- using technology better- Newsletter - issue 9 - 2019 BLOG UPDATES - something we think you'll like - something to make you think- AND MORE!


A HUGE thank you to all our readers who completed our newsletter review. You're awesome!

We appreciate that time you took to give us feedback. It made us totally stoked (that's kiwi/aussie for super happy) to hear that you are getting ideas, inspiration and motivation from our little newsletter. We truly do try hard to make sure it adds value for you.

We'll take some time to have a look at your suggestions and see what we can do - some changes are already in effect - let's see if you notice!

I used Google's random number picker (see the short video below) to select the winner of a free online course with UTB valued at up to $300 and we're delighted to announce that the winner is ....

Michelle Bromby!! πŸŽ‰πŸš€

Michelle - check out our online courses here and email us to let us know which you'd like to get started with! Congratulations!

We've decided to keep the review open for another fortnight so if you didn't get a chance to complete it please click here.

We'll announce another winner in next fortnight's newsletter.

Noteworthy blogs...

Automatic Feedback in Google Forms - Encourage revision, extension and lifelong learning

As a teacher, one of my favourite features in Google Forms was the ability to automate feedback for my students based on how they answered. By doing this I was able to direct them towards support or revision if they answered incorrectly, or extend them by providing them with materials for them to take their learning further. - By Lara Kirk

Encourage Students to use spare time purposefully

As learning becomes more self directed and students work collaboratively more often, we tend to have times when some have finished and some haven’t. Rather than letting those finished have β€˜free time’ how about designing some form of a choice board with purposeful, engaging activities that develop 21st century skills. Here are four ideas you could include. - By Donna Golightly

5 ways to develop creative STEAM projects

It is possible to deliver a STEAM project to students which kills creativity. Without significant and purposeful learning design STEAM learning can inhibit the very things we are trying to support students to develop. Here are five tidbits of thought to help you think critically about STEAM and creativity. - By Tim Thatcher

Have something you'd like us to blog about? Let us know by clicking the link below!

Something to make you think...

Should teachers be threatened by the rise of AI in the classroom?

Do you ever wonder if a robot will one day take over your role as classroom teacher?

Here's an article from researcher Neil Selwyn (Monash University, Melbourne) that provides six reasons why AI will never take over from human teachers.

Do you agree?

microsoft word update...

Turn your Microsoft Word document into an attractive website easily!

Have you seen this recent update in Microsoft Word?

With Transform to Web, you can easily transform your Word documents into interactive, easy-to-share webpages with just three clicks. Transform to Web offers a variety of styles that look great on any device, helping you easily publish a wide variety of polished content, including newsletters and training manuals - using the mechanics of Sway. You can also view analytics on the page, including who has viewed or read your content.

To transform a document, go to File > Transform and select a style. This feature is available for Word with an Office 365 subscription and Word Online

something we think you'll like...

Biodigital Human

"The virtual body as the health equivalent of Google Maps." - The New York Times

This is an incredible resource for learning about the human body. We all got a little bit lost in it after Tim shared it with us last week and we think you and your students will too. Check it out here.

" A digital revolution for studying the human body" - WIRED

upskill with our online courses

Professional Development that suits your schedule and interests!

πŸ’•πŸ’•πŸ’• We love hearing from people who are using our online courses and professional learning network to challenge their thinking and increase their skills and knowledge. Thanks for all the feedback and embracing the power of online learning! πŸ’•πŸ’•πŸ’•

Get together with some colleagues and work through a course together - collaborate, share ideas and encourage each other!

Our online courses cover a range of topics and concepts - from your own digital fluency, through to STEAM and practical, classroom applications for Digital Technologies.

There really is something for everyone!

tool of the week...


Teachers are often asking us whether there are any browser based apps that can be used for making music and podcasts. There are quite a few out there but I have found Soundtrap to be the most intuitive for students.

It also allows online collaboration and assignments can be posted on Google Classroom.

It's basically like Google Docs but with sound!

workshops and training near you!

  • Are you looking for practical, engaging ways to integrate Literacy and Digital Technologies?
  • Are you explicitly teaching your students how to find information online and look at it critically?
  • Are you teaching your students about video comprehension?
  • Are you showing your students how to find and use content in a legal and ethical way?
  • Are your students developing the skills needed to be creators of valuable content that allows them to have a voice in the online world?
  • Are you making the most of the digital tools you have available to teach your students in an authentic, meaningful way which connects with the way learning actually takes place in the real world?

If you're interested in finding out how you can do more of the above then our 'Literacy in the 21st C' workshop is for you.

This is a shiny new course which we are in the process of selecting locations around NZ and AU to hold this day long workshop. If you are interested in hosting us or keen to register your interest click here!

These boot camps are fast paced, 2 day courses that cover a wide range of G Suite tools and how to use them in the classroom. You will also sit the 3 hour Google Certified Educator exam, where you will demonstrate your knowledge with multiple choice and practical scenario questions.

We've seen an increase in demand for our Google Certified Educator boot camps at both Level 1 and 2. This is great, as we think our two day courses have a lot to offer for everyone working with G Suite. There's several locations to choose from below. If you'd like to host one at your school, as always, feel free to get in touch!

Check out dates and locations in New Zealand here.

Back by popular demand....

Technology has been evolving at a rapid pace, artists and designers are pushing the boundaries. New techniques and strategies have emerged which art teachers can harness to engage students in innovative projects.

In this fun, meaningful workshop teachers are supported to explore how new technologies and ideas can be integrated into the art room. Participants will enjoy hands on experimentation and lively discussion around how art, technology and innovative thinking can be integrated into the classroom.

Check out all the dates and locations here!

Not seeing an event near you? Do you think your area/district could benefit from some digital training?

If you'd like to request a workshop or support in your area please get in touch by clicking the button below. Host schools get a free attendee!


This fortnight's STEAM tool video is all about the delightful Makey Makey - one of our favourite tools for bringing coding into the physical world.

This video is part of a series we filmed with the PBTech Edu team in Auckland in 2018. We'll share one with you each fortnight but if you want to see them all you can check them out here!

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Created with images by Jon Tyson - "untitled image" β€’ Owen Beard - "untitled image" β€’ Antonina Bukowska - "untitled image" β€’ Guilherme Stecanella - "untitled image" β€’ Alice Moore - "untitled image" β€’ Thomas William - "untitled image" β€’ Alexas_Fotos - "teamwork together objectives"

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