Monday, 11 September 2017

Ordering coffee in Maori

Looking forward to using this with my next school coffee order.


Place names

Pronunciation Guide

Friday, 8 September 2017

Playing with RFID, next stages

It has been something that I have played with on and off since 2014, when I was looking at developing a project for my previous school. It has been something that I have been waiting for the technology to catch up so we can start doing some cool projects with.

Since the early days with sparkfun and a simple rfid to serial board, now through to simultaneous rfid readers now. It has been a journey of discovery and challenge. Now playing with tags that I can write specific data to.


The challenge has been to thinking how to deal with the data. In some ways, I need a way to test this in a live environment. Just to gather data to be able to go through and learn how to manage it, to store it. How to do this live and filter the captured data.
I have been starting to think about how to deal with it and been finding some algorithms to do with it.

Update: Raspberry pi has been ordered to bring the next stages of this into action.

Reading up how to pass the information from the arduino through to pi, using pyserial.
Although I have done this with a previous project, it has been good to go thought this again to remind myself.
I also have to find the usb battery to run this, It has a 2A connection on it to run the reader.

Monday, 4 September 2017

Digital Technologies, programming NCEA 2016

One of the areas that I am interested in each year, is what is the condition of programming in New Zealand Schools.

While it has been going up year upon year, with 5884 students taking NCEA Level One programming in 2016. Up from 3246 when the standards was introduced in 2011. What does this look like nationally.

There are 430 schools that teach Technology at NCEA levels in New Zealand in 2016. I have used that as the base information.
The above map shows the areas of the country where Level One, Level Two and Level Three are taught.

Sunday, 27 August 2017


"I haven't done one of these in a while," was a comment from my hub students on Friday, neither have I.

Adventure Racing
The term started off being a challenge for me, the Get to Go Junior Hillary Challenge was coming up and we have entered this for the past 3 years. After a bit of messaging, emails, talking with students (They don't check there emails, or read the school notices) I managed to get a team together. With the help of two of the Senior Get to Go students, training started. It has been great to see the leadership and ideas that the senior students brought to this, they bring a different sense of what it means to them to be part of this squad. They are able to talk about the challenges, the way they reflect afterwards. It allows them to gather the skills to work with 7 other people when you are tired and grumpy. The positive spirit in the group and the talking in the van between the different challenges showed that they had fun, enjoyed the day. I hope that they will join the senior squad next year.

Mountain Biking
This continues with the last race mid September, I have seen my team grow and develop their racing and now showing the skills and training that they have been doing pay off. The last race showed that even the parents work together to support each other when one of our riders was injured. I help out with the timing and general organisation of the race when running, we have not had a race like this in a while where a number of things didn't go to plan, a lost rider that didn't make the start, was found, a injured rider that needed assistance, all ok, a protest due to a rider cutting part of the track. It just goes to show when you are a teacher, you can deal with more than one thing going on.

League of Legends High School League.
This is a new one for me, I am looking after a e-sports team. It has even got me playing the game so I know what is going on now. I have taught these students for the past 3 years, and I am seeing a completely different side to them now. The team work in this and communication is essential for good game play. They too, reflect after the game and talk about the strategies that they use and things that went well and not so well. It has been great seeing one of the students who has taken on the role of captain communicate and encourage his fellow team. We have yet to win a game, but that is not the objective, as with the Adventure racing, there are other objectives that we are working towards.

The MODULE I have at the moment is Mathematics and Digital Technologies where students are learning how to code. We are using snap coding, as it is an alternative to scratch, the students have said they welcome not seeing the cat when it loads up. It works within a browser, as we have mac's windows' and chromebooks within the class. The biggest thing I hear from the students is that this is hard. When we unpack this, and I am more this week as part of my inquiry, is that this is the first time that they have done anything like this. They have not had to code before. Trying to work out how to get a computer to figure out the highest number when you enter three numbers, they can look at the three numbers and say it straight away, getting them to unpack how they do it, is a little bit harder.

FX, Learning how to do editing and creation of graphics is fun, thats what they are saying. They are looking forward to the challenge of the Fair Go Kid Ad Awards and spent the day on Friday researching different ideas from the 70's to make cool again. Even looking at old ad's to see ideas that they could bring in.

Digital technologies Curriculum Workshop
I was unable to go to the teachers one of these when in Auckland, and ended up going to the parents and industry meeting, which gave me some different insights into what they are thinking the challenges of the new curriculum is. Communication with parents on what schools are teaching seems to be a partly missing gap. What is it that the community would like to see us teach?

Developing understanding of the micro:bit
Next term I am running a SPIN based upon electronics, I am using the ideas of the mindkits brainboards, bbc micro:bit and adafruit sparkfun express.
We have been lucky that a New Zealand Supplier has just started and is bringing these into the country. Learning Development is offering a bulk discount for a set of 10 micro bits.

