Ensure your school leadership team is across the opportunity afforded by new technologies, by hosting a complimentary Windows in the Classroom seminar. Find out more information by visiting our website. To book a Windows in the Classroom personal development seminar at your school or for more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Microsoft Partners in Learning is a $500 million global initiative working with schools and educators to improve teaching and learning practices; optimize the use of technology within pedagogy to improve learning outcomes; and help every student receive an excellent education and gain the skills they need in work and life. To sign up now, visit http://www.pil-network.com.
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We are so excited to announce that the new SharePoint now allows for more innovative interactions with SharePoint sites and content on mobile devices: contemporary views, device channels, and new native apps (SkyDrive Pro apps and SharePoint Newsfeed apps).
Mark Kashman, a Senior Product Manager on the SharePoint team this week blogged about how, "From the start, touch has been a key area of investment across all of the products in the new Office, and SharePoint is no exception. Now we're making SharePoint even more touch friendly. The new Touch Design mobile pages enhance the touch experience of two core SharePoint components, SkyDrive Pro and Sites.
"Now, when you access SharePoint Online from smaller devices-from 11-inch screens down to 4-inch-you have a new app-like experience that enables you to work your best with your documents and team sites," Mark adds.
Take a look at a few screen shots of SharePoint on 11-inch and 4-inch screens:
The Touch Design view of "my documents" in SkyDrive Pro on an 11-inch touch tablet device.
Backstage of the Touch Design experience on a 4-inch screen showing navigation access to Office 365 tiles. After clicking into the SkyDrive Pro tile, you see a "shared with me" documents pivot.
To find out more, read Mark's full article here. Tweet us your thoughts! @MSNZEducation.
Last week, Anthony Salcito had the honour of announcing Microsoft’s 2014 Expert Educators and Mentor Schools. Members of both programs are part of an exclusive, year-long program designed to recognize educators and schools that are on the leading edge of education innovation. Expert Educators were selected from nearly 22,000 educators in 158 countries, while Mentor Schools came from nearly 250 schools in 75 countries. These educators and schools are using technology to transform education, often overcoming overwhelming obstacles in order to prepare their students to be 21st century leaders.
Salcito explained how, "Winning Expert Educators are not only doing innovative work in the classroom, but they are actively mentoring others and creating change within their own education systems. For example, one of our winners created digital literacy courses and produced audiobooks for non-native speakers and the blind, and then designed a multimedia centre to allow any student or teacher to access their work and experiment with broadcasting language lessons. Yet another designed a history project for their students to study medieval history. Students took in-person tours of medieval castles, researched and compiled all their information, and then created virtual tours that could be used by other teachers and students who could not visit the castles in person. These innovators set an outstanding example for their peers."
"Or take winning Mentor Schools like GENTE (Gin Exp Novas Tecnologias Educacion) in Brazil, and Campbelltown Performing Arts High School in Australia. At GENTE, the focus on personalized learning has completely transformed their curriculum and learning outcomes. Each student creates his or her own online “formative itinerary” that lists the skills they already have and the ones they need to develop. A digital adaptive evaluation system monitors what the student has learned, and where they can improve. At Campbelltown Performing Arts High School (CPAHS), action learning project teams explore four key areas of 21st-century learning: project-based learning, personalized learning, flexible learning spaces and student voice. CPAHS is firmly committed to practices that improve learning outcomes for students and prepare them as 21st century citizens who have the capacity to reflect deeply, collaborate effectively, think critically and work creatively."
"The Expert Educators and Mentor Schools programs are designed specifically to help enable major transformations for both the educators and the schools. This year’s winners will benefit from the access to technology that they receive as part of Microsoft’s ongoing programs. We also see the programs as a “fellowship” of sorts: winners will not only work extremely closely with Microsoft, but they will also have access to a global community of world-class educators and schools."
Look out for the applications for 2015 later next year!
The Office 365 team has just announced the arrival of real-time co-authoring in Office 365, as well as a whole host of new features in the Office Web Apps that will help the education sector collaborate and work together more productively both Online and Offline.
Students and educators can contribute and edit documents simultaneously in the Word Web App, PowerPoint Web App or Excel Web App. New real-time presence helps you see where your co-authors are working in the document so that you don't create conflicts as you edit.
Additionally, the new ability to see changes to text and formatting as they happen will help you and your co-authors stay on the same page as your ideas develop and evolve.
