January 21

Assessment 2: Reflective Blog Post

This subject has taught me so much about how I can continue to support students in their quest to find good quality literature and show teachers how to effectively embed literature across the curriculum and into their classrooms. At first I had great reservations of how to effectively achieve the latter, but as always, it comes down to collaboration with teachers, selecting quality literature (in a range of formats) that support the curriculum and enhance critical thinking skills that develop a greater understanding and perspective of their world through literary learning practices. Quality literature is vital to ensuring student engagement and enhances the learning cycle across the curriculum, by providing opportunities to connect with texts and respond in a way that is far more meaningful (Simpson, 2016) and this was reiterated in my blog  for my vision for the future, when asked to consider the future of children’s literature.

I also need to be willing to learn and master a range of digital technologies and share this with teachers so that I become a valuable and knowledgeable support to teachers, further advocating my role and the use of literature in the classroom. By helping students to respond to literature in new and innovative ways, as I described in my module 6 blog about the Sway I incorporated in a French class, I can confidently share by example, and I think this is incredibly valuable.

Essentially, the key issues I have taken from my learnings include the fact that the greatest value that literature can offer is through the discussion that it stimulates (Allington & Gabriel, 2012) and how student learning outcomes can be enhanced through a shared reading experience (Fisher & Frey, 2018). This advocates for literary learning on so many levels. The value that reader response strategies offer totally supports this idea, and strategies such as learning circles and book bentos are just two that I am going to promote in my school this year. I am going to start with our History teachers, because I truly see the value of offering a range of literature that supports so many facets of the history curriculum.

My collection development practices will also see more involvement in curriculum committees. By working closely with teachers that provide insight into their teaching programs, I will be able to a) select appropriate literature to support their teaching areas and b) advocate for my support in designing and implementing curriculum programs through literary learning. I shared my views of this in the module 4.1 discussion forum of how we can promote our services (Bourne, 2020, December 24). If I can show how literature can build knowledge, promote critical thinking skills and develop trans-literacy practices as Gordon suggests (2011), I am on my way to establishing a culture of literary learning and literature across the curriculum.

I also learned that students don’t necessarily respond well to reading when they are given little choice and are forced to keep reading journals and write book reports. In my blog for module 3 I acknowledged how much I had to learn about helping students find reading material they were interested in and had free access to, and this will inform my practice moving forward in how I support our students, especially when it comes to age appropriateness, which is less important than knowing the student, and as Travers and Travers stipulated, knowing the child is just as important as knowing the book (2008).


Allington, R., & Gabriel, R. (2012). Every child, every day. Educational Leadership, 69 (6). pp.10-15. http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/mar12/vol69/num06/Every-Child,-Every-Day.aspx

Fisher, D. & Frey, N. (2018). Raise reading volume through access, choice, discussion, and book talksReading Teacher, 72(1), 89-97. doi: 10.1002/trtr.1691

Gordon, C. A. (2011). Lost in cyberspace?: Tracking the future of reading. School Library Monthly, 27(8), 50-54.

Simpson, A. (2016). Choosing to teach with quality literature: from reading (through talk) to writing. Scan, 35(4). https://doi.org/https://education.nsw.gov.au/content/cam/main-education/teaching-annd-learning/professional-learning/media/documents/Research-choosing-to-teach-with-quality-literature.pdf

Travers, B. E., & Travers, J. F. (2008). Children’s literature: A developmental perspective. John Wiley & Sons.


January 18

Reading programs….myths debunked!

Module 3

I learnt so much after listening to Reading Rockets (2015, August 5). It was pointed out that when teachers put pressure on students to read, this actually pushes children way from reading. The idea of reading logs and book reports are counter-productive to engaging students in reading, and this is such a game-changer for me. I have been given the responsibility of running a reading program for our year 8s this year, which previously was supervised by any teacher that had a spare in their timetable (I know ☹).

This year, I have the privilege of running it alongside the Head of English, and I am so excited. However, my plans for reading logs and book reports have gone out the window. Sharp (2018) says that it is imperative that good teaching habits are modelled and great support is offered to students when looking for books, because students underestimate how difficult it is to find books. Travers and Travers (2008) provided some excellent advice for how to support students in their quest to find good books that appeal to them. They suggest that knowing the child is just as important as knowing the book. Having insight into a students’ cultural background, life experiences and personality type is just the beginning in trying to find that ‘right’ book, that is both enjoyable and meaningful. Reading ‘age’ is no longer that appropriate, and knowledge of the reader is what will stand teacher librarians (in collaboration with teachers) in good stead when helping students choose literature. I wholeheartedly agree with Pennac (2006) and the suggestion that children are introduced to the pleasure of reading in the home. Communication with parents is key in advocating for the importance of good reading practices, and is something that teacher librarians can promote in newsletters, blogs and other formats that communicate to the schooling community.



