INTERFACEXpo Workshops 2018

There is always a great selection of workshops for delegates to choose at INTERFACEXpo events – and 2018 will be no exception. They are 40-minute sessions, designed to give a more in-depth view of particular products, services and solutions.

This year they will be divided into three groups with delegates selecting one from each group to attend.

Several sponsors are running workshops at INTERFACEXpo 2018. Here are their outlines:


New Cyclone LogoCompany: CYCLONE

Title: Rolling into the DTHM curriculum with Sphero

Outline: See the Sphero in action. Take a look at the SPRK Lightning Lab app, your hub to create, contribute and learn with Sphero Robots. The visual block-based building interface makes learning the basic principles of programming approachable and fun. Browse through activities, keep track of a class, and collaborate with users around the world. When creativity strikes … Make. Code. Share.

spheroPresenter (Christchurch): Emma Planicka is an experienced educator and has worked in the education sector for more than 12 years in a range of settings including, Early Childhood Education, Primary, as an e-Learning Leader and as a Digital Learning Specialist with Cyclone. Her current focus is supporting teachers to successfully integrate e-learning into teaching and learning, by providing PLD in digital fluency and PLD upskilling teachers in their understanding and skills around digital technology. Emma is accredited to deliver MOE-funded PLD. As a teacher in both Early Childhood Education and Primary, she has developed a strong understanding of New Zealand Curriculum. She has supported and worked alongside a number of schools, leaders and teachers, in so doing gaining a deep understanding of pedagogy that drives student centred learning in the 21st Century.

Emma has recently run a number of interactive, practical workshops offering PLD to teachers and leaders around Digital Technologies – Hangarau Matihiko. This covered fun and engaging learning experiences with Sphero, BeeBot, Osmo, unplugged games and learning, with links to planning and additional resources. She has continued to build her knowledge working with Tynker, Hopscotch and Swift Playgrounds. Emma is also supporting and working with a number of schools around digital technologies curriculum and strategic planning for 2018.

Presenter (Palmerston North and Auckland): Craig Render has been and an educator for the past 10 years in a low decile school in South Auckland in a wide range of roles including Health and Physical Education, Digital Coding and Robotics, ICT lead teacher, Whanau Dean, Specialist Classroom Teacher and eLearning coordinator. He is also a Microsoft Innovative Expert Educator, Microsoft Learning Consultant and accredited MOE PLD provider.

As a teacher of a predominantly Maori and Pasifika students, Craig believes in a relational approach to education and PLD, in an on-going commitment to research and upholding the values of Te Tiriti o Waitangi. Craig’s knowledge of senior assessment allows a better understanding in how to implement the New Zealand Curriculum in to NCEA with the use of collaborative technologies. Craig has experience working with a large range of teachers and students from varied learning areas to support 21st Century teaching, learning, assessment and reflective pedagogy. He also has experience in working with SLT, BOT and whanau to implement strategic change.


tts logoCompany: TTS

Title: Simplifying Digital Learning

Outline: Using TTS Universal as an example, this workshop will demonstrate and discuss ways digital resources can be used in the classroom across the curriculum, as part of meaningful inquiry, and to support literacy (including, visual, oral and written) to simplify digital learning, so teachers have more time to teach.

Explore ways educators select and distribute digital resources, as well as how they can gather analytics about the use of these resources. Presenter Michael Richards will cover planning for inquiries based on, around, and with digital resources. He will look at the ways current best practice (and well implemented) teaching strategies are used using a mix of physical and digital resources. There will be time for a brief Q&A and ideas sharing to make the most of the knowledge in the room.

michael richards ttsPresenter: Michael Richards is Pedagogy Consultant. He’s a teacher with classroom experience teaching Years 1 through to 8. He has a Bachelor of Teaching and continues to learn through post-graduate studies, currently studying Te Reo Māori.

“I believe that teaching in the 21st century requires adaptive, innovative, and creative thinking to cater to the diversity of learners entering schools. I am passionate about literacy education, and how reading and writing can – and should – be made accessible and interesting for all learners in schools. I have taught gifted and talented students who struggled to be engaged by existing reading stocks, and I have taught remedial senior students who felt discouraged by the lack of age appropriate texts available at their level. As a teacher, I recognise the need for resources that engage, enable, and empower students so they can achieve a meaningful, successful, and sustainable education.”


