Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Term 3 2008

Whew, it's a while since I've done one of these. Beginning of this term actually. During the term we have implemented KnowledgeNet as our intranet. I'll be doing some more PD on this early next term, but you should have logins for all your students now and should distribute these for next term.

Also on the PD agenda for next term is using PCSchool Spider to view class and student details, print of class lists, and mark the roll.

Meanwhile, here's some sites you may be interested in:

Book Wink - dedicated to inspiring children to read - uses video and podcasting

Whyville - social networking for primary age children in a safe environment.
Background for teachers

Terri Husted's Homepage - Maths for teachers

From Interface Magazine:

Virtual Body - good animated body part models. Smartboards?

Speaking of Smartboards, all smartboard computers will be upgraded to Notebook v10 in the next wee while. Notebook 10 has some new features which Aaron will be working with next term. New Features:

New Look
• improved user interface
• toolbar customization
• Welcome Center
Notebook Software File Creation and Delivery
• page grouping
• customizable themes
• Senteo™ software question insertion
• SMART Document Camera image insertion
• Magic Pen tool
• table integration
• active alignment
• object animation
• SMART recorder
• shape recognition tool
• color and gradient fill effects
• spell check
Other Tools and Features
• SMART Learning Marketplace access
• Online Essentials for Educators
• security features


Or with the smartboard look at these space interactives.


Phases of the moon:

Got some time during the holidays? Add effects to some of your digital photos here:


Who has a Facebook Page? From a survey of 31,000 Employers:

More than 1 in 5 employers said they found information on social networking sites about prospective employees

Top areas of concern:

  • information about alcohol or drug use
  • inappropriate photos of information
  • poor communication skills
  • bad mouthing former employers

Careful what you put on your facebook site!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A New Term.

Teacher Day 25 July


This is all go for this term. Please make sure you have your teacher login so that you can print off the usernames and passwords for your class.

You should also spend a bit of time familiarising yourself with the teacher interface so that you are able to keep an eye on what your students are doing. I'll run you through an introductory session this morning.

Logon to Mathletics here!

Remember that Mathletics provides you with some detailed reports of what your students have been doing. It's worth spending a bit of time here.


The new Wellesley website is due to launch on 4 August. Sneak preview:

From that date the existing website will be gone and the school network computers will point at the new public intranet page. The link to this page is below. This page will be available anywhere (not just at school) and has a initial list of links which will be refined and updated. It's not much to look at yet but it will be refined in the next couple of weeks.


You will also see a school calendar which is a public version of the school calendar we all know and love. The plan is that this calendar will become the planning calendar which we currently use. Calendar items will be entered or edited by any staff members, and when you enter the item, you will need to decide who should view the item. Some may be for teacher view only, some may be student and/or parent as well.

Logging on to Knowledgenet (the intranet / Learning Management Site will give you a staff version or student version of the calendar, depending on who you are.

You will also see a notices section. Again, this is a public notice view, logging on will show you a student or staff version of these notices. Notices can be placed by any staff member for any group – whole school or class.

This all means that the calendar and notices can be prepared with the audience in mind. Students will only see student notices.

Logging on to Knowledgenet will also provide:

  • E reflection area

  • Booking Calendars:

    • Mobile Trolleys

    • Technology Room

    • Hall

    • Van

  • Personal web page/ work area

  • Digital Learning object repository

  • Collaboration areas

Library Development

The architect has prepared some basic drawings. Jane, Warren and I like the hall/ library/ICT area combo the best, but this will also be the most expensive.

Student Management System

This will be accessible from within the intranet as long as you are at school through a web browser. I am installing the web access to PCschool during next week. Again you will get a username and password – I'll try to integrate the usernames and passwords as far as possible! I hope the first stage will be to complete the roll through this. I would expect this to be under way during this term. Then we'll be able to provide access to assessment data like PAT and STAR. After that.......

I'll run a training session as soon as it's up and running.

