Posts from the ‘laptops’ Category

Sugata Mitra: The child-driven education

If you missed watching Sugata Mitra‘s famous TED talk, about his “Hole in the Wall” experiments showing children motivated by their own curiosity teaching themselves and each other, you can see it here.

His new talk is equally engaging:


Adobe Captivate 4

The Adobe Captivate software, on the student laptops and available to DET home users, has great potential for students and staff.

The software assists you to capture and record screen activity on your PC or laptop, create interactive tutorials, quizzes, podcast, screencast and generally make a variety of professional multimedia presentations. The software interacts with other Adobe products, like Photoshop.

Here’s an example from Adobe.

Read more about the software here.

Many online resources and tutorials, on how to use Captivate, are tagged at my Delicious page.

Anyone using Captivate at your school?

Adobe Captivate 4



Schools trialled blogED, a blogging tool soon to be available to all DET staff and students, during 2009 with great success.

This tool will enable staff to quickly and easily establish blogs for each student, in every class, generated using ERN.

There are extensive tutorials and good support is available, making this tool a great resource for students who have been issued laptops. Opportunities to learn about good digital citizenship by exploring the requirements for using original, student created material or following the creative commons guidelines at the blog abound.

Here’s a video tour of the tool you can access via the intranet.

How does my school get involved?

Read everything you need to know about the blogED tool on page 3 of the latest CCP bulletin #30.

Updates regarding blogED can accessed here when connected to the Connected Classrooms intranet.

Encouraging your principal to be ‘provisioned’ for AMU Learning Tools access from the 15th March by emailing will assist you to get students and staff, especially stage 5, composing and blogging quickly at your school.


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How can the school help students to use social media safely?

Deputy principals regularly deal with conflicts that arise from misuse of social networking sites like MySpace and Facebook.

There are countless useful sites about cybersafety and you are likely to already have many of these in your favourites, like CybersmartThe Alannah and Madeline Foundation and Click.

A great resource to assist your school with the important task of educating students to play safely in an online world is the Manager of the Department’s Web Filter Unit, Elaine Talbert‘s Delicious tags. Elaine has collected and tagged a wealth of sites, showing us how Delicious can be effectively employed.



The more informed and positive the whole community conversation at your school is, the more likely students are to become good digital citizens. It is important that students are not tarred as irresponsible and poor digital citizens in general conversation. This will only lead to more inappropriate usage. Most, of course, do the right thing.

A few ideas:

1. Talk positively about the ‘good digital citizenship’ of students at the school, especially of Year 10 who have the laptops, explaining what this actually means. If the school frames the conversation positively it allows misdemeanours to be the exception rather than the rule. Give the students real narratives of ‘how’ a peer dealt with a cybersafety issue, as this will assist others to ‘know’ what to do when a challenge arises in their online world.

2. Run parent information sessions that give positive strategies for managing student usage at home. Do not spread fear and anxiety but concrete strategies for cybersafety. For example, screens are best located in shared areas of the house not isolated in bedrooms.

3. Have a clear school policy on the actions and steps students and parents take to address issues of cyberbullying and regularly publish in the school newsletter and other forums.

4. Celebrate the students savvy use of technology whenever possible to build a positive atmosphere. Praise their sensible use of mobile devices.

5. Educate the staff about bluetooth, 3G access to the internet from mobile devices, social networking and the school’s policies.

There are many other strategies and ideas that you use at your school. Please share links and ideas by making a comment here at our blog.

For example, this teacher has made a useful blog post about their experiences, with useful links here.


Everyone knows the feeling of working on multiple computers –  work, home, their laptop – and not having their bookmarked, favourite websites available when they need them. Delicious is a social bookmarking site that allows you to save your favourites online, tag them for ease of reference and collaborate with colleagues by linking accounts.

Here’s a short video explanation.

Try searching my Delicious tags for 1:1 laptop use and OneNote. Useful?

Signup here. You will need to use your Yahoo email address (or get one) to join. Most DET people add their professional email when prompted to include a ‘secondary’ address.

Thoughts, question, issues?

Please comment if you use Delicious or successfully establish an account.