News and Notes


Tuesday 1 March, 2016

Registrations now open for INTERFACE Xpo 2016. Plus, Google joins sponsors and will present on latest trends and products

BYOD? MLE? 3D printing? Robotics? Chromebooks? Flipping? Coding? Whatever’s on your technology radar, you’ll find it at INTERFACE Xpo 2016. If you make – or help to make – the ICT decisions for your school, this is a day not to be missed. It includes presentations from Google and N4L, workshops, an exhibition and networking opportunities – PLUS, enjoy an inspiring talk on using technology in education from Ian Taylor, founder of Animation Research. We’ll be visiting Wellington, Taupo and Auckland. We’re looking forward to a fantastic day. Make sure you don’t miss out. Book your spot.

Register here »

Challenge your students with the NZTA Games Design Competition

Got the best road safety game idea? Gather your team, make it happen and win! The Game Design Competition 2016 is open to Year 7-13 students and runs through Terms 1 and 2.

There are two categories:

  • Game Design Document
  • Or Playable Game + Game Design Document.

Entries are by teams of three or more. The competition website includes game design tasks linked to curriculum resources across several learning areas.

Find out more »

The Mind Lab: Last chance to join March entry for postgrad course

Applications close soon for the March intake of the Mind Lab by Unitec’s ‘Postgraduate Certificate in Applied Practice (Digital & Collaborative Learning). Make sure you get in quick to secure your spot on this 32-week part-time programme taking place in Auckland, Gisborne, Wellington, Christchurch, Rotorua and Whangarei. Plus, you could also earn yourself a 20% discount and a morning tea.

Read more »

Going through a visioning process

As part of our ‘The Challenge of Change’ feature, ACTIVboard’s Murray Thoms assesses what needs to happen before change. “Before spending any money, I would recommend that schools complete an audit of their existing ICT assets, as part of an overall visioning process, giving staff a clear picture of what it is their school is wanting to achieve terms of learning technologies and methodologies for their students. The school leadership needs to be able to articulate how this vision translates to an investment that will better prepare their students for the world they encounter when they leave school.”

Find out more »

Limited internet access can subtract from kids’ education

Can a kid succeed in school with only a mobile device for internet access at home? Lorena Uribe doesn’t have to think about that one: “Absolutely not,” she says. When her old computer broke down several years ago, she and her teenage daughter found themselves in a bind for about five months: homework to do and no computer or broadband access at home.

Researchers from Rutgers University and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop collected dozens of stories for a new study – ‘Opportunity for all?’ – focused specifically on lower-income families with school-age children. They surveyed nearly 1,200 parents with kids between 6 and 13 years old, whose income is below the national median for families with children.

Find out more »

Equico and APPA PD programme offers $20,000 for grants

Equico, in collaboration with the Auckland Primary Principals’ Association (APPA), is providing an opportunity for Principals to further their PD, with a funded grant that can be used for training and learning. There are four grants available to the value of $5,000 each. “By contributing towards Principals’ professional development, Equico and APPA believe the benefits are far-reaching, potentially inspiring a whole school community,” said Equico’s Martin Frankland.

Find out more »

Review: HP Pavilion x2

Looking for a student computing device that will meet all the demands of your 1:1 programme? The BYOD market’s pretty crowded at the moment – choice is big, choosing can be hard. Price? Specs? Form? Design? Toughness? Does one do it all? Before making the call, you should definitely check out the Pavilion x2 (RRP$599), the latest device from HP. It easily transforms between modes by way of a hinged, detachable, 10-inch screen. There are four forms: notebook, tablet, ‘tent’, and ‘stand’.

Read more »

Wanted: Your ‘coding’ experiences

Are you using coding in your classroom? If so, we want to hear from you for an upcoming ‘special issue’ on computer programming. We want you to tell us about your experiences using this type of teaching solution. Just get in touch with INTERFACE Editor Greg Adams and he’ll tell you what we’re looking for, 

WIN Meccanoid G15, Epson Workforce Pro, Zippy Drumkit and a mind-controlled PuzzleBox Orbit helicopter

We have some great prizes up for grabs this issue. We’re giving away a Meccanoid G15 Personal Robot, Epson Workforce Pro WF-4640, and Puzzlebox Orbit ‘mind-controlled’ helicopter. Or how about making some serious noise with a Zippy Drumkit Playmat?

Find out more »

Thanks to ‘HP and Pavilion x2’ for sponsoring this ‘News & Notes’.



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