Saturday, 2 February 2019

Beginning of the year - project

Looking at what our community day is at HPSS this year, developing an amazing race for students to participate in to develop relationships and getting to know each other within the hubs. I was put onto this by someone on facebook.
What a cool way to develop a digital outcome that would need to have thought about activities, packaging, concept as well as branding.

What a cool thing to be able to give back in the way of manakitanga, a gift to form classes an opportunity to grow at the beginning of the year.

Project that could be aimed at year 7-10, in groups

Idea and inspiration gained from:

Friday, 1 February 2019

Great Year 9-10 project Makecode - arcade

I have been watching the videos from the BETT 2019 conference today. Microsoft have been releasing some great ideas. One that has me excited is the 

They have been developing an interesting idea of game design and linking it in with adafruit hardware as well as other systems that will be coming out in the near future.

What could a term look like with adafruit electronics with your game loaded on digital media that you have created on your own 3d printed custom case game device?
I love the idea of a student project that students can take away that has such a uniqueness to it.

included is a blog post showing more ideas

STEM activity - Brain impact simulator

The other part of the video provided an awesome opportunity to hack STEM is the new extension to be able to bring in data into excel. Getting into data science, especially designing a new helmet to be able to protect the head from a concussion. It has been interesting over the years having to do concussion tests on students that have had a head clash at lunchtime on the field, also it has been surprising the number of students that have head injuries in school that need time. What a cool way to integrate health and digital technologies using data, as well as getting to understand the issues and why is such an important initiative in sports today.
Integrating technology into this as well as some schools have vacuum formers in which students could investigate the concept and design, and test these. 
Also the idea of developing a textiles solution as well.

Screen Shot 2019-01-28 at 8.33.56 PM.png

Building models to understand and mitigate brain injury

It works with a micro:bit!!!!!

It can also be created with an arduino as well.

What awesome ideas for Year 9 or 10.

Database task and infographic - action calendar - DDDO 3/4

I have been thinking of different activities to do through the DDDO Progress Outcome 2(Looking at but not reporting at this stage), 3 and 4, and thinking about what kind of theme to have students inquiring through Term Two, when we have a whole school theme of Relationships. 
I have put the planning stuff at the top, Progress Outcomes for DDDO and Technology Achievement Objective focus - Technological Products.
This is just an idea of thinking at the moment. Plan to put into a more google doc structure later on. 

*Thoughts, thinking, is there something that I am missing?*

How Might We Gerard - DTHM Slide.png 

Planning and Curriculum Coverage
Designing and Developing Digital Outcomes Progress Outcomes
Progress Outcome 3 for DDDO
In authentic contexts, students follow a defined process to design, develop, store, test and evaluate digital content to address given contexts or issues, taking into account immediate social, ethical and end-user considerations. They identify the key features of selected software and choose the most appropriate software and file types to develop and combine digital content.
Students understand the role of operating systems in managing digital devices, security, and application software and are able to apply file management conventions using a range of storage devices. They understand that with storing data comes responsibility for ensuring security and privacy.
Progress Outcome 4 for DDDO
In authentic contexts, students investigate and consider possible solutions for a given context or issue. With support, they use an iterative process to design, develop, store and test digital outcomes, identifying and evaluating relevant social, ethical and end-user considerations. They use information from testing and apply appropriate tools, techniques, procedures and protocols to improve the quality of the outcomes and to ensure they are fit-for-purpose and meet end-user requirements.

Technology Achievement Objectives - Technological Products
School Learning Area - Learning Objective: To refine by transforming materials to be fit for purpose
Level Four: Students will: Understand that materials can be formed, manipulated, and/or transformed to enhance the fitness for purpose of a technological product.

Achievement objective

Students will: Understand that materials can be formed, manipulated, and/or transformed to enhance the fitness for purpose of a technological product.

Teacher guidance

To support students to develop understanding of technological products at level 4, teachers could:
  • provide students with the opportunity to discuss what is meant by materials being formed, manipulated, and transformed.
Forming refers to bringing two or more materials together to formulate a new material resulting in a different overall composition and structure to that of the original materials. Transforming refers to changing the structure of an existing material to change some of its properties, but in terms of its composition, it remains the same material. 
  • guide students to understand that for materials to be selected for use in a technological product, their performance properties must align with the desired specifications of the product
  • guide students to recognise that during development of a product, specifications are established that will require the manipulation, and in some cases, transformation and formation, of materials
  • provide students with a variety of technological products to explore and guide students to identify examples of when materials needed to be manipulated, transformed and/or formed to enable material linked specifications of the product to be met and contribute to the product’s fitness for purpose
  • provide students with a scenario outlining technical and acceptability specifications for a product and support them to explore and research materials to determine what material would be suitable and how they could be manipulated and/or transformed to meet product specifications
  • support students to communicate material related
  • details effectively. Material related details include such things as what materials would be feasible and how they would need to be formulated, manipulated and/or transformed. Effective communication uses specialised language and symbols.