Company: HPHP

Title: Top 10 tips that are changing teachers lives in the classroom

Outline: John has extensive experience with providing PD to teachers, so HP’s decided to turn it around and get him to give the answers to teachers’ most common issues. The Top 10 will be what you can take away today to make your life easier tomorrow. Simple, effective and relevant.

john phelpsPresenter: John Phelps, from Technology Concepts, has more than 45 years’ experience as an educator in New Zealand schools. For the last five years he has been a Microsoft Learning Consultant and will be sharing the tips that have most affirmation from teachers and students he works with. David is an ex-secondary teacher, author and teacher advocate for digital technology making life better for teachers and students.


themindlabbyUnitec* Please note this workshop was limited to 30 places and is currently full.


Title: Electrical engineering and Coding

Outline: During this workshop, explore the processes of building and testing an early detection device that has been constructed from off-the-shelf components. It’s for all skill levels and it can be easily implemented into a classroom setting. After completing this workshop, you will be able to deliver a lesson plan that allows students to expand their knowledge about basic circuitry and coding.

damon the mind lab

Presenters: Damon Kahi and Matt Sorkin.

Damon is the National Technologist at The Mind Lab by Unitec and has been involved in education for the past 10 years. In addition to teaching, he develops new programmes and activities that teachers can implement in their classrooms.

Matt The Mind LabMatt is the Educational Technology Experience at The Mind Lab by Unitec and has been working on implementing Design Thinking into primary schools. He was the co-content creator of the Digital Passport (, which is the new educational platform that empowers teachers to deliver key digital competencies to New Zealand children.


linewize-by-familyzone-blue-10000pxCompany: LINEWIZE and FAMILY ZONE EDUCATION SOLUTIONS

Title: A school’s duty of care: the Family Zone education solutions welfare module

Outline: Online behaviour can be insightful. Family Zone’s education solutions include reporting on search terms used in major search engines, and on Youtube content viewed. Students will be flagged with ‘at risk’ indicators if their online activity raises concern, enabling schools to gain insights into:

  • top ‘adult content’ users
  • top ‘offensive content’ users
  • top VPN users

Tim Levy, CEO of Family Zone Cyber Safety, discusses the duty of care responsibilities schools have to keep students safe, and the importance of an ecosystem approach that includes the school community.

tim levyPresenter: Tim Levy is a successful telecommunications and technology entrepreneur. He is the founder of Vodafone’s largest Australian retail partner Mo’s Mobiles and was the former CEO/COO of listed Optus reseller B Digital Limited. Prior to working in commerce, Mr. Levy was a management consultant at Andersen’s working in technology and change projects across Australia, South Africa, Zambia, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

Currently the Managing Director and Co-Founder of Family Zone, he is a passionate advocate for making the online world a safer place for our children through an integrated community approach to cyber safety. With a focus on developing technologies to help empower our school communities to educate students, teachers and parents alike.


norrcom-logoCompany: Norrcom

Title: Managing a constantly evolving ICT environment

Outline: With digital technology changing so rapidly, it is hard to know if the changes are beneficial and should be adopted in your school. In this workshop, Norrcom will cover the trends and areas that are currently hot topics. They’ll discuss the pros and cons, enabling you to be both informed and prepared for your school to make educated decisions about its ICT solutions. ​


New Cyclone LogoCompany: CYCLONE and MICROSOFT

Title: Exploring the Digital Technologies Curriculum with Minecraft Education Edition

Microsoft-LogoOutline:  Minecraft: Education Edition is a collaborative and versatile platform that educators can use across subjects to encourage 21st century skills. Find out about the key features of M:EE and take some time to immerse yourself in the Minecraft world. We will cover:

  • Assess and Reflect – The camera and portfolio allow students to take screenshots of their work and document their progress.
  • Immersive Learning – Non-Player Characters act as tour guides in the game, extending learning by linking to additional resources.
  • Classroom Collaboration – Students can work together in pairs or groups simply by joining their classmates’ world.
  • Curriculum Resources – Including the Chemistry update
  • Coding and Computer Science – looking at how to teach these concepts through Minecraft

MinecrafteduPresenter (Christchurch): Rachael Hoddinott is an experienced educator who has worked in the education sector in a range of roles including Primary Teacher, Assistant Principal, Numeracy Facilitator / Mathematics Advisor, and is currently working for Cyclone as a Digital Learning Specialist. She has worked with both primary and secondary students, as well as teacher education and distance learning. Her current focus is upskilling teachers in Numeracy pedagogy and digital technology skills. Rachael is accredited to deliver MoE funded PLD.