Pennac, D. (2006). The rights of the reader.  Walker Books.

Reading Rockets. (2015, August 5). Leading to reading [Video]. YouTube. https://youtu.be/jqgjvauQmYUTravers and Travers

Sharp, Colby. (2018, November 1). Free choice…with support: Game Changer [Video file]. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/PiwiJWSIaFA

Travers, B. E., & Travers, J. F. (2008). Children’s literature: A developmental perspective. John Wiley & Sons.

January 18

Using technology to produce a response…

I have just starting using Sway in the classroom. It can be used as an excellent teaching tool, and I have used it for a couple of units I taught in French and English in 2020.

Because Sway is incredibly easy to use, and our students have access to it through the Microsoft suite available at school, I taught my students how to use it for a unit of work we studied in French.

After studying a unit on personal information, including biographical information, family, personality and careers in a unit of work for Year 9 French, students read a variety of excerpts from a range of famous French people. As an activity that demonstrated their understanding of language in the target language, we created an activity for students that required them to use the information they had learned, and then create a Sway presentation that would appear in an interactive museum. Students chose one of the famous French people (Kings, actors, sportspeople etc.) and presented the information as an infographic that one might find in a museum. This activity was great in that students were creating a response that provided a real purpose, were drawing on information learned and then had to present this information in a way (bi-lingual actually – for both English and French readers!). We got students to record their voices for the ‘read aloud’ function in Sway, and this was challenging and daunting for some students who had to listen to themselves speaking in French.

What we didn’t anticipate was how long this was going to take. We had to teach students the fundamentals of Sway, and the correct use of digital images. Fortunately in Sway, you can tick a box that only selects creative commons licensed material, but it was still a time consuming activity. In terms of learner response strategy however, it was great for students, as they respond really well to anything that involves technology!

December 9

My vision for the future of children’s literature. Mod 1

Do you have a vision for the future of children’s literature? Who will be the driver’s of change?

Given that Short (2018) informs us that print books are very much still alive and are not a dying breed thanks to their digital counterparts, I am comforted by the fact that students read both print and digital narratives, and that these two mediums don’t actually compete against each other. What is I think is incredibly important is that we are cognisant of providing our readers differing experiences of how to engage with texts (Short, 2018). My vision is that children’s literature will continue to evolve to meet the leisure, cultural and reading preferences of readers. I think what we must remember is that marketing and publishers don’t drive the future of children’s literature, but children do. They tell us what they want to read, they show us what is of interest to them and we need to listen to them. Quality literature needs to be made available in a range of formats that incorporates visual culture, racial diversity, gender diversity and ways for readers to engage with authors that provide authentic learning experiences (Short, 2018).

The emergence of digital literacies has changed how students access books, and it has been interesting to witness students who prefer a physical text to their digital counterparts. Some students certainly prefer digital access, and we have to take this into consideration when developing our own collections, ensuring we provide a balance of formats to suit our students’ needs.

According to Harvey, print texts still play a large role in children’s reading preferences, but what is fascinating is how the media also play a large role in influencing reading preference titles. The influence of games, movies, merchandise and licensed brands certainly promote their text counterparts in ways that it has been necessary for me to follow media trends and stay connected to these platforms (Harvey, 2015).

Literature works continue to evolve to meet the demands of how readers read and engage with texts. Research conducted by Wolf (2014) suggests that the developing engagement in literature with an adult, ie a parent or teacher, enhances and heightens the engagement for a child. We all have a part to play, and our vision for children’s literature needs to be collective.



Harvey, E. (2015, December 8). Five trends affecting children’s literature https://www.bookbusinessmag.com/article/what-we-learned-from-the-top-trends-in-childrens-literature-webinar/). In Book Business.

