October 26, 2015
by Jillian Brown

Digital Australia

Last term one of our colleagues attended a presentation by Jeffrey Brand from Bond University in Queensland titled ‘Digital Australia 2016’, DigitalAustralia2016a presentation focussing on an industry report about the state of interactive media in Australia with a focus on demographics, play habits, behaviours and attitudes. Of particular interest was the statistics around game playing in Australia. The report identifies some key findings including:

  • Games provide a transformational media – hand/head/heart
  • It is an immersive experience
  • 5% or less of the population are addicted to games
  • Parents are afraid of games because they don’t understand the medium
  • Games provide parents the opportunities to start discussions with their children.
  • Today’s entertainment is tomorrow’s economic literacy – why STEM and digital literacy is so important!

To check out Jeffrey Brand’s presentation, resources and the full report follow the link http://www.igea.net/2015/07/digital-australia-2016-da16/


A gameful world It’s interesting to reflect on this presentation as we prepare for the Games in Education Summit 2015 at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre this Thursday, 29th October. The Summit will explore the links to learning and teaching in Victorian classrooms and the resources available to teachers. With contributions from the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority, Department of Education and Training, the Game Developers Association of Australia, Google, Intel, Microsoft and Unity, the Summit will cover:

  • A snapshot of the game development industry in Victoria and internationally, and its importance to the digital economy
  • The broad range of creative careers open to Victorian students
  • The stories behind successful game developers and the impact they are making here in Victoria and internationally
  • The growth in serious games and gamification to solve real world challenges
  • A Curriculum Panel discussion looking at the clear links to the Digital Technologies curriculum and STEM in both primary & secondary schools
  • 12 workshops presented by classroom teachers, game developers and academics showcasing how game development, game playing, serious games and gamification are being used in the classroom
  • An overview of the resources and support available to teachers.

It’s not too late to register for this event. Register here http://gamesweek.melbourne/index.php/education_in_games/

October 26, 2015
by Jillian Brown

Scientists in Schools

Thanks to Warracknabeal SC and DET Virtual Learning Coach, Butch, for this blogpost.

Warracknabeal Secondary College recently had a virtual visit from its SIS partner Dr. Peter Nichols from CSIRO Food & Nutrition and Oceans & Atmosphere based in Hobart. Dr Nichols spoke to the Year 10/11 Chemistry class on his specialty area of Oils Chemistry. He described his role as a member of a CSIRO team working to incorporate specific algal omega-3 genes into land plants including canola to produce fish oil like levels of the health-benefitting long-chain omega-3 oils. Such plants can in the future supply sustainable sources of these ‘good oils’ for use in feeds, food products, supplements and pharmaceuticals.

The CSIRO research team was the first group in the world to achieve the production of DHA, one of the main long-chain omega-3 oils, in an oilseed. In a world first, the Australian partner of CSIRO, Nuseed a subsidiary of Nufarm, commenced field trials of the DHA-containing canola in Horsham in mid 2014. The field trials follow on from the successful transfer of the plants from CSIRO to Horsham and their testing in greenhouse trials. This makes the connection and discussion even more ‘real’ for the Wimmera students. Dr Nichols also spoke about his career path and interest in science to the class.

The Science in Schools session with WSC will continue in the future to expose students to ‘real’ science through connections with an external expert which includes demonstrations of experiments using oils analytical equipment at CSIRO.

Warracknabeal Secondary College thanks Peter for his time in visiting our college to support its students through the SIS program.


SIS partnership between WSC, Warracknabeal, Victoria and CSIRO Hobart – Virtual visit from Dr Nichols in Hobart (centre) to Warracknabeal where John teaches his students (from left): Matt Stephensen, Courtney Arnott and Isaac McPherson. In case you hadn’t picked the similarity, Peter Nichols is John’s identical twin brother.


October 12, 2015
by Jillian Brown

Artlink to Archibald: A virtual event celebrating the portrait in art

archiarchi3As part of its Archibald Education Program, the Art Gallery of Ballarat is offering your students to participate in an online live workshop. The session will include a brief history of portraiture, an overview of the Archibald Prize exhibition, including some of this year’s highlights, and a portrait workshop with a professional artist. archi Limited places are available and priority will be given to schools in remote regions and schools who have students from socially and economically disadvantaged backgrounds. The Gallery will supply participating schools with an exhibition introductory wall text which you can use if you choose to mount an exhibition of your students’ work in your school. Schools can also send us a selection of their artworks for display on the Art Gallery of Ballarat website. The workshop is supported by Gandel Philanthropy, as part of its support of FACE, the Gallery’s Archibald Education Program.  


