VITTA Conference 2012 (ICT Conference) Notes by KEA

Here are my notes from a conference Dan Farrant and I went to last week. There was lots of relevant and interesting ideas for any curriculum area so I thought I’d share my notes through this blog. These are just my notes from what the presenters said that I wanted to capture so please don’t take them necessarily as my thoughts/opinions. However, there is also an ideas section at the bottom that are my ideas. If you would like any more information from the conference, feel free to drop me an email.


Kezia Easter


VITTA Conference 2012 – 6th August

Keynote Address: Yong Zhao

Twitter: @YongZhaoUO

Book: World Class Learners: Educating Creative and Entrepreneurial Students

ICT profession more than just programming. Need management skills, creativity, etc.

What kind of students do we have to produce? Is the question, not what ICT skills we teach, not what curriculum we teach.

The world doesn’t need a whole lot of students educated with exactly the same skills and the same level.

Every industry is now global.

Schools traditionally have created employees. Now we need to move towards creating entrepreneurs: business entrepreneurs, social entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs, policy entrepreneurs… Mass entrepreneurship.

What are the entrepreneurial qualities? How can we increase these in our students?

“Quality” education could hurt student learning confidence.

Personalised and strength-based curriculum for all INDIVIDUAL students. – support for ILPs for all students???

Student autonomy – global campus – product-oriented learning – share skills and knowledge. Education as a global enterprise.


The Changing Space of Education – Anne Mirtschin


google doc:

Learning can happen 24/7, not just in the classroom. (Cyber Safety)

Online webinars offered through the Zoo website. Bringing the world to the classroom.

Adobe Connect

Blackboard Collaborate – free for DEECD schools: can share files through this.

Google Hangouts



e.g. connecting gifted students across classrooms learning about the same thing. Share guest speakers. online debates with other schools. Lunchtime activities for small groups to connect to guest speakers outside of the school.

Recording lessons for students to be able to re-visit later.

Share teacher/student expertise with other classes.

Use chat to clarify confusions during lessons.

Mystery Skype: Skype with people overseas with students. Students can ask yes/no questions of person to work out where they are.



Thinking in the Cloud:


Concept mapping: Presenting learning or “maps” of content using or spiderscribe. Can embed photos or videos or documents. Use to map learning progress for students.

Wallwisher: online sticky note board. or Edistorm for mobile apps.

Other Options: thoughtboxes, spicynodes, slatebox.

DFA: Writing and collaboration redefined by google docs video on youtube. Students do work on Google docs and share with teacher so teacher can check and edit and comment in real time while students are working on it. Assessment as Learning.

Read Write Think. USA based. Not true cloud-based but lots of good ideas and resources.

HackPad. Allows to replay of creation of the document to see the process of learning. Can create multiple layers of documents.

Dipity. Xtimeline. Digital timelines. Create and share timelines.

Ted-Ed. Create scaffolded discussions around video content. Get students to do this! Video content created by teachers and animated by artists. Can also create your own. Students watch video, take quiz, check answers, think questions, dig deeper questions – with info and other resources linked to the topic.

Youtube for schools. Can be embedded into Ted Ed.

Vialogues. Similar to Ted Ed.


SimpleMind+ for creating mind maps



Inspiration Maps Lite


Keynote Address: Greg Whitby – Learning by Inquiring


From I know, to we learn.

Knowing who your Learners are is the starting point. Not sit down this is what you’re going to learn. Where is their ZPD? What do they need next to help them learn individually?

It’s about the students learning something.  Support for LI’s.

Teachers as inquirers to learn about their craft.

Whose responsibility is it to learn? The learner! Both teachers and students.

Timperly’s inquiry cycle.

How do you use data to inform your teaching?

Use what we’ve got now to its potential.

Imagination/vision, creativity, innovation.

Improving practice will make the difference.

Get rid of staff rooms 🙂 eat when you need to, etc. same with students…


Going Digital – Lenva


BYOD program. Use of Google Apps for Education. Whole school use of EPortfolios through wikis/Google apps. Expectation that all teachers utilise ICT in all aspects of the classroom.

What we want our students to look like? What can we do to get them there? What do we need to do as a school to get them there?

Common understandings and tools.

Sustainablility of new approaches needs to be considered.

Creation of a trust model.

Creation of a policy for mobile devices. Keep it simple. Students, parents and staff sign.

Keep track of devices brought into school. Ultimate responsibility is with the student.

Requirement that laptops are on home and contents insurance.

Lease options for students without their own device.

Use of anything that can access the internet. Preferred to have laptops or tablets. But ipods or phones can be used.