As a classroom teacher, school leader and learning specialist, Rachael has developed a strong understanding of the New Zealand Curriculum and has worked closely with senior management teams and teachers to develop sound insight to the pedagogy that underpins student learning. In her classroom practice, Rachael made innovative use of digital technology and more recently, as a digital learning specialist, she has been working with teachers and schools to develop greater capacity to make use of Digital Technology to support student learning outcomes. She has also delivered content to schools around Canterbury to support engagement around the new addition to the NZC.

Presenter (Palmerston North and Auckland): Craig Render – Bio as above.

Presenter (all venues): John Phelps – Bio as above.


schoology logoCompany: Schoology

Title: Building Engaged, Connected School Communities with a Culture of Collaboration, Co-Construction and Sharing

Outline:  In this workshop, Brad, Sam and Bronwen will share the simple it is for teachers to build and nurture their own subject driven personal learning networks to enjoy collaboration, co-construction and shared resources and ideas that sees a greater choice delivered for their students learning. Schoology has made it so easy for teachers to connect into a rapidly growing national and international network of educators via subject driven groups to collaborate, co-construct and share their teaching resources. We have been building the framework for a New Zealand teacher to share and access an expanding resource bank that spans primary, intermediate and secondary schools and will be looking at this in our workshop. Teachers can join this movement for FREE and we’ll show you how.

We’re also interested in your feedback on how we’re doing this – so please do come along and be open to sharing your views with us – we want to hear from you and make this work. The collaborative nature of Schoology has the potential to help teachers begin to develop cross-curricular links.  We know that this is something that a lot of schools are hoping that collaborative learning management systems are going to better enable them to do. Schoology is built for these types of tasks.

We’ll also look at how to engage the entire school community – teachers, students, SLT’s & deans, school – literally anyone that’s connected to and has a role in your school community. With Schoology parents and guardians are provided with a 360 degree visibility of their children’s learning regardless of their school age, you’ll see how you can actively involve this important and often hard to reach part of your community in the dynamic life of your school.

Schoology is more than a learning management system. It’s your virtual learning environment. A simple-to-use educationally driven toolbox that operates as a ‘hub’ to deliver all the tools needed to empower teachers, engage students and connect your entire education community – everything in one place accessed with a single login. Whether you’re a primary, intermediate or high school Schoology has the tools needed to elevate connection, engagement and collaboration.

brad friis schoologyPresentersBrad Friis, GCT Education, Samuel Harris, Manurewa High School, and Bronwen Wilson, Lynfield College

Brad Friis is the General Manager of GCT Education, the Australasian channel partner for Schoology, and has spent 22 years working in web-based media and software development with a focus on user experience and engaging, intuitive design. He firmly believes that if digital education tools are not easy, fast to learn and intrinsically engaging, you’re fighting a losing battle. As a parent to 5 kids, a member of various school boards and committees, and with several years working with primary, intermediate and high schools, Brad understands many of the challenges schools are facing and the various pressures that teachers deal with and hats they wear every day. When Brad was approached to drive the delivery of Schoology into New Zealand and Australia he immediately recognised Schoology’s intuitive interface and easy to use tools would effectively engage the entire school community.

Some of the schools that have seen the same potential for their learning community are Rototuna High School, Manurewa High School, St Marys Diocesan Stratford, Sancta Maria College and Lynfield College. Although these schools are all secondary schools, Schoology is widely used globally from new school entrants through to tertiary level education. Its flexible nature enables all ages to benefit from its use.

Brad is passionate about helping schools traverse the shift from the more traditional school to a blended, digitally savvy learning environment that takes full advantage of the opportunities digital tools offer.

sam harrisSam Harris is the teacher in charge of History at Manurewa High School. He is currently doing a Post-Graduate Certificate in Applied Practice (focussing on digital and collaborative learning) at the MindLab by Unitec.

Sam is interested in ways that digital technologies can be used by teachers to develop better professional networks and change their class room practice.

Brad and Sam have been working together to develop a Schoology Group that allows teachers to collaborate and cooperate online. The purpose of this group is to allow teachers to grant their students more freedom of choice over the historical contexts that they learn about in class by giving teachers access to a space where they can share different teaching resources that they are using in their schools. Sam will discuss his experiences of working alongside Brad in developing this group and explain how the collaborative nature of Schoology can improve professional cooperation between teachers in any New Zealand primary, intermediate or secondary school, while also improving learning opportunities for students.

bronwen wilsonBronwen Wilson is the director of e-Learning and HOD of History at Lynfield College. Her educational interests include anything that will inspire and engage students. These days this often includes the use of Schoology to deliver, engage and create such experiences.