Students can:
  • describe examples to illustrate how the manipulation of materials contributed to a product’s fitness for purpose
  • describe examples to illustrate how the transformation of materials contributed to a product’s fitness for purpose
  • describe examples to illustrate how the formulation of new materials contributed to a product’s fitness for purpose
  • communicate, using specialised language and drawings, material related details that would allow others to create a product that meets both technical and acceptability specifications.
Level Five: Students will: Understand that materials can be formed, manipulated, and/or transformed to enhance the fitness for purpose of a technological product.

Achievement objective

Students will:
Understand how materials are selected, based on desired performance criteria.

Teacher guidance

To support students to develop understanding of technological products at level 5, teachers could:
  • guide students to understand that the composition of materials determines what performance properties it exhibits. Composition relates to such things as the type and arrangement of particles that make up the material
  • support students to analyse examples of how materials have been selected to gain insight into how this selection relies on understanding the composition of the materials available and using this knowledge to help decide which materials in combination would provide the best "fit" with the product specifications.
Examples should include the material selection practices of technologists.


Students can:
  • discuss examples to illustrate how the composition of materials determines performance properties
  • explain the link between specifications of a product and the selection of suitable materials for its construction
  • discuss examples to illustrate how decisions about material selection take into account the composition of the material and the specifications of the product.

How Might We make Action for Happiness a part of our school, or classroom practice?
The following resource has existed for a good period of time and provides a good basis for this project.

The focus of this project is to develop a database using the calendars as a focus for content, that they can be used to push the content of each day through to the Visual Signage in the hallway at school.
Other ideas, how could databases/spreadsheets be used to help create individual slides/graphics quickly to be able to deal with this type of data when planning a month or week of activities in the school. 
Even recreating the document to a weekly focus through design principles and infographics.  

One of the issues that will come up as part of this when dealing with databases, is date formatting.
Dealing with dates... databases and dates, formatting dates, displaying dates and the various formats that cause databases to go askew,
An interesting way to look at this is, what other formats have students seen, or dealt with?

Students will need to come up with a way to get the information into the database, as well as possibly think of metatags, filtering that could be used in the future to help other students find activities that could be done to support.
The discussion would help students to explore filtering suggesting as well as how these make databases more easily to function and interpret.

Jan: Happy New Year (general happiness actions)
Feb: Friendly February (key: Relating)
Mar: Mindful March (key: Awareness)
Apr: Active April (key: Exercising)
May: Meaningful May (key: Meaning)
Jun: Joyful June (key: Emotions)
Jul: Jump Back July (key: Resilience)
Aug: Altruistic August (key: Giving)
Sep: Self-Care September (key: Acceptance)
Oct: Optimistic October (key: Direction)
Nov: New Things November (key: Trying Out)
Dec: Kindness Calendar (for advent/festive season)

Another part of this would be using the functions within the database about finding words and the number of instances. Using the wildcard tools(%, *, depending on platform) to find the "Appreciate" and "appreciating" word for example.

Infographic Development
Poster design and Development

Decision 1: Layout – Less is more
I consider how many key items I’m dealing with. In this case I had 4 key guidelines so considered :

How a page/slide might be divided in four.
What layouts have I not seen recently – you don’t want to many things in your classroom or school looking the same.
Is the target of the work more informative or creative. I keep layout simpler if it’s main aim in information.
I decided we had not seen a basic cheque board look recently and the aim of this poster was information., so we kept it simple.
Too much information on one page/slide can overload the viewer and fight against the intentions of the creator.

Decision 2: Style – Pick one and stick to it.
If the style remains constant it is easier to digest the info. 
Saying that, you can use style to emphasise or unite key elements. E.g. I use yellow to highlight the key word from each of the 4 guidelines on the poster above.

If you import icons for objects:
try to use a icon sets so they’re all the same style, match their line and shape style for other objects.

If you start with a photo, use it’s colours for other objectsFor colours,
use 3 max (unless doing an actual rainbow effect) + Black and white.
Use either a vertical or horizontal line on the colour pallet – match tone or single colour theme
OR use for a 3 colour designer pallet. (see Pic)

Stick to one line style and width
Don’t go crazy with fonts – try to stick to one and make sure it’s easy on the eye
For slides, keep to the same colour theme and style. A change of colour or style can accidentally visually imply a change of topic.

