- using technology better- Newsletter - issue 1 - 2019 BLOG UPDATES - something we think you'll like - tools + tips - AND MORE!

Welcome to the first Using Technology Better newsletter of 2019!

We hope that you had a lovely break over Christmas and New Year and if you are a teacher in the Southern Hemisphere are getting ready to launch into a new academic year.

While things do get a big quieter here for us during term breaks we have put our energy and focus into developing our online courses. We’re excited to share some of these courses with you this week (see below) and will tell you more about them in our next newsletter.

Our 2019 training calendars are filling up with events across Australia, New Zealand, Asia and further abroad. If we can support you with your 2019 goals - whether through our online Professional Learning Network, face to face workshops and bootcamps, online courses or anything else - please feel free to get in touch.

A few holiday snaps from the team!

1. One of many beach walks for Donna ~ 2. The Vardeanega's Christmas lights ~ 3. Tim's kids testing the chilly, summer, South Island sea ~ 4. Mike - A dare turns into a 450m climb straight up Williamsons Spur in Queenstown, NZ ~ 5. Adrian and family enjoying a walk in the park ~ 6. Lara's dog Huxley checking out the views at Lake Hawea, NZ

tip of the week

Inserting Icons into Google Slides

Google Slides offers some great shapes and arrows to help you design great looking slides. But do you want more?

In this video (2m 43sec), Tim will show you how to add fantastic icons to your slides. You will use Icons for Slides to up your design game.

SOMETHING to make you think

How to be "Team Human" in the digital future

“It's not a matter of rejecting the digital or rejecting the technological. It's a matter of retrieving the values that we're in danger of leaving behind and then embedding them in the digital infrastructure for the future.” - Douglas Rushkoff

A great, 11 minute video (or podcast) that will get you thinking about the role of technology in our world now and in the future.

Teachers - I would recommend it as a great way to get your staff talking about the use of technology and its impact on society. Consider how you can use tech to develop 21st Century skills, values and morals, and ask your students to do the same.

Check out the video here or find it on the TED Talks Daily channel wherever you get your podcasts.

blog posts you may have missed

Check out the practical, helpful tips in our blogs below.

Something you want us to blog about? Make a request here or check out our website to see all our posts.

The Life-Changing Magic of a tidy Google Drive - Three tips to get your Google Drive under control! - If you’re anything like me your Google Drive can sometimes get out of control. 57 ‘Untitled Docs’, 123 folders under ‘My Drive’ and don’t even get me started on ‘Shared with me’. Here are three simple tips to help you get your Drive under control for the new year. Fifteen minutes is all that is needed to get you feeling like a digital Marie Kondo. - By Lara Kirk

How to get a date picker in a Google Sheets cell I recently learnt a nifty trick in Google Sheets that will force a cell to display a pop-up date picker box when you double click on it. This is a great alternative to typing in dates manually! The secret is to use the Data validation feature to limit the cell data to dates only. - By Samantha Vardanega

Blogger for Teacher Appraisal - Using Google Blogger is not only a great way to reflect on your practice but it also offers an efficient way to align samples of your practice with the Teaching Standards. I have seen many teacher blogs which are done on Google Slides or Sites but the awesome thing about Blogger is that you can label your evidence with the Teaching Standards. - By Tim Thatcher

Updates - google classroom

Google Classroom has a fresh new look and some new features just in time for those Aussie and New Zealand teachers who are heading back to school!

Check out our video overview of what’s new, including a preview of the new Gradebook tool which is currently in beta (your school can sign up for the beta program here).

Bonus tip! The old ‘About’ section is called ‘Class details’ and you can change this by clicking on the settings cog. If you have information in here you’ll see a little arrow button at the bottom of the header image in a Google Classroom. Click this to quickly see the ‘Class details’ information for that classroom.

A cool resource....

BBC Sound Effects - 16,000 free sound effects for you to use.


Professional Development in your pyjamas, with your cuppa, in the comfort of your own home!

We are continuously working to expand on the professional development we can offer to teachers and corporate clients online.

Get access to some incredible resources, courses and our online community.

Watch out for our next newsletter which will highlight the new courses that we have been working on.

upcoming events

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. :)

2019 - Victoria, Queenstown and Alexandra

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!

GCE Boot Camps - Click on one of the locations listed below to find out more!

Alexandra, NZ - Level 1 - February 2019

Taupo, NZ - Level 1 - Feb 2019

Geelong, Victoria, AU - Level 1 - Feb/March 2019

Napier, NZ - Level 2 - March 2019

Queenstown, NZ - Level 2 - March 2019

Online Level 1

Online Level 2

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.

Auckland, NZ - April 2019

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Created with images by Ian Schneider - "untitled image" • thr3 eyes - "Christmas Lights Bokeh Effect" • Denisse Leon - "untitled image" • rawpixel - "untitled image" • Alexas_Fotos - "figure puzzle last part"

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