Considerations of how to allow students to access the wireless network on their devices.

Unplugged solutions: picasa web, webdav, email, cloud storage, media.

All classes have an account in divshare to store/embed into their portfolio all media for that class.

Partnerships with other local/feeder schools to upskill all teachers on ICT capacity.

Use of Google Apps for Education and Teacher Dashboard through Google to keep track of student eportfolios. Can easily see if students have/have not updated their portfolio.

Teaching students and teachers which formats are best to store work in, e.g. docs, avi, pdf, etc.

Use of student leaders who receive training and then go and share this knowledge with their classes.

Compulsory apps for students who use tablets/ipods/phones to be able to do work. e.g. Printcentral, wifiphoto transfer, goodreader, voice thread, blogger, etc. some paid and some free.

Only use apps that can be used to create new content. As opposed to drill and practice games, etc.

No difference between what students do at home and at school. Makes learning seem more real.

ICT pedagogy coach with full release time to meet with teachers, drop in to classes, share knowledge, etc.

Brings the devices out of hiding.

Digital citizenship program with culture of trust to ensure all students use devices appropriately, resulting in privileged use and open use of devices for all students. one wrecks it for all.

How to screen casts created by teachers and students for teachers and students.


Blogging in English in Year 9:


check out virtual choir video for analogy for working together collaboratively online to create a whole. Point: amazing things can happen online when we work together. Also illustrates the connections between people even when we’re spread out over the world. Where are the connections in the classroom? How can we help each other to create something great? i.e. learning!

Are we afraid of what can happen? Are these fears unfounded? How will we know?

Opportunities for shy students to be able to share their knowledge/thoughts/opinions in a format that allows them to be able to do this.

Idea of the smartest person in the room being the room. The collective brainpower!

Don’t just consume, create! Rheingold.

How do we get students to be more reflective and better critical thinkers? Blogging! Not assess it though. Allowing students to be more honest and accurate.

Students can read each other’s writing and get excited about others seeing their work. Gives it a real audience. Getting a global audience too! Use of online networks to promote students’ writing. Through Facebook/Twitter/etc.

Preparation: How to behave online. Rules: traditional and what’s most important – how to give real feedback/comments. e.g. give it a context, proofread, etc.

Keeping a journal that has a public audience. Use interesting/thought provoking prompts for writing e.g. You are what you know. Do something life affirming and write about it. Add how and why questions to prompt thinking. Go to Wikipedia and read a random article. Get lost online. Online serendipity. Go down to the first link that captures your attention and follow it., repeat. Write about connections you can see between what you learn between subjects.

Invite authors or personalities to read and respond to students’ blogs. Encouraging them as writers/creators.

Investigate students’ own authorial voice, rather than just what the teacher wants to hear.




Create a video sharing an aspect of your life that you can teach others. i.e. life on a farm, travel, sports, art, hobbies, parents’ business/job.

Use Twitter to clarify confusions (students ask questions during lesson and hashtag specific lesson/topic). Teacher to respond to later or share questions to all respond to collaboratively.

Year Level connectedness through edmodo??? A page for the year level?

Social and learning etiquette for using mobile devices. i.e. not on them when being spoken to.

Digital Citizens: Creation of a trust model for students to be able to use devices as learning tools.

Asking “why are we doing this?” for our pedagogy and curriculum. Who is learning? How do we know this is at the appropriate level? What evidence is there to show they are learning?

Drop in sessions early in the morning with PD for whatever is needed by staff.

Use of student leaders who receive training and then go and share this knowledge with their classes.

Guide to commenting on blogs through Grammar Girl.





One thought on “VITTA Conference 2012 (ICT Conference) Notes by KEA

  1. “Schools traditionally have created employees. Now we need to move towards creating entrepreneurs”.
    Employees cannot create entrepreneurs – so we need to BE entrepreneurs. The term ‘teachepreneur’ has started to gain momentum in the eduspeak vocabulary (big think, mindshift). How many of us consider ourselves entrepreneurs? Are we constantly looking for that that new idea that will change the game? are we prepared to do something brand new that may completely fail? – and then reflect and do it again even though we had a bad experience because we believe inthe idea? Do we model this behaviour for our students – that taking risks and trying new things and failing is not only a good way to learn, but that it IS learning! Does our pedagogy, assessment and feedback promote ‘getting it right’ (safe/employee) or on the process of learning (risk taking/entrepreneurs). My first thoughts would be the former – not because of any inadequacies in us as teachers – but because of our system. Schooling is a big, safe system of employees that is resistant to change, not a cutting edge industry that values and rewards innovation.

    How do we become ‘teachepreneurs’?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *