Book Creator Online!

pic 44The Book Creator app, the one I’ve described as my fav ‘non Apple’ app for teachers and students, has just realised an ability to publish books online! This is HUGE. One of the stumbling blocks teachers have had with the app is how to share the ePub files.


Up till now you had to publish to the iTunes store, or email the file or link to a Google Drive upload, or Airdrop the file from iPad to iPad.

Here’s a little example of a book I made as an example of an app ‘smash’ with the @wordFoto app, a cool little word and image mash up app.

Check it out – to get the online publishing feature, just update your app in the App Store to V5.1. Go for it! The whole world is waiting to see what you’re written and created!

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Make sure you click on the sound – one of my kids read it out for me….


STEM Elements

Screen Shot 2017-03-17 at 7.06.59 AM.pngOne of our most popular regional events is the “STEM and Digital Technologies” workshop we offer. Teachers have a day to explore both the pedagogy of STEM and get hands on with a range of technologies, from Sphero SPRK+, to low tech gear like popsical sticks and ping pong balls! You can see a Twitter moment here which gives you a small window into the action!

This week I’ve been updating some of the material we share on the day and I’ve adjusted this graphic of the ‘STEM Elements’, based on based on the book, “STEM Lesson Essentials, Grades 3-8” by Jo Anne Vasquez, Cary Sneider, Michael Comer. STEM ELEMENTS (1)


These elements are a great way to make the important aspects of STEM stand out for teachers and I also encourage them to use these four elements as a planning guide when they’re preparing to engage students in STEM. When we have an empty box it forces us to fill it in! It’s a helpful way to help us engrain this thinking when we are starting out and a good technique to foster new pedagogies into our school culture.

STEM ELEMENTS planning (1).png

Here are some images from the workshop ran last Wednesday. If you’d like to host a regional STEM event at your school, or have me work exclusively with your staff, contact me here on Twitter or use the contact widget on this page.


Getting Started on Twitter – for Teachers

Tomorrow we’re holding a Staff Breakfast for getting started on Twitter. Here are some links that I found to help you get under way and even get ‘smarter than the average Twitter bear.’

Video – for visual learners.

This video explains, step by step, how to get going and is focussed on educators. (Selena Woodward)

Video Resources

David Wees has some great videos on a range of topics…

Ultimate Guidebook for Twitter

Lastly – this blog post from has some so many incredible links to get your teeth into!
Twitter – this is where the action happens! You learning, at your pace, where-ever you are! 

Solo Taxonomy Conversation

I posted a photo from our staff meeting this afternoon on Twitter. It lead to a conversation with @bridgetcasse who is an Assistant Principal in Auckland and, coincidentally, co-wrote a book on the use of Solo in the Junior school

Here’s the thread shown through Storify. I’m always amazed at the connections we can make with other passionate educators out there! And I’m also very proud of our staff and the journey we are all on.

App of the week!

Here’s the first ‘App of the Week’ – it could also be the last, who knows. I have @sharpjacqui to thank for sharing the news that this app (she called it one of her favs) was free on itunes for 2 days… so naturally I was curious.

Yes, it was the free part. Can you blame me.
Here are some screen shots from itunes on Halftone.
It’s a great app for uploading photos, adding text and a few icons. Very easy to use and, as most apps will allow these days, whatever you create can be shared on facebook, twitter and emailed.
Some fun ahead, I think! My first go is on the side of my blog.

Twitter’s Birthday!

I’ve been sharing the magic of Twitter ALOT lately. (I’m sure I heard someone sigh this week but I don’t care…) It is, hands down, the MOST powerful PD you can ever be involved in. Most educators who blog have tapped into it’s potential to connect / share and upskill.

I showed our Lead Teachers this video today which has come out on Twitters 5th birthday! It’s hard to imagine life without it, now. Yes…I’m not ashamed to say that I’m professionally addicted.

Here are two small examples how teachers are using it in our cluster.

1. A class is involved in a space inquiry and they are following the astronaut in the above movie! He’s posting photos and updates from a space station. They’re apparently SO engaged in their inquiry and his posts inspire so many further questions for them to explore.

2. The Southland region now has 14 educators who are using twitter for connecting with each other, both inside the region and out. Here are a few local twitter names to watch for;
Timl27 – a local Principal – and new blogger.
Craiginteract – the IWB facilitator for the Invercargill Region
Cossie29 – AP and teacher who is embarking on some further study soon. Prolific tweeter!
COME ON! Join the revolution.=)

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