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Archived Posts from “Professional Development”

ByteMe! Digital Content Festival, Perth



ByteMe! Festival will be an inspiring event to take students along to or even to attend yourself. A few events that caught my eChalk eye were these:

  • Ghost Town is a new innovative game of urban exploration played with the help of your mobile phone, and unleashed on the streets of Perth for one week, starting December 2nd, 2007. The game uses a mashup of technology (bluetooth, SMS and VOIP) and the physical world. To play: Go to the Ghost Town booth at the Perth Town Hall between 10am and 5pm (Dec 2 to Dec 9) with a mobile phone with Bluetooth. Cost: FREE
  • BarCampNano - a mini Unconference of web 2.0. The Australian Web Industry Association will be conducting BarCampNano between 1pm-4pm on Sunday 9th of December at the Perth Town Hall.
  • Get Reel is a collection of Western Australian digital content that covers a wide spectrum - from animation to ads, from 3D fly-throughs to games development, from engineering to education, from virtual safety training to visual FX for film and television.
  • The Interface - play with PCs with WA-programmed computer games to play, free wallpapers and ringtones for your mobile phone and loads of other things to do and see in the glass foyer of the Town Hall.

Via Kat Black, Director of the ByteMe! Festival:

Digital content isn’t an Industry, it’s part of almost EVERY industry now. Animation, visualisation, games development, virtual safety-training - you can see it all at BM!F.

Byte Me

Byte Me! is a Digital Content Festival in Perth, featuring a program of screenings, Show ‘n Tells by Industry speakers from around the world, live audiovisual performances and innovative cross-media events. Some events would be great for school groups - such as the Get Reel screenings of WA digital content, and some would be more appropriate for professional development for teachers, in particular ICT, programming and Media teachers, or even Arts Teachers with an interest in digital media.

The Byte Me! Festival will be at the Perth Town Hall, Western Australia 2-9 December 2007, with some events at various venues in the days leading up to then. Sorry for the very late notice, but this is an you might be interested in, from 2-9 December at the Perth Town Hall.

It’s called the Byte Me! Festival and it includes screenings, digital-careers showbags, international and local guest speakers and an interactive mini-expo where you can talk to people about the type of jobs available in the digital content field, play some locally-developed games or try your hand at VJing.

Some of the events are free, and some are ticketed. Thanks to our generous sponsors though, ticket prices are low - from $5-$19 per event. Concession price is available to ALL people in the Education sector, whether you come with a school group, or just attend in your own time.

They have international speakers from Dreamworks (Shrek), EA Games (MySims), Weta (King Kong and Lord of the Rings) and more. Check out the full Program for more information:

There is a handy Google calendar for event subscription on the website. Hope to see you there!

ECAWA 2007 State Conference



ECAWA conferenceWestern Australia’s ECAWA 2007 State Conference will be two days of exciting professional learning and professional development opportunities, networking and sharing of information about ICT in education in a relaxed and friendly environment at the Atrium Hotel in Mandurah.

While a significant part of the programme will explore some of the opportunities that Web2+ technologies offer educators and students, there will be plenty more as well.

A strand in the programme will focus on senior secondary computing courses – Applied Information Technology and Computer Science. For Primary and Middle School Teachers, strands within the programme will focus on using Information and Communications Technology in the classroom. A list of the presentations are here.

Marc Prensky in Perth



The Department of Education and Training’s Schools Online Curriculum Services (SOCS) has several very interesting projects on the go. Most exciting is the news that Marc Prensky will be in Perth between May 28th and 30th to ‘conduct a series of workshops and keynotes that explore online technologies and their application for innovative education’.

Marc is best known for coining the terms ‘digital immigrants and digital natives’ and for his groundbreaking work on game-based learning. It should be an awesome learning experience. No information on costs or venues at this time, but you can contact the SOCS team at

K-12 Online Conference



The “K12 Online Conference” is for teachers, administrators and educators around the world interested in the use of Web 2.0 tools in classrooms and professional practice! This year’s conference is scheduled to be held over two weeks, Oct. 23-27 and Oct. 30- Nov. 3 and will include a preconference keynote. The conference theme is “Unleashing the Potential.”

Link to the conference site is here.

I’m not sure of this information has already made it into this forum but for those who may be interested this online conference began this evening with the pre-conference keynote. Much like the Victorian Education Knowledge Bank conference, this conference also utilises the Elluminate online conferencing software. My first experience with this software has been relatively positive apart from some issues with picking up system audio.

The next session of this conference appears to be at 6 a.m. Tuesday morning Perth time. Further details of the conference sessions can be found via this link.