I have been thinking about the next steps with this, and starting to think what are the best resources or projects that could be developed by the students. This is one of the first results when searched,

Supporting other schools
I have had a number of visits by primary schools in our area looking at what their technology programme looks like and how it may link in with what we are doing as a school. It has surprised me that schools are doing the one project for all students still.
How can secondary schools support the local schools in developing the ideas while still holding onto their identity. For me, it will be the progress outcome statements that I am looking for when a student transitions to secondary. These will provide better guidance on where a student is at. Maybe something for the SiSi project to have within it.

To end this reflection, we had the political parties and people in our area talk to the senior students, it was great to hear them talk and understand what is happening.

I am still working on the ideas of the habit stick, I now have some laser printable rubber to be able to create some stamps with the hobsonville habits on them.

Monday, 21 August 2017

Computational thinking and the NZ Curriculum

Back in 2013 I took a university paper, the post was kept as draft, however, it has been interesting looking at how things have changed and where things are being put now 4 years later.

We have been asked to provide some feedback based upon a question raised through our EDEM626 course.
This is a worthy topic for this course too and our Ministry of Education too perhaps. What do you think?
Computational thinking is seen as a skill set that every child needs to develop. It is related with a number of other 21st century competencies (problem solving, critical thinking, productivity, and creativity). In EDUsummIT 2013, we aim to advance the discussion about computational thinking by focusing its core competencies, its relation with and distinction from other 21st century competences, and its place in the curriculum.

I look back to a post from 2011 Some of the links however don't seem to work, this one takes you to an informative page
Advances in computing have expanded our capacity to solve problems at a scale never before imagined, using strategies that have not been available to us before. Students will need to learn and practice new skills—computational thinking (CT) skills—to take full advantage of these revolutionary changes brought about by rapid changes in technology. ISTE and the Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) are collaborating on a project to prepare young learners to become computational thinkers who understand how today's digital tools can help solve tomorrow's problems. CT is vital to all students as we work to raise the level of achievement, prepare students for global competitiveness, and blend academics with real life.
Download the Computational Thinking Teacher Resources now. CSTA and ISTE intend for the CT Teacher Resources to reflect our commitment to the universal idea that CT can work across all disciplines and with all school-age children. The CT Teacher Resources are an introductory package of prototype materials which include:

•   An operational definition of CT for K-12 Education
•   A CT vocabulary and progression chart
•   Nine CT Learning Experiences
•   CT classroom scenarios

The Computational Thinking Leadership Toolkit is now available for download. This companion piece to the Computational Thinking Teacher Resources, includes:
* Making the Case for CT
* Resources for Creating Systemic Change
* Implementing Strategies Guide

Copied from

I have also looked at the csta website around computational thinking,

Looking through the resources, what is the case for CT

CT is a problem-solving process that includes (but is not limited to) the following characteristics:
▪ Formulating problems in a way that enables us to use a computer and other tools to help solve them
▪ Logically organizing and analyzing data
▪ Representing data through abstractions, such as models and simulations
▪ Automating solutions through algorithmic thinking (a series of ordered steps)
▪ Identifying, analyzing, and implementing possible solutions with the goal of achieving the most efficient and effective combination of steps and resources
▪ Generalizing and transferring this problem-solving process to a wide variety of problems

Reading the information I am finding it interesting that the Key Competencies mention Thinking.

Computational Thinking: Combining critical thinking and the power of computing. Does this need to be explicitly said in the next version of the New Zealand Curriculum?

"Computational thinking enables a student to express problems, and formulate solutions in a way that means a computer (an information processing agent) can be used to solve them.
Students develop computational and algorithmic thinking skills, and an understanding of the computer science principles that underlie all digital technologies. They become aware of what is, and is not, possible with computing, so they are able to make judgements and informed decisions as citizens of the digital world. Students learn core programming concepts and how to take advantage of the capabilities of computers, so that they can become creators of digital technologies, not just users. They will develop an understanding of how computer data is stored, how all the information within a computer system is presented using digits, and the impact that different data representations have on the nature and use of this information."

Friday, 14 July 2017

Developing ideas for Design and Developing Digital Outcomes Progress Outcome 2

I have been thinking about this for a while, and have done some action to work on the ideas.
A couple of years ago I used the mindkits brainboards to develop the ideas of coding with some electronics. With this the arduino provides students with an understanding of how to program. So I have been thinking about this and what the next set of gear could be.

Now, the micro:bit is available. I managed to get two of these through sparkfun earlier in the term. The great thing about these is the matrix, as well as they have an accelerometer and compass.

Now, I received an email through the nzacditt network which
In case you hadn't seen this in the news: is giving low-income students a chance to learn how to code through a free course called “Computer Science Discoveries.” The yearlong course, unveiled this week at’s TeacherCon conference in Houston, will be taught by more than 800 teachers during the school year. It’s designed for students in grades 7-9 and teaches Web design, physical computing and game creation. Link to new article

The adafruit circuit playground is part of the course, now I have had an opportunity to look at and develop during the last day and I must say that I am impressed. a small board with a lot of grunt, the part I like is the opportunity for it to record data. This makes it a great start for Internet of Things opportunities.
Stick a battery pack on this and it can be used anywhere...