  • Wednesday 21 October 1 – 2.30pm. Primary, Years 3 – 6
  • Thursday 22 October 1 – 2.30pm. Secondary, Years 7 – 10
  • Wednesday 28 October 1 – 2.30pm. Primary, Years 3 – 6
  • Thursday 29 October 1 – 2.30pm. Secondary, Years 7 – 10

Details of the event:

  • The session will include:
    1. A brief overview of the Archibald Prize exhibition and Art Gallery of Ballarat portrait collection by Gallery Educator (AusVELS Exploring and responding to art).
    2. A hands-on portrait workshop with a local practising artist (AusVELS Creating and making art).

How can your school participate?

  1. MSLYNC – A link will be provided on confirmation of Registration
  2. Polycom VC. A number will be provided on confirmation of Registration

Do you need technical advice or assistance? Please contact DET Virtual Learning Coach Jo Tate tate.joanne.e@edumail.vic.gov.au To participate, you will need to have ready at your school:

  • A4 cartridge paper
  • Graphite 2B pencils,
  • Colour pencils (preferably watercolour pencils or pastels)
  • Erasers

Bookings Please complete the following and email to michaelnichols@ballarat.vic.gov.au:

  • School Name………………………………………………
  • Highlight the event your school is interested in. If you could potentially be available on either date please highlight both dates:
    1. Wednesday 21 October 1 – 2.30pm. Primary, Years 3 – 6
    2. Thursday 22 October 1 – 2.30pm. Secondary, Years 7 – 10
    3. Wednesday 28 October 1 – 2.30pm. Primary, Years 3 – 6
    4. Thursday 29 October 1 – 2.30pm. Secondary, Years 7 – 10
  • Primary contact email: ………………………………………
  • Number of students participating: ……………………………..
  • Please indicate the % of students from socially and economically disadvantaged backgrounds? …………………………..
  • Will there be any Koori Students involved? Numbers? ………………

Send Registration proposal details to Michael Nichols, Education Officer, Art Gallery of Ballarat michaelnichols@ballarat.vic.gov.au  

October 8, 2015
by Jillian Brown

Register NOW – Digital Technologies Information Webinars

DIGITECHTo support teachers with getting started the Department has partnered with Digital Learning and Teaching Victoria (DLTV) to present three introduction webinars for Victorian teachers. Teachers will need to report against this new curriculum by 2017, which is why it is important to start learning about classroom implementation early. To find out more follow the registration links. All sessions will be at a beginner level and will assume little prior knowledge. Make sure you register early to avoid disappointment. There is no cost to participate.

For further information or enquires please contact Penny Rowe at rowe.penelope.m@edumail.vic.gov.au or 03 9651 3017.

October 8, 2015
by Jillian Brown

Games in Education Summit 2015: A gameful world – 29th October 2015

GamesAs part of International Games Week in the last week of October, Victorian primary and secondary teachers will have the opportunity to listen to some of the leading players in the game development industry. With its growing popularity among young people and the world, the Education in Games Summit 2015 is an ideal opportunity for students to leap into this growing industry.

Presented by Creative Victoria, the Department of Education and Training and ACMI, the summit is a collection of workshops, speeches and panel discussions with industry experts.

Curriculum connections and information to the new Digital Technologies curriculum will support teachers to learning about implementing the curriculum in the classroom.

Attendees can customise their experience and find events that interest them over the all-day event.

The keynote speaker for the summit is Dr Steffen Walz, an Associate Professor at RMIT University and the founder-director of Games & Experimental Entertainment Laboratory, the GEElab. At the GEElab, an international team of researchers scrutinizes the potential (and pitfalls) of play, games and game design elements for non-entertainment purposes.

Event Details:
Date: Thursday, October 29
Time: 8.30am – 4.30pm
Venue: Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre
For: Primary & Secondary Teachers
Cost: $90 (ex-GST) *Includes access to Day One of PAX Australia

If you’re interested in attending the summit, please register at: Education in Games Summit 2015 – Registrations

To see a full list of the workshops and sessions at the summit, please see: A Gameful World – Program

To promote the event at your school, please print and display: A Gameful World – Education in Games Summit 2015 – Flyer

Skip to toolbar