At Lynfield College we have been using Schoology to collaborate with both the students and the staff. Many departments have set up groups to collaborate, construct courses together and share resources. The teaching as inquiry group that I am part of is using Schoology to encourage cross-curricular collaboration. I’ll be showing this to those in our workshop and illustrating how these fundamental tools in Schoology can be used in any school to achieve a deeper level of connection, idea sharing and resource development for the benefit of both teachers and students.


code avengers logo


Title: Launch your digital technologies curriculum with Code Avengers

Outline: Digital technologies is a foundational field for 21st Century learners and, while its addition to the New Zealand Curriculum is exciting, it also presents challenges for busy teachers and administrators. Code Avengers provides a comprehensive package of engaging teaching and learning resources for delivering the new digital technologies curriculum from Year 1 to 13. Learn how to use Code Avengers to streamline your school’s adoption of the new Digital Technologies Curriculum.

Participants will:

  • Explore the ‘Code Avengers Junior’ teaching and learning resources.
  • Get ideas for teaching digital technologies in a cross-curricular way.
  • Discuss three keys to blending online learning with traditional classroom methods in a way that engages learners.
  • Learn how to set your school or class up with Code Avengers.

Code Avengers is the first company in the world to have a comprehensive suite of digital technologies teaching and learning resources that go all the way from Year 1 to 13 and beyond. These resources make it easy for teachers to deliver the digital technologies curriculum in a fun and effective way.

mark walmsley

Presenter: Dr Michael Walmsley comes from a family of 29 school teachers and has been programming computers since he was 12 years old. For his PhD, he combined his passions for education and computers to build an app that helps people learn to read Spanish. This app had significant commercialisation opportunities, including CIA backing to get it working for Russian and Arabic. He’s subsequently founded Code Avengers, which is based in Hamilton and has grown from one to 20 staff during the past six years.


adobe-logoCompany: ADOBE

Title: Linking Photoshop tips and tricks to Adobe’s free mobile apps

Outline:  Adobe Photoshop is the most widely used image manipulation software in education and industry. This workshop will go through a range of Photoshop tips and tricks that are commonly used by teachers and students to enhance their communication and creativity. The end product will be an Adobe Spark Page outlining what was learned throughout the workshop. No experience in Adobe Photoshop is required. Attendees should bring a laptop with Adobe Photoshop CC installed if possible. Further Professional Development is available at no cost for schools nationwide. Find out more at the Adobe stand at INTERFACEXpo 2018.

Presenter (Christchurch):  Dr Tim Kitchen. With more than 20 years of teaching and education leadership experience in Australia, Dr Tim Kitchen is currently Adobe’s Senior Education Specialist for Asia Pacific. He regularly liaises with government officials, schools, universities, Adobe partner companies and organisations with a focus on enhancing creativity in education. He also manages the Adobe education leadership and active use programmes throughout Australasia, and supports the professional learning activities within the Adobe Education Exchange (, which now has about 4,500,000 members.

A passionate advocate for creativity in education and a well-recognised education thought leader, Tim is a regular writer and presenter for a wide range of national and international journals and conferences

Presenter (Palmerston North and Auckland): Rosie Sue is one of Adobe’s New Zealand-based Solution Consultants who works directly with organisations and schools, running workshops around the country. She offers product training on a range of Adobe Creative Cloud programmes, which include Photoshop, InDesign, Character Animator, Adobe Spark, Illustrator, Premiere Pro, and many more. During the past two years, Rosie has worked closely with a large number primary and secondary schools around the country, up-skilling staff and inspiring students to tap into their creative skills by using Adobe products. Professional Development is available at no cost for schools nationwide. Find out more at Adobe’s exhibition stand.


etv logoCompany: ETV

Title:  EVA in Education – Enhanced Video Annotation: Don’t just watch,

Outline: eTV is proud to announce our newest online tool, EVA. With 17 different types of interactions, EVA makes videos come alive with added content such as labels, text, tables, links and images. Enrich any eTV video with response-enabled tools including single, multiple and cloze text questions, drag and drop, true/false and hotspots.
eva-new.pngWith the ability to fit in at any point in a student’s learning journey, EVA is more than just video annotation software and can be used as an interactive assessment tool, from diagnostic testing, to in-depth analysis which allows the teacher to easily-monitor student progression towards desired academic outcomes.
In this workshop learn how educators can easily use EVA to introduce the student to a topic to gain maximum engagement, carry out simple/advanced diagnostic testing in a common, non-threatening environment and utilise reporting functions to assist and monitor student progression towards desired academic outcomes. And because EVA can be actively edited, students can continue to use the same resource (video) while the teacher changes the annotations and layered content. Teachers can easily scaffold the student through levels of progress by updating the EVA when needed, so that the student will have continuous access.
elink logoEVAs are not just a ‘watch it once’ DVD on the resource room shelf, but a ‘Watch and Learn’ interactive tool. Accessible at any time and available wherever the student has access to the internet, EVA creators can use embed codes for Learning Management Systems and direct links for sharing.
EVA enables the personalisation of content and context while stimulating engagement and facilitating student-centered and differentiated learning opportunities.

