e-Learning Fellowships for 2008

Original document:

Hon Steve Maharey


Innovative teachers to explore new technology horizons

Five teachers have been awarded e-Learning Fellowships which recognise their innovative and creative approaches to improving students learning, Education Minister Steve Maharey said.

The Fellowships enable teachers to be released from the classroom for up to a year to research and develop their use of information and communication technologies.

Mr Maharey announced the recipients of the 2008 e-Learning Teacher Fellowships today in a speech to the third annual U-learn conference in Auckland.

The Fellowships support teachers as researchers, and help build teacher capability, providing funding, laptop and computer equipment, and mentoring and academic support.

This year's projects include research into how mobile phones can support students with special learning needs, and combining virtual and face-to-face learning to improve students literacy and thinking skills.

The Fellowships are a great example of the Labour-led governments commitment to 21st century teaching. They encourage teachers from early childhood through to tertiary education to raise student achievement through technology, such as social communication tools and software.

Technology is becoming more and more central to the way New Zealanders live and work. Technology is one of the eight learning areas in the new curriculum, and these teachers will be leaders in this area.

Past fellowship recipients have become principals, curriculum, learning and teaching leaders, in-service e-learning advisers and professional development experts.

Recipients are supported by industry partners or education providers, such as Massey University.

The recipients

Michael Fenton (Inglewood High School, Taranaki): To investigate the cognitive and motivational benefits to learners of using mobile sensor technology to gather data for use in problem solving, question formation, assessment tasks and interactive games.

Toni Twiss (Waikato Diocesan School for Girls, Hamilton): To evaluate the use of mobile phones and personal digital assistants to support learning programmes of learners with specialist learning needs.

Nicolas Rate (Russell St School, Palmerston North):- To explore the opportunities offered by e-portfolios to create a community of learning between students, families and schools.

Matthew Tippen ( Isleworth Primary School, Christchurch): To investigate the effects of using short, high-impact physical activities, created by students using ICT, on learners motivation, health and engagement.

Mark Callagher (Wellington College, Wellington): To examine effective models for combining virtual learning environments and social software with face-to-face classroom teaching, focusing on the impact on learners literacy and thinking skills.


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