Now there is an updated version coming out, with some more sensors on it and a bit of reworked system, that allows for a few more languages to be used. I am more using this a gateway to electronics, something that can be easily adapted and developed, however as students learn about the sensors and what they can do, or can't do, then other alternatives need to be looked at and developed. 

How does this look in relation to the new digital technologies curriculum. Is it Computational Thinking, or is it Designing and Developing Digital Outcomes.

It is something that I find rather difficult to put in a box for now, the guidance just isn't there. 
Mind you, I have not given what the purpose of the the idea is.

With some thought on what the purpose of the outcome could be:
Develop a solution that can record a runners temperature, and what effect the run has on a person using an accelerometer. Graph the results of this. 

It is only then that I look at this is around Designing and Developing Digital Outcomes, rather than Computational Thinking. 

  • Given some parameters/criteria and tools and/or techniques they are able to make decisions (largely independently) about creating, manipulating, storing, retrieving, sharing and or testing content (developed for a specific purpose) within a fundamental system.
  • Understanding the particular roles of components in a fundamental input, process, output system and how they work together.

Students could then talk about how they could show a couple of other aspects of this, talking about better storage opportunities through a sd card, as well as being able to record longitude and latitude through a gps receiver.
  • Understanding that inputs are transformed into outputs within a fundamental system and the “control” role that humans have in this. 
  • Purposefully use an increasing range of applications (software and file type).
Some may be thinking you have aimed for the wrong progress outcome with this, considering no student currently has any progress outcomes reported against them, I think Progress Outcome 2 for Designing and Developing Digital Outcomes at year 9 and 10 is a good place to start. Considering Progress Outcome 3 is Given some parameters they are able to make decisions (largely independently) about the best tools/ techniques to solve the problem.  
How can they make the decisions when they haven't been given the learning to support those yet?

While other may look at the Computational Thinking and look at combining these, I feel they could lose opportunities for evidencing there learning.

Friday, 30 June 2017

Challenge - Digital Technologies Curriculum

Since the announcement, I have been thinking about some of the ideas that have come out from it and these are some of the ideas around some questions that we could be asking ourselves.

What would some responses look like for some of these questions?

What does digital technologies currently look like in your school for years 9-10 students?

I have written a number of posts in relation to this over the 3 years I have been at HPSS now.
For me, it hasn't been about the "toys", it has been about developing the concepts of computational thinking, as well as design and developing digital outcomes.

This is from a blog post that talks about where is the fun stuff?
my fun stuff has been brief development where students developed a brief for new training equipment to develop a skillset in PE. (no specific requirement on any tech area)
my fun stuff has been technological modelling where students have been developing ideas around an app for developing skills with the primary school students years 4-6
my fun stuff has been technological outcomes were students made a stop motion video around relationships for visual text through an english context.
my fun stuff has been elements of design creating graphic novels through an english context.
my fun stuff has been digital information using documents and sheets
my fun stuff has been digital media photoshop looking at students photo editing skills, collage development and incorporating mixed media to support the ideas required for level one.
my fun stuff has been SketchUp recreating building around the hobsonville point for historical purposes.
my fun stuff has been developing personal vinyl stickers to identify BYOD devices and who they belong to.
my fun stuff has been developing a technological outcome for 5 years through scratch
my fun stuff has been programming through ardunio using the mindkits brainboard develop prototypes
my fun stuff has been programming through python to develop games through technological systems
my fun stuff has been digital information, creating guess who through mysql console for technological modelling.
my fun stuff has been digital media through developing simple websites using notepad++ through outcome development.
my fun stuff has been teaching students about algorithms, human computer interfaces, data representation which has covered a lot of technological systems.
my fun stuff has been integrating aspects of drama into getting students to understand computer science concepts.
my fun stuff has been integrating aspects of drama into getting students to develop digital citizenship related videos.
my fun stuff has been getting students to develop landmarks/building/new recycling bin ideas through 3d printing.
my fun stuff has been students using the local area and finding out more about it to update websites, apps and develop information signage to go around our community.
my fun stuff has been getting students understanding about self driving cars through the LEGO ev-3 Mindstorms systems and learning about testing.
my fun stuff has been getting students working with digital media-video to create social action ad's that can go on the visual signage around the school.
A lot of this has taken place from the student voice we get from the students, as well as conversations that I have with students in the modules. What is it that they want to get out of school, from the area. Where will this take them. I look forward to what the students will be doing in the next couple of years with the knowledge and skills that they have obtained through technology and digital technologies.

What are some of the barriers that are currently in the way of working towards the new digital technologies curriculum?

