Thursday, 27 February 2020

Everyone Can Code - Puzzles

Over the past two weeks, we have begun looking at new Apple resources called Everyone Can Code - Puzzles. Computational thinking and designing and developing digital outcomes is now part of the New Zealand Curriculum, so the learning possibilities of these resources link well with our classroom programme.

Apple say that the lessons were designed not only to teach students fundamental coding concepts using a real language—Swift—but also how code is used all around them. Each lesson requires students to think critically to solve problems and then apply what they learned ​
to a new scenario. Students also complete activities that connect the concept to everyday life. The goal is to deepen their understanding of the role of coding and computer science in the world and also to help them think about how they can apply it to their own lives today and in the future. Throughout each lesson, students express their creativity through code and other projects.

Swift is a powerful and intuitive programming language created by Apple that makes programming ​
easier and more flexible. For first-time coders, there’s Swift Playgrounds, an iPad app that makes getting started fun and interactive. By exploring and solving rich puzzle worlds, students develop coding skills that become the foundation of their programming knowledge.

So far, we have been learning about commands. Everyone is showing a high level of interest and engagement in the sessions so far, and today in assembly we were excited to give the rest of our school a sneak peak at what we've been up to. Check out our video below.

Sunday, 9 February 2020

Setting The Scene For Learning

We've had a really positive start to the year in Koru 1. It has been wonderful seeing our friends from last year, meeting some new people and being in a new classroom space.

During the first few days of school, we explored what we value most in a classroom. This came in the form of a group activity that had us rank different aspects and behaviours in a classroom by displaying them in a diamond formation. It was interesting seeing and hearing about how we all have different experiences, which have shaped our beliefs.

We also had other activities including circle times and a forum through our Koru 1 Google Classroom to help bring out many of our ideas for our classroom vision. The participation and contribution form everyone was important. Just some of the things they wanted in our vision were:

Jaxon - "We look for learning opportunity’s is one of the things I would like to see on our classroom vision"

Taya - "To feel happy and safe in class"

Jarome - "I would like for everyone to be kind to each other"

Chelsea - "I would like to have an organised class or it will be too messy to learn"

Kate - "We should admit when we are wrong"

Archie - "We should be flexible"

Coby - "I would like us to be peaceful, because in our class it would be nice to have a cool calm and collected class well we are working. It would make a difference to people’s learning"

A few photos of the journey are shown below, along with our completed vision, which we are excited about and will refer to often throughout the year.

Monday, 25 November 2019

Ōtautahi Pizza At The DigiAwards

We were so excited to be presented two awards for our Ōtautahi Pizza website at the Grow Waitaha DigiAwards. In previous posts, you can read a little about the project. But below is an article that Atarau, Milla and Arona wrote for our school newsletter. We had many successes from across our whole school. 

DigiAwards 2019

On Wednesday the 13th of November, the Grow Waitaha DigiAwards hosted an awards evening at St. Margaret's College for the finalists. Bromley School entered many different entries for many different categories. The categories were website, story telling (retelling original stories), coding, comercial, Te Reo, and an open category for any entries. Loads of schools in the Canterbury region entered with their unique creations. The awards were given by companies around Canterbury.

Everyone was greeted by Haeata’s Kapa Haka group and they did some waiata along with a Haka. There were over 700 people who attended. There were also many people from schools who were nominated. The prizes were things like advanced mechanic building sets, coding equipment and Chromebooks.

We are so excited that the overall runner up was Mrs Gardner’s class, Kakano 1. They won a Chromebook! They entered a video called Te Waka O Tamarēreti. The overall winner was a boy from Avonhead called Thomas. He entered a Battle Bots game he coded and created himself.

Bromley School won a number of different categories, which was awesome because it was our first time entering and we won so many awards. Below is a list of our winning entries.

Storytelling Winners (Bromley):
Year 0-2: Te Waka O Tamarēreti from Mrs Gardner's class, Kakano 1.
Year 3-4: The Nine Ika Of Matariki. From Mrs Hix and Mrs Togiaso’s class, Pitau 1.

Storytelling Runner Ups (Bromley)
Year 0-2: Skytins Vs Zombies. From Mrs Wixon and Miss Paterson’s class Kakano 2.

The Open Category Winners:
Year 0-2: The Brave Shadow. From Mrs Macintosh and Miss Newth’s class Kakano 3.

The Open Category Runner Up:
Year 3-4: A Special Place. From Mr Cron and Mrs Sung’s class in Pitau 2.

Website Winners:
Year 5-6: Ōtautahi Pizza. From Mr K’s literacy group in Koru 1.

There was also a special prize given to Ōtautahi Pizza which was a $750 voucher for PB Tech. This was given to them because one of the judges believed that the way we created it and designed it deserves an extra special award.

Throughout the night there was lots of cheering from Bromley. When they announced who was in 2nd, Bromley would start cheering because they noticed that Bromley won. There was lots of support and all the entries had lots of effort put into them. Bromley left St. Margaret’s happy and were even happier about the results.

Here is a link to the Grow Waitaha website for extra info, including the winning entries.

Sunday, 10 November 2019

Marvellous Muffin Challenge

Here's what Mrs Harris's literacy group has been working on:

We worked in teams of 3 or 4.