Next Byte Education (WA PD)



David Allibon of Nextbyte has organised some PD and as far as Western Australia is concerned the information is as follows:

Next Byte has planned a number of short professional learning opportunities for West Australian teachers during term four. All courses are free, but please register your attendance by emailing Ashley Staring at stating your name, the course(s) you will be attending and contact details.

Introduction to OS X 10.5
Apple has just released some details of its next operating system OS X 10.5. This session will discuss and highlight many of the new and improved functions in 10.5 and provide time for discussion and questions
Location: Mt Lawley SHS
Afternoon tea provided
Date and Time: Wednesday 18th October at 4.15pm
Presenter: Byron Rudenno – Apple Account Executive (WA)

Using iWeb to Support Classroom Learning
iWeb is a new application in the iLife 06 suite of tools. iWeb allows students to easily publish to the web, sharing their ideas, work and thinking. It also allows teachers and students to set up their own blogs and podcasts. This session will look at how easy it is to use the software and provide attendees with hands on experience with the software.
Location: Christ Church Grammar School
Afternoon tea provided
Date and Time: Wednesday 31st October at 4.15pm
Presenter: Kyrne Holloway –Christ Church GS staff member)

The Power of Atomic Learning
Atomic Learning meets a wide variety of training needs including just-in-time support, help desk functions and structured training courses for staff and students. The tutorials can be embedded into the school’s own material.
It offers a very cost effective web-based software training and support resource. Currently there are over 20,000 video tutorials covering 100 software applications and growing all the time. Participants will be given trial access to the website to test its usefulness and benefits.
Location: To be advised
Afternoon tea provided
Date and Time: Thursday 9th November at 4.15pm
Presenter: Bryn Jones ACPD

Technical talk
This session is aimed at the more technically minded people in schools. It aims to answer your questions about the what/ why and how of managing macs in a school environment. Designed within the session there will be a time set aside for questions and answers as well as an opportunity to share ideas and knowledge.
Location: PLC
Afternoon tea provided
Date and Time: Thursday 9th November at 4.15pm
Presenter: Brett Clarke – IT Director at PLC

Taking Podcasting To The Next Level
While still using podcasting as a base the world has already evolved and vodcasting (video) has logically provided the next step. In this PD while still looking at the merits of podcasting we will look at evolving to vodcasting and techniques used to achieve required outputs. Some of the peripherals looked at are midi input, camera use in class, sound recording and also the merit in editing for student evaluation as well the provision of task analysis tools and student evaluation tools related to outcomes in WA. Hope you can make it.
Location: Kinross Middle School
Afternoon tea provided
Date and Time: Tuesday 21st November at 4.15pm
Presenter: Steve Adcock – Staff member at Kinross Middle School

Podcasting and iPods in the classroom
Many educators are currently Podcasting work and activities within their schools. This session will explain what a podcast is, the educational benefits of podcasting and give participants time to take the first steps in creating their own podcast.

This session will involve the use of Garageband, iPhoto, iTunes and iPods to complete Podcasts as well as providing support materials to assist them as they venture back to Podcast in their own schools.
Location: Oberthur PS
Afternoon tea provided
Date and Time: Tuesday November 28 at 4.00pm
Presenter: Larni Rettalack