For me, it is the difficulty of what digital technologies is to people, the community, and other teachers. This is one of the most difficult parts at present. The name itself. ind you, technology, computer science, and ICT all have baggage with them as well. The ideas that we are trying to get through to the students who at present who have high anxiety over their English and Maths results from every time they are tested or reported on.  The baggage of the technology curriculum. While strands and achievement objectives have been important, these are not evident in the new digital technologies curriculum. The move to progress outcomes will cause considerable issues within schools as they are not curriculum level. How does one show a Basic, Proficient and Advanced mastery of this? Getting schools to rethink reports for a particular learning area is going to be a challenge. I am lucky in the way that our school functions around our Learning Design Model in the way that we report. I guess it is around the conversations that we have. I need to be better at the Open Learning Conversations and sit down and talk with our principal about some of the barriers that he sees as a school.
Being the only teacher? This one is still a hard one to delve into, I was challenged in my thinking around this yesterday, However, looking at it from a different lens, I am not the only teacher in the school. There are others who have an interest, who are innovating in their practice in the school. I need to be talking with them more, developing that thinking and ideas.

How does the current timetable in your school support the ideas of the new digital technologies curriculum?
Has our timetable stopped changing? No. We are in our fourth year of operating as a school. The changing nature of our school in adding a new year level each year providing challenges and opportunities. Modules provide opportunities to work together with another learning area and provide an integrated curriculum.
Technology - Digital Technologies and English
Technology - Digital Technologies and PE
Technology - Digital Technologies and PE
Technology - Digital Technologies and The Arts - Drama
Technology - Digital Technologies and Social Sciences
Technology - Digital Technologies and Mathematics 
These are the areas that I have been working with over my time here. Through our integrated learning approach, such wonderful rich connections

It is not only just being taught through one area.
SYMTEXT uses Edison robots to get students to develop algorithms to think about how they can be successful through providing step by step instructions.
Mytimes provided opportunities for students to develop pixel art as well as developing paper based electronics.
Projects has allowed students to develop electronics, access virtual reality, robotics.

A lot of that different "stuff" has also been around what students come and ask for, be it recording, using maky maky's for HCI experiments, go pro's that allow students to record their learning. Also access to arduino's for students to develop some electronics sensor recording. Having high quality camera for students to be creative. It is having these on hand for students to develop their understanding that is outside the classroom.

Also had opportunities to work with the primary students in them developing their coding, as well as digital media.

I suppose the thinking around this, is that students learn through a more integrated curriculum, the learning of Digital Technologies is happening in other places, it is not limited to. Students Explore, Make Sense, Focus Generate, Test, Refine, and Evaluate through the Design Thinking Process whenever they are developing a Digital Outcome. How do we provide the tools and thinking to support other teachers through this.

What do the progress outcomes mean for reporting digital technologies within your school and to your parents?
We are sitting rather well around this, as we don't report achievement objectives, instead;
"Progress is reported against curriculum levels that align with Learning Area (subject) learning objectives. Students are measured against the New Zealand Curriculum, utilising curriculum and sub levels to signal the depth of thinking and understanding. This is one of the ways that we share achievement and progress with parents and whanau." - HPSS Summative Progress Report

How might you as a leader of digital technologies help promote the ideas of the new curriculum to senior management?
Have already started the conversation, I haven't gone in with the attitude of things must change, it is about listening to them and providing them the understanding. Yesterday I sat down with our principal and had a discussion with him about what he saw and heard at the cross sector forum.
------------some notes from that meeting----------

Changing feast - always changing.

Starters in conversation, how do I change the open to learning conversation.
Active listening.

Change reporting in school to match the digital technologies outcome statements.

Message from robotics, not using digital, but being digital. 
Looking at a way to capture the resources, getting our students digitally fluent, achieving these progress outcomes.

That our school be seen as a beacon of quality digital citizenship and digital ethics

Developing computational thinking

Provide connections between learning areas. 

Access through our facilities management building management system, data from energy, water use, waste. Through our community.
Need to get access to this.

How do we take the technology curriculum to all students and teachers.
The process of learning/ design thinking/ process that should drive learning for all learning areas.

Achievement Objectives vs progress outcomes.

What is the process of learning, learning design model, learning is a process. In other school learning is the delivery of stuff. Teacher and student may not understand what the process is. How do we show depth of thinking?
Some of these may be answered within just a couple of words, but as we go through the consultation period,

I for one would like to see some discussion on the questions that are in the consultation document. Especially around,

What does this mean for Technology in schools? This is one that I am trying to come to grasp with at the moment, what does this look like for me as Learning Design Leader - technology. Does the specific skills in Technology (Food, DVC, Materials) need to change? Considering the ideas of Designing and Developing Digital Outcomes, aspects of the work in these areas are now more digital based, textiles have access to laser cutter, embroadory machines, and e-textiles. DVC has access to rhino and other 3D creation packages where students are developing their drawings into imagined worlds. Materials have the laser cutter where exact measurements are being cut and accurate use of materials. The area of Technology is becoming more digitised.

For us, I believe that we are well placed for the changes.