Decision 3: Balance objects size and spacing
No matter what’s on the page, make sure all the objects, when grouped, create an equal border width around the edge.
Don’t use bullets if colour and shapes can divide the info.
Consider how many key statements/elements there are and find an interesting way to divide the area up in a balanced way.
Remember people read left-to-right and top-to-bottom. Think about the order you want people to see things in.

Decision 4 – Quality and thematic images
It's the holidays, so I thought this might be a nice image to go with this resource at the time, maybe not in winter.

Using high-quality images is key to making work look professional. 
When people can quickly recognise their work looks like a quality product, teachers and students both enjoy the task much more. Speakers can be taken more seriously if they look visually professional.

Use a good royalty-free image site. Not Google.
I use (There are many more)
Have a creative thought about connecting the meaning of images with your theme. This cocktail on a beach might mean relax or holiday but it also might mean “escape” or “lonely”.
Try to match the colours of your graphic to the images you chose. This will help maintain the 3+B&W colour rule.

There you go. 
My final rule is “Be inspired by others.” Google “posters” and “infographics” before you start any project and try to copy the ideas of pros. 
You’ll rarely achieve the same result leaving you with wonderfully unique “ideas of you own.”
Some content copied and reused from as per CC 3.0 BY-NC-SA

Higher levels
To build on this would be ways for students to input what they have done to show how they have met the different posts each day.
How would they make there own type of system for ongoing daily activities, ie training calendar for sports?
How could a student develop an iCal or iCalendar (not the same thing) program to automatically add these into the days, groups, calendar. - Possibly a CT Progress focus as well?

Some content copied and reused from as per CC 3.0 BY-NC-SA
image.png - XKCD Databases - Action for Hapiness Calendars 2018

Could we teach students how to hack hardware. DDDO PO 5

Xiaomi Mi Band 2 (Black)Thinking about the new standards and the opportunities around the integration of learning areas.
This is something that is especially part of me and my teaching over the past four years. 
Thinking about opportunities to integrate health and digital technologies.
I have been the teacher in charge or mountain biking, adventure racing and orienteering, as well as taught two comodules with health and physical education at year 9 and 10. 

While there is a lot talked about ethics within digital technologies, the ideas around fitness and the hardware that is now available that students wear or have access to. 
is it ethical to hack a device? Is it ethical what about where the data goes?
What are the relevant social, ethical and end-user considerations when doing this? 

Being able to get this data to be used in an authentic and meaningful context. While the apps show one side of the data, what else is being recorded and sent.

Could we be teaching students how to hack their devices?

I am looking at the Alternative fit bit, MI Band 2 for this project.


But as the DDDO PO5 states, with support, so information and guidance can be given to students.

Looking at how this might integrate into DDDO progress outcome 5
In authentic contexts and with support, students investigate a specialised digital technologies area (for example, digital media, digital information, electronic environments, user experience design, digital systems) and propose possible solutions to issues they identify. They independently apply an iterative process to design, develop, store and test digital outcomes that enable their solutions, identifying, evaluating, prioritising and responding to relevant social, ethical and end-user considerations. They use information from testing and, with increasing confidence, optimise tools, techniques, procedures and protocols to improve the quality of the outcomes. They apply evaluative processes to ensure the outcomes are fit-for-purpose and meet end-user requirements.

Friday, 25 January 2019

Opportunities for Digital Technologies

Creative technologies we bring together the creative arts, design, digital media, computing, engineering and entrepreneurship in one project-based learning environment.
-AUT Colab
Creative technology is a broadly interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary field combining computing, design, art and the humanities. 
- wikipedia

I have looked at this in the way of outcomes first. What could be some opportunities to develop skills? While this is not normally how I operate, it has provided a number of opportunities and where they may fit under different themes.

Laser cutting using illustrator to create a recycled bag? 3D printing using tinkercad to develop new opportunities for recycling at the school? Developing new T-shirt’s using e-textiles to show the temperature of the user or new disco outfit for a school dance? Designing art using robotics to incorporate cultural patterns. Using computational thinking and csunplugged to develop runtime length encoding art pieces on school walls. Developing new Bluetooth speakers using 3dprinting and electronics using shapes from the world around them. Using vinyl cutter to develop new stickers based upon a person responses to a questionnaire for stickers to go on their laptop showing there learning style,
Being able to create a draw graphic novels through the likes of illustrator and photoshop, or bring cartoon characters to live to tell stories through the adobe apps.
Developing a whole branded campaign for an item that they have developed and created as part of a project, recently I saw the ideas of the Christchurch Container Mall done in miniature with shops outfitted through laser cutting and art, which makes a theme-based project showing students passions and interests in marketing through Digital Technologies as a way to engage students.

