unplanned sessions where people can pop in and cover what they need to.
This proved interesting today when Carol, our Food Technology / Catering and Hospitality teacher came and we ended up doing podcasting.

She wanted an interactive way that students can be involved in the recipe process. So the original plan is that Carol will make a podcast of the ingredients, using Garage Band, so the students have to listen to the instructions. With it being in podcast from, they can listen as many times as they need to. She will then embed this on her site, via Sound Cloud, where she will combine it with a Google form where the students have to fill in the method. Carol then plans to move on to the students doing the whole process them selves.
We had a lot of fun today, recording the voice tracks, putting in jingles and adding illustrations of the recipes.

Climbing the SAMR Ladder

We have been involved in an interesting activity at school recently where we have been looking at what we are doing in our teaching practice regarding online learning. Part of that assessment process involved looking at the activities that we are doing and where they fit onto the different levels on the SAMR ladder.
Here is what I thought that I could put on each stage of this ladder. This table is part of the from that the school gave us to fill in. We had to put our input into the last column.

Level Definition ExampleEvidence (Link)Substitution (Enhancement)Technology acts as direct tool substitute, with no functional change.Examples may include; digital copy of notes/handbooks.Graphics SiteAll of the instructions and resources are stored online rather than on paper.Everything that I used to give the students on photocopied handouts is now on the site for them to reference.Augmentation(Enhancement)Technology acts as direct tool substitute, with functional improvement.Examples may inc…

Students as the Teachers

Over the past couple of years, I have noticed that my knowledge of using all the Googly stuff gets stuck into my head much more as I have to show others how to do it. I have also found that the action of making the how to screen casts, where I have to be really clear about the process, has been really beneficial to me in my own clarity and understanding.
This term, I decided to try this out on my Level 1 class and get them to make a "how to" instruction set about something they had just learned.
We have been learning how to render a few different surfaces, like wood and plastic.

They had a practice through the process of a couple of the techniques, then they had to decide which one they were going to use as their example of a teaching how to. I made them a quick example to show them how I wanted them to set it out using a Google slide show. This was also a good time to show them the new crop feature in Google slides, which they were delighted with. I didn't put any writt…

Blended Learning and the effects on a Secondary Timetable

As part of my blended learning research this year, I am interested to know what kind of effect this type of learning has on the timetable and planning in a secondary school context.
I have interviewed Mr Harris, Deputy Principal at Tamaki College, in charge of timetabling. I sent him the questions a couple of weeks ago so he knew what I was going to ask him.

These are the questions that we covered ( along with a few extras along the way ).

What do you see as the main issues with the timetable as it stands at the moment?How do these issues affect the planning  of a whole school timetable?What is your understanding of blended learning?Have you seen blended learning in action at any other school?Were there any timetable considerations with what you have seen?When the wireless in the community is up and running, and nearly all students will therefore have internet access at home,  do you see more of an opportunity for blended learning to have an impact on timetable planning?What do you see…

Google for Education

After listening to all the training options available at the GAFE Summit NZ this week, I decided to make a start.
I went through the basic exams yesterday, and have completed the level 1 certificate.
I have now made a start working my way through the first Level 2 set (about Docs and Drive) and am aiming towards the Google Educator exams.
Link to the Google for Eduction site here.
Great resource site from the GAFE Summit here.

Be More Dog...

This week I have had a great time at the GAFE Summit NZ North Island.
The summit was a two day event this time round, so there was lots of choice of great things to go and listen to.

We kicked off with a keynote from Suan Yeo.
Here are my highlights from his keynote speech :-
A lot of the content on the net is repurposed and re-imaged - how can you make the content say what you want it to say.Start with why.Do schools kill creativity.Children are born inquisitive.Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn.Shift from students as consumers to students as creators.The sign up rate for MOOCS is HUGE.MOOC like reading the newspaper.You pick what you want to learn when you want to learn it.Ask questions that can’t be Googled..Flip the teacher - get the students to lead the class for the day.Plan for the last mile not the firstLet technology do the hard work.Computational thinking - problem solving - the steps are important not so much the answer.Internet Explorer - the best browser for downloadi…