Short, K. (2018). What’s trending in children’s literature and why it matters? Language Arts, 95(5), 287 – 298. Retrieved from http://www2.ncte.org/

Wolfe, S. (2014). Children’s literature on the digital move (https://ila-onlinelibrary-wiley-com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/doi/full/10.1002/trtr.1235). Reading Teacher, 67(6), 413-417. https://doi-org.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/10.1002/trtr.1235



December 9

Children’s literature…what would I know?! Mod 2

Children’s Literature- What do I really know?!

I’d like to think I know a little bit about Children’s Literature! I was an avid reader as a child, and continue this favourite pastime in my adult life – when time permits! Having children of my own, one of whom reads voraciously, has opened up a whole new world for me regarding children’s literature. It has been the titles that he reads, that has informed my own decisions (to some extent) as to what we should be considering for our school library’s collection.

But then, I have to sit back and think about what he loves to read, and whether this appeals to a wide readership. And it doesn’t! Whilst Rick Riordan, Branden Sanderson, Neal Shusterman and Julie Kagawa write fabulous novels that my son devours, this doesn’t appeal to all readers, of all reading abilities. So honestly, my knowledge of children’s literature is quite limited. I think about my own reading experiences as a child, and I was reading (for Year 9 English!!) Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities. My father, another avid reader, introduced me to Daphne Du Maurier as a young teen, and of course, Enid Blyton took up a great deal of bookshelf space on my bookshelves.

After engaging in some wide reading in this subject (and others!), I know that children’s literature should accommodate for the behavioural, cognitive and emotional reading levels and development of children. It was only when I started working in a library that I realized how incredibly popular graphic novels are – which was so new to me because my children don’t read (or enjoy) them. Or meeting some students who were reluctant readers and would only read one author. One of our Year 7 students loves Sarah Maas, but continues to read her series over and over, and is incredibly reluctant to try other authors. It took a great deal of encouragement and research, on my part, to find ‘read alike’ authors and suggest new titles that she may like to consider. So, whilst I may think I know a lot or at least enough about children’s literature, the truth is, I could know more. I will always be uncovering new titles and authors for students, and I need to listen to my students, my children and spend time reading reviews, subscribing to useful websites and develop my collegial network with other teacher librarians, teachers and librarians to inform my practice and knowledge of children’s literature.


December 9

Literary non-fiction Mod 2

Module 2.2

Lowitja by Stuart Rintoul


Lowitja is an excellent authorised biography that traces the life of Lowitja O’Donoghue and her remarkable contribution to creating awareness regarding Indigenous people and their history. Her life story is tenderly captivated by Stuart Rintoul, who retells the heartache, loss and ultimate sacrifice Lowitja and her family endured at the hands of familial separation. The biography includes factual information and retells Australia’s history with a new and reimagined honesty. Readers are privy to the heartbreaking separation of Lowitja from her mother and her removal from her family, culture and language. Whilst Rintoul doesn’t empathically create a sense of emotional appeal, readers are left with a sense of discrimination and shock at Lowitja’s experiences. What makes this woman remarkable is that her steely determination is born out of an innate sense of justice and fighting for what is right. Lowitja O’Donoghue’s achievements are admirable and she is honoured with awards such as Commander of the Order of the British Empire, Australian of the Year, National Living Treasure and Companion of the Order of Australia, which is astonishingly inspirational when the reader learns of the basic and blatant discrimination she experienced as a young woman.

Literary non-fiction is an excellent genre to introduce readers, particularly students, to understanding a perspective other than their own, and allows students to learn about their history, the social and cultural context and inherent ideologies present in a time before they lived. Storytelling itself is an ancient art form and allows the author to convey social values and develop a sense of self, empathy and understanding (Comer-Kidd & Castano, 2013). Narrative non-fiction allows readers to engage meaningfully with a narrative that allows them to understand facts and develop an understanding of the facts presented (Cornett, 2014).

Literary non-fiction, such as Lowitja, is an excellent way to introduce students to the history of Australia, through the eyes of somebody who has lived a life very different to their own. It is this perspective that gives students valuable insight into the not so glamourous history of Australia, but also reads as a great inspirational tale that demonstrates what one can achieve, even through great adversity.

Literary non-ficion, such as biographies are an excellent form of narration that exist in secondary school libraries. They make the content accessible and students often find recalling information from such texts easier than the recall from traditional textbooks (Cornett, 2014). Lowitja allows students to engage with O’Donoghue’s story on a personal level and this fosters greater cognitive and developmental engagement, which allows students to recall the historical facts with greater ease. Students also develop greater critical thinking skills because students are forced to consider and evaluate the information presented to them and make sense of a perspective of Australia’s history they may not have been previously privy to (Morris, 2013).