When doing some research around this and what it could look like, it is the themes or topics that keep coming up. The themes do make sense in the thinking and I wonder if these are ones that come up across the entire Year 9 curriculum, and not just a Year 9 Creative Technologies programme.
Students will be designing, creating and innovating in a range of contexts.

Topics for 2019 could include:
diversity and cultural appropriation
street art and councils
media studies
upcycling and zero waste

This course will highlight the Creativity and Character deep learning competencies. It's curriculum focus will the Social Studies and English learning areas.
I am interested in what these look like, in the ways of rubrics or descriptors of these competencies.

What are the ideas that then can be taken through to the higher levels around blended or integrated or will it be separate strands of learning?

I think the creative technologies section is a really good blend of the technology curriculum. However, here is the issue that I see, we have many names for subjects, courses, programmes of learning. Something that we are just beginning to see again and again as new curriculum content is added into schools.
Look at what DTTA was before, it was a blend of NZACDITT. I realise we are in a better space and place, and that one of the considerations of the Strengthing DIgital Technologies work was 

A comment on the name of the Learning Area
42 Given the substantial changes to the Learning Area, the Curriculum Advisory Group strongly recommends the name of the Technology Learning Area in the New Zealand Curriculum be
updated to reflect the significant role the digital plays, as both 2 of 5 technological areas as well as underpinning the other 3, and the other elements of the curriculum. The Curriculum Advisory
Group did not consider that such a change was necessary in Māori -medium where Hangarau was regarded as capturing the full essence of the learning area.
The name change in the New Zealand Curriculum is intended to:
a)  More accurately represent the updated Learning Area
b)  Send a clear signal that this is a major transformational change to this area, not just minor reorganisation of a learning area
c)  address concerns about the low status of “Technology” in secondary schools in particular
– a status that puts pressure on time being made available for the delivery of the Digital Technologies technological areas.
d)  reflect a similar form of naming in other curriculum areas – for example, Mathematics and Statistics, Health and Physical Education.
e)  Ensure Digital Technologies is seen as part of a curriculum area in its own right with its own content, understandings and capabilities, and not just a pedagogical vehicle/tool for delivering the whole curriculum.
43 The Curriculum Advisory Group recommends that the new name incorporates the word “Digital” and suggests Digital and Materials Technology as one possibility.

However, the ministry came back with:
We acknowledge the Curriculum Advisory Group's view that changing the name of the learning area can help raise the status of the learning area, and send a clear signal regarding the significance of the change. However, we note the possible name suggested by the Curriculum Advisory Group (Digital and Material Technologies).
However, we note the possible name suggested by the Curriculum Advisory Group (‘Digital and Material Technologies’) may not be viewed as inclusive to all, in particular those working in ‘Digital Visual Communications’ and ‘Processed Technologies’.

When ERO comes to the school and asks about the Digital Technologies Programme, what is the SLT going to talk about, as it is different terminology and understanding, while it is blended or integrated into the learning, are there going to be the parts that they can talk about confidently, the Progress Outcomes and how they are being reported?

Friday, 12 October 2018


Its been a busy holidays.

The first week involved a meeting in Wellington that brought the providers of the Digital Technologies Hangarau Matihiko curriculum together. This was an important meeting that allowed for the first time to meet and share their experiences, as well as what they are looking at.

The following days involved me down in Christchurch at the DT4PD conference. This brought together the Regional Hub heads to be able to talk about and listen to what is happening in the regions. This has been important to get this up and running to allow teachers to be able to come together to share, develop and strengthen their understanding.

I ended the week by visiting Code Club Aotearoa, it was the launch of an amazing project that they have been working on which enables students to start understanding the Internet of Things and how they can be a part of it. There is a story available on stuff about the initiative.

I am interested in how we could get one for our own school garden, or do we make our own?

Thursday, 9 August 2018

Self review for schools in their digital technologies journey ideas

Some quick questions for the start of this post.
Is the digital technologies curriculum to be taught separately from the technology curriculum?

What is your understanding of the progress outcome for each strand. You can select to focus on junior, middle or senior levels.

What is your understanding of these and what types of contexts could they be taught within your school.

What are some of the opportunities that the Digital Technologies curriculum has to offer.

Many schools are asking about STEM and how this might develop an integrated curriculum, what type of themes could be used and what possible outcomes might be developed?