How useful is the consultation material in considering how to integrate and adapt the proposed DT|HM content to design local curriculum for your students?
I have been thinking about what local curriculum is, one of the ideas is to use what we started off with in our school. That was about Our Community, being able to think about us as a school, our community, our region and New Zealand.
As a school we generate a huge amount of data through our Building Management System, what is it that we can gather and use through the sensors that we have already, start some interesting conversations around.
The community, while it has been talked about for a while now, getting students starting to develop their own businesses in the use of digital technologies. How do this look like in practice?
I use the community to enable students to go out and get their original content, it has been rather great to be in a space that is always changing, has public art, pretty cool historic buildings, and has some great parks. These provide opportunities for students to be creative as well as opportunities for the community to see learning outside the school.
I guess in someways it has been something we have already considered within our school. Innovate. Engage. Inspire. It will be how do we show this in a more visible way.

How might we reflect digital technologies learning in the name of the Technology Learning Area?
Technology has so many issues with names, when you say Technology outside of the education system, people already assume the use of devices and associated peripherals.
I would like to propose, Design and Digital Technologies.

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Ideas for goal setting, reflection

I have been watching some kickstarter ideas, I keep coming back to how we can better help our students with the ideas of reflections and personal goals.

The idea I am looking at today is

Online or paper based. 

Every student is different, I talked with one of Friday, she has started to write down things that she is happy for each day, as well as giving herself a star rating. Thinking about her mental wellbeing, also using a sheet to write down what is due and what is required from her classes. Asked about digital or paper, at the moment paper, because I can cross it off. It is always with me.

“A lot of tech people I know are going back to paper, because a paper planner … there’s still no better tool than a paper planner.” organization and time-management guru, David Allen, said during a recent interview.


While many applications for time management exist, none can replace the added value of sitting down with a pen and paper. It’s just faster, way more convenient, and therefore you will actually use it.  

So happy that the while I get a physical copy of the book, I also get a PDF copy as well.

Here is what Amy Schellenbaum, Popular Science, had to say:
“Writing things down can make you feel better, mentally and physically.” 
“...Once you’ve written down all the tiny things you need to get done, you give your brain the capacity and the encouragement to actually do the things.” 
“The manual effort: It’s easy to underestimate the swell of satisfaction from making progress on something physical. To-do lists give nerds like me the thrill of checking something off. It’s a genuinely pleasurable experience.”

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Big Data and NZ Digital Technologies NCEA Level 3 idea

How do students create understanding of Big Data, what can be some of the ideas that they can understand. Plotting data on a map to understand a crash analysis database(need to register to access, research purposes). This I did a couple of years ago. Now I am looking at the ideas of infographics. One that has helped me to understand a bit better the opportunities around this is Brian Foo, the creator of Climate Change Coloring Book on kickstarter.

The Climate Change Coloring Book contains guided coloring activities that explore scientific research and data related to climate change. The goal is to encourage learning, exploration, and reflection on issues related to climate change through act of coloring.

One of the great things about his kickstarter has been the sharing of the code, the code used to generated the art in the book will also freely available to use and extend. This has allowed me to think about what data we have in New Zealand and what could be used to demonstrate the understanding.

Pushing the ideas.
Since working in Christchurch I am used to seeing in the papers the number of days that there was poor air quality. This is from to be able to think about what the ideas of having and showing data could look like.
Gathering data to use from
Seems like it does not like to show data from some sites, this could be that the data is no longer being gathered.

DateTime,StationName,CO (mg/m3),NO2 (ug/m3),NOx (ppb),PM10 (ug/m3),PM2.5 (ug/m3),PMCoarse (ug/m3),Relative humidity (%),Temperature (near ground - top of mast) (DegC),Temperature 10m (DegC),Temperature 2m (DegC),Wind maximum (m/s),Wind speed (m/s)
2017-06-01,St Albans,0.354879349470139,15.7742910385132,13.4651327133179,14.1038541793823,8.67333316802979,5.43052053451538,90.6372528076172,0.032423734664917,9.91655158996582,9.94897556304932,2.42499995231628,1.32716655731201

Looking at the data, we need to gather the PM10 (ug/m3), however the data that is being collected for the code in the coloring book above is for PM25. It seems that the New Zealand measurement is PM10

What students will need to understand is what is the data recorded, and how it is being used.

The "phigital" student

“phigital”—unwilling or unable to draw a distinction between the physical world and its digital equivalent.
Thought it rather an interesting article, when you start to read the idea behind it.

We are now entering a world where the students that we have in the classroom have never been without access to digital devices, the internet.

"Since education has been focusing more on adapting itself to its students, rather than students learning to adapt to its educators..."

When I start looking at the conversations that this group has been talking about in the past two weeks, as well as conversations I have had with others in the past. Have digital technologies courses put the student at the centre, or have they had the teacher at the centre?

What talents do students bring to class?