This text fulfills the Year 10 English and History curriculum as well as the General Capabilities in Literacy and Ethical Considerations (ACARA, 2014a; ACARA, 2014b; ACARA, 2014c, ACARA, 2014d). This text would be an excellent addition to any secondary school library, as it addresses more than one curriculum area and the requirements of the General Capabilities.



Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA). (2014a). F-10 English Curriculum. Retrieved from Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority website: https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/english/


Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA). (2014b). F-10 English Curriculum. Retrieved from Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority website: https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/humanities-and-social-sciences/history


Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA). (2014c). F-10 General Capabilities – Critical and Creative Thinking. Retrieved from Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority website: https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/general- capabilities/critical-and-creative-thinking

Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA). (2014d). F-10 General Capabilities – Ethical Understanding. Retrieved from Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority website: https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/general- capabilities/ethical-understanding

Comer Kidd, D & Castano, E. (2013). Reading literary fiction improves theory of mind. Science, 342 (6156), 377 -380.

Cornet, C.E. (2014). Integrating the literary arts throughout the curriculum. In Creating meaning through literature and the arts:arts integration for Classroom teachers (5th ed).

Morris, R. (2013). Linking learning and literary non-fiction. School Library Monthly, 29(7), 39 – 40.


October 6

Assessment 4 Part C

This subject instilled great fear in me and my abilities to understand digital environments, let alone create one. Whilst I feel like I have a sound grasp of the digital world I engage with on a daily basis, the thought of actually creating a digital story with programs I have never used, was terrifying. However, I understand as a teacher and teacher librarian (TL), harnessing the skills of information and communication technology (ICT) and being abreast of 21st century skills is absolutely vital, and are a requirement set out in the General Capabilities of the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA, 2018).

Whilst I do use a range of digital platforms in my teaching, I never actually considered what constituted valuable digital literature until I began my readings in earnest and thought about it from the TL perspective. I valued the insight provided by Yakota and Teale (2014) in what constituted a good digital text, because it isn’t just about how it fits into the curriculum, its accessibility and whether it appeals to users in a way that fosters intrinsic motivation. It also needs to be classified as quality digital literature (Walsh, 2013). Taking these features into consideration gave me greater insight into how I was going to create a digital story, and ensure that I made use of the digital storytelling elements and considered the pedagogical implications for the user (Nokelainen, 2006). Nokelainen proposes key criteria to evaluate the use of the material, including learner control and activity, added value, motivation, flexibility and feedback and I tried to focus on these key criteria when I developed my digital storytelling (DST) project (Nokelainen, 2006). I desperately wanted my DST project to contain Nokelainen’s elements so I could create a valuable teaching resource for my students and be able to share this as an exemplar with my colleagues. I wanted to eliminate the fear of what I had previously held, about using software and digital tools that felt so foreign.

I used Microsoft Sway, Microsoft Forms, Powtoon and Vimeo to create my DST project, and I have never used any of these digital tools before. I originally thought about using powerpoint, but this is a program I have used for many years, and I really wanted to learn something new from this assessment and bring it to my teaching practice. Initially it was overwhelming, but I quickly learned how easy it was to access and create a digital publication. In less than 24 hours, I had a really clear grasp of Sway and found its usability incredibly simple. I actually felt excited. I noted in my Module 2.1 discussion forum how teachers feel great intimidation when implementing digital literature into the curriculum and feel great pressure to master skills they have had little formal training in. Teachers are already faced with a demanding workload, but I’ve realised if that if one teacher can create a digital narrative in Sway, for example, and share it with teaching colleagues that allows for contribution and collaboration, it lightens the load and the pressure to constantly create new and innovative digital resources. It also works as a guide to show teachers how to include digital stories with features that enhance the learning process, rather than detract from it. With digital narrative technology and the use of tools it encompasses, it helps to ensure the focus remains on learning (Hall, 2011). The creation of digital narratives as noted by Hall (2011) significantly enhances professional awareness and development, leading to teachers being much better equipped to meet the demands of new technologies when creating digital narratives (Hall, 2011). Walsh maintains that ‘students of today will need to adapt to new technologies and to those literary practices needed for each development’ (Walsh, 2010, p216), however, so too will teachers. Leadership, collaboration and support are key elements that a TL can offer to a teaching team when creating and implementing digital narratives.