We published our recipes to create a class recipe book.

Each group shared their keynote presentation, which described their muffins using similes.

We voted for our favourite recipe and the next day we made the winning recipe: "The Magic Mars Bar Muffins".

If you would like a copy of our recipe book, get in touch with Mrs Harris and she will email it through to you.

Wednesday, 18 September 2019

Ōtautahi Pizza Project - Part Two

We have just completed our Ōtautahi Pizza website and have entered it in the Grow Waitaha DigiAwards under the website category.

The project has taken us most of the term and we have chipped away at it during our literacy sessions. Everyone has contributed in some way, with some individuals having a huge input.

You can read about the project on the website itself. We are really proud of it!

Click here:

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Gap Filler Idea - Digi Award Project - Part One

Mrs Harris' literacy group have been working on a digital project. We are creating commercials that pitch a creative idea. These commercials will be entered into the Innovative Ōtautahi Digi Awards.

We learned about Gap Filler, an Ōtautahi enterprise that fills that gaps of our city with creative, fun ideas. You may have been to the dance-o-mat in the city or exchanged a book for free at a pop-up book exchange.

To help us navigate the creative process we took our learning journey through the design thinking format.

Our task was to generate an original idea to fill a gap in our local Cypress gardens.

Firstly we needed to empathise. What problems do we have in Cypress Gardens? Who uses Cypress Gardens, and what are their needs? How can we make Cypress Gardens a better place for our community? We took a stroll around the gardens and took some photos to help us generate ideas.

We used the keynote application during the ideate stage. The app allowed us to import our photographs and sketch our ideas over top. We were able to record notes and even our voices to add detail. By this stage, some of us were generating similar ideas, so this is how our digi teams were formed.

So what makes a good commercial? Next, it was time to learn about persuasive language. We needed to convince our audience that our idea was the best. We wrote our commercial scripts, making sure to include catchy phrases and powerful persuasive language.

To plan the structure of our commercial we used a storyboard format. This included sketches of our filming location for each scene, information about digital effects and a list of props required. Throughout this stage, we were going back to the ideate element and checking that our ideas would come across clearly in our commercial. We also shared our storyboards with the class to get some feedback.

Oral language has been another focus area of our learning journey. A good commercial has a speaker who projects their voice and speaks clearly to get the point across. To practice our oral langauge we have been participating in oral language games such as fortunately, unfortunately and going over our commercial script. Ask your child about fortunately/unfortunately, it's a fun game that everyone can enjoy.

We have been busy organising or collecting props for filming day, which will begin soon. We have also been given a challenge to include a green screen effect in our commercial. It has been fun experimenting with the app. After many weeks of learning about the elements of a commercial, we are excited to put it all together.

Monday, 12 August 2019

Ōtautahi Pizza Project - Part One

Mr K's literacy groups have begun a new project. We are creating a website that will contain recipes for pizzas we have made - all named after some of our favourite places in Christchurch.

We hope to enter the website into the Grow Waitaha DigiAwards, which has a theme this year of celebrating innovation in Ōtautahi. Our creation will be submitted in the website category.

To start with, we set up a Trello board that we could use to track parts of the project that we need to do, are currently doing, and have done. It has been a great tool to display where we are at daily. Some of the initial tasks we have been working on are researching different types of pizzas, finding out what pizzas people like, designing our own pizzas and investigating ingredients. We have also needed to carry out organisational tasks, like deciding on our groups and planning the purchase of ingredients.

In Term One we took part in the Food for Thought programme through the Heart Foundation. We learned a lot about healthy diets and lifestyles, and the facilitator left us with a $60 Pak n Save gift card to put on a healthy lunch. With that money, we decided it could be used to purchase the pizza ingredients, so teachers did not just put on a lunch, but we designed and made it ourselves.

We decided on the name 'Ōtautahi Pizza' for our website. Then Mr K created a design brief for us to create a logo for it. This was loads of fun and many of us made entries for the competition. Some of the requirements included the logos being professional looking, using appropriate colours and that they must be our own designs.

To choose a logo, Mr K set up a Google Form for us to vote on which design we liked best. Arona's design, with a red and black background was the one that most of us chose, although many of the others will be put on our website for viewing.
Here is Arona's chosen design:

The designing of our pizzas took two weeks. This included lots of group discussions, negotiating ideas, exploring different herbs and spices, and using the Pak n Save website to calculate prices. Many of us have also been using the Tayasui Sketches School app to draw our ideas to show what we are making visually. This is also the tool many of us used for our logo designs.

In groups, we made sure that all the ingredients came under $60 in total. Last night Mr K took our shopping lists to the supermarket and picked up the ingredients we asked for. Guess what? It came to $59.71! Nice work on our behalf to make the most of the gift card.

This morning we organised roles within our groups, like someone to construct the pizza base, someone to put on the toppings, a videographer, and a group manager. Everyone managed their roles so well and the morning was a real success. We were so proud of how the pizzas turned out and we are looking forward to constructing our website and sharing the recipes with you, including some other interesting site sections we are planning.

And yes, they tasted really good!

We would like to say a special thanks to Sheryl, who helped us create the pizza bases and prepare the toppings during organisation time.