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The Learning Conference 2003

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Presentation Details

 

Developing Meaningful Technologies for Girls

Warwick Noble.


With consideration to the different learning style needs of girls and equity issues associated with computer use at home and at school, the development of skilled and meaningful use of technologies present quite unique challenges for the teachers of girls. This presentation will focus on two recently developed technology-rich learning projects for primary and secondary girls at Abbotsleigh, School for Girls in Sydney, Australia. The motivation, design and delivery of these programs differed quite significantly yet both resulted in marked student progress in areas relating to skill acquisition, interpretation of visual meanings, motivation and confidence to use technologies. This has been attributed to the meaningful integration of technology in a relevant learning framework.

“The Year 5 Author-Web site project”
The project, www.jacquelineharvey.com centred on the development of a class maintained website for the author and Year 5 class teacher, Jacqueline Harvey. As part of the design and production of the website, students were engaged in individual website design and planning, website critique and evaluation in addition to technology skill development. Students worked in teams with various roles such as project managers, technology and multi-media experts, editors, agent liaison, journalism and other scholastic elements depending on individual strengths and interests. All students were required to keep a journal to document their learning and to encourage reflection of the task requirements. In addition to written evaluations students also contributed to a video diary.

“The Year 10 Pastoral Care Program”
This year, in order to meet mandatory technology competency requirements, the Director of Technology and Director of Teaching and Learning designed a new Pastoral Care Program for Year 10 students. The program inextricably linked Pastoral Care objectives and computer competencies through a series of meaningful and relevant learning activities facilitated by the Pastoral Care tutors. Essential to the success of the program was 150 students having 1:1 access to computers during their programmed Pastoral Care session and 24 hour access to resources placed on the Intranet. It was anticipated that student motivation and the content of the Pastoral Care program would be enhanced through this type of delivery and engagement with technology.

Based on Experiential Learning principles, both projects reflected a strong element of reality and accountability for the girls. The learning experiences were meaningful, relevant, and cognitively challenging with a high level of socialisation, student responsibility and sense of audience. Video footage and research data used to evaluate the two projects will be presented to help illustrate key learning outcomes in computer literacy for the girls.

Presenters

Warwick Noble  (Australia)
Director of Technology

Abbotsleigh - School for Girls

Warwick Noble is the Director of Technology at Abbotsleigh with responsibilities of implementing and supporting technology in all areas of the school. Before this he was Head of Technology at Queenwood School for Girls during which he completed a Masters in Digital Design.

Keywords
  • Technology for girls
  • Meaningful technology
  • Experiential learning principles
  • Computer literacy
  • Pastoral Care
  • Student website
Person as Subject
  • Jacqueline Harvey Kerrie Wilde



(30 min Conference Paper, English)