Digital Technology Now workbooks - FAQ

What do the online support materials look like?

I have prepared a pdf preview of these which you can download here.

How are the Digital Technology Now workbooks connected to the Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies framework?

In answering this, I will give you a bit of background first. I am a teacher myself and have been teaching for over 20 years. Up until this point, I had published a variety of text books - mainly focussing on senior IT / programming. In a previous role as Director of Learning Technologies, I began my planning for the implementation of Digital Technologies in a P-12 school. I mapped out all of the units in the Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies framework - examining the elaborations and matching these to activities that I thought would fit our local curriculum. It was around this time that I decided to begin writing the workbook series that you have seen previewed on this website. 

While the connections are not transparent in the workbooks (deliberately), I have developed extensive support material that is available to those that are using my workbooks. The workbooks are really the tool that the students will be using, but the curriculum links, elaborations and extension materials will all be available via the Members Area on this site. 

What is the focus of each of the workbooks?

Each book works through the entire F-2, 3-4 and 5-6 unit sequence as laid out in the Digital Technologies curriculum. I have colour coded each section and given them a 'label' (as the units simply have a code and a description). So for example, in the F-2 workbook, the sections are 'Digital Devices', 'Patterns in Data', 'Presenting Data', 'Digital Citizenship', 'Coding',  and 'Safe Use'. 

To what depth do the workbooks explore each topic?

The activities in the workbooks vary in depth. Some pages will have simple activities that are stand-alone, while other pages will be quite in-depth with project ideas and activities that may take days or weeks of class time (potentially). I have tried to style the workbooks in such a way as the content can be integrated into the existing curriculum as much as possible. For example, at the beginning of a topic on creatures of the sea, it might be good to do the activity on safe use of the Internet. Perhaps prior to undertaking a science project, an activity on presenting data can be done by students. The Digital Technologies curriculum is very much intended to be delivered this way (as much as possible), so I have tried to follow this philosophy. There are some topics where this isn't possible (coding for example).

At the end of each section, I have a page with some extension ideas and activities listed - but I have many more materials in the support materials on this website.

How do the Digital Technology Now workbooks address assessment?

Assessment within the Digital Technologies curriculum is based around being able to provide evidence that the units have been addressed by students. In writing the workbooks, I felt that this could be addressed to a high level by providing students with a form of 'passport' that they could stamp and have as a record of progress at the end of their unit sequence. The model I envisioned was one where each student had their own workbook stored in the classroom - which they could take out when appropriate to continue work on. At the end of their sequence (for example, at the end of Year 2), a student would (hopefully) have completed all of the activities and had these marked off by their class teacher in the back of the workbook. The workbook then would become the evidence that the student had completed the Digital Technologies curriculum.

In addition to this, the workbook provides a guide as to what needs to be addressed by each student. As a teacher thinking about how to implement Digital Technologies, I wondered about the record keeping that would be needed to keep track of each student's progress. This workbook series provides an easy method of doing this as well as involving students in the assessment process.

What is the style of the workbook - is it like a text book?

The workbook is very much inquiry based. Given the wide range of resources available to schools Australia-wide, I didn't want to write a text-book. Rather, I wanted to create a tool that schools could integrate with their existing curriculum and utilise their existing resources.