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SchoolNet News June 2016
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Welcome to our June 2016 newsletter. In this issue we bring you:
  • News about our Learning Gains through Play project’s recent graduations in KZN and the Western Cape
  • A report back on our local Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert ‘Hack the Classroom’ event in Johannesburg
  • Information about SchoolNet’s Change Leadership in Technology Integration course which is proving very successful in the Telkom schools
  • A reminder about the EdTechTeam Google in Education Summit in Johannesburg in September
  • and much more.
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Learning Gains through Play project - Western Cape Showcase and Graduation 3 June 2016
Our Learning Gains through Play project recently held its Western Cape Graduation at Somerset West Methodist Primary school. This was to recognise the teachers and principals in the project who had completed the first two components of professional development. This professional development comprised the ICT4RED modules from the Learning and Teaching with Mobile Devices course as well as SchoolNet’s Change Leadership course for senior management teams.   The next professional development component, currently underway, is Peer Coaching, which will last until the end of 2016. Provincial and district WCED officials, including the District Manager, Mr B. Schereka attended the graduation.

Read more here
Microsoft Innovative Educator Experts Hack the Classroom
On 8 and 9 June 2016, Microsoft Innovative Educator Experts (MIE Experts) from across South Africa and Lesotho attended a Hack the Classroom Forum at Microsoft in Gauteng. The aim of the Forum was to bring together the most active MIE Experts to learn from one another’s best practices and get up to speed on the latest Microsoft educational tools. MIE Experts particularly enjoyed networking with other teachers who are using technology in creative and engaging ways in their classrooms. A highlight of the Forum was a group work task which involved MIE Experts working together to develop an idea for a project that would hack a common problem shared by the team. The winning “hack” was produced by Keshma Patel, Mabore Lekalakala and Andries Bogatsu who came up with a project idea to answer the question “Can technology encourage a heathly diet?” which they presented as a sway. Some of the MIE Experts who attended the Forum shared their ideas for using technology in the classroom during the TeachMeet. A range of clever project ideas and uses of tools were presented and Mokhudu Machaba’s TeachMeet idea on “Using Apps to Create Content” was voted as being the best of the session. Phuti Ragophala was recognised for being active on social media and using this tool to share ideas for using technology with teachers in her network. After learning how to use the Office Mix add-in for PowerPoint, MIE Experts were challenged to create an Office Mix to teach others about a randomly assigned topic. Well done to Catherine Mullen, whose Office Mix on making pancakes made excellent use of the interactive features of Office Mix.

Applications are now open for the next round of the Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert program. Find out more on the Microsoft Educator Community and apply by 15 July 2016.
Ms Janet Thomson will be sharing on the Gaming in Education panel at Eduweek…
Gaming, gamification and learning through play are trending throughout the world. It is important we understand how educators can leverage the use of play for learning as this will ensure that we encourage creativity and innovation throughout schooling. SchoolNet’s CEO, Ms Janet Thomson, will be participating at EduWeek this year where she will be on the panel to discuss Gaming in Education and more specifically to explore ways of making learning fun through play.

Read more about Eduweek on our website here
SchoolNet’s Change Leadership in Technology Integration course proving very successful in Telkom schools…
SchoolNet’s Change Leadership for Technology Integration course is proving very successful in all projects where ICTs are being implemented. The purpose of this course is to encourage and motivate school management teams and their staff to understand change and recognise how to lead change as opposed to managing change. The course calls on participants to think through one of the toughest questions about change “Why?”. Understanding the Why in what we do and our greater purpose is a fundamental cornerstone of change. A statement on paper is not enough to justify change as a commitment to learners who are disadvantaged in some way; it is a call to action that will take place in the school. It is this call to action that provides motivation for the effort and commitment that is required to make new initiatives a lasting success in schools.

Read more here
 Learning Gains through Play project - KZN Showcase and Graduation May 27th 2016
Our Learning Gains through Play project recently held its KZN Graduation at Thembelihle Primary School in Howick. Although the Learning Gains through Play programme still has nearly a year to run, the first professional development part of the project has been completed.   This comprised the ICT4RED modules from the Learning and Teaching with Mobile Devices course as well as SchoolNet’s Change Leadership course for senior management teams.  The graduation invigorated enthusiasm and a sense of ownership from the project teachers. Dr Thami Nkabinde from the provincial Department of Education and several District Foundation Phase officials attended the graduation.

Read the full report on our website here
 Rwandan trainers master Microsoft tools
The Rwandan Education Board has been rolling out training to Rwandan teachers to encourage them to enhance their lessons using technology for some time. Between 30 May and 2 June 2016 Megan Rademeyer facilitated a master training session for twenty-three Rwandan trainers and ministry officials on “ICT Integration in Teaching and Learning”.    The intention of this training session was to build on pre-existing skills and knowledge; to expose trainers to Microsoft tools and courseware which they can also share with teachers; and to provide examples of a range of methodologies which can also be deployed when training teachers.  In addition to helping teachers to integrate technology into teaching and learning, it is hoped that trainers who attended this session are now better positioned to help teachers prepare for the Microsoft Office Specialist exam and the Office 365 deployment.

Read the full report on our website here
Learning Gains through Play - Western Cape Peer Coaching Workshop
The first of the Western Cape Peer Coaching workshops in the Learning Gains through Play project was held at Solomon Qatyana Primary on the afternoon of 2nd June 2016. Peer coaching is a highly collaborative professional development experience that assists teachers to develop the skills they need to coach colleagues to succeed in integrating learning technologies and to promote 21st-Century or deep learning activities.  At this first workshop the coaching cycle and planning sessions were briefly discussed with the participants. These will be further unpacked in the next session which will also include principals. Teachers left this workshop feeling confident and committed to this new venture and we look forward to embarking on the peer coaching journey with this group.

Read the full report on our website here
Why not register for the upcoming 4th Annual Google Summit in September? 
This popular yearly Summit will be held at Dainfern College in Johannesburg this year. Enjoy two full days of learning. This two-day high-intensity event focuses on deploying, integrating, and using Google Apps for Education (and other Google tools) to promote student learning in K-12 and higher education. The program features Global Leaders in Google for Education Training,  local Google for Education Innovative Educators, Google for Education Certified Trainers, practicing administrators, and other solution providers.
Register here http://goo.gl/9jDCjL
Find out more athttps://za.gafesummit.com/2016 .  

Date and cost
September 1: Pre-Summit Workshops | $199/Person
September 2 -3: Summit featuring Google for Edu | $225/Person
International Project – Heritage around the world
South Africa is a land with rich cultural heritage, fantastic fauna and flora and landscapes that showcase the beauty that abounds in our country. Teachers of history, this is part of your curriculum already. Wouldn’t it be great to get your students involved in a global project where students can share our heritage and learn about the heritage from around the world.

Read more here
The First Round of the Programming Olympiad is starting soon…
Are you looking for opportunities for your learners to gain more Programming experience? Why not consider participating in the upcoming Programming Olympiad. We know that our learners are learning to code; some teaching themselves; some take MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses); but most are learning IT (Information Technology) at school. 
 
Read more about the Computer Olympiad here
If you are not yet a SchoolNet member, please join us by clicking here and following the prompts to be kept in touch with our various offerings from time to time. We hope you'll visit our blog and our Facebook page regularly. We also invite you to follow us on Twitter (@SchoolNetSa)

Warm regards 
The SchoolNet team

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