It is so important to include digital resources in our teaching and to teach students how to access digital literacies across the learning continuum and David Leu clearly acknowledges why it is so important that we support and provide students with the skills needed when reading digital texts (Leu et al., 2011).

I was very conscious of my digital citizenship with regards to copyright and ensuring I used images that didn’t breach copyright in my DST project. This was one of the reasons why I chose to embed links to other online sources, as this does not breach copyright (Australian Copyright Council, 2020). I also relied on the images provided through Sway, so that I could select Creative Commons images only, limiting me to licensed material. Sway also allows for the upload of my own created content in Vimeo. I feel like I still have a great deal to learn about managing copyright effectively, especially as TLs are considered the voice of expertise in this field.

The idea of exploring digital literature for Assessment 2 necessitated a connection to social media and networking that has been established through CSU. Using Goodreads, Twitter and the Knowledge Networks Diigo group was something that I initially felt quite uncomfortable with. However, on reflection, I do see the value of connecting with these professional networks to inform my practice and widen my professional connections and indeed give me greater insight into the digital platforms and resources that exist, and remind myself that I am not alone and really, anything is possible.



Australian Copyright Council. (2020). https://www.copyright.org.au/ Australian Government. (2012). Copyright and the Digital Economy | Australian Law Reform Commission. https://www.alrc.gov.au/publication/copyright-and-the-digital-economy-alrc-report-122/

Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority. (2018). Senior Secondary Curriculum. Retrieved from Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority website:  https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/senior-secondary-curriculum

Hall, T. (2011). Digital renaissance:The creative potential of narrative technology in education. Creative Education, 3(1), 96-100.

Leu, D. J, Forzani, E., Timbrell, N., & Maykel, C. (2015). Seeing the forest, not the trees: Essential technologies for literacy in the primary-grade and upper elementary-grade classroom. Reading Teacher, 69(2), 139-145. http://ezproxy.csu.edu.au/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=ehh&AN=109228758&site=ehost-live

Nokelainen, P. (2006). An empirical assessment of pedagogical usabipty criteria for digital learning material with elementary school students. Educational Technology & Society, 9(2), 178 – 197. https://www.j-ets.net/ETS/journals/9_2/12.pdf

Walsh, M. (2010). Multimodal pteracy:what does it mean for classroom practice? Austrapan Journal of Language and pteracy 33(3), 211 – 239. http://www.alea.edu.au/documents/item/63

Walsh, M. (2013). Literature in a digital environment. In L. McDonald (Ed.), A literature companion for teachers. (pp. 181-194). Marrickville, NSW: Primary English Teaching Association Australia (PETAA). https://doms.csu.edu.au/csu/file/863c5c8d-9f3f-439f-a7e3-2c2c67ddbfa8/1/ALiteratureCompanionforTeachers.pdf

Yokota, J. & Teale, W.H. (2014). Picture books and the Digital World: Educators Making Informed Choices. The Reading Teacher, 34(6). https://www.academia.edu/3886534/Picture_Books_and_the_Digital_World_Educators_Making_Informed_Choices


October 6

Assessment 4 Part A

Part A

This digital storytelling (DST) project has been created for the Senior Secondary Curriculum for English in Unit 2, for a Year 11 English class using Sway in Microsoft 365, Microsoft Forms, Powtoon and Vimeo. It is a multimodal resource that does not meet all of the requirements of digital literature categories as stipulated by Walsh (2013) and Lamb (2011), however does exhibit characteristics of storytelling such as linearity, structure and digital features that provide and enhance learning opportunities for students.

This DST project has been developed for a secondary, independent school that excels in both NAPLAN and OP (ATAR in 2020) results. As such, students identified with learning needs is minimal, however with close to 28% from non-English speaking backgrounds (NESB), this project is scaffolded with various digital features to support challenged readers (Alexander, 2011).

