19 January 2016

Revitalising Senior Assessment & Tertiary Entrance in Queensland Education - Jan 2016 Update

**This post was taken directly from a QCAA presentation**

A new system of senior assessment and tertiary entrance will be rolled out for current Year 9 students when they enter Year 11 in 2018. This system will combine externally moderated school-based assessment with subject-based external assessment. This commitment builds on Queensland’s 40 years of experience in school-based assessment while recognising the important role of external assessment.

22 September 2015


There’s often a fairly treacherous conversation around the dinner table as students approach their parents regarding subject selections. Both parties have their own interpretations of what makes up a ‘good’ education and students tend to value completely different aspects of school than parents do.

Traditionally, the Western education system valued the core subjects like English, Maths, Science & History. Giving weight to their significance are the universities which demand them as particular pre-requisites; this in turn directly affects how our schools are organised. The 5 strands of Arts subjects, Drama, Music, Media, Visual Art & Dance were historically never recognised as being ‘valuable’ or ‘necessary’ for a ‘proper’ education.

15 July 2015

You can now disable printing, downloading & copying of any file in Google Drive

Google Drive is a great platform for sharing files with students, teachers, and the wider community. In most cases, you want your students and colleagues to copy, print or download documents. However, there may be important files that you'd like to restrict and have complete control over! 
Today Google released an update for Google Drive that will give users an added level of control over their files. With Information Rights Management (IRM), people using Google Drive can now disable downloading, printing, and copying from the advanced sharing menu. This new option is available for any file stored in Google Drive, including documents, spreadsheets, and presentations created with Google Docs. 

For this update and much more head to googleappsupdates.blogspot.com

How do you think Google's new IRM update will help you in the workplace? 

Follow Me & check out what else I've been up to! 

13 July 2015

Fixing Student Folders in Hapara Teacher Dashboard

At the beginning of each term, it's usually a good idea to fix student folders in Teacher Dashboard. The most common reasons that you'll discover folder problems are:
  • Student subject folders that have been deleted by a student
  • Student subject folders that are missing or not visible in a student's Google Drive
  • Student subject folders that are not displaying in Teacher Dashboard
The solution is very simple! If you encounter these or similar problems with student subject folders, please resolve them by navigating to the student's class in Teacher Dashboard, opening the Class Info page, and clicking on the 'Fix class folders' link, as shown below:

You'll find this solution and many more at support.hapara.com 

6 July 2015

Google For Education Certification Upgraded & Open for Business.

The Google for Education Training Center offers in-depth training for educators at every level. Courses are self-paced, guided and designed to address real classroom needs. Google recognises that:
Dedicated educators are lifelong learners. With that in mind, we've designed free, online training for the classroom that helps educators do what they do best, even better. 
Google has designed guided training paths just for educators. Whether you're planning to learn one new thing or to start the path to Google mastery, there's something for everyone. The training center has content to meet you where you are and get you where you want to be.

24 June 2015

Which style of 'Lunch and Learn' session suits your teachers? A simple comparison.

What is a Lunch & Learn Session? 

Teachers are time poor where I come from and there is an expectation to attend professional development throughout the year. I believe in professional renewal and encourage all staff to gain as much training as possible to stay current in the field on education. This is difficult for some teachers to handle because they are either opposed to PD or simply don't have time.

I think priorities have to change and teachers need to engage in meaningful professional development as much as they can. In such a time-critical workplace, I trialled 2 "Lunch and Learn" sessions this week with varying success.

10 June 2015

3 Reasons Why StaffPad is the Greatest Music Composition Tool Ever!

StaffPad is making waves in the music industry for all the right reasons. Educators and their students from all over the world are creating amazing content with this powerful software. I am confident that StaffPad will be defined as the greatest music composition tool in history. The powerful features of StaffPad are just as accessible for novice music students as they are relevant for professional composers. Here's 3 reasons why StaffPad is dominating the music industry. 

