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Ray Fleming's take on what's interesting in Education IT in Australia

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  • Blog Post: Your opportunity to apply to join an exclusive community of innovative educators

    Richard, who runs our Microsoft Innovative Educator programme in Australia, has asked me to let you know about the opportunity for practising teachers to apply to join the Microsoft Innovative Education Expert program. We’re looking for top educators, ready to spread the word about...
  • Blog Post: Edmodo app for Windows 8 available now

    At the ISTE Conference in the US, the team from Edmodo (“the world’s largest, free K-12 social learning network”) released the Windows 8 Edmodo app for teachers and students. With thousands of teachers in Australian schools using Edmodo, it means that learners in Australia can easily access the Edmodo...
  • Blog Post: Explain Everything for Windows 8 - now available

    I’ve been away for a nice holiday, and now that I’m back I’m staring at a huge backlog of blog posts to write up, as there’s been so much happening and announced whilst I’ve been away. And because many schools, TAFEs and universities are heading back next week, I thought I’d better get started… There...
  • Blog Post: Research in Practice seminars: Learning and Thriving in a hyper-connected world

    The Principals Australia Institute and the Microsoft Australia Education team are collaborating on a series of breakfast briefings around Australia from mid-March to early April, as part of PAI’s established Research in Practice series. The series puts principals and educators in touch with the latest...
  • Blog Post: Is School Writing the best Windows 8 education app?

    Demografix is a Queensland-based education software developer producing great apps for schools and students – and they have just produced a Windows 8.1 version of their best-selling School Writing app. And working with them has been fascinating, as they have found extra capabilities in Windows 8 that...
  • Blog Post: Snap a whiteboard and bring it into OneNote for Windows 8

    What if there was an app that your students could use to take a photo of anything you write on a whiteboard, store it, convert it to text, and make it easy for them to search back to find a specific word you’d written on the whiteboard last term? And thus mean that you could deliver lessons/lectures...
  • Blog Post: Accelerate–the Microsoft Australia Education Newsletter

    We've just launched the sign-up page for the customer newsletter from the Microsoft Australia Education team. It’s designed for teaching and learning staff in schools and colleges across Australia, and will be sent out monthly in 2014. This is in addition to any of the other newsletters you may receive...
  • Blog Post: Announcing the Microsoft Australian Teachers Blog

    My colleagues have been talking for a while about creating a more teaching-centric blog for Australia, focusing more on the teaching and learning side of technology. And a couple of weeks ago they launched the Microsoft Australian Teachers Blog , which is all about technology in the classroom. It will...
  • Blog Post: GeoGebra for Windows 8 released

    GeoGebra is an open-source mathematics app that is used on over 700,000 classroom Windows computers in Australia alone. And the developers have just released GeoGebra for Windows 8 , so now there’s a touch-based version of GeoGebra for students using tablets, or teachers using interactive whiteboards...
  • Blog Post: Office templates to help families of children with autism

    My colleagues in the US have been working with Autism Speaks and the University of Washington Autism Centre to produce a series of free PowerPoint templates that can be customised to explain social situations to children with autism, as well as a series a Word templates of documents and forms for the...
  • Blog Post: How students can work together on the same Office documents in real time

    The Microsoft Office suite has always had ways for different authors to work on the same document – but the reality for many people is that they often simply circulate a document via email, then people make changes and email the document back to the sender. And then somebody has to bring all the changes...
  • Blog Post: Collaborative learning with Windows 8 multi-touch apps– flip the screen over!