Schools often talk about there senior programmes of learning and the difficulty of how to understand what the junior curriculum has to offer. How might you look at the progress outcomes and the current timetable requirements of your school.

What are some of the opportunities that your current timetable gives?

Which has lead me to start thinking about what a Self review tool for where you are at currently with your digital technologies programme which is different to the review tool as part of the digital readiness.

While the new curriculum content includes a focus on Integrated learning, or connected learning, this  has been talked about as providing opportunities to teach digital technologies rather than within a single silo. However, is this a focus more on digital fluency? How we use digital devices within the class to support the learning.

Schools often talk of their digital technologies programmes being more about the learning with digital technologies or digital fluency. Office and google apps for education feature quite heavily. 

If you were to talk about your digital technologies programme within your school, how would you describe what is currently available and has been available for students?

Digital technologies,  has been taught at Hobsonville Point secondary school through integrated modules with foundation years.
Digital technologies with Physical Education
Digital Technologies with English
Digital Technologies with Performing Arts
Digital Technologies with Visual Arts
Digital Technologies with Mathematics

These have been taught through themes; 
  • Space and place
  • Identity
  • Citizenship
  • How things work
  • Culture and Diversity 
  • Relationships
  • Innovation
  • Transformation
These are just some of the SPINS.
Creating 3D modelling characters based upon the English novel that they have been reading.
Understanding the base principles and ideas of how digital devices work.
3D printing to understand and create new opportunities for recycling at our school.
Understanding how things work by pulling apart computers and understanding the components that make up a computer.
Recreation of historical building at Hobsonville point before they were pulled down in sketch up, this ended up being shown by the primary school students who were part of the class as part of a google summit for students by students.

Digital technologies has also been used to support Projects, an all in curriculum that supports learners to develop outcomes based upon guiding principles.

Back to some more questions that build on the self review
What does assessment against the progress outcomes look like? While this could be a larger question in itself, how could it differ in what it currently looks like within your school.

Local curriculum, how much of what you offer already is based on your local curriculum? How might this change with the opportunities that the digital technologies curriculum offers.

Do projects feature that combine learning about different areas of digital outcomes, ie information and media, developing an understanding of the data that you have collected and crates an info graphic based upon that data? Or are different areas of digital taught and assessed individually?

What is the current description in your course booklet for year 9 and 10?

How is this reported to parents? 
How are you reporting what the current learning is for students, are you using specific skills rubrics, or have you been the Technology Achievement Objectives. Does the report allow for different levels of the curriculum, or just based upon one curriculum level and a standardised level within that?
I have heard of schools that have created a junior credit system or using cut score marking to report to parents where the student is at. How are these being used to support the students next steps within their learning.

What outside opportunities exist for your junior students to develop?

Does your junior course prepare students for future study with digital technologies?

I don’t want to put projects or assessments in this, more want to get people to say what, not pld or specific requirements, but future developments that there regions or developed ideas could support.

What have you done to build your understanding of the new digital technologies curriculum?

Monday, 11 June 2018

Paper Cup machines, Edison robots and digital technologies

It has been a busy week developing a range of ideas for the MOVING module class. We have moved away from scratch and the development of algorithms that are being laser cut this week, through to more hands on activities where students have opportunities to be curious and creative.

It started with coffee cups, with other stuff added in. Students created their own paper cup machine that they used to see if they could develop some interesting patterns. One thing that they talked about was all the testing that they did flattened the coin batteries that we were using.

Classroom Post

A pretty great lesson where large amounts of learning, laughter and fun of machines doing some pretty weird things.

This lead to students being able to compare their paper cup machines to robots today.

The kit, Edison Robots and LEGO

Year 13 working along side Year 9 and 10 exploring the edison robot and potential uses

Classroom post

The edison robots provided a good platform for students to learn how to develop and test ideas as part of the Computational Thinking Progress Outcome today. Having an opportunity to work in pairs to design a way for the pen to be held on the robot through to programming and testing the ideas out. Students were required to develop three patterns with their time today. This gave them the opportunity to try out different ideas. We used the the EdWare programming where just in time learning supported students to develop code, figure out how to upload the code to the edison robot and also trouble shoot fail codes. It is amazing how many of the students had there volume turned to mute.

We are continuing to use these for the next couple of weeks. The reason is that want students to develop cultural patterns using computers.

We have been looking at different ideas for holding the felts, however the hole is too small on this. But it has potential. The comments from students who liked the fact that we were using LEGO to develop the mechanisms to hold the felts. Even students who were not part of the class today and in other areas commented that they could hear the lego being tipped out and wished that they could join in the learning today.