These are the things that I do to help embed ICT into my classroom practice over time.

If you would like to download a resource pdf of links to some of these posts click here.

In late 2005 the principal of Appleby School and I went on a day long PD session on Learning Management Systems with Mark Treadwell. During the session he took a photo of us in discussion groups and put it on the internet. I was impressed and he told me it was simple and any one could do it using Blogger. So I went home that night and made myself a blog and got the hang of what to do.....


The primary focus of our class on-line presence is our class blog


With this I try to foster a sense of openess, collaboration, sharing and conversation.

To highlight these aspects I have highlighted a few of our posts...

  • In the beginning I did most of the writing and taking of photos on our blog.


  • I then started writing in partnership with children- we shared the writing task.


  • Right from the beginning we encouraged each other to develop a conversation with our blogging.


  • To encourage parents knowing how to add comments each year we offer a chocolate fish for those who commented on our blog. We even had to send bags of chocolate fish overseas.


  • We used blogging to share exemplars of children's good work.


  • I used the blog to communicate with parents about class homework tasks and the like.


  • Parents started getting into the swing of things and would sometimes email me photos that they would like to see on the blog.


  • We used blogging to clarify our learning about maths.


  • In February 2006 we had our first sessions with the COW- Computers on Wheels- a pod of 12 Apple laptops


  • By June 2006 children were writing blog posts independently


  • In July 2006 we added a Clustrmap to our blog so that we could see where in the world our readership came from and how many viewers there were. Since that time we have had over 16,000 viewers and commenters. This really affirms for children their audience and gives them and authentic context for writing.

  • In August of 2006 our journey with podcasting began in earnest. Waimea-South ICT cluster paid for Janice Gulbransen our director and myself to go to Point England School in Auckland to see what they were doing. Our podcasts played though our school website and also through my podomatic page.

  • Of course I blogged about our big day out and what we had learnt.


  • The blog becomes more of a learning hub where referenced on-line activities can be easily found.


  • From our blog we link to our class Delicious account where we store a lot of our frequently used websites and links to web sites that we can't remember the URL of. This Delicious account also links to my own account where you will find lots of other web links and links to part of my learning network.


  • As I learnt how to embed things from other websites into the blog I added different features to it- like this Bubbleshare.


  • In August/September we had our first real attempt at collaborating with a wiki. We used it as a resource on Flight and to share our learning with children and Wakefield School who were also studying Flight.


  • Throughout the year we fostered link with Paul Harrington's class at Cefn Fforest School in South Wales. They went us a small geocache bear- Tiny Ted, and a Travelling Bear and we sent them Cuddly Kiwi. Both these toys became favourite focuses of our ICT with them going home with children and children taking photos and showing each other about life in far off lands.

We set up a Flickr account to document some of his travels- I bought a class camera and it went home most nights with children to record what Tiny Ted got up to. This also gave purposeful reasons for children to become independent with digital cameras and made further links between home and school. Children at Cefn Fforest did the same with Cuddly Kiwi.




  • Tiny Ted became a bit of a celebrity in his own right. At the beginning of 2007 he started a new adventure, being taken by Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach back to America.




  • This contact led to a number of Skype conversations and podcasts with our link class in Wales. We had to work our way around the time delays. These conversations have been a wonderful catalyst to our learning through ICT.



  • January 2007 these links led us to getting a write-up in the United Kingdom Times Educational Supplement


  • April 2007 to facilitate our learning about life in America we started linking with Beth Sullivan's class in New York.


  • The three classes got together to name our three class fish- another exercise in global collaboration.


  • May 2007 Dino, one of our Year Five travelled to the UK and spent a day with our link school in Wales. We came back in at night time to talk to him.


  • June 2007 through contacts at school we managed to join in a Skype chat with Rob Waddell, America's Cup grinder. This podcast was featured on the TVNZ One news.


  • As a starter activity to learning about economics we experiment with a Voicethread on NZ money which is later used by others to share their monetary systems.


  • American superintendent, Dennis Richards made us a Voicethread based on a favourite book of his.


  • Miriam, a year four child has the courage to share her voice with us via an .mp3 file. She is now confident enough to sing in front of assembly. A great justification for podcasting.


  • We used a Voicethread to share what we have learnt using ICT in 2007.

  • In December 2007 Moturoa entered a partnership with a similar class in New York who were trying to compare features of the different hemispheres. We helped them with their research and this wiki shows our discoveries. This wiki won a Chase award in America. Yay us!

http://comparinghemispheres.wikispaces.com/About Us

  • One of the highlights of 2007 has been the enthusiasm of individual bloggers in Moturoa. We used Blogmeister to allow everyone to post to their own blog at the same time but following a weekend 'How to make a blog' afternoon with parents a number of children are maintaining their own blogs and they continue to do so without my direct supervision. They would love some feedback if you have a moment- introduce yourself.

  • At the beginning of 2007 I was invited to do a presentation on blogging for the TUANZ roadshow so constructed www.bling4yrblog.blogspot.com as a resource centre for teachers wanting to learn how to blog and how to add some of the 'extras' to make your blog more inviting. I have been adding to it ever since.


  • When Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach, this year's ULearn keynote speaker, came to New Zealand as a speaker for the TUANZ roadshow she encouraged me to start a professional blog to reflect on my learning and chronicle some of the cool finds of linking globally with other educators on this Web2.0 journey. It was a really good idea and her encouragement has always been an inspiration for what I am trying to do. This Edublog also lets me link with other educators globally and each day I continue to expand my personal learning network via Twitter, Delicious, a variety of Ning collaborations and through my RSS reader of choice, Bloglines.