Frog’s Learning Management System was trialled successfully at St Joseph’s Catholic College, Katherine, in the second semester of 2014, and was greeted enthusiastically by staff and students alike. As a result of the trial, Frog has now been made available to all seventeen Catholic schools and the Education Office in the Northern Territory.
John Morton, Education Officer, ICT’s in Learning, explains their Frog journey.
One of the great challenges in 21st Century education is to use technology appropriately and not to be compelled to ‘try and make it fit everywhere’. Our vision is to use technology to support a wide range of different teaching and learning styles; classroom teaching, students working individually on mobile devices like iPads, IT and study skills, for revision, or to collect evidence of excursions or even science experiments.
We chose Frog because it works across all devices and its flexibility enables schools to use it in a way that suits them and cater for their unique social and cultural setting.
Staff turnover in this part of Australia is quite high, so we also wanted something that was really quick and easy to use and minimises the amount of training required.
Across our schools I have witnessed how the appropriate use of technology draws in students to support their achievements, ultimately helping them learn to love learning. Frog is really versatile because it can incorporate the tools and resources that schools are currently using, providing continuity and consolidating everything into one place. How Frog will be used by schools is going to be answered with many different voices, as each school discovers how it can support their teaching and learning and how it fits with the technology they currently use.
Many schools are now on their own Frog journey, having had an introduction, teachers are beginning to test out how Frog will work best for them and their students. It will take time to create resources but the investment will pay off, as once created they will be stored in Frog and be shared with other teachers and students in every school, improving collaboration and ultimately, productivity.
Teachers can collaborate to develop sites that link together subjects in ways that make interdisciplinary themed projects a reality. The Year 7 teachers at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart, Alice Springs, are doing just that this term with a project on the theme of Ancient China. Staff with different subject expertise are building a site that links all their subject areas. When the term is completed they can reflect on what worked well or could have been done better. The site will be there to share with new staff, next year’s Year 7 students and all the other Catholic schools across the NT.
Curriculum staff at the Education Office are also beginning their Frog journey, creating resources to support all aspects of school life from Leadership to Catholic Identity, so that they can better serve the NT Catholic schools community to ensure continued student progress and excellence in teaching and learning.
Oh and Frog looks pretty too!
John Morton Education Officer,
ICT for Learning Catholic Education Office, Northern Territory