Killer Whale Flash file

 

A little source of amusement… sent to me by a student.

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N4L managed network YEAH RIGHT

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WEGC recently switched from the Loop to N4L . The Loop may not have been perfect but I cannot recall having very poor performance for 24 hours+ (2 minutes to load stuff.co.nz). This is totally unacceptable in my view. Can we get serious about having robust broadband to schools. We are rapidly moving to an environment of BYOD, meaning if the network goes down then “the learning” goes down also.

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Hour of Code

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I asked my Year 10 students to undertake the “Hour of Code” tutorial for Beginners. Not that they are beginners, they have been using Scratch the last few weeks. But it did serve three advantages:

  1. They got to have  a break from Scratch.
  2. They got to experience a slightly different programming “language” Google Blockly
  3. With the review code option they got to see the Javascript code generated from Blockly.

And it was quite fun. A few of the students even printed of the Completion certificate. I have sent the link to my wife to try it out in a Primary school perhaps they can undertake the formal Hour of Code scheduled for December 2014.

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THINK

photo (22)Seen at the Computer History Museum in San Francisco. This slogan represented the IBM culture of THINK first espoused in 1911 by Thomas J Watson. Not terribly different from what we would like our students to do today!

 

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Judging IITP Excellence Awards

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I had the privilege of being one of three judges for  the Education category of the IITP Excellence Awards. There were three outstanding finalists but unfortunately only one could win. The winner was Tim Bell a key player in the development and promulgation of computer science resources nationally and internationally. I will be attending one of his sessions CS4HS in Christchurch in December this year. A great opportunity to learn from the master.

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Epic WEGC Silicon Valley visit

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I have returned from what can only be described as an epic trip to Silicon Valley and Seattle. All students returned safely and on time. Huge amount of learning related to life, people and technology were experienced. These will be included in a later blog once I get my feet on the ground.

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Awards finalists announced

Some great finalists in both the Open Source and IITP awards this year. I am naturally interested in the Education awards and wish all finalists the best.

Open Source Use in Education

For the outstanding use of free and open source in education in New Zealand.

  • Catalyst Open Source Academy
  • Makerspace in Dunedin
  • WEKA Data Mining project

Excellence in IT Education

In partnership with CITRENZ and MBIE

  • Computers in Homes Team, 2020 Communications Trust
  • Samuel Mann, Otago Polytechnic
  • Dr. Tim Bell, University of Canterbury

Check out these finalists and the rest of the categories:

Open Source Award finalists https://www.nzosa.org.nz/categories

IITP IT Excellence Awards http://www.iitp.org.nz/awards/finalists

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