And because Office Web Apps now save as you go, your team's edits are included and seen as they happen.
Check out the details here: http://bit.ly/1floWsB
The changes are being rolled out now across Office 365 and SkyDrive, and are part of Office 365's regular upgrade cycle.
We are very excited to share with you Microsoft's latest BYOD discussion paper put together by Partners in Learning Australia. This paper is a significant update from the previous version and gives you a comprehensive guide to everything you need to know about implementing a BYOD programme in your school.
The ongoing debate regarding the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) model in schools warrants deep analysis to help educators and institutions understand this provisioning model and its potential benefits and pitfalls for learning. This discussion paper sets out to define and investigate current BYOD models to clarify which questions should be addressed in the context of your school’s culture, to determine the most suitable BYOD model for your situation. It is intended to stimulate discussion around what constitutes best practice 1-to-1 learning.
The paper explores all of your questions around the following:
Readiness, planning, technical support for devices, maintenance of devices, software licensing, security, school policy and parental consent, device life cycle and warranties.
Network and security considerations, file considerations, print considerations, software considerations.
You can view and download the full guide by clicking on the link at the bottom of this post!
Keen to find out more about 1:1 Learning programmes for your school? Register now for the 21 Steps to 21st Century Learning Workshop!
Facilitated by world education leader, Bruce Dixon, the complimentary workshop is designed to support school Principals and eLearning leaders to work together. We recommend two leaders attend from each school. We invite you to attend the workshop in Auckland, on 11th-12th November, or in Wellington, on 14th-15th November.
Places are limited and the first workshop is only 10 days away! Find out more here or register now by emailing email@example.com.
Two of New Zealand’s most tech-savvy schools, both in Auckland, have been awarded classroom sets of Microsoft Surface RTs in recognition of their leadership in digital learning.
Microsoft New Zealand is giving Botany Downs Secondary College and Ferguson Intermediate School in Otara 25 Surface RTs that will become a shared resource and accelerate the schools’ innovative teaching practices. Both schools are Microsoft Partner in Learning schools, meaning Microsoft has partnered with them to up skill teachers and increase the use of technology as a learning tool.
These schools have become so skilled at using technology in the classroom that international delegations of teachers have visited to learn from them. Last month, both Botany Downs Secondary College and Ferguson Intermediate School were further recognised when they became two of only 34 schools in the world to be a World Tour School, an honour that recognises the colleges as global leaders in education innovation.
Mike Leach, Principal of Botany Downs Secondary School, says most tablets are designed for people to passively consume information, like watching videos and reading current events. In contrast schools need devices that allow students to learn by creating things independently, as well as working together.
“We’ve got lots planned for our Surface RTs. Every one of our students will benefit from using programmes like PowerPoint and Word on a portable tablet and it allows us to actively engage them in an enjoyable way,” says Mike.
Jenny Leach, Principal of Ferguson Intermediate School, agrees that these tablets will help excite her students about learning. She sees implementing up to date technology as a way of addressing digital inclusion and supporting the school’s broader community.
“The best way we can prepare our students for success in our digital world is by giving them hands on experience with up to date technology. For most of them, their jobs will incorporate technology and it’s important that they know how to use it and how to collaborate with other people via technology,” says Jenny.
Evan Blackman, Microsoft Education Sector Manager, says bringing technology into the classroom isn’t a nice to have anymore, it’s fundamental to learning.
“This gift is tied into a much broader commitment Microsoft New Zealand has made to the education sector and these two specific schools. We’re working with teachers around the country to show them how to use technology in the classroom to make learning better. This means actively engaging students, giving them access to experts and getting them to collaborate with each other,” says Evan.
Surface RTs are used throughout the education sector, including by tertiary students, because they have all the features people expect in a laptop, like Microsoft Office and a USB port, but remain small enough to easily carry around.
We are looking forward to keeping you updated on each school's exciting digital learning journeys!
The following post was originally blogged on The Official Microsoft Blog and is written by Frank Shaw, Corporate Vice President of Communications at Microsoft. We thought it was a fantastic read and are so excited to share it with you.
"I’m still over in Abu Dhabi, where the only thing hotter than the weather are the new Windows devices unveiled by Nokia this week.
