Online publishing tool – Readymag

Another great publishing tool available for education – made possible through student managed email accounts. (all Victorian government schools have them)

 Back to purity, back to simplicity. We rethought digital interfaces and built Readymag from the ground up to become the most beautiful and meaningful publishing tool.

Quite a claim but it is really simple to use and the presentation is very professional. Interestingly does not work well with interent explorer. “Browser friendships”

or “Browser war” You will need to use Firefox or Chrome.

Readymag Quick Demo from Readymag on Vimeo.

So what difference does technology make? – Using new thinking to present a powerful message

The blog post on Tuesday featured a government report around young people and risky behaviour. I followed up yesterday with an approach taken by a creative company in addressing a social issue. Now for some classroom application.

Dumb ways to die used creative freeware to develop their campaign. The technology allowed them to do it in an engaging way. More than just engaging and being fun, the campaign was different because of the technology available and the thinking behind its use.

Social media allowed a different approach to audience participation and delivery.

So what difference does technology make to the thinking creative approaches we teach our students?  Are we just teaching them to present? – present powerpoint style, even when we use different medium or technologies?

This Prezi “how to” provides some great ideas to get your students to think and present a concept differently.

The technology makes this possible. Give this to your students, Choose a topic…Romeo and Juliet ….. Antibullying….. Global issues … Could be anything. But here is an authentic way to connect technology, creativity, thinking to any curriculum area.

Follow up to the risky behaviours report published yesterday

Accident rates on the Melbourne Metro were rising, largely due to an increase in risky behavior around trains. But a rail safety message was the last thing our audience wanted to hear and traditional public safety messages just don’t work on young people: tell them to do one thing and they’ll do the opposite. So we had to turn a message that people needed to hear into a message that people wanted to hear. The way we did it was to embed the message into awesomely entertaining content.


From day one, everything about this campaign was designed to be inherently spreadable via social technologies. The main digital channels used were Tumblr, YouTube, Soundcloud, iTunes and a microsite. The three-minute video lived on YouTube. The video was reimagined as 21 animated GIFs on Tumblr. These GIFs created huge and immediate viral effect, driving traffic to both YouTube and our microsite. Once on YouTube, people were given a series of links: they could purchase the song on iTunes, download it for free via Soundcloud, visit our website and get free GIFs off our Tumblr site.

Does participation in extracurricular activities reduce engagement in risky behaviours?

 This working paper from the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research looks at the influence of participation in extracurricular activities on the behaviours of Australian adolescents. The research found that while participation does significantly reduce engagement in risky behaviours, the effects differ according to activity type, gender, and to an extent socio-economic status.

Read the full working paper and comment

Nominations Open – The 2013 Annual Edublog Awards Are Here!

The Annual Edublog Awards have started and you have until Dec 1 to nominate your favorite blogs, twitterers, community sites, videos, podcasts and more… for 2013.

Ediblog Awards

The Edublog Awards started in 2004 in response to community concerns relating to how schools, districts and educational institutions were blocking access of learner and teacher blog sites for educational purposes.  The purpose of the Edublog awards is promote and demonstrate the educational values of these social media.

Working together, we create an invaluable resource of the best-of-the-best on the web!

To nominate your favorites:

  1. Write a post with your nominations for the different categories on your own blog (or a website – anywhere public) – here is an example of a nomination post from 2012.
  2.  Submit the link to your nomination post by completing this form here.

You’ll find a list of all of the nomination categories here.

Check out the latest nomination posts:

All nomination posts are being added to The Edublog Awards Flipboard Magazine.

Check out the latest nomination posts here!



eLearning Excellence Awards

The sixth eLearning Excellence Awards of the eLearning Industry Association of Victoria was held on 14 November.  The K-12 sector had a great range of finalists worth checking out.  

Royal Children’s Hospital Create, Explore, Learn App.  This app encourages children to create their own artworks, explore the vibrant spaces of the RCH and learn about the artists, designers, zoo keepers and divers who all play a role in making the RCH a healing space and a learning place.

Other finalists K-12:

  • Fatigue and Recovery – an interactive program for PE that gives students an opportunity to be involved in an engaging story that draws out the concepts behind fatigue and recovery in elite athletes
  • Chinese Language Learning Space– engaging modules to support teachers and students of Chinese Language
  • AITSL Illustrations of Practice – video vignette showing authentic teacher practice drawn from particular Standard and focus area drawn from the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST).

 President’s Award:

  • Time Lens Museum Victoria: takes would-be explorers on a scavenger hunt around Melbourne Museum to discover some of the treasured objects and hidden gems of the museum’s collection.

YouTube and Victorian Government Schools

I am presenting a blog post by Saga Briggs “197 Educational YouTube Channels You Should Know Aboutto try to rid the old urban myth that “The department” is “the boss” of all school filters and access to sites like YouTube.
Each Victorian government school has tools to manage the internet access of teachers and students at their school. Principals have been provided login details which allow schools to make localised decisions about what sites are available in their school.

197 Educational YouTube Channels You Should Know About

Schools can allow or deny sites based on audience and schools can make decisions around what those audiences are. Often schools seperate teacher audience from student audience. Schools of course must consider their duty of care to students and ensure that they have assessed the purpose and value of the sites they include. Policies around expected behaviours such as the student engagement policy, must consider those behaviours in an online context.

Apps for multiple intelligences

A valuable resource can be found at APPitic. The site presents lists of educationally relevant Apps web link

which are presented for iPads but could be a reference for other tablet users. This particular link presents well organised apps for teaching and learning exploring multiple intelligences.


The 5 most persuasive words in the English language

We discuss persuasive text with students and get them to write them.

An image showing research into the marketing power of the word free

This blog post writen by Gregory Ciotti is a handy resource for teachers to invesitgate the words that persuade us to buy.

Great resource for digital literacy, critical thinking and simply writing persuassive texts.

The likelihood of completing a VET qualification

Australian vocational education and training statistics

The Australian vocational education & training statistics have released the findings around the  likelihood of completing a VET qualification 2008–11 completion of VET front cover


For qualifications commencing in 2011

  • The national estimated completion rate for VET qualifications at certificate I and above was 35.5%, up from 33.7% for qualifications commenced in 2010.
  • For students in full-time study aged 25 years and under with no prior post-school qualification, the national estimated completion rate for VET qualifications was 44.2%, a decline from 45.7% for qualifications commenced in 2010.
  • VET qualifications at diploma and above (43.6%), certificate IV (41.6%), and certificate III (40.9%) had the highest national estimated completion rates.
  • For students in full-time study aged 25 years and under with no prior post-school qualification, the national estimated completion rate for VET qualifications at certificate III was 56.2%.
  • VET qualifications in education (58.8%), society and culture (48.5%), and natural and physical sciences (43.8%) had the highest national estimated completion rates.

Full Report