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Recent Comments
  • Melanie: Thank you Kim! I will definitely check out this link and see the developments for higher education on the SLED.
  • Kim Flintoff: We have been using Second Life in a range of situations. Built a Wound Care Clinic with Curtin University for training nurses about wound care and the relationship between hand-washing and infection in a...
  • Melanie: Hello Paul, I am wondering, have continued to utilize SecondLife? Do you find that it has better user-friendly features? Do you find that your courses are easier to teach in this format? Is the VLC classroom a...
  • Melanie: We may agree to disagree on the instant gratification society term, however when you look at new social network devices that are connected to mobile devices – there is an urgency that is attached to those...
  • Kim Flintoff: "instant gratification society" - I'm not sure I'm part of that society. Educational institutions do not make decisions - people do. Which people in educational institutions will cling dearly to email? Email...
  • Melanie: I agree that email is outdated in most settings. However, many educational institutions will cling dearly to email due to the aspect of "waiting before sending." Email is still a resource and an appropriate tool...
  • Maryjane: This is incredible and we need to spread it to school districts. It was posted two years ago and I've not seen new policies or classroom innovations happen since then. People are afraid of what the kids might do....
  • Suzanne: I cannot help but think that this trend, while reflecting archetypal youth rejection of all things "adult," is also related to the digital immigrant/digital native thing. The young are very flexible, very willing...
  • Maryjane: This made me laugh outloud. School districts are still discussing whether they'll give access to students for email; do all their business by email instead of walking next door and talking to someone; and wonder...
  • Nick Smith: This video was exactly what I needed/wanted to hear. As a student working towards being a teacher, I find it great to not only revolutionize teaching, but to re-invent it all together. One woman mentioned...
  • Scott Merrick: Hey there, feel free to unpublish this comment--it's more or less for your own info: This is to let you know that Digital Chalkie has been nominated for Blog-o-the-Month at the Blogger's Hut on Second Life...
  • Laura Seabrook: I have one other question, which I can't find answer to on the Murku wiki (no doubt the answer is right there and I keep missing it) - where/how does one get it?
  • Laura Seabrook: Murku looks really interesting (and I shall definitely try it), though the examples could do with some improvement, as per my comments above. Positioning can be important - see the Blambot article at...
  • Kim Flintoff: Murku is designed to facilitate the construction of comics based on content in a Second Life TM, ie SL, environment. Murku will be of interest to those who have always dreamt of creating their own comics but...
  • Laura Seabrook: Actually there was a typo in my previous comment. I meant to write wouldn't be, not would as far as being the first to do an SL comic. I discovered Plywood shortly after starting my own, which can be found...
  • Kim Flintoff: Hi Laura, The example in the article wasn't intended to be a highly refined product - it literally took me 60 seconds to create with some random images grabbed from my hard drive. The points you make about...
  • Laura Seabrook: I started doing Second Life comics late in 2007 ( though I didn't use Comic Life - rather I drew bits, used screenshots and put it together using PaintShopPro and Fireworks (for speech balloons etc). I knew...
  • michael chalk: Great stuff Paul .. lots of good points here. You are right about the ABC - they're really leading the charge into the new era of digital participation aren't they! My favourite thing they do is the way they...
  • Ken Allan: Kia ora Kim! I don't think it is anything to do with HOW we communicate. It is more to do with how kids see email. It is simply to do with the age-old feature of youngsters avoiding ANYTHING that is associated...
  • Aaron Fisher: This is very cool! It is amazing how those principles from long ago are relevant today, just in different forms. Students do learn better by doing, no matter the subject. We teachers need to do a better job...
  • Julie Carney: Thanks for this post, and for posters like Paul who have linked and commented on resources for educators to use. As is the case with most things, it seems the right combination of educator/program/developer...
  • Debbie: I, too am upset that this website has been taken off-line. My special education students loved it, and I knew I could always find an activity geared their levels and abilities. I hope that it will soon be running...
  • Andrew Westerman: Each LO costs $20 000. So, if 20 students use that learning object for 0.1 of an hour (6 minutes), that's 2 student / hours @ $10 000 per hour. If 2000 students use that LO for 0.2 of an hour (12...
  • Cathy Nash: Learning Objects are one of the tools in a good teacher's toolbox. It is simplistic to lay them aside as past it. A poor teacher can make a pencil look dull and a great teacher may just achieve great things...
  • Suzanne: I am so upset that this site has been removed, however I fully understand why. My Year One children and my pre-primary children loved using the site and it catered for all ability levels in my class. i do hope...
  • Julie: I am sorry that Rainbow Maths has been forced off the web. My daughter loved it so it is missed. Any idea when Jenny may put it back on the web with added security measures to prevent it being copied etc?
  • Jen Zupp: I totally agree with Jenny's reason to take it off. I have spent thousands of hours keeping my website up which is pretty much a directory of quality websites I find online. If I had created a masterpiece like...
  • Kristy Dickson: I agree with Paul, $20 000, $80 000, or whatever they cost, kids are losing interest. I think they have their place for a bit of drill and practice occasionally, but I wouldn't pay for them. Motivation and...
  • Ingrid: I'm distraught that rain forest maths is not available. My 3/4 kids loved it. My kids loved it and it is so easy to cater for their abilities with the different levels. Anyone know if there's a chance it will be up...
  • Azam Ali: my kids love this site, they come on rainforest to learn. Anyone trying to stop kids education is playing with our future. Shame on people who are greedy for money and dont care for the future.
  • Bryn Jones: Channel 4 in the UK has £50million to develop new media content. Ewan McIntosh has some role in it as Digital Commissioner for Scotland. Jobs open now!
  • Thomas Goodwin: Paul Reid has pointed educators in the right direction (create and collaborate) however he started from an incorrect premise; The Learning Federation's Digital Resources are completely different from the...
  • Patricia Corby: Phew, what a terrific wealth of useful info here! Thanks Paul. In reference to this comment "They need to move from static to dynamic in form" as an overall comment it is relevant but being fair some are...
  • Paul Reid: If everyone's Math is correct the Teaching & Learning Federation pays $20k for jpeg pictures Learning Objects! eg these ones shown here http://www.thelearningfederati
  • Janice Millard: its not fair that my class can't go on rain forest maths because of other people copying we were going to do a test on it but it was closed down my class was very upset not very happy!