ICT Prof Dev Cluster

We have completed a proposal to form an ICT Cluster for 2009 – 2011. This would mean ICT continuing to be a major focus during these years.


From the Google Blog:
Our Googley advice to students: Major in learning
7/15/2008 05:48:00 PM

Management guru Peter Drucker noted that companies attracting the best knowledge workers will "secure the single biggest factor for competitive advantage." We and other forward-looking companies put a lot of effort into hiring such people. What are we looking for?

At the highest level, we are looking for non-routine problem-solving skills. We expect applicants to be able to solve routine problems as a matter of course. After all, that's what most education is concerned with. But the non-routine problems offer the opportunity to create competitive advantage, and solving those problems requires creative thought and tenacity.

Blog Competition Winner for Term 2:

Darren's efforts in the sport area:




Judges comment was that this was not an easy task!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Mathletics, Knowledgenet and other stuff.

Mathletics and Knowledgenet

I'll send around your teacher logins for mathletics this week. When you log in you'll be able to print out your maths class logins and passwords in case you want to get into it before the end of the term.
I'll go over the basics of teacher admin on teacher only day anyway. There is a login link on the Wellesley Maths page.

Knowledgenet is our new Learning Management system and Intranet. I've started populating this with our intranet stuff, and there will be usernames and passwords for this as well (but only for accessing certain parts of it. More on teacher only day!

And remember the blog competition. I've organised a judge to check them out next week, so make sure you blog is up to date before then.

Have a play with Wordle – a tool which lets you create word clouds with examples of text. The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text.
For example, the cloud below is constructed from the Wellesley Philosophy as it appears on the school web site.
Which words are given prominence? What does it tell you?
How could you use this on the Smartboard?

Smartboard cartoons - Welcome to Hunkin's Experiments. Cool cartoons that will have you experimenting with food, light, sound, clothes, and a whole lot more!! Hundreds of cartoon experiments from cartoonist, broadcaster and engineer Tim Hunkin.


ICT Sessions at Wellesley

These are some images relating to work done by your boys in ICT. First some edited digital photos using online editing web site Fotoflexer:
And some 2d images of 3d designed vehicles in Google Sketchup.

Young Minds, Fast Times: The Twenty-First-Century Digital Learner

How tech-obsessed iKids would improve our schools. Marc Prensky


An interesting article. What do you think:

Turn teen texting toward better writing
Teachers who co-opt Web tools for class have the best of both worlds.
"Our student bloggers and digital writers of all backgrounds are part of a journaling culture which America has not seen since the great age of diarists during the Transcendental movement, when Thoreau and Emerson recorded their daily lives for eventual public consumption."

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Thinking and Learning

21st Century Learning Skills:

From the Thinkfinity site mentioned below

In some respects, the potential of 21st century learning lies in the
exploration of how digital tools (cameras, presentation software, computing
equipment) and online resources can support and enhance traditional
subjects,skills and teaching practices. The Internet alone provides students
with enormous opportunities to access:

· A trove of primary source documents previously located on library
shelves, but now available online through digital archives.
· Authentic scientific data across a range of fields from current and historical
meteorological forecast data to economic statistics
· Geospatial tools that combine data with dynamic maps
· Global communications media that make distance collaboration, cross-cultural exchanges and rich media experiences possible

How many of these opportunities do we provide for our students?

Authors and Reading:

This is the link I sent around earlier in the week of Michael Rosen interviewing various authors:

Video of the Week:

Principal from hell! Rowan Atkinson deals with the problem of boys not issuing books from the library.........
Actually we have some books taken without being issued; perhaps we could try this technique?


Just discovered this Boolean Search graphical tool! We have some information on Boolean searching on our search site and it is a tool all searchers for information need to employ to some degree.:

But this is a very clever way of seeing how it works. The example in the image uses a search for information on Wellesley College but not including USA but including New Zealand results.I would think this would be good to do on the Smartboard!

And if you have a Vista machine, have you tried the snipping tool??