9 June 2015

5 Simple Steps to Sharing a File Using Hapara Teacher Dashboard

Hapara Teacher Dashboard is a magnificent tool for collaborating with students through the Google Apps for Education framework. Among other things, Hapara Teacher Dashboard allows you to share and copy files quickly and easily with your students. 

Below is 5 simple steps to sharing or copying a file with your students using Hapara.

3 June 2015

StaffPad Changes Music Education Forever! First impressions of the stunning app on a Surface Pro 3.

StaffPad has been engineered to work perfectly on the Surface Pro 3. This stunning app has single-handedly changed music education forever and I can't wait to share my first impressions with you. StaffPad on the Surface Pro 3 with the Surface Pen is a recipe for game-changing success. As you'll quickly see, music education will never be the same again with this stunning app.

1 June 2015

Using Canva to work smarter in the classroom! A beginners guide.

Teachers are always looking for new tools to work smarter in the classroom, especially ones that are free. I have been using Canva in the classroom for a while now and I'm completely in love. Using Canva for class work has been an innovative teaching tool for my staff and students. This is a beginners guide to Canva.

27 May 2015

Public Speaking Tips for Success! A simple How-To guide.

Public speaking is a learned skill. These tips for success are simple and easy to follow. For many people the thought of speaking in front of others is a daunting concept. Below you'll find my top public speaking tips for succeeding in front of your next audience! 

23 March 2015

Australian Curriculum Update: The Arts - Trials & Implementation Across The Country

Many teachers across Australian schools are in various stages of trialing or implementing The Australian Curriculum: The Arts. It's been some time since we've had any definitive updates trickled down to teachers. 

9 March 2015

Bursting at the seams! How teachers can manage increasing class sizes.

Teachers often struggle to manage large classes. The increased number of students in classes puts a lot of strain on staff who are under-prepared an ill-equipped for the change. Teachers who are left to deal with this problem on their own are more likely to feel unsupported and will inevitably burn out quicker. 

6 March 2015

Mental Fitness & Fatigue: How can teachers prevent "Stress"

Teaching children in schools can be stressful, contributing to overall mental fatigue. It's widely accepted that teachers are underpaid and unappreciated and the profession is a well documented killer of mental fitness. In this post I will outline a number of ways you can prevent your "Stress" levels from destroying your mental fitness and fatigue.

3 January 2015

Teaching & Bodybuilding: They have more in common than you think!

Teaching is a profession that requires dedication and passion. Teachers have a unique skill-set that is constantly developing and changing. A great teacher is consistently training to stay in top shape in the classroom. 

20 November 2014

Don't waste time in class during end of term: Tech-tivities to try post-assessment!

As we near the end of the year you may find time to invest in some classroom activities once exams and assessment have finished. In my experiences the unstructured, dreaded worksheets of crosswords, puzzles and santa drawings often encourage poor classroom behaviour and general unrest in students. 

I suggest that if you do happen to have time up your sleeve that you consider planning some meaningful learning to keep your students focused and engaged in their schooling.

18 November 2014

Sway | Re-imagine content: from boring to amazing!

I was lucky enough to jump on-board with a preview from the Microsoft Sway team today. I quickly got to work trialling the very simple interface. 

My first impressions... It's amazing. 

9 November 2014

The Learning Journey: Microsoft is a Leader in Education

The Global Forum – Miami is a unique opportunity for education and school leaders, policymakers, top industry experts and also Microsoft partners to discuss the key transformations in Education across K-12 and Higher Education and how Microsoft can support those goals.

5 November 2014

Putting PLAY back in the classroom: Inspiring a passion for learning in students

Like most kids, I was born... I grew up doing what kids did - I played. I challenge educators to rethink about how they can utilise 'play' into the classroom. Instinctively, children will play for hours. They play at school, at home, by themselves, with friends and even with kids they don't know! Educators would benefit by learning how to harvest this natural playfulness and apply it in the classroom. 

29 October 2014

Feedback in the classroom: How to make it valuable for your students

It's important that educators around the world know how to give valuable feedback in the classroom. I believe it should be taught explicitly when training teachers so that they can consistently be giving valuable feedback in the classroom.