I have to say, I’m really excited for a 1080p Lumia with a third column on my start screen so I can keep a close eye on more people, more news, more stuff.
Of course, even with the 720p display I’m using right now, I could easily spot some coverage today that needs to be corrected.
Seems like the RDF (Reality Distortion Field) typically generated by an Apple event has extended beyond Cupertino.
So let me try to clear some things up.
Note: If you are the TL;DR type, let me cut to the chase. Surface and Surface 2 both include Office, the world’s most popular, most powerful productivity software for free and are priced below both the iPad 2 and iPad Air respectively. Making Apple’s decision to build the price of their less popular and less powerful iWork into their tablets not a very big (or very good) deal.
Since we launched the Surface line of tablets last year, one of the themes we’ve consistently used to talk about them is that they are a terrific blend of productivity and entertainment in one lightweight, affordable package. In fact, we’re confident that they offer the best combination of those capabilities available on the market today.
That’s not an accident, it’s exactly what we set out to design. We saw too many people carrying two devices around (one for work and one for play) and dealing with the excess cost, weight and complexity that “dual carrying” entails. We believed that there was another, better way: A tablet built to offer great touch-based entertainment activities combined with a productivity powerhouse that helps people crank through the stuff they have to get done before they watch zombies or flick birds.
That’s what Surface is. A single, simple, affordable device that helps you both lean in and kick back. Let’s be clear – helping folks kill time on a tablet is relatively easy. Give them books, music, videos and games, and they’ll figure out the rest. Pretty much all tablets do that.
But helping people be productive on a tablet is a little trickier. It takes an understanding of how people actually work, how they get things done, and how to best support the way they do things already.
The good news is that Microsoft understands how people work better than anyone else on the planet. We created the personal computing revolution by giving people around the world a low-cost, powerful, easy-to-use device that helped them accomplish an unbelievable array of tasks. And together, Windows and Office ended up reaching every corner of the globe and powering every academic institution, industry and profession. Of course both Windows and Office are evolving all the time – to reflect the way people work today – more social, more mobile and connected through the cloud.
We literally wrote the book on getting things done. And that’s how we knew that Surface needed to include three things to help people do their best work:
1. The gold standard in productivity software – Office.2. Faster and more precise input methods like keyboard/trackpad.3. The ability to use apps and documents side by side, allowing the comparisons, analysis and synthesis that happens frequently during content creation.
That’s what we delivered. And it’s why the Surface is the most productive tablet you can buy today. We also knew that it would make our competitors take notice. That as consumers got a taste of devices that could really help them get things done, they would see alternatives as being more limited.
And so it’s not surprising that we see other folks now talking about how much “work” you can get done on their devices. Adding watered down productivity apps. Bolting on aftermarket input devices. All in an effort to convince people that their entertainment devices are really work machines.
In that spirit, Apple announced yesterday that they were dropping their fees on their “iWork” suite of apps. Now, since iWork has never gotten much traction, and was already priced like an afterthought, it’s hardly that surprising or significant a move. And it doesn’t change the fact that it’s much harder to get work done on a device that lacks precision input and a desktop for true side-by-side multitasking.
But you wouldn’t know that from reading some of the coverage I’ve read today. Perhaps attendees at Apple’s event were required to work on iOS devices that don’t allow them to have two windows open for side-by-side comparisons, so let me help them out by highlighting the following facts:
• The Surface and Surface 2 are less expensive than the iPad 2 and iPad Air respectively, and yet offer more storage, both onboard and in the cloud.• … come with full versions of Office 2013, including Outlook, not non-standard, non-cross-platform, imitation apps that can’t share docs with the rest of the world.• … offer additional native productivity enhancing capabilities like kickstands, USB ports, SD card slots and multiple keyboard options.• … include interfaces for opening multiple windows, either side by side or layered to fit the way most people actually work.
So, when I see Apple drop the price of their struggling, lightweight productivity apps, I don’t see a shot across our bow, I see an attempt to play catch up.
I think they, like others, are waking up to the fact that we’ve built a better solution for people everywhere, who are getting things done from anywhere, and who don’t have hard lines between their personal and professional lives. People who want a single, simple, affordable device with the power and flexibility to enhance and support their whole day."
Cyclone is presenting the Surface Education Usage Seminar to give you the opportunity to meet the new Surface range! You'll get the opportunity to say hello to Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 and hear directly from Microsoft on what’s new. You'll also get to hear from local education sites that are currently deploying and using them. Learn how Windows 8.1 makes a strong case for doing everything within the modern-style interface.