"Because of this upbringing, Gen Z would rather focus on their own unique talents and interests, rather than pre-determined skills and interests agreed upon by a group. The Stillmans say that Gen Z typically likes to work independently and likes to create their own job or project title/description.

Mirroring this trend, innovative schools are making personalization and individualization of instruction for every student a major priority.

But outside of individualizing instruction through adaptive learning and LMS and teacher-based pedagogical strategies, some schools are going a step beyond by giving students choice in both learning materials and how they plan to reach project-based learning goals."

While this may not be new to teachers of the technology process, it maybe something new to the other learning areas.

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Resources/Ideas for Digital technologies

It is interesting the development of the New Zealand Digital Technologies ideas. Lately the conversation has been around what resources do you use in class to support the ideas of computational thinking and design and develop digital outcomes.

I think it hasn't been always resources that enable the teaching and learning, but listening to ideas from students.
  • my fun stuff has been brief development where students developed a brief for new training equipment to develop a skillset in PE. (no specific requirement on any tech area)
  • my fun stuff has been technological modelling where students have been developing ideas around an app for developing skills with the primary school students years 4-6
  • my fun stuff has been technological outcomes were students made a stop motion video around relationships for visual text through an english context.
  • my fun stuff has been elements of design creating graphic novels through an english context. 
  • my fun stuff has been digital information using documents and sheets
  • my fun stuff have been digital media photoshop looking at students photo editing skills, collage development and incorporating mixed media to support the ideas required for level one.
  • my fun stuff has been sketchup recreating building around the hobsonville point for historical purposes.
  • my fun stuff has been developing a technological outcome for 5 years through scratch
  • my fun stuff has been programming through ardunio using the mindkits brainboard develop prototypes
  • my fun stuff has been programming through python to develop games through technological systems
  • my fun stuff has been digital information, creating guess who through mysql console for technological modelling.
  • my fun stuff has been digital media through developing simple websites using notepad++ through outcome development.
  • my fun stuff has been teaching students about algorithms, human computer interfaces, data representation which has covered a lot of technological systems.
I often look at the fun stuff and think about what is next for our students. 

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Digital Technologies - Summary of Change


Summary of change


From 2018, Digital Technologies | Hangarau Matihiko (DT | HM) will be integrated into the Technology | Hangarau Learning Areas of The New Zealand Curriculum and Te Marautanga o Aotearoa. This means that learners from Year 1 to Year 13 can develop the DT | HM skills that they need to succeed in the 21st century, at a level appropriate for where they are on their learning journey.

We expect DT | HM to have the following learning progressions:
  • Two dual progressions which reflect both The New Zealand Curriculum and Te Marautanga o Aotearoa and will include Computational Thinking (covering algorithms, programming and data representation), and Designing and Developing Digital Outcomes (covering digital applications and digital systems); and
  • Two further progressions which reflect the unique aspects of Te Marautanga o Aotearoa: Ngā Ariā o Ngā Whanaketanga Hangarau Matihiko Arareo Māori, and Te Tangata me te Rorohiko.
Learning progressions have already been applied to the development of the Learning Progression Frameworks, which allow us to better understand how students develop expertise in reading, writing and mathematics from Curriculum Levels 1 through 5 (Years 1 to 10). The learning progressions for DT | HM will highlight the major steps (or signposts) that students take as they develop their knowledge, skills and attitudes in DT | HM, from Year 1 to Year 13. For example, when looking at programming, students might develop from programming simple instructions, to developing software or programming robots. Learning progressions link these capabilities together, and help determine how we can best bring students from the first signpost through to the last.

At a senior secondary level, we expect that these new progressions will form the basis of school curriculum development, so they are informing the review of the current achievement standards.

NCEA Content

In advance of the trial, we have produced early drafts of the reviewed NCEA Level 1 matrix and achievement standards. Our expert writers will be continuing to revise these throughout May, using feedback from education and digital technology specialists, along with the wider sector.

We have developed draft Level 1 achievement standards in the two dual progressions mentioned above – CT and DDDO – and in the two progressions unique to Te Marautanga o Aotearoa. The draft Level 1 matrix shows the current titles of these standards. In early June, all trial schools will receive further developed draft curriculum content, the full draft achievement standards, and the draft assessment resources to be trialled in Term 3 this year. Schools would be expected to trial at least one achievement standard.

Draft L1 achievement standards matrix

This was part of the trial letter sent out to schools Term 2 Week 2.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Changing mindsets including my own

I started a class that is looking at creating 3d printed objects with the idea of how do we do recycling better in our school. This was supposed to be a way to get students investigating and seeing what the bottles that they drink from are made of and what happens to them afterwards.

The recycling bins at school
Just some of the bottles that we looked at. Interesting that the Powerade bottle had no markings showing what number recycling it was.

However, it has carried on, students are designing new ideas and bins through tinkercad on how these could actually be made and work. There has been one conversation that keeps going, it is around why not promote recycling through a gamification.

An idea from overseas.

