What does Exploring Technology look like at Ponsonby?
Students learn about the language of coding and 3D design by persisting, being open to continuous learning and responding with wonderment and awe within this Module subject at Ponsonby Intermediate. Students begin their two year pathway by building a foundation of coding knowledge in Scratch and both photography and Photoshop skills. Students progress into Year 8 by building on their coding knowledge and learning about 3D design and 3D printing.
Students learn that F.A.I.L. is not a bad word. It stands for First Attempt In Learning. This is essential to the learning of Technology and the design process. Students need to be persistent with their prototype creations, and be open to continuous learning by finding different approaches to solve their problems.
A challenge for the students is to respond with wonderment and awe as they live within a very technological savvy world with high end devices, instant social media communication and connectivity.
Why do we teach it?
The aim is for students to develop broad technological knowledge, practices and dispositions that will equip them to participate in society as informed citizens and provide a platform for technology-related careers. Students learn that technology is the result of human activity by exploring stories and experiences from their heritage, from Aotearoa New Zealand’s rich cultural environment, and from contemporary examples of technology. As they learn in technology, students draw on and further develop the key competencies.
How do we teach it?
At Ponsonby Intermediate School, Exploring Technology is a modular subject. Students have Exploring Technology for one term each year, 2x 90 minute lessons each week.
Scratch 3 helps young people learn to think creatively, reason systematically, and work collaboratively — essential skills for life in the 21st century. Scratch 3 was chosen over other software as it is inclusive for students of any gender, culture and or ability.
Primarily, I teach the language of coding through creating games in Scratch 3. Students, I have found, will want to increase their learning to try and improve their game creation. Students learn through a mixture of whole class teaching, individual time with the teacher, and also via access to a library of prerecorded video tutorials and exemplar screenshots of how to code the projects. These are freely accessible to the student to use as and when they require it.
Once the students have a firm foundation of understanding about the language of coding and photography and photoshop in Year 7, they progress further in Year 8.
3D designing is introduced where students are able to explore what is necessary to construct a successful design for 3D printing. Tinkercad is the website we use in class, due to its accessibility and initial ease to learn. Students are given design challenges to become familiar with using the new software, then they get a chance to print their 3D designed keytags to establish what outcomes they are to expect when 3D printing before they begin their prototype designs for their project.
Marketing of their project, whether in a Shark Tank presentation, or in the format of a promotional infomercial recorded using Zoom screen recording, is how the final assessment of their learning takes place.
From the Ponsonby Curriculum. Published 2022.