Digital Technology

What is the Digital Technologies and Hangarau Matihiko curriculum?

Digital Technologies and Hangarau Matihiko is about teaching our tamariki and children how technology works, and how they can use that knowledge to solve problems.

Even if they don’t go into “tech industry” careers they will need digital technologies skills, knowledge and capabilities to become fully participating citizens and successful workers in our increasingly digital society and economy.

Your child will benefit from having these future thinking skills.

What are digital technologies?

When people in education talk about digital technologies they mean things like computers, laptops, tablets and cellphones.

They also talk about the infrastructure that schools need to use digital technologies, like fully funded, safe and reliable access to ultra-fast broadband and wireless (Wi-Fi) access to the internet.


How does Ngākuru School access to digital technologies?

The government is supporting schools by investing in people and infrastructure so that learning is enabled by the use of digital technologies. We have just had an upgrade to connect to ultra-fast broadband, an upgraded internal IT network and have a a fully-funded Network for Learning (N4L) Managed Network connection that provides fast, high-quality, predictable internet access and uncapped monthly data for school use.

Teachers and principals receive laptops.

We have received funding from trusts to purchase devices for classrooms and have BOT funded screens in all classrooms.

Ngākuru School Learning Dispositions

Learning and Innovation Skills

Our school learning dispositions have been based around these...

Learning and innovation skills are what separate students who are prepared for increasingly complex life and work environments in today’s world and those who are not. They include:

    • Creativity and Innovation
    • Critical Thinking and Problem Solving
    • Communication
    • Collaboration

Online Platforms and Digital Technologies used at Ngākuru School

Ngākuru School Website

- Information about our school

Ngākuru School Facebook

-for all school celebrations, news, current events, contact to/with school through Messenger etc.

Google Classroom

- managing teaching and learning

- blended/flipped learning


Google Docs/Ngākuru Independent Progress Plans

-formative reporting to parents using Google Docs

-collaborative space using team drives


SeeSaw

- Activities with evidence of learning progress and communication with classroom teacher, parent feedback to students

Etap School Management System (SMS)

-email communication, newsletters, attendance, medical, pastoral and learning data tools etc.

SchoolDocs

- All Ngākuru school policies, feedback and review


Skool Loop App


- All communication in one place, absentees, calendar, newsletters etc.

Zoom Video Conferencing

-online/blended learning tool

Why are digital technologies being used for learning?

Education is changing. For many of us, where our children learn, what they learn and how they learn is very different from what we experienced at school.

As our world keeps changing we need our young people to be confident, creative, connected and actively involved life-long learners. We need an education system that supports the development of values, knowledge and competencies, and sets them up to do well in the world.

Digital technologies are an important part of your child's world. Your child uses them to connect with each other, to learn new skills and pursue their interests further than has ever been possible.

They also offer new opportunities for teachers and leaders, and new ways for your family and community to contribute to your child's learning.

Digital technologies can enable:

- learning to happen anywhere and any at any time (ubiquitous) and not just in the classroom

- your child to connect and collaborate with other students and teachers outside their school and even across the world

- your child to understand challenging concepts in virtual worlds that would not otherwise be possible

- easy access to the huge range of resources available on the internet to support learning (websites, apps and more)

- you, your family and community to become more involved and contribute to your child's education, for example through school Facebook pages and Gmail etc.

- your child to follow personal interests and talents and access experts not available to them locally.

How do we use digital technologies at school?

Our students use digital technologies as a tool to enhance their learning and where appropriate to do so. Students in the Year 1-2 and Year 3-4 classes have access to iPads but are welcome to bring their own. Year 5-8 students are encouraged to bring their own device. We do prefer Apple iPads due to their versatility, ease of use and creation capabilities but this is parent choice. We have found that iPads work well with our school's sysyem and have all of the features neede to support our student's learning. We have a good relationship with Noel Leeming whereby parents can purchase devices at very competitive prices.

What about internet at home?

Access to the internet outside of school can help with homework and self-directed learning at home. If you can't provide access at home you could talk to school about using school internet after school hours or consider community internet access (eg in public libraries).

How do we provide a balance?

Digital technologies can have many positive impacts on learning and offer challenging activities and opportunities for real world problem-solving activities.

It's a good idea to make sure your child’s screen-time is balanced with other activities to ensure their health, safety and happiness. You may want to talk to us at school if you have any queries or concerns about getting the balance right for your child.

What about internet safety and security?

While internet/online access and digital technologies provide many benefits, they can also present risks to your child, like cyber-bullying, sexting, access to inappropriate web material, scams and concerns about privacy.

At School - online safety

Our school is aware of these risks and the BOT (through N4L) are responsible for making sure an appropriate level of safety and security is in place for their school. We have policies and procedures in place that everyone follows.

We receive government funding for content filtering and firewalls to protect their systems and block inappropriate material.

- All students and parents have read and signed our ICT Responsible Use Agreement (available on Ngākuru SchoolDocs).

- Teachers go over this agreement regularly with your children, and review it when required.

- The agreement is visible and accessible to everyone at all times.

-There are consequences if the agreement is broken.

- Teachers continually monitor screens

- We limit the use of social media, especially now that students will want to connect online. Adults at home should have access to your child’s social media. If your child has a social media account, then they should have at least one of their parents or caregivers as a ‘friend’.

-Any mobile phones brought to school are handed in to the classroom teachers at the start of the day and given back at the end of the day.

-Students are only allowed to contact parents through other devices with the permission from the classroom teacher.

Other links:

At Home - set up an online safety plan

The school’s internet safety software does not work when students go online at home. It is therefore important that parents supervise the online space within your own home environment.

As a parent, you need to be involved - you need to know what your child is doing online, both at school and at home, and you need to actively support them to be safe online.

Make sure you have good security and firewalls on your home devices and keep them up to date.

Keep the lines of communication open with your child. Talk to them about how to keep safe online. Use the Netsafe resources together.

You can also talk to us to understand more about how we are using digital technologies for learning, what our internet safety and security policies are and how they are being implemented.

Netsafe is an organisation that, in their own words "promotes confident, safe and responsible use of online technologies". They are a good first stop to learn more about how your child might be using technology and how to support them. Check out the Netsafe website for information, blog posts, to report incidents and for free resources to help you.

Before any online learning gets underway at home, families should discuss and agree to a good online safety plan to ensure the safety of everyone at home.

Use the following NetsafeNZ websites to set up your Cybersafety Plan