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Thomas Bigge's discussion posts

  • Thomas Bigge 25 Mar 2015 4:26pm () in Web based apps to raise engagement for a RANGE of learners.

    Kerri, just started to have a play with booktrack. What a great site - lots of potential for students. Thanks. 

  • Thomas Bigge 25 Mar 2015 4:25pm () in Web based apps to raise engagement for a RANGE of learners.

    Jane, I just had a look at the 'spirals of Inquiry' link you provided. I thought it was exceptional. Using the digital tools to get the boys to talk about their learning goals and seek feedback from their parents. I really was blown away by this. Thanks so much for the link. The movenote app looks like a fantastic way into student voice. 


  • Thomas Bigge 23 Mar 2015 2:41pm () in Web based apps to raise engagement for a RANGE of learners.

    This is the skeleton of my inquiry question:

    How can I improve the engagement of my target students in order to lift their (literacy achievement) by using (web based app here) for writing?

    I am having trouble finding a web based app that will help a range of learners. My target students are below and above the standard. This is because my inquiry is primarily based on engagement. Does anyone out there have any ideas of good web based apps that engage students with their writing? Students in my class use Chromebooks. 

    Any help, thoughts, ideas much appreciated! 


  • Thomas Bigge 23 Mar 2015 2:31pm () in Teaching kids typing skills??

    Hey, I thought I would throw in my 2 cents here. We are a primary school that has just made the transition to 1 to 1 Chromebooks in our Year 6 class. After much consultation with our community, it was clear that parents were concerned that students would suffer if handwriting was no longer taught. They also made it clear that they thought touch typing would be beneficial for students. In light of this, we have decided to teach both. We alternate between teaching handwriting and touch typing. 

    As a teacher I think this is quite effective. Students express that they enjoy the calming nature of handwriting and some prefer to write that way too. With the touch typing, it is good to do it in class. Students need constant reminding that it is technique not speed to begin with, technique comes first, speed later. They generally want to type fast and this alway compromises their technique. It also provides us with the opportunity to talk about posture and how we should sit when using a Chromebook. 

    We use typingclub.com - there are freemium and premium options. 


  • Thomas Bigge 31 Oct 2014 7:32pm () in Coding, programming and Chromebooks

    Thanks Mark, appreciate it. 


  • Thomas Bigge 29 Oct 2014 1:18pm () in Coding, programming and Chromebooks

    Hey guys, I was wondering how do schools teach coding to students using a Chromebook. What are the best applications and where do I start?? 

    Any help appreciated.  

  • Thomas Bigge 29 Oct 2014 1:15pm () in Storage for Chromebooks - Help!


    Thanks for the responses. Those images were just thing I needed to get my memory and thoughts in action. I LOVE the whole dish-rack in a filing cabinet idea. So cheap and SO easy, thanks Sonya. Also, thanks Hamish for the images - cool storage system. The art cupboard idea is kind of where we were going but I was going to have to buy a cupboard from The Warehouse first. 

    Thanks guys, appreciate it. 


  • Thomas Bigge 28 Oct 2014 2:09pm () in Storage for Chromebooks - Help!

    At my school we are going to be rolling our 1 to 1 programme next year, aiming to have Chromebooks for our Year 6 students. Everything is going well and I am super excited about our progress. I have one question and it is purely to do with the physical environment, not teaching or learning. 

    What storage options for Chromebooks are out there that are secure? Alternative and conventional suggestions are much appreciated.


  • Thomas Bigge 07 Oct 2014 4:53pm () in 2014: Principals’ Leadership applied to strategic planning for the integration of technologies across the school community | NAPP Kōrero 14

    I have used the e learning planning tool with 3 staff (the principal, DP, myself) at the moment. The intention is to use the tool incrementally with the staff at school before the end of the year. The next phase will include the senior management team and then we will continue to the rest of the staff. 

    Being able to measure the results (these consist of pre-emerging, emerging, engaging, extending and empowering) against the 5 dimensions is incredibly powerful. Using the results will inform (and amend) our e learning strategic plan. Our e learning strategic plan has also been informed by our school wide strategic plan. There are already areas that are showing up as much less developed than others and attention has been drawn to them as a result of doing the survey. At this point it has on been completed with 3 staff under the “Principal/Senior Management” category. I am interested to see what the results look like for “Middle Management” category and the “Classroom Teachers” category. I am sure there will be much different areas for development depending on who is completing the survey. 

    The survey results of the Middle Management and Classroom Teachers will inform many next steps when we review them in relation to our e learning strategic plan.

    I would love to hear from a school that has already used it successfully or is currently in the process of doing so. Please let me know your journey as I am currently venturing into the unknown. 

  • Thomas Bigge 07 Oct 2014 4:02pm () in 2014: Principals’ Leadership applied to strategic planning for the integration of technologies across the school community | NAPP Kōrero 14

    Glenda, I attended a workshop hosted by Cheryl Doig last term and I would like to say that it blew my mind. It really pushed my mind to the edge and made me consider how technology is changing the way we do things. In addition to this I just finished reading Stratosphere: Integrating Technology, Pedagogy, and Change Knowledge by Michael Fullan. This also blew my mind. I came away from this text inspired about the future of education. I would like to emphasise a point that he discussed.

    Michael Fullan discusses how it is pedagogy that is the essential missing ingredient of implementing techonolgy and e learning in schools. Meaning that tech, without good teaching, is worthless. I really reccommend reading this as it certainly gets you thinking. Here is a link:


    Earlier in your post you mentioned that it is HOW something is implemented that has the biggest impact on its implementation. We are currently tackling this very issue at my school at the moment. We are trying to get staff to use more e learning tools. In order to do this we are planning for PD next year that will focus on 21st century teaching and learning skills. These workshops will not relate at all to e learning 'tools' but will simply develop on the notions of 'what good 21st learning and teaching is. . . ' Things like Personalised Learning, for example. The idea being that these workshops will begin the process of change and act as a gateway for the provision of e learning in the classroom. e.g. an e learning tool will provide an excellent opportunity for personalisation, like a teacher recording a youtube of a maths strategy breakdown for a students that need it. . . 

    In doing this we aim to give the teachers the opportunity to see the purpose in what they are doing for themselves and, therefore, make the learning more powerful. 

    Thoughts?? Love this e learning stuff eh! Mind boggling, exciting, I love it.