However the students want to link towards the TimeOut Zone idea, where you get to play for tickets and get something from it.

Collect a number of tickets and you get a hot wheels car or lego set/piece.

Interesting ideas, However for a commercial crusher is $6,000.

I also got sent this from one of the parents tonight, who engages with her son on the learning at school.
Bottle and can crushing machine aids charities and environment 
The reverse vending machine
There is also what DB Export are doing, where they are turning bottles into crushed sand.

I continue to challenge the ideas, but also in the back of my head, I am saying, why are we not trying to do this, how can we do this, it is possible, and can raise awareness.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Week 12

It has been a busy week, with things restarting and new classes in operation. Challenging and meeting the students expectations.

Getting students to think about their personal goals and how they are working towards them has been an interesting experience. One of the great conversations was with Natasha in the office about getting students in the hub to help others. Having the students write their goal on a piece of paper and have all the others in hub to give advice and guidance on how they could meet this goal. Students are now writing an attack plan on how they can work towards that goal over the next couple of weeks, 21 day challenge.

While some goals are around developing confidence, they themselves can offer assistance to others in hub. By developing confidence themselves.

Mountain biking today was great. The series is a great way for students to overcome their mindsets. A number of the students who did not do well last year in the first race, managed to do better this year and in some cases overcome a mindset at the start of the day which was I can't do this, through to one of I managed to do this, and do it well.
Conversations over timing and next phases of technology have increased the use of the rfid project. What costs $3000-$4000 a number of years ago, could now be done with a budget of $500.

Mountain biking on Wednesday saw myself having a better time than a number of weeks ago. Seeing the improvement of students and them working towards their own challenges and seeing the habits in action. Something that our year 9 students have seen, but not really engaged with so far.


Not giving up when times are tough.
Being inquisitive and playful. Exploring in search of awe and wonder.
Being imaginative and exploring the what if. Viewing things in new ways. 
Looking back to look forward. 
Taking risks and looking for opportunities which may not yet exist. Giving everything a go.
Doing things with intent and determination. 
Making a difference by using my skills, thoughts, and ideas when working with others.
Working with and learning from others.
Being empathetic, aware, and flexible when making decisions and taking action.
Using initiative to seek out resources and using them in different ways.

Monday, 24 April 2017

next stages of araako

It has been a while since I did any work on the learnpath(ara ako). I think part of it has been the change of nature of hub. Moving away from habits through to students inquiry. I guess I am still trying to work out how the inquiry functions for my students and what evidence is required.

I am still getting students to focus on their weekly reflections on a friday. While many of the hub see the purpose in the reflection, Others still do surface reflections or work out how to try an do little reflections at all.

Is the issue that they cannot see what they have done? I have thought about how to get the image feature of the reflection really helping. But I still need to think about what is the actual benefit of the work to help?

Does anyone have reflection templates that they find 13-17 years, it could be scaffolded that is still needed for some students.

finding instagram as a help to develop ideas

Monday, 17 April 2017

Week eleven

Leadership Camp, up the top in the farmland,
The mist comes out after the heavy rain.

Eleven week first terms are long, they create a huge amount of stress. I look back to what was happening to me around week 7 and 8 and they are when pit falls happened.

However, I probably spent less time in the classroom this week, due to leadership camp. 50 students away for an overnight camp on the night that cyclone cook entered New Zealand. A 20 minute massive downpoar of rain, the rest just wind.

The camp showed the students in different ways, developing new teams and communication were two very big components of the camp. How do we communicate with others what we want, our ideas. This is something I paid particular attention to, as in my role of Learning Design Leader of Technology is something that I need to keep developing.

When the bus didn't turn up for nearly two hours, the weather turns on us, when things don't goto plan. Having to work through problem solving and changing decisions on the fly is something that you have to get used to at camp, while things are planned, outside factors do impact.

The same in school.

How have things gone this term.

Hub, I started off doing well, however, I have let things fall away slightly, worked well to help students input there goal, I need to work on the next phase. The curriculum checker as well as the habit indicators.
Getting students to up their reflections took some work, however they now seem comfortable writing 150+ words. It seems that the majority of them enjoy reflecting on their week and how things are going. The ones that struggle to do the reflection I am thinking about how to work with them, is it that they are unable to reflect as they feel they haven't done anything during the week?

WOTPOINT Technology/Social Sciences
This module has put me outside my comfort zone, getting students developing drawings of the building that they are creating, I am thankful for the work that I did at Secondary School as well as having a graphics class earlier in my teaching. I must say I am impressed at what the students created and so were others at the show time on Thursdays Professional Learning morning. I look forward to next term and the ideas that we are going in with. The struggle has been working through inclusion for some students. Working at lower curriculum levels than I am used to, as well as I wish that I had rewritten the project brief for some of our students so they could see some success.

