Tech Talk

Raising children in a digital world is a challenge for all of us in the rapidly changing, modern world that we live in. Recent events with COVID-19 and the difficulties we have faced in our community and indeed the world, have lead to a rapid increase in the use of digital media around the world and research suggests that this will only continue.

As parents this has significant impact on many aspects of our children’s lives and keeping up can be difficult in this new world of podcasts, blogs, apps and devices. We have never been so connected but unfortunately this connection is not always a positive one.

How to use technology to enhance your child’s development is the topic of a free workshop hosted by South East Metro Parenting Support Services. This workshop uses research from Telethon Collaborate for Kids.

Please see the attached flyer on page 12 if you are interested in attending this free workshop.


Technologies 2020 Annual Report

In 2020 online learning was successfully implemented and delivered in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The online learning journal platform, Seesaw was purchased to assist teachers to deliver the curriculum to students at home. All students were provided with a year level ‘Learning Grid’. This provided individualised codes to access online resources including Seesaw, Mathletics, Soundwaves, Studyladder and Online communication between parents and teachers was conducted via Seesaw as teachers posted announcements, sent daily work plans and individually messaged parents.

Staff participated in an intensive series of professional learning sessions in order to provide a quality distance educational program and to familiarise them with the Seesaw platform. Families with limited access to online resources were further supported with the provision of printed work packages. Additionally, 15 School Surface Pros were loaned to families with no access to a computer to assist them to access the online curriculum provided. As students returned to school following COVID-19 shutdowns, the focus on developing and using digital technologies to support learning has continued with significant developments in technology-supported teaching.

All computers have successfully been updated to Windows 10. This upgrade led to the purchase of 18 new computers across the school. A new laptop was bought, which now allows for the use of the Arts centre projector. Larissa Waghorn applied and received a grant of $25000 and $5000 in 2019, which allowed for a range of new resources for Technologies to be purchased. Some of the items included Osmo’s, Bee Bots, Bee Bot Mats, microphones and even a 3D printer.

The school runs regular Technology Cafes to support staff development. These sessions are facilitated by the Technology Committee and utilise the skills of current staff to support and develop those of their colleagues. In 2020 these sessions included the use of Seesaw, Ikon, Bright Path, Kahoot, Reporting and Green Screen. Teachers also took part in an interactive information session run by Larissa Waghorn, where all staff were able to practice their skills at using robots such as Bee Bots, Sphero, Edisons and Lego EV3 Mindstorm. This has led to some exciting projects been completed by many classes using digital technologies throughout the year.

In Semester 1 teachers were focused on Design Technologies. A new range of teacher resource books were purchased to add the school’s professional resource library. These teacher guides have supported teachers further to integrate design technology activities into their learning programs. Students have been using hands on approaches, along with problem solving skills, to design, build, test and improve their set projects.
The Technology marking rubrics are used as a whole school assessment tool, which continues to ensure that all aspects of the curriculum are covered in a consistent, moderated manner. This tool also allows us to monitor student achievement and progress in Technologies, as well as adjusting teaching and planning to improve student learning. We have planned for and begun the progression of replacing teachers' interactive whiteboards, with the purchase and installation of SMART TVs.  This exciting new resource will allow teachers to mirror directly from an iPad to the TV. Aligning with the expectations of the Technology Curriculum, a whole school Cyber Safety curriculum is in the developmental stages and is planned to be implemented in 2021. Lessons will be designed for every year level and information session for parents will be provided.

Chantelle Murray – Technologies Coordinator