Cyclone has been appointed one of the official resellers of the Surface range and they have the resources available that can assist on all procurement, pedagogical and deployment services for everything Surface related.
You can attend the seminar on any of the following dates:
Christchurch: 30th October, 2:30 - 4:00 Auckland: 7th November, 2:30 - 4:00 Wellington: 21st November, 2.30 - 4:00
You can find out more and register here! We look forward to seeing you!
You may have heard, Windows 8.1 has been released today! We are very pleased to announce that it is available for free download right here. If you have a PC running Windows 8, there are a huge variety of reasons to upgrade to the new version. This update will introduce you to many useful tools and we can't wait to see what you think of them!
So, what's new in Windows 8.1?
You can learn even more about the Windows 8.1 features here and take a look at Mashable's recent post, 10 Reasons You Should Upgrade to Windows 8.1 Now.
Please join us at the complimentary 21 Steps to 21st century learning workshop in November, 2013. This two-day seminar is designed to help school leaders clarify their vision for 1:1 learning and building an executable framework to bring this to life. Facilitated by world education leader, Bruce Dixon, the workshop is designed to support school Principals and eLearning leaders to work together. We recommend two leaders attend from each school.
In the workshop you will work through the 5 Phases that outline the Design and Deployment Guide to 1:1 learning:
Phase 1 – The Compelling Case for Change: Create a solid foundation for a 1:1 initiative, with a clear vision and actionable, measurable goals.
Phase 2 – Redesign Learning and teaching: Focusing on rethinking and redesigning all aspects of teaching practice and the learning experience, based on the information garnered and ideas developed in Phase One.
Phase 3 – Lead the Shift: The vision and goals have been set. It’s time to turn the vision into reality, and theory to practice. This phase develops strategies in the key areas of stakeholder engagement, financial models, equity of access, community buy-in and teacher professional growth to support your initiative.
Phase 4 – Manage Implementation: Once all the strategies for change are in place and being put into action, schools are ready to plan the actual 1:1 implementation. This implementation covers a range of tasks, including managing the budget, creating a 21st century learning environment, conducting a readiness assessment and establishing critical partnerships, culminating in the actual start
Phase 5 – Evaluate Continuously: Effective evaluation of your initiative is the backbone of its success. Without any genuine commitment to such a process, the impact of the previous 20 Steps can be marginal. It underpins the ongoing development of a program and ensures the best possible outcomes for students, staff and the school.
Places are limited, register your interest now by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org! To find out more, please visit http://www.microsoft.com/nz/21steps/.
Today Microsoft announced the Student Advantage programme, which will help ensure all students at New Zealand schools and higher education institutions have access to the productivity tools used in most New Zealand workplaces, before they enter the workforce.
Beginning 1 December 2013, every school and tertiary provider in New Zealand that licenses Office for staff and faculty will be eligible to get Office 365 Pro Plus for its students at no additional cost.
This comes off the back of The IDC Workforce Readiness Study, released today by Microsoft, which reveals the key skills that people looking for work in high-growth, high-salary jobs need. Behind core communication skills and attention to detail, the third most important skill for prospective employees is knowing how to use Microsoft Office.
Paul Muckleston Managing Director of Microsoft New Zealand, says Student Advantage gives schools and academic institutions the tools they need to better prepare students for entering the workforce, without spending additional money.
“The impact of Student Advantage for New Zealand students is going to be far reaching. We believe it will help address the country’s challenge of ensuring equity of access for all students to eLearning, as more than one million students will be eligible for Office 365 ProPlus under this new benefit.”
More information can be found here:
For New Zealand schools to take up this added benefit, the steps are:
- Add the zero-cost Student Advantage sku to your Microsoft agreement; and
- Deploy the no-cost Office 365 A2 Plan service for staff and students; then
- Students are able to download the Office Pro Plus client software to their devices (up to 5 devices per student)
Please contact your Microsoft Reseller for more details:
- For schools enrolled in the Microsoft Schools Agreement with the Ministry of Education, please contact Datacom on 0800 22 55 428
- For all other schools, please contact your Academic Reseller or partner
We are very pleased to announce that the winner of the Surface Pro Competition at the ULearn Conference last week is Clint Hawke, Deputy Principal of Taita College. Congratulations Clint! Your new Surface Pro is coming your way very soon.
We had a fantastic time at ULearn, and would love hear your feedback on the conference. Tweet us your thoughts @MSNZEducation!
We are very pleased to announce that Partners in Learning School Research (PILSR) is now available on the Partners in Learning Network.
PILSR provides individual schools with an online research tool to measure their own innovative teaching practices that develop the skills students need for life and work today. Based on globally-recognized research, the PILSR research tool is international in scope, enables school-specific measurement of innovative teaching, and provides a common language to drive community dialogue and systemic change – all at no cost to schools.
So what is it? It's a free, online survey sent out by a school administrator to school leaders and teachers to gain their individual self-assessment on the current state of innovative teaching practices in their school and their own class. Everyone is encouraged to participate (it only takes ten minutes), and all responses are anonymous and confidential.
Once your surveys have been taken, your school receives a data-driven, action-oriented report with concrete recommendations for how your school can develop and expand its innovative teaching and learning. The surveys can be used to measure progress by establishing a baseline of your school's current teaching practices using the initial survey results, and then conducting subsequent research every year thereafter to assess how those practices have evolved.
Find out more and get started here!
We'd love to see you at ULearn this week in Hamilton. Attend a Microsoft seminar and visit us on our stand to go into the draw to win a Surface Pro!
Wintec (Waikato Institute of Technology) took out the supreme award at the 2013 Microsoft Tertiary ICT Innovation Awards held in Tauranga last week.
Held at the Bay of Plenty Polytechnic as part of the 31st Annual Tertiary ICT Conference, Wintec won the award for its innovative use of cloud-based technologies to improve the overall experience for students, staff and stakeholders.
Matt Bostwick, Tertiary Education Sector Manager at Microsoft New Zealand, says it is inspiring to see New Zealand’s tertiary education institutions leading the way in the use of innovative technology.
“The conference theme for this year, ‘Get Connected’, highlights a key trend in the education sector where the application of smart technologies is helping universities and polytechnics to better connect staff and students to each other and collaborative learning environments, as well as improve outcomes for learners, educators and the broader community.”
Wintec received the Microsoft Innovation Award trophy and prizes, including Microsoft Surface Pro tablets in recognition of its cutting-edge work. Pictured below is Gary Johnston, Wintec CIO, with the Microsoft Innovation Award trophy.
The two category winners were:
· Innovation in Connecting Students to New Technologies and Services: Bay of Plenty Polytechnic for its student portal and mobile app project.
· Innovation in Connecting Staff and Students to Collaborative Teaching and Learning Environments: Te Wananga o Aotearoa for its iMarae mobile app.
We're very pleased to be part of ULearn in Hamilton this week. Please come and see us at our stand (#34-35), and join us at the Microsoft seminars below. You may get lucky and win a Surface Pro!
We are very pleased to announce that Microsoft New Zealand has this week introduced its Surface portfolio to our local business channel via three partners. Effective from the 1st October 2013, the resellers which will stock the Surface portfolio are New Era, Cyclone Computers and Telco Technology Services (TTS).
In addition to offering Microsoft's extended warranty and accidental damage, resellers bring a variety of value-added services to the Surface family such as asset tagging, custom imaging, kitting, onsite service and support, device recycling, and data protection.
"The addition of these authorised resellers is a continuation of Microsoft's devices-and-services strategy, and extends our Surface family of devices, enabled by cloud services, to more organisations," says Brent Kendrick, Director of Small and Mid-size Business and Partner Group, Microsoft New Zealand. "We look forward to working closely with these partners to better serve their commercial customers. As we move quickly into future phases of this program, we will activate more partners to sell Surface devices."
To find out more, read the full press release here.
On October 23rd, 2013, Microsoft Partners in Learning is presenting a virtual University webcast on understanding the learning strategies of the 21st century learner. You can register here, right now!
Join this great dialogue on the 5 best strategies every 21st century learner needs to succeed in school and in the workplace. Why a capacity to learn is more important than knowing. Topics covered will be:
During the webinar, three Amazing Grades books will be given away to the first three attendees asking questions. Amazing Grades is a worldwide goodwill book with 101 authors from 13 countries around the world and includes a special bonus chapter by Nasha Fitter, Worldwide Lead of Education for Microsoft.
Learn about the presenters:
Pat Wyman is a College Professor, founder and CEO of HowToLearn.com and best-selling author of Amazing Grades: 101 Best Ways to Improve Your Grades Faster and Spelling Made Easy: Learn Your Words in Half the Time.
Bonnie Terry, best-selling author of School Strategies for ADHD Kids, Five Minutes To Better Reading Skills, and Ten Minutes To Better Study Skills and one of the co-authors of Amazing Grades is with us today. She is a Board Certified Educational Therapist and internationally recognized as America’s Leading Learning Specialist and the founder of BonnieTerryLearning.com.
Susan Kruger, M.Ed. is the founder of StudySkills.com and best-selling author of SOAR® Study Skills: A Simple & Efficient System for Getting Better Grades in Less Time. She will be speaking on the best study skills for 21st century learners.
Don't forget to register here!
Microsoft Partners in Learning is a $500 million global initiative working with schools and educators to improve teaching and learning practices; optimize the use of technology within pedagogy to improve learning outcomes; and help every student receive an excellent education and gain the skills they need in work and life. As a member, you get access to free tutorials and other fantastic resources to help you and your school create and enhance lessons that elicit 21st Century Skills in students.
This is one of the helpful tutorials hot on the Partners in Learning website right now. If you don't already know, OneNote is a digital notebook that lets you store all your valuable class or project knowledge in one place. Whether your information is text, pictures, or in a paper folder, it can be digitized, organized, and easily accessed from OneNote. You are productive because everything you need on a subject is at your fingertips. You will be able to build learning connections with other teachers and your students for the ultimate school experience.
We'd love to hear your thoughts, tweet us at @MSNZEducation!
Interested in learning more about using OneNote and other 21st century learning tools in the classroom? We're still taking bookings for our Windows in the Classroom seminars. Register your interest by emailing email@example.com.
Today, in New York, Microsoft announced the next generation of the Surface family of devices and accessories. You can preorder and find out everything you need to know here about the Surface 2, Surface Pro 2 and the new accessories, all available for preorder in New Zealand soon!
Check out the video below, and get excited! We are!
Submit your application to become a Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert before the September 30th, 2013 deadline to be considered for this exclusive program. Completing and submitting your application means you'll have an opportunity to join the Expert Educator Program and an all-expense paid trip to the Partners in Learning Global Forum 2014 in Barcelona–Spain. The Forum is where the worlds' most innovative educators will gather March 11–14, 2014 to learn together and to be inspired.
The Microsoft Expert Educator program is an exclusive, one-year program that recognises educator visionaries around the world who use technology to create better learning and student outcomes. As an Expert Educator, you will be a global advocate, sharing your knowledge with other educators and education leaders. You will exchange best practices and learn alongside some of the most innovative educators in the world.
When you become a Microsoft Expert, you will receive:
To work on your application, please click here.
We are very excited to announce that this month marks the tenth anniversary of Microsoft's Partners in Learning!
James Bernard, WW Director, Partners in Learning, this week commemorated the occasion, "Ten years ago, we recognized that education systems around the globe simply weren’t working. With a model built to support the 19th century industrial revolution, it was clear that change was not only necessary, but critical to the future success of our children and our society. It was also clear that governments were not equipped to make this massive transformation happen on their own. The private sector would have to play a significant role, and Microsoft stepped up to do just that."
"With a firm conviction that every child deserves a quality education, and over $750 million dollars committed to date, Partners in Learning has had the resources and reach to accelerate the progress of education reform. I’ve been involved in Partners in Learning for over five of its ten years, and I’ve been privileged to witness first-hand the program’s impact. We’ve recognized and supported Innovative Schools as well as Expert Educators. We’ve given exemplary teachers a platform to share their experiences on a global stage through our Global Forum and other Partners in Learning events taking place in every region. And we’ve helped millions of teachers use technology in their classrooms to engage students and transform learning."
So, If you’re not already, join the Partners in Learning Network! We can't wait to see what the next ten years have to come.
Interested in become a Microsoft Expert Educator? Apply here!
The education team is at the NZ Education Summit today at the Aotea Centre, Auckland. It's been a fantastic day so far, the highlight for us definitely being Education Sector Lead, Evan Blackman, delivering a keynote on Microsoft's 21st century learning design.
Blackman spoke about the fantastic learning and teaching resources (tools, tutorials and learning activities) that you gain access to as a member of the Partners in Learning Network. He also talked about the innovative research Microsoft is carrying out to ensure that school leaders are equipped on their journey to 21st Century teaching with technology.
And we can't forget the hot topic of how Microsoft's Partner's in Learning Programme can help you as an educator ensure your students are acquiring a new, 21st century, set of skills.
Tweet us your thoughts on these topics at @MSNZEducation - we'd love to hear!
Bruce Warren, Principal at Auckland's Mairangi Bay School, recently took a Microsoft Surface RT with him on a two-week study tour of Korea. This recent article by Interface Magazine gives us a fantastic run down of his thoughts, feelings and experiences towards the device. But here's a few of Bruce's words:
"My first impressions were positive. I liked the design: the size; the black metal feel; the widescreen depth of colours; the realistic feel of the type cover keyboard; the weight; the kickstand; the preloaded Office software; and the easy connectivity to Wi-Fi, so that I could catch up on Facebook and email on the go."
"I used OneNote for organising all my notes and readings, and the angled rear camera easily captured presentation slides. I used my smartphone for photos and downloaded them via USB port. I could then use them in a PowerPoint presentation I delivered on the Surface connected via USB/ VGA to a projector."
"Many times I was pleased I had the Surface RT, as I would not have lugged my hefty laptop from the hotel to lectures. Other educators were equally impressed. Now that I’ve returned, I find I use it at home to browse the web, check email and Facebook updates. I could see it becoming a preferred device at our school by staff and students."
Don't forget, the Surface Offer for Education Institutions ends on the 30th September!
To remind you, this offer includes the following special pricing on Surface RT to New Zealand schools and higher education institutions, through Authorised Surface Retailers:
All the prices above include GST
It's extremely evident that today’s learning environments and student preferences are focused on producing more and more content via digital mediums in the form of rich Microsoft Office documents, interactive games, photo and video libraries. One challenge that arises as a result of this shift, is having a way to store and access this content anywhere, anytime, regardless of device. The majority of users tend to choose a consumer cloud storage service like SkyDrive or use a school file server. Valuable knowledge and content is not typically manageable or searchable by schools in the case of consumer cloud storage and file servers can be unreliable and hard to access outside of school grounds.
With Office 365 for Education, Microsoft provides a rich set of enterprise grade services via the cloud which can be managed by a school or preferred partner. Office 365 for Education demonstrates the power of highly available, modern cloud services that can help facilitate curriculum ICT integration. Take the opportunity to see this vision in action by registering for one of our Windows in the Classroom seminars.
One of the key services included in Office 365 for Education is SkyDrive Pro. It's the place where staff and students can store, sync, and share their files across multiple devices with ease and security. Until last week, 7GB per user made up the available storage for SkyDrive Pro, as part of Microsoft’s evolving and maturing cloud service offerings this storage has now increased to 25GB per user by default.
With SkyDrive Pro you can collaborate with others in real time and edit documents from virtually anywhere via a web browser using Office Web Apps. Accessing your files from multiple devices (including Windows Phone, Windows 8, iOS, and Android devices) is a cinch with native SkyDrive Pro and Office Mobile apps.
There are three new significant improvements to SkyDrive Pro for Office 365 for Education subscribers - to help you be more productive:
We have some excellent resources that can help you learn how SkyDrive Pro could be best used at your school. Check out Training: Sync libraries using SkyDrive Pro.
We also have a great quick reference card attached below that would be a good way to gain adoption of SkyDrive Pro and Office 365.
You can subscribe to our official announcements for Office 365 including the recent SkyDrive Pro and Exchange Online storage increases on our Office 365 technology blog.
We've had an excellent response on our Surface RT offer for schools and tertiary education institutions!
Haven't heard about it?
Until September 30, 2013, Microsoft is pleased to offer the following special pricing on Surface RT to New Zealand schools and higher education institutions, through Authorised Surface Retailers:
If you are interested in finding out more about this offer for your school, please contact any of the following:
Take a look at the brochure below to see how taking advantage of this deal will benefit your school or tertiary institution!
1 This price is the recommended retail price for the offer. Your actual price will be determined by your Surface retailer. There is no obligation on any retailer to comply with any recommended retail prices.