Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Webinar reminder for tonight

A snippet from one of Michelle's popplets

Our guest webinar tonight features Michelle Botha from Somerset House Primary School in Somerset West. She has made good use of an amazing classroom tool called  'Popplet' in her classroom experience and you don't want to miss what she has to share!

Please join us in an Adobe Connect Meeting:
Meeting Name:  The Power of Popplet
Summary: This webinar features the lovely mindmapping/sticky-note/collaboration application
Popplet ( with which you can do much.
Presenter: Michelle Botha from Somerset House in Somerset West.
Invited By: Fiona Beal (
When:  Thursday 22 November 6:00 PM - 6:15 PM (15 mins)
Time Zone:  (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

The recordings will be placed on the blog the day after the webinar. 

Our Google+ webinar recording

This webinar took place on Tuesday 20 November as advertised in the previous post. Here s the recording.
Webinar presentation
This is a Slideshare on Google +. It covers:
What is Google +
•Highlights of interesting features
•How to write a post
•How to receive a notification
Benefits to education 

'Google Hangouts' will receive a post of its own later. 

Get to know Google plus! from Fiona Beal

Webinar recording
The above Slideshare was presented as part of the webinar on Google+. If you would like to know what was said, here is the webinar recording: Get to know Google+

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

SchoolNet webinars this week

These are our SchoolNet webinars for this week - both short and sweet! Do join us if you can.

(1) Please join us in an Adobe Connect Meeting.
Meeting Name:  Get to know Google +
Summary: This webinar introduces you to Google+ and how to use it.
Presenter: Fiona Beal (
When:  Tuesday 20 November 6:00 PM - 6:15 PM (15 mins)
Time Zone:  (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

(2) Please join us in an Adobe Connect Meeting.
Meeting Name:  Popplet in the classroom
Summary: This webinar features the lovely mindmapping/sticky-note/collaboration application
Popplet ( with which you can do much.
Presenter: Michelle Botha from Somerset House in Somerset West.
Invited By: Fiona Beal (
When:  Thursday 22 November 6:00 PM - 6:15 PM (15 mins)
Time Zone:  (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

The recordings will be placed on the blog the day after the webinar. 

Thursday, 15 November 2012

SchoolNet's November webinar programme for November

SchoolNet's webinar programme for November started this week. Please join us if you can.  All you have to do on the night of the webinar is click on the link to be taken to Adobe Connect, our hosting platform. From there you may be prompted to check that your computer has the installed the necessary add-in. Thereafter sign in as a guest with your name.
The proposed programme for the rest of the month (subject to change) is:

1. Tuesday November 13th from 6:00 - 6:15pm
Google Chrome Tips and Tricks (Fiona Beal) completed

2. Thursday November 15th from 6:00 - 6:15pm
Use Google Docs to create beautiful collaborative newsletters (Brenda Hallowes-Cotsworld Prep)

3.Tuesday November 20th from 6:00 - 6:15pm      
Get to know Google+ (Fiona Beal) 

4.Thursday November 22nd from 6:00 - 6:15pm      
Using Popplet in the classroom (Michelle Botha - Somerset House) 

5.Tuesday November 27th from 6:00 - 6:30pm
a) To BYOD'ly go .... (Nina Adams - St Cyprians)
b) Our BYOD pilot in Grades 6 and 7 (Michelle Botha - Somerset House)

6.Thursday November 29th from 6:00 - 6:15pm  (Fiona Beal)
Get the hang of Google hangouts

We do hope you can join us on these occasions. 

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Webinar recording - the Amazing Google Chrome

Thank you very much to all who attended the webinar last night entitled 'The AMAZING Google Chrome'. I hope you were inspired to try more of what this browser offers.