In Unit 2 students analyse the representation of ideas, attitudes and voices in texts in order to consider how texts represent the world and human experience (ACARA, 2018). This unit of work focuses on the study of Leah Purcell’s The Drover’s Wife, and students will examine the effect of stylistic choices and how audiences are positioned to consider the prevailing attitudes, values and perspectives present in this text (ACARA, 2018). The unit incorporates a close study of the play, and this necessitates a deep understanding of the socio-cultural context of the both colonial and post-colonial texts. This DST project has been developed for the orientation phase of the unit of work, introducing students to colonial texts and the inherent ideologies and cultural assumptions that foregrounded this era of literature. This then provides a springboard for understanding how post-colonial texts subvert the predominant ideologies and represent a reimagined telling of a story with a post-colonial voice. The purpose of this DST project is to introduce students to traditional colonial texts and then further examine how language and structural choices shape perspectives. This unit of work culminates with an examination that responds to an unseen question, in the form of an analytical essay. This DST project meets the content descriptors for Senior English in ACEEN024, ACEEN021, ACEEN022, ACEEN025, ACEEN026, ACEEN028, ACEEN031, ACEEN033, ACEEN035, ACEEN038, ACEEN039 and ACEEN040 (ACARA, 2018).

The value of this DST project is multi-faceted. The author of a Sway resource is able to invite others to edit, enabling great collaboration amongst a teaching cohort. This DST project could be created by one teacher who then shares it with their teaching team, enabling other teachers to edit and contribute to the overall presentation. This allows for a greater collaboration of ideas, shared authorship, empowerment and pedagogical practice (Morra, 2013). This synergy amongst a teaching team would be incredibly valuable (Lamb, 2011) and promotes pedagogical methodology through the use of tools by teachers that enhance the teaching of their curriculum areas (Hall, 2011). Additionally, it allows teachers to engage creatively with their subject and explore the creative ways of communicating a topic in way that is engaging for their students (Hall, 2011).

After the experiences of online learning as a result of COVID, this DST project would be an excellent teaching resource for teachers and students to use. Students would have the luxury of self-pacing, and can enable the feature of ‘read aloud’ to assist in the comprehension and learning of content. A Stack (Microsoft, n.d) of key vocabulary needed for the unit of study is clearly explained for students, and hyperlinks have been embedded to audio and text files, allowing students to gain further understanding of key concepts. A Powtoon video (Powtoon, n.d) has also been embedded via Vimeo (Vimeo, n.d.) offering an audio-visual experience for students. This DST project provides students with great flexibility and control over their own learning and pace of learning, and it is this sense of autonomy that has the potential to enhance educational and learning outcomes, because it allows students to progress at their own pace (Cullen, 2015). Further engagement in the learning experience would be enhanced by completing activities in the inbuilt Forms, another feature of Microsoft 365 (Microsoft, n.d.). These activities provide opportunities for consolidation, comprehension, and higher order thinking skills of synthesis and evaluation (Kopka, 2014). Further, they allow students to engage in literary practices by demonstrating metacognition and using the metalanguage of the English curriculum (Walsh, 2010).

This DST project allows students the flexibility to self-pace, listen as opposed to (or in conjunction with) reading, levels of interactivity and cognitive engagement, comprehension and evaluative skills that students should be predominantly engaging in (Roskos et al., 2014). It is these features that also provides differentiation for students, making it a valuable teaching resource.

For a school that optimizes the features available in Microsoft Office 365, students would have unlimited access to this resource at school and remotely, provided internet access is available remotely. The added advantage of this DST project is that teachers can teach the content face to face as a presentation, and share the Sway so that for those students that need additional access or revision of taught content, they can watch, read, re-read and listen as many times as they need, without judgement or pressure. This added flexibility allows students greater autonomy over their learning and caters to the needs of students with diverse needs, highlighting the potential that digital narrative and media has in engaging disadvantaged learners in textual practices (Mills & Levido, 2011).

Essentially, this DST project is a traditional learning activity that has been redesigned with digital tools to engage learners in a deep and meaningful way, providing flexibility and an element of interactivity. It also allows for a blend of flexible learning and teaching approaches, whilst also providing students with the necessary ICT skills that are vital to 21st century skills of creating, communicating and collaborating. (Morra, 2013; Dzuiban, Hartman and Moskal, 2004).