Under accessories, it enables you to take images of anything that is on your desktop and either copy it to the clipboard, or save it to an image file.


What’s a blog? 6 and 7 year olds from Nelson Central School talk about what a blog is:

Smartboard Activities:

For Juniors, try Animal Riddles:

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

More stuff for your Class - May

This could be useful for the senior school inquiry this term: Time Magazine's best inventions for 2006. Did they do one in 2007? I haven't found it yet.

From Interface mag ( In the staffroom, well worth a browse) These activities are interesting rather than being stupendously educational. They're worth a play, though.

Linerider – try it on the whiteboard – pure wet day fun!

Grammar Ninja someone’s independent study!

Genius Boxing – Pick a fight with Archimedes, Einstein, etc

Or if you really need a low intensity activity, try this on the Smartboard!! Virtual bubblewrap.....
http://smartboards.typepad.com/smartboard/files/bubblewrap.swf Manic mode seems to work best for me.(especially at the end of the day.)
where would you assess ithe thinking skills involved on the SOLO scale????

Or Have a look at Newsmap on your smartboard:

Newsmap is an application that visually reflects the constantly changing landscape of the Google News news aggregator. A really interesting way of looking at the news.


Scicity – Hosted by Otago Museum and IBM - SciCity is a rich learning environment that utilises innovative new technology to engage young New Zealanders in ongoing interactive experiences.
SciCity has direct links to the revised New Zealand curriculum. It achieves success by approaching many hard to reach curriculum areas in a fun and creative way.
Scicity is here I’ve used it in ICT sessions last year, so ask if you need help. Meet your class in Scicity!

Teacher resources are here!

Using your Smartboard with maths. Have a look at this video. Persevere, it’s worth watching as he is using the recorder feature of the notebook software. Maybe something to get an able child to try with........ say.....long division??

Class tools of a varying nature : http://www.classtools.net/

Youtube Corner:

Teenage Affluenza:

The Piano:


And for a better ending for Kiwi:

Friday, March 14, 2008

Technology and Art

Is this Art?? This was created using a web based graphics editor ( http://fotoflexer.com/) by Vinay in 78T. He used the digital photo below as a base. Is this artistic? creative? or sneaky!? There are lots of ways of creatively altering digital photos. The darkroom of the past is What do you think Eve?

More for Smartboards

Great to see some of the maths basic facts games being used on smartboards around the place. I used the jetski race one with my maths class ( http://arcademicskillbuilders.com/games/jetski/jetski.html) -an excellent way to improve basic facts speed - Set up a hosted game and as well as competing against the computer, you could end up competing against some whizz kid from USA? China?

Try your smartboard with some of the activities below:

Geosense – pinpoint cities of the world. This is a challenging activity - good for able students

And from the same maker – a vocabulary game – try it in year 7 and 8 with able spellers. http://www.wordslide.net/

Or a simpler vocab game from Roy the Zebra:

Do you think you know the countries of the Middle East?? Try the map game from Rethinking Schools – fantastic for the Smartboard! It's harder than you would think.

Articles worth reading:

When Mum or Dad Asks To Be a Facebook 'Friend' Social networking and parents! A Washington Post article.

And the video selection for this week!
Some Brazilian Football Skills:

And the famous Bush Blair Duet:

Sunday, February 17, 2008


Welcome to 2008!

Continuing on the theme of Smartboards, here are some links to resources you might find useful in your class.

The Wicked! website has some maths games and interectives which lend themselves well to smartboard use. Really good for students to work on their basic facts:


Another basic facts site with some speed games to improve basic facts recall:


This looks like a good resource too - a blog dedicated to the use of smartboards. Spend a few minutes looking around here:


And courtesy of Interface, the NZ ICT in schools magazine, a growing list of NZ teachers who maintain blogs.


And on the same site, a group of pdf files which contain ICT related lesson plans:


Perhaps your students could try some artwork on the smartboard at:


That's enough for now! Remember to flick your projector off at lunchtimes, or if you're out of the classroom for a while.