Presenter: Gresham Bradley has been the General Manager of eTV since its launch and he has been at the forefront of development of leading edge streaming video and rich media resources, online tools and services for teachers in the education sector.  He has over 40 years’ experience in educational programming, production and video streaming. Gresham has a BA, Communications from Simon Fraser University, Vancouver and was one of the founding staff of the Knowledge Network, B.C.’s Educational Television service, with a lead role in its development, production and programming.  He is the brains behind the new services the eTV Trust is launching at INTERFACEXpo: ELINK and EVA.

Check out a demo on EVA at 



pcmediaCompany:  PCMEDIA

Title:  Cloud should be free, debunking the myths!

Outline: How is the Ministry of Education’s Schools Cloud Transformation strategy going to impact your school? The strategy is real and there are decisions and actions to be considered right now that will have a major impact in ensuring your school is prepared and at the forefront of ‘moving spend out of the server room and into the classroom’.

lee harper

Presenter: Lee Harper, Education Specialist at pcMedia. For the past three years, Lee and his team have worked closely with schools across New Zealand. In 2016, pcMedia successfully carried out the Ministry of Education’s ‘Schools’ Cloud Transformation Project’ proof of concept.


Microsoft-LogoCompany: MICROSOFT

Title: Supporting student achievement with Learning Tools and Immersive Reader

Outline: Join the Microsoft team for a workshop showcasing the applications that are creating huge interest in New Zealand schools and across the globe: Learning Tools and the Immersive Reader. These two applications are built into Microsoft applications and are having a huge impact supporting literacy in schools around the world.

Learning Tools for OneNote is a free Add-in for OneNote that helps everyone improve reading and writing skills, including gifted learners, students with learning differences or a combination of any of a broad range of unique learning abilities.

Presenters: John Phelps and Anne Taylor

john phelpsJohn has over 45 years’ experience as an educator in New Zealand schools. For the last five years he has been a Microsoft Learning Consultant and will be sharing the tips that have most affirmation from teachers and students he works with. David is an ex-secondary teacher, author and teacher advocate for technology making life better for teachers and students.

anne taylorAnne Taylor is responsible for evangelising all things Microsoft Education with School Leaders and Teachers in New Zealand! She has worked for Microsoft for 16 years, with the last four focused on Education. She runs programmes for teachers and schools, including the Microsoft Innovative Educator Programme, the Showcase Schools Programme and the Microsoft Learning Consultant Programme.


New Cyclone LogoCompany: CYCLONE

Title: Coding with iPads

Outline: In this session, learn about tangible coding in play with Awbie. Coding Awbie teaches logic skills and problem solving, and it helps kids succeed in an increasingly digital world. Coding Awbie is the easiest way to introduce coding to your child.

swift playgrounds logoThe session will then move into Swift Playgrounds, a revolutionary app for iPad that makes learning Swift interactive and fun. It requires no coding knowledge, so it’s perfect for students just starting out. Solve puzzles to master the basics of Swift – a powerful programming language created by Apple and used by the pros to build today’s most popular apps. Then take on a series of challenges and step up to more advanced playgrounds designed by Apple and other leading developers.

Presenter (Christchurch): Emma Planicka – bio as above.

Presenter (Palmerston North: Jo Nicol has extensive experience in the education sector with a range of roles including Learning Area Leader, Teacher with Library Responsibility and Digital Learning Facilitator. Jo has a postgraduate qualification in Digital and Collaborative Learning and is currently employed as a Digital Learning Specialist at Cyclone. Her main focus is helping educators create and develop future focused and student-centred learning environments with an emphasis on digital fluency. As a teacher, Jo used digital technologies to enhance her learning programmes and in her role at Cyclone has been helping educators learn how use digital technologies to enhance the learning experience for their students.

Presenter (Auckland): Craig Render – bio as above.




To register your interest to attend INTERFACEXpo 2018, go

Once registered, you will receive an invitation to select the workshops of your choice. If you have registered but have not receive this information, please contact us at