    Most of the Windows 8 education apps have been designed for a single user experience – a student sitting at a screen, or using a touch tablet – where the screen is always oriented in one way with a clear ‘top’ and ‘bottom’ of the screen – with the text and graphics designed to be readable in that way...
  • Blog Post: Microsoft IT-Girls Day 2013 - Sydney 6th May

    Do you work in a girls or mixed school in or near Sydney? Do you want to help to raise the profile of the IT industry amongst your female students? If you haven’t taken part in these events before, then you’ll be in a for a big surprise, as it shatters the image of IT as being a geeky...
  • Blog Post: nsquared numbers: free Windows 8 education apps from nsquared

    In my last blog post I wrote about nsquared , a Sydney-based company producing education software that works with touch devices, and the first of their free apps for Windows 8 – nsquared snap . Today, here's their next free Windows 8 education app – numbers.   nsquared numbers Link nsquared numbers...
  • Blog Post: Building an engaging Windows 8 education app for teachers

    Developing an education app is about designing an experience, before writing code . One way is to talk to teachers and students. Another way is to look at examples, and that's why we created 'App Idea Books' for Windows 8. They cover different areas – games, entertainment, news, productivity, sports...
  • Blog Post: Update 9–Windows 8 education apps from Australia

    I've written before about Lucas Moffitt , an independent developer who's writing Windows 8 apps to help teachers.  He's turning them out pretty quickly – Australian Teacher Professional Standards Evaluator , Class Seater and Lesson Coder – and he's just had his most ambitious project published in...
  • Blog Post: Technology classroom wall poster

    Here's an interesting poster for your IT classroom walls, highlighted by Steve Clayton on the Next at Microsoft blog . Apparently it was created for the Microsoft careers team, to highlight some of the different career options linked to the many different technologies that we work with at Microsoft....
  • Blog Post: Update 8-Windows 8 Education Apps from Australian developers

    Last week I wrote about Lucas Moffitt, an Australian developer of Windows 8 education apps . Well, his latest two apps have been released into the Windows Store 'Education' category, and they are both apps for teachers to use. They are designed around the idea of creating very simple apps that help teachers...
  • Blog Post: Update 7–Windows 8 Education Apps from Australian developers

    As promised yesterday, here's some another Windows 8 Education app developed in Australia. Lesson Coder Link Lesson Coder , is from Lucas Moffitt , who's a developer in Newcastle (the Australian version, not the English one). It's an app designed to allow teachers (or other lesson observers...
  • Blog Post: Update 5–Windows 8 Education Apps

    It's been a long while since I posted an update on Windows 8 Education Apps, and I feel guilty for the gap. So here's a bumper list of apps for Windows 8 for teachers and students. The list of apps is growing rapidly, and I'm not claiming that this list is any way definitive, as it's just nice (and free...
  • Blog Post: Supporting and Enhancing Office 365 deployments with IT Academy

    Are you using Office 365 for education , or thinking of it? Well, there's some help available in the IT Academy programme to ensure all your staff, students and administrators are using it to its fullest potential. Which, let's face it, can be a huge task for a school or institution. Each individual...
  • Blog Post: IT Academy in Australia–450 institutions delivering technology skills and certifications

    According to the Australia Skills Gap Survey 2012 , 7 out of 10 of organisations find it difficult to find individuals with the correct combination of both technical and generic skills. And we can help with that!  We have a program called Microsoft IT Academy which lets education institutions deliver...
  • Blog Post: Free workshops on Microsoft OneNote - Hands-on Tour at Swinburne

    Yesterday I wrote about the new Lenovo Windows 8 tablets and touch laptops . Today, I've been sent details of workshops being run at Swinburne University of Technology on 24th October, with a chance to spend two and a half hours with a Lenovo Tablet PC and OneNote, learning how to use OneNote to support...
  • Blog Post: How to join Skype in the classroom - like 38,000 other teachers

    Did you know that your students can use Skype to connect with a range of fabulous organisations that can broaden the classroom experience for your class – like NASA, museums, and expedition groups? Last week the team from 'Skype in the classroom' announced an expansion of their programme to...
  • Blog Post: The 2013 Innovative Teacher Awards for Australia are now open

    When I was in the UK, I had a couple of years as a judge on the UK Innovative Teacher Awards, run as part of the Partners in Learning programme. It was a definite highlight of each year, as we saw some fabulous examples of inspiring and motivational classroom practice. Although it was always difficult...
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