If you missed the webinar (18 minutes) and would like to list to what was said, here is the recording link:

The presentation on SlideShare

If you would like access to the presentation used in the webinar it can be downloaded from Slideshare as a PDF. Here is the link:

Webinars - on 13th and 15th November 2012

There are two webinars this week:

1) The Amazing Google Chrome

Meeting Name
:  The AMAZING Google Chrome
Summary: This webinar sets out to show what one can do with Google Chrome! It is an extraordinary browser with all sorts of tips and tricks you might not know about to make browsing a breeze!
When: Tuesday 11/13/2012 at 6:00 PM
: 15 minutes
Presenter: Fiona Beal
To join the meeting

2) A classroom newspaper in Google Docs for Foundation Phase

Meeting Name:  Create a classroom newspaper using Google Docs
Presenter: Brenda Hallowes from Port Elizabeth in South Africa
Summary: This is a webinar from Brenda Hallowes showing how she uses Google Docs to create a lovely classroom newspaper with her Foundation Phase students.
Invited By: Fiona Beal (
When:  11/15/2012 6:00 PM - 6:15 PM
Time Zone:  (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

These webinar recordings will be placed on the blog the following day in case you cannot join us at the time of broadcast. 

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Please tune in to our guest webinar on Thursday from 6:00m- 6:30pm



Three superb short presentations on 'Learn the news',  'Brainpop' and "Prezi' presented by Mary Lou Berndt, a teacher in East London on Thursday from 6pm till 6:30pm.


Last week I had the privilege of attending the first TeachMeet in the Eastern Cape which was co-hosted by Stirling Primary School and Clarendon Primary School in East London, but held at Stirling Primary this time round. The two enthusiastic teacher organisers were Claire Dean from Stirling Primary and Sharon Cox from Clarendon Primary. A full blog report will appear soon.  It was marvelous to see how much the East London teachers had to share with one another.

One of the presenters, Mary Lou Berndt shared three lovely presentations on Learn the News, Brainpop, and Prezi. I have asked Mary Lou to present these at our next guest webinar this Thursday, so please do pop in and listen. You won’t be disappointed! Here are the details. (Just click on the URL, and sign in as guest with your name.) This webinar will be recorded. 

Join us on Thursday

Meeting Name: Learn about 'Learn the News','Prezi' and 'Brainpop'
Summary: These were three superb presentations given at the East London TeachMeet on Thurs 11th September by Mary Lou Berndt. Learn about 'Learn the news' (a great programme for your students to find out about the news), how to make a 'Prezi' and an amazing site called 'Brainpop'.
When: 09/20/2012 6:00 PM - 6:30 PM
Time Zone: (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

To join the webinar:

If you have never attended an Adobe Connect webinar before:
a) Test your connection:

b) Get a quick overview:

We really hope that we will meet you there on Thursday. 

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Join SchoolNet's exciting webinar programme this week!

Please consider joining our SchoolNet webinar programme this week!  These are short (30 minutes) webinars and you can leave any time!  I will do the first one which is on creating a In the second one I am please to announce that we have two guest speakers. Lisa Gair from The Rock Academy will tell us how she uses Edmodo at school, and Siobhan Lowe from Somerset House will tell us how she uses Obami at school. webinar details
Meeting Name:  Get curating with
Summary: This is a demonstration on how to get started with the amazing curation programme called presented by Fiona Beal
When:  Wednesday 08/15/2012 6:00 PM - 6:30 PM (probably only about 15-20 mins)
Time Zone:  (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

Edmodo and Obami Webinar details
Meeting Name:  Learn about Edmodo and Obami
Summary: We are thrilled to have a guest webinar featuring Lisa Gair speaking on how she uses Edmodo, and Siobhan Louwe speaking on how she uses Obami. Both these free applications are amazing Learning Management Systems designed to motivate your learners and hugely enhance your classroom experience with all their benefits. Join us. 
When: Thursday 08/16/2012 6:00 PM – 6:30 PM
To join the meeting:

Test your system
All you really need to do for an Adobe webinar is test your connection before the time if you have never tuned in before, as you might need to add an add-in:
Then on the evening just click on the link, log in as a guest and write your name.

Think about joining us!

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Join us in our May webinars relating to wikis

Here is our SchoolNet webinar programme for the month of May:

1.Create a wiki using Wikispaces
Tuesday 15th May: 6pm - 6:30pm 
This is a short hands-on demonstration on how to create an educator's wiki using Wikispaces.

2. Make your wiki look like a website
Thursday 17th May: 6pm – 6:30pm 
This webinar will gives some hands on tips on how to make your wiki look like a website even though you don't know any HTML

3. Add writing, photos, audio & video to your wiki (This webinar will not take place today. It will be replaced by Screencasts on the course wiki)
Wednesday 23 May: 6pm – 6:30pm

This presentation will look at the ways you can add to your wiki - writing, photos, audio and video etc

Use your wiki for online projects
NEW DATE - WEDNESDAY 6 JUNE and no longer Tues 5 June (WE ARE HERE)Wednesday 6 June: 6pm – 6:30pm
Tuesday 5 June: 6pm – 6:30pm

This presentation will look at ways of conducting a project using a wiki

How to listen to one of our webinars 

We are thrilled to have sponsorship of Adobe Connect sponsored by Adobe for our webinar programme. We have found in the past that some members simply cannot get into Adone Connect. If this happens to you please contact your service provider to find out what is blocking it. But generally to join one of our webinars

1. Test your connection:
If you have never attended an Adobe Connect meeting before you will need to download an add-in.  All you do is click on this link and it will take you through the steps.

2. The following link is optional but it gives you a quick overview:

3. Join the meeting on the night by clicking on the webinar link provided. We will then like you to sign in as guest with your name as the password option is only for the host.

4. Here is a slideshow to take you through the steps again:

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Webinars for May - all about wikis

We are hoping to have four webinars centering around wikis this month. Please keep watching this page for the links and the times.

1. How to create a wiki using Wikispaces
2. Make your wiki look and work like a website
3. Add writing, photos, audio and video to your wiki
4.Use your wiki for online projects

Friday, 13 April 2012

Microsoft Free Tools webinars

Here is our webinar programme for the next three weeks. The webinars will all relate to Microsoft  Free Tools.

1.How to use Microsoft's Autocollage and its uses in the classroom:
Thursday 12th April: 6pm - 6:30pm

2. How to use Microsoft's Photostory 3 and its uses in the classroom
Tuesday 17th April 2012: 6pm – 6:30pm

3. How to use Microsoft's Windows Live Movie Maker and its benefits in the classroom
Thursday 19th April: 6pm – 6:30pm

4. How to use Microsoft's SongSmith and its uses in the classroom
Thursday 26th April: 6pm – 6:30pm (NOTE THE NEW TIME)

Friday, 6 April 2012

Webinar of past winners shows the creative ideas teachers come up with to enter Microsoft’s Partners in Learning Forum (13th Feb)

At the moment we are having a series of nine webinars featuring past finalists and winners in Microsoft’s Partners in Learning Forum (formerly called the Innovative Teacher competition)  I have thoroughly enjoyed hosting and listening to these twice a week as it shows me that we have some very creative teachers in our midst. I have also had the tasks of converting these webinars to YouTube videos and podcasts which makes for easier viewing 

Today I am going to feature the webinar presented by Helen Robertson, Wessel Theron, Ryan Galving and Sarietjie Musgrave . After the little write ups about the projects I will add the vdieos and podcasts. If you are a South African teacher please considering entering this great competition. Some of these presenters travelled up to Joburg for the South African Finals, then went off to Jordan for the African and Middle east finals. Some even got to the World Finals in Washington DC. What a year of travel in 2011!

Helen Robertson who was teaching at Cornwall Hill College in Pretoria at the time

Helen’s project was called Functions for Technologically Functioning Teens. In the webinar she renamed it ‘It all started with a cell phone’. Getting learners to plot and analyse functions is a tricky part of the grade 10 Mathematics curriculum. To address this, learners used a cell phone app to plot the functions whilst they focused on the more important skill of analysing the effects of changing the variables. Support structures, including contacting their teacher using Whatsapp and asking questions of the “Functions for Technologically Functioning Teens” Facebook group, encouraged independent learning. 


Wessel Theron from Bishops Diocesan College in Cape Town

Wessel called his project ‘School of Rock’. To create interest and excitement in additional language lessons, this project involved learners searching for their own Afrikaans song and then creating a music video for it that is shared on YouTube. Grade 8s had to work in pairs to match images to the lyrics of the song. They also had the option of translating a song and singing it themselves. This was a perfect opportunity to be creative using ICTs, improve Afrikaans comprehension and vocabulary, and be entertained while learning. 


Ryan Galvin from St Nicholas in Pietermaritzburg
Ryan called his project R and J in R and B which is short for Romeo and Juliet in Rhythm and Blues. In an attempt to persuade his grade ten class that the story of Romeo and Juliet is relevant to any time, this teacher offered learners the opportunity to re-tell the story and revise the play. Learners made use of MP3s on their cellphones, iPods, YouTube, Twitter, digital cameras and videos. The final task was creating a MovieMaker slideshow, using the music, tweets and photos they had gathered.


Sarietjie Musgrave who was teaching at Eunice High School in Bloemfontein at the time.
She did a hugely successful project called ‘Spread the sunshine’ and did South Africa proud by achieving a second place in the world finals with this project! Her students each found students with disabilities in the community to link with and created ICT programmes to help them.


Here are their YouTube presentations neatly tucked into this Slideshare presentation. Their podcasts will appear below.

Join our webinar session of past winners at 5pm today! (9 Feb 2012)

This afternoon we have another webinar of three past finalists or winners in the South African Partners in Learning forum. Please log in as a guest and join us if you can:

Ngaka Ralekoala from Bloemfontein
We have Ngaka Ralekoala who worked in a team of four in a project about vulnerable children. In this project learners from participating schools received training in ethics and research methodology and then conducted research in their local community to determine the needs of vulnerable children.  Through this project, learners have been given the opportunity to collaborate with other schools, the University of the Free State as well as experts in the field of Social Action research from the De Montford University in the United Kingdom via the Internet. 

Charli Wiggil from Eden College in Durban
 We also have Charli Wiggil from Durban who did a project around the world cup in South Africa called ‘Tweenzites’. In this grade 10 Life Orientation project involved learners identifying a contemporary problem in their community and exploring it using various technological tools (Intel Thinking with Technology, GPRS, cell phones, Microsoft Office Applications etc). Learners were then challenged to devise strategies to address the problem that they identified and these were presented to local community and government leaders, community members, educators and learners from other schools. It is hoped that the municipality might implement some of the suggestions through their Department Planning Programme. One of the groups developed a DVD to be used in Life Skills by other schools.

Glen Williams from Sunridge Primary in Port Elizabeth
 The third teacher is Glen Williams who did a project which he calls ‘Silent Morals’ around a particular IT programme called Scratch.Glen says " Well , my grade 6 learners had to USE what they learnt in basic programming, EXPLORE, and CREATE an ANIMATED SILENT MOVIE which DEPICTS a MORAL VALUE or LESSON.You will see that I start AND end this presentation with the word FUN, because I believe that education must be ENGAGING in a FUN way. Projects allow learners the FREEDOM to EXPERIMENT with what they already learnt in a STRUCTURED way AND forces them to EXPLORE things which they haven’t learnt yet, without RELYING on a teacher."

This all makes for some interesting listening this evening. If you can’t make it the recording will be placed on the wiki tomorrow. ( But please join us if you can this evening at 5pm:

Well, five 'o clock has now been and gone and the webinar is over. Here is a Slideshare with embedded YouTube videos showing the webinars of these three finalists. Take a watch and a listen if you have the time.

Otherwise, listen to their podcasts instead

Ngaka Ralekoala - Children who care (mp3)

Charli Wiggil - Tweenzite (mp3)

Glen Williams - Silent Morals (mp3)

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

SchoolNet's webinar and podcast programme now in full force

This is the time of the year where SchoolNet and Microsoft combine to prepare interested South African teachers for the upcoming Partners in Learning Forum. This competition used to be known as the Innovative Teacher's Forum. There are amazing prizes up for grabs for successful teachers, the most valued being a week long trip to participate in the Pan African and Middle East Finals in Morroco, and/or a week long trip to participate in the World Finals in Greece, for successful teachers. This year SchoolNet is running an online support course from  a wiki (http://partnersinlearningforum-sa) to prepare teachers. We are also running, alongside this, a webinar and podcast programme of past winners sharing their successes.

Past finalists and winners group 1

These three past finalists and winners shared their projects in the same webinar

Lyneth Crighton from Brescia House in Johannesburg
Lyneth Crighton is from Brescia College in Johannesburg. She ran a workshop in which Grade 10 learners explored the novel “Cry the beloved Country” using Web 2.0 collaborative tools. The girls collaborated on a wiki, participated in an online discussion forum, created a pod-cast and developed a word cloud. Colleagues across learning areas got involved in the workshop to show that the themes in the novel were applicable to a range of learning areas.
Lyneth was a winner in the South African Finals, and they went on to represent South Africa at the Middle East and Africa Finals in Jordan. She won again and were able to participate in the World Finals in Washington DC.

Louise Clark from St Cyprians in Cape Town
Louise Clarke and Kim Jackson are both Grade 4 teachers at St Cyprian's School in Cape Town. Their combined project for Grade four learners involved reading the first chapter of book called ‘The Phantom Tollbooth’ and predicting what adventures the main character would have in “The Lands Beyond”. Learners produced artwork and scripts describing what they thought would take place and they then narrated their predictions using Windows Movie Maker. This project only used free software – and its true success was in the way it promoted collaboration and creativity amongst young learners. Louse and Kim were winners in the South African Finals, and they went on to represent South Africa at the Middle East and Africa Finals in Jordan. They won again and were able to participate in the World Finals in Washington DC.

Add caption

Natalie Meerholtz from Holy Rosary in Johannesburg
Natalie Meerholz is from Holy Rosary School in Johannesburg. Natalie and her Grade 6 learners aimed to encourage the school and surrounding community to address the issue of e-waste. Activities included creating e-posters and e-advertisements; reusing e-waste in the form of sculptures; and holding an e-waste launch. An e-waste bin has been set up to encourage responsible e-waste disposal and recycling. Natalie 
was a winner in the South African Finals, and she went on to represent South Africa at the Middle East and Africa Finals in Jordan. She achieved a winning place and was able to participate in the World Finals in Washington DC.

Watch and listen to their presentations

Here is a Slideshare containing the webinar presentations of the first three past finalists who shared their stories recently. These webinars were converted into YouTube videos. Slideshare now has an amazing feature where you can insert a YouTube video after a slide! Take a look!

Listen to their podcasts

Natalie Merholtz (mp3)

Louise Clarke (mp3)

Lyneth Crighton (mp3)
South African teachers - we encourage you to participate - this year could be the adventure of your life!

Thursday, 26 January 2012

SchoolNet starts its webinar programme for 2012

Currently we are running a free online course preparing our South African teachers for the upcoming Partners in Learning forum. This can be viewed on the wiki: If you have not yet signed up for this course so we can keep in contact with you, please do so on the sign up page of the wiki. The course is supported by webinars. Please feel free to join us by clicking on the link provided. Recordings will be posted on the wiki after the session. .


Week one: one idea leads to another
*No webinars

Week two: the complete course via webinars and posts
*Webinar 1: Learn from previous winners part 1 (Tuesday 24th Jan, 5-6pm)
Natalie, Kim and Louise, Lyneth,

*Webinar 2: Get started with a project (Thursday 26th Jan, 5-6pm)

Week three: a repeat of the complete course via webinars and posts
*Webinar 3: Learn from previous winners part 2 (Tuesday 31st January, 5-6pm)
Peter de Lisle, Linda Bradfield, Lisa Gair, Megan Rademeyer

*Webinar 4: Get started with a project (Thursday 2nd Feb, 5-6pm)

Week four: let's plan and analyse
*Webinar 5: Learn from previous winners part 3 (Tuesday 7 Feb, 5-6pm)

*Webinar 6: Learn from previous winners part 4 (Thursday 9 Feb, 5-6pm)

Week five: How is it all going?
*Webinar 7: Learn from previous winners part 5 (Tuesday 14 Feb, 5-6pm)

*Webinar 8: Learn from previous winners part 6 (Thursday 16 Feb, 5-6pm)

Week six: Three weeks to go
*Webinar 9: Learn from previous winners part 7 (Tuesday 21 Feb, 5-6pm)

*Webinar 10: Learn from previous winners part 8 (Thursday 23 Feb, 5-6 pm)

Week seven: Two weeks to go
*Webinar 11: Question and answers session (Tuesday 28 Feb, 5-6pm)

*Webinar 12: Learn from previous winners part 9 (Thursday 1 March 5-6pm)

Week eight: Wrapping up

*Webinar 13: Wrapping up session (Thursday 8 March 5-6pm)