Alexander, B. (2011). Storytelling: A tale of two generations. In The new digital storytelling: Creating narratives with new media (pp. 3-15). Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO. Retrieved from https://ebookcentral.proquest.com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/lib/csuau/reader.action?docID=678297&ppg=20

Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority. 2018. Senior Secondary Curriculum. Retrieved from Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority website:  https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/senior-secondary-curriculum/english/

Bourne, H. (2020). The Drover’s Wife, Year 11 English Unit 2: Culture and Texts (Sway). Townsville Grammar School Teacher Resources. Townsville Grammar School PF Rowland Library. Townsville. Retrieved from https://sway.office.com/H7SiI7dD7ekK5KLr?ref=Link

Cullen, M. (2015). How is Interactive Media Changing the Way Children Learn? Education Technology Solutions. Retrieved from https://educationtechnologysolutions.com/2015/12/how-is-interactive-media-changing-the-way-children-learn/

Dziuban C, Hartman J. & Moskal, P. 2004. Blended Learning Educause. Vol 2004, issue 7. Retrieved from http://net.educause.edu/ir/libary/pdf/ERB0407

Kopka, S. & Hobbs, R., (2014). Transmedia & Education: Using Transmedia in the Classroom with a Focus on Interactive Literature [Blog]. SeKopka. Retrieved from https://sekopka.wordpress.com/2014/05/07/transmedia-education-using-transmedia-in-the-classroom-with-a-focus-on-interactive-literature/

Hall, T. (2011). Digital renaissance: The creative potential of narrative technology in education. Creative Education, 3(1), 96-100.

Lamb, A. (2011). Reading redefined for a transmedia universe. Learning and Leading with Technology, 39(3), 12-17. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.csu.edu.au/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=ehh&AN=67371172&site=ehost-live

Mills, K., & Levido, A. (2011). iPed:Pedagogy for digital text production. Reading Teacher, 65(1), 80-9. Retrieved from http://exproxy.csu.edu.au/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=pbh&AN=73908381&site=ehost-pve

Morra, A. (2010). Eight steps to great storytelling. [Web log post]. Retrieved from https://edtechteacher.org/8-steps-to-great-storytelling-from-samantha-onedudemic/

Microsoft. (n.d.). Sway. Retrieved September 15, 2020 from https://sway.office.com/

Powtoon. (n.d.). Bring awesomeness to your classroom. Retrieved September 16, 2020 from https://www.powtoon.com/edu-home/

Roskos, K., Burstein, K., Shang, Y., & Gray, E. (2014). Young children’s engagement with e-books at school: does device matter? Sage Open, 4. doi: 10.1177/2158244013517244.

Vimeo. (n.d.). We’ve got a thing for video. Retrieved September 16, 2020 from https://vimeo.com/

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Walsh, M. (2013). Literature in a digital environment. In L. McDonald (Ed.), A literature companion for teachers (pp. 181-194). Marrickville, NSW: Primary English Teaching Association Australia (PETAA). Retrieved from https://primo.csu.edu.au/discovery/fulldisplay?docid=alma990022907270402357&context=L&vid=61CSU_INST:61CSU&search_scope=MyInst_and_CI&tab=Everything&lang=en


September 30

Digital environments

Think about your own journey as an educator – what has changed in your teaching practice over the course of your career with regards to technology use and literature? Is that change embedded at a core level, or is it a matter of changing tools?

I have been teaching for twenty years and so much has changed in how I use technology over the course of my career. After I returned to work after a few years on maternity leave in at the end of last decade, I remember so many of my resources were no longer relevant. The curriculum focus was the same, it was just how I had filed them and the formats they existed, were all of a sudden obsolete. I am incredibly fortunate to work in a school that embraces technology and ICTs and we are supported by an incredible IT department. Whilst I acknowledge that in the past teachers have shied away from utilising the digital platforms and tools we have available, now we really do not have a choice. We have a morning briefing every morning before school, where all teaching staff come together to discuss the day ahead. Every Tuesday is now dedicated to training in digital tools and we actually call it ‘Tech Tuesday’.

I can’t tell you when we became so digitally literate, although it feels like it happened through a natural transition. All of a sudden we had onedrive, google classroom, Microsoft Teams and Google suite. As a TL, I have had to adapt, review and implement ebooks, audiobooks and other interactive texts online and implement through our LMS.

As cited by our teachers, keeping students engaged and not distracted by other features afforded in the digital world, means that we have had to be vigilant in how we evaluate the resources we acquire and understand better how our students learn from screens, and the implications involved with literacy and technology. Teachers too, feel great intimidation when implementing digital literature into their curriculum and I know they feel, like me, pressured at times to be an expert on everything digital we encounter. This certainly isn’t the case, but I do understand how some teachers feel great pressure to gain – quite quickly – a range of skills and competencies in rather a short period of time, on top of the already demanding roles teachers face today.