Motivating students to want to learn

Kids don’t learn from people they don’t like. Firstly, treat your students the same as you’d like to be treated. Each year, on the first day I tell my students that I am not going to clap , whistle, put my hand up, ring a bell or chant to get their attention because if someone did that to me, I wouldn’t like it. I let them know that there is one […]

Teaching fantasy texts?

Fantasy is my favourite genre with one of my favourite authors being Christopher Paolini, author of Eragon. However, teaching the genre can be rather challenging. There are so many elements which bind together to create a fantasy realm. It pushes teachers and students beyond the traditional narrative themes. Watch this: As with any genre, I begin with students deconstructing texts. I like to use student’s work samples so that students […]

The Computer Science Field Guide

The Computer Science Field Guide is an online resource for teaching Computer Science to students. It is a New Zealand based project, providing  content in the form of text (both for students and guidance for teachers), images and interactives.  The project was formed because people often confuse computer science with programming. “Computer science is about tools and techniques for designing and building applications that are very fast, have great interfaces, […]

Binary in plain English

You need to teach binary as part of the curriculum, but do really understand it? The binary number system is a base-2 number system. This means, it only has two numbers, 0 and 1. You might be thinking, our decimal number system has numbers 0-9 so why don’t we use this? Well, with electronics and computer systems, they only have two electrical states, on or off. These two states can be represented as zero […]

Teaching Secondary Math? Get on board with Mr Woo!

Eddie Woo is Head Teacher Mathematics at a public comprehensive high school in Sydney, Australia. Recently he has become a YouTube hit! How did it all begin? Unfortunately, Mr Woo had the experience of teaching a student a few years ago who was very ill and in and out of hospital regularly. He noticed that what the student craved, was to just feel normal, to do normal things, not have appointment […]

Four simple array tasks, which don’t require much preparation

An array is an arrangement of objects, pictures, or numbers in columns and rows. In mathematics, they are useful representations of multiplication concepts. For example, 3 x 4 = 12 can be shown in an array of 3 rows and 4 columns equals 12 in total.  There are many ways to teach arrays but here are four activities which students really enjoy. Teaching arrays idea 1: When you ask students to sit on the […]

Is homework meaningful?

Homework is a topic which generally doesn’t receive much discussion in schools. Of course, there are policies about how much homework students should complete each week (which teachers should be aware of), but little discussion occurs amongst colleagues about what homework is being set. It took me several years to get year level text books off my student’s class book list because teachers commented, “We’ve always had a text book, […]

Live holographic teleportation? Yes!

Before I get to the live holographic teleportation, which is amazing, I’ll give you a little background information. HoloLens is mixed reality. It allows you to interact with virtual holograms and real objects in your physical world with holographic technology through a headset (the lens straps onto your head and partially covers your eyes). Last year I showed my students the Minecraft HoloLens video by Minecraft Gameplay. They were totally blown […]

Australian bush fire unit using Microsoft OneNote Class Notebook

This term I had to teach a unit on Australian bush fires as part of the Year 5 curriculum. The content descriptor is: The impact of bush fires or floods on environments and communities, and how people can respond (ACHASSK114) . Previously I have taught this unit with the help of a Microsoft SharePoint page which I created for the unit. I use SharePoint as it is our whole school’s learning […]