Partnering with the Ministry of Education, the IT industry is supporting the introduction of the new Digital Technologies & Hangarau Matihiko curriculum content into schools and kurawith the Tahi Rua Toru Tech Challenge.
The Tahi Rua Toru Tech (123Tech) Challenge is split into two different formats to suit all age groups at school. Students up to Year 4 undertake a series of fun activities and puzzles to learn computational thinking, without the use of computers. Those who complete eight or more activities receive a Discovery CREST Award and can participate in the Regional, then National 123Tech Championship.
Students in Years 5 to 13 undertake a project-based challenge in teams of 3-4. The Challenge brief is simple: identify a problem in their school or local community and, using digital technologies, devise a means to solve it. Once the challenge is completed students will receive a CREST certificate and have the option to present their projects to industry professionals at Regional and then possibly National finals.
Problem-solving and creativity
The brief is purposely vague to let students truly delve into their problem-solving skills and creativity which can yield amazing results. Examples from last year’s winners include a role-playing survival game set in a 3D environment to promote mental health awareness, a digital streamlined solution to help the city mission, and a simple game to create awareness around the impact of pollution on the environment.
The challenge is simple to run. Teachers are provided will all the resources to help guide students through the process, as well the opportunity to have an industry mentor help guide students on their projects.
Most importantly, the Tahi Rua Toru Tech Challenge has been developed so that anyone can get involved, no matter their level of experience with digital technologies. It’s completely free of charge and is a simple but innovative and exciting way to engage students with DT&HM in the classroom. The only limits are students’ creativity and innovation!
By Daniel Vernon, IT Professionals New Zealand.
To find out more see page 5 or go to 123Tech.nz