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It is wonderful to see staff at St Catherine’s College in The Whitsundays, Queensland, having fun while learning about Digital Technologies with the CSER Makey Makey Kit. Samantha Hinton, Assistant Principal Curriculum, learned about the CSER Lending Library after participating in a CSER Digital Technologies workshop with Lauren Stanhope.

‘Our teachers have participated in workshops to develop their skills in STEM and their knowledge of the Digital Technologies curriculum. At St Cath’s we have some excellent resources to support the development of this curriculum area and STEM initiatives. Staff ‘played’ with Makey Makey, WeDo 2.0, Lego robots and Probots. Our students love these lessons!’

St Catherine's 1St Catherine's 2aSt Catherine's 3St Catherine's 5a

Visit the CSER homepage to register your interest in CSER professional development and the CSER lending library.

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In 2015, five Melbourne schools formed a collective with the vision to “enable maths pedagogy that is engaging and authentic”. Their “quest is to create confident and competent maths learners by challenging, inspiring and working collaboratively.”

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Since then, they have benefitted from working across schools and engaged the services of experts in the fields of Maths Education. Rina Polastri, Numeracy Leader at Corpus Christi, Glenroy says “The Pentagonal Collective was formed as a result of an initiative of the Catholic Education of Melbourne. It promoted cluster based improvement by grouping together schools with similar needs as well as similar profiles (high EAL, large numbers of new arrivals, low socioeconomic status and low NAPLAN numeracy results). The five schools in our collective identified the learning and teaching of Mathematics as a priority. In 2016 they engaged Professor Peter Sullivan from Monash University followed up by Lorraine Day from the University of Notre Dame in Western Australia in 2017. Rina reflected, “This collective has provided us with opportunities for collegial discussion, professional input from notable experts and the development of a supportive network through the establishment of a Google Community.”

In 2018, the leaders decided to continue the work by focusing on the connection between Mathematics and Digital Technologies. It was seen as a wonderful opportunity to provide well timed professional learning on the new curriculum and further the strong pedagogical work in Mathematics from the previous years.

The leadership team asked University of Adelaide, CSER Victorian Project Officer, Celia Coffa, to facilitate the Term 1 workshops. Teaching teams from each school attended sessions in their year level groupings (F-2, 3-4, 5-6). Each session included an introduction to the Digital Technologies curriculum, considering the rationale, the context and content. Teachers unpacked the curriculum and explored activities that supported Mathematical concepts.   Luckily, Simon Collier, Project Officer for the ACARA Digitech in Focus project was able to work alongside Celia.

Each teacher registered for a CSER online course (MOOC) and will be encouraged to continue to engage with the courses throughout the year and in the follow up sessions that are planned for Term 2 and 3.

Staff appreciated the time allowed to work in school teams to discuss and plan units of work – collegial conversations were very rich and much appreciated time was spent exploring an array of plugged and unplugged resources.   Tamara Moravksi, Teaching and Learning leader at Corpus Christi, Glenroy, felt that they “developed a deeper understanding of the concepts in the DT curriculum and how they link to other curriculum areas, particularly Mathematics. Teachers are tweaking their practices to embed the DT curriculum into their current learning and teaching programs and are finding that students are benefitting from much richer learning tasks and are more active and engaged learners.”

Linda Minahan, Mathematics Leader, St Brendan’s School, Flemington reflected on the three sessions.  “The opportunity to work with experts and to collaborate, not only as a school in professional learning teams along with the opportunity to have discourse but with other like schools, helped all of us to have a shared understanding of how we can implement the digital technologies curriculum. Teacher understanding of how digital technologies may align with Mathematics grew through the combination of exploring CSER MOOC content, the opportunity to work with experts outside of school, and the generous provision to be able to borrow digital resources through the CSER lending library. The teachers valued having time to take this further through an inquiry planning cycle using the Mathematics curriculum to support the implementation of digital technologies”

A number of the schools have taken advantage of the CSER Lending library and are furthering the student and teacher learning whilst getting to know the devices.

It will be great to see how the teachers implement the Digital Technologies curriculum with their focus on mathematical connections.

Celia Coffa                                                                  maths collective blog post photo 5

CSER VIC Project Officer

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It’s been four years since we launched the CSER Digital Technologies Education Program! We are so honoured to have been able to work on this project with you all, and to have such fabulous partners to collaborate with. Special thanks, of course, to our supporters and collaborators, including Sally-Ann Williams, Leanne Cameron, Julie King, Google Australia & New Zealand, Digital Careers, ACARA, ESA, CSIRO, the Commonwealth Department of Education and Training, and all of the amazing people we work with across Australia (and beyond!).

To celebrate, we’ve produced an update on the program so far, featuring some of your stories and exploring the impact of this program. Thanks for working with us: https://infogram.com/4-years-of-cser-moocs-1h7j4d7kwy5d4nr

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By Hannah Dodds, Technologies Leader, Deputy Principal, Harrisdale Primary School, WA In 2017, Harrisdale Primary School participated in using the CSER Lending Library by registering via the website https://csermoocs.adelaide.edu.au/library/. We borrowed a mixed kit in Term 2 for 10 weeks, which contained Beebots, Makey Makey’s, Ozobots and Sphero’s. The Lending Library was a fantastic solution […]

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CSER Project Officers spend much of their time working directly with schools in their local setting. Occasionally CSER also runs public events that are open to teachers from all schools. If you would like to participate in professional development with CSER and cannot find a suitable event below, please contact us directly through our Professional Learning […]

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The 2018 Commonwealth Games is almost here! Get your robots ready because we have an exciting lesson plan in store for you! Our Northern Territory Project Officer, Sue Carter, has prepared a free online lesson plan that will inspire a Digital Technologies-themed Commonwealth Games for your classroom using robotics. In this lesson, Sue uses the […]

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We are delighted to welcome Ms Robin McKean to the CSER Team as WA Project Officer. Robin brings a wealth of experience and developed a passion for ICT with opportunities provided as Microsoft Innovative Teacher 2005; 2007; Westfield Premier’s Research Scholar (Technologies) 2006 and the National Award for Quality Schooling; Excellence by a Teacher – […]

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Our team member, Steven Payne, is leaving the CSER Digital Technologies team in March to focus on his other education work. Steven has been a valued member of our team, as a Project Officer for Western Australia. During his time with us, we have been inspired by his enthusiasm and ideas, and the WA education community has expressed great […]

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Did you miss Google Edu On Air last year? Dr Rebecca Vivian and Prof. Katrina Falkner presented a session on creating assessment activities for the Digital Technologies Curriculum. You can watch the recorded webinar on-demand! This session unpacks ideas for assessing student learning of Digital Technologies in the primary and secondary years using Google Apps for […]

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How prepared do you feel to assess student learning in K-12 Digital Technologies? Let us know in our online survey so we can best support teachers, schools and professional development providers. This is your last chance to win a $100 Coles/Myer gift voucher before we close the survey end of Sunday, 25th Feb! Go to the […]

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