WALLE Technology using EV3 robotics
Developing a robot to meet a certain set of conditions. I went outside the normal create a robot to follow a line idea, getting a robot to from one side of the classroom to the other, students tested, refined, developed constantly. Though some students were still developing there robot on the last day was of concern. I need to look at this next time so we have all teams running. Students did do well working together and collaborating, sharing their ideas.

DESIGNW - web development
Developing students to understand the code that the web works by, many of these when faced with challenges embraced them and have develop some great pages through simple design. The one that gets me, is when a students doesn't want to try. This is a struggle, without knowing the tags of HTML you cannot do the create stuff later on. There needs to be a natural development of understanding knowledge to develop skills.

HWMGHTWE - technology
Students have developed a good understanding of database management through khan academy, I was not sure if this was going to be the right move, but students would be able to do the requirements of NCEA level 1, level 2 and level 3 database management. It is the next part that we need to work on, which is the database integration into another program.
Building on this has been the brief development, getting students to think about what they are going to develop. I need to make sure that this cane get down to 2-4 pages. Something that will need to be the focus of the beginning of the next term.

I have started to think about how to support a student that may be finding this too hard. Though this also could provide an interesting brief for a level 1/2 course. Building a website that records the amount of water a students drinks daily. Simple enough, but how to do you develop the marketing behind it.

Where are things going?
3DSPACE PLA - the 'engage' part of our innovate. engage. inspire. engage through powerful partnerships. Working with an outside company on this has provided some interesting opportunities. To be able to develop NZ Mountains through 3d printing.

To start to think what terms 3 and 4 SPINS will offer, one will need to be a programming SPIN, the other, I am still thinking...


Has anyone got students developing projects around wellbeing?
I saw one earlier this year this around helping a student manage their NCEA credits and homework.

Looking at other aspects of wellbeing, "the state of being comfortable, healthy, or happy."

Getting students to think about how these aspects can contribute to their life.

Apple have been working on their wellness within business. The Close the Rings Challenge v1.0

However, not all students have apple watches, and probably cannot do the standing within their day. Thinking about other ideas, like removing the soft drink to the 2 litres of water a day challenge, how could this be tracked?

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Week ten reflection

Success through failure. This weeks reflection is based around this concept. In Technology it is outcome development and evaluation. Refining ideas when trialled and trying something different. The WALLE robotics class has been one of great interest to me this term. Watching students see success when trialling ideas, and then failure when they have been put into practice. Challenge of time has also been one, managing to meet the requirements. To put you robot onto the street and run it three times. Most managed to do this, however a couple of groups did not manage this, it could be a good reflection to read about where things went wrong.

Back to the photos,
Auckland Secondary Schools Orienteering finals were last weekend. The four students did well with the challenge of the other schools. Making sure you check the control number against the control you are in front of is something that will need some work. Getting used to the map scales is another.

On Monday I did a checkin with a student in the WOTPOINT class, she had missed the time where students went out to look at their structure/building. After the meeting that night I went down to go and take some photos, this allowed for here to complete the missing work, it also allowed me to check out where the come fly with me event will be happening this weekend.

The track for WALLE. Get from point A to point B while avoiding obstacles.

Wednesday, project day. Helping student manage there resources. Two groups required time to get resources for the come fly with me event this weekend. While waiting for the groups to finish I was talking with a couple of business men behind me who asked what the students were doing. Explaining the project, how they have to come up with an exhibit, plan, explore, budget and deliver a result. They were amazed at what they were up to and wished that they had that opportunity when they were at school.

The game of awesome, I used this in hub this week as a creative talking activity. The students had two cards and were required to tell a story that included the words from the cards. This was a fun and exciting activity that made a few people stop and watch. I think I may have to look at some other rules to help develop the ideas a bit more. With 17 people in hub I believe I could have two games running.

Time in the day... shakespare festival and mountain biking were on at the same time this week. I took time off mountain biking to keep my cultural kete full. Something that I have thought about more since leaving my previous school. Academic, Culture and Sport. I also need to be making sure that I not just photograph sporting events, but also cultural.

Exploring and engaging in different partnerships through the school. I use mindkits gear a fair bit in my classroom. Electronics, but now also 3d printing. They have developed a partnership with printlab, who have just released a mt everest module that allows students to develop skills in mathematics and technology. The 3d printed object is just one of 16 tiles of the contours of Mt Everest. Throughout this I have also been in contact with them about how the experience has gone as well as possible future ideas for the students. How do we do this with New Zealand Mountains? I await the response next week.

The runner box, this little box has had a few experiences this week, through the STRIDE class which do a 2km run, as well as the Adventure racing time trial. It was also presented as a independent project that one of the students has been working on since October last year when I asked him to have a look at some of the code.

Student council election week this week, rather than getting the students to do a prepared speech,
how do they deal with the pressure of a game show style event.

Starting to come up with things that I want to achieve over the holidays. See fablab in christchurch. Have a chat with a teacher from Rolleston College. Talk to an HOF about rubrics. Plan for a day or two at Rototuna next term and put a proposal to management.