3 Reasons Why StaffPad is the Greatest Music Composition Tool Ever!

StaffPad is making waves in the music industry for all the right reasons. Educators and their students from all over the world are creating amazing content with this powerful software. I am confident that StaffPad will be defined as the greatest music composition tool in history. The powerful features of StaffPad are just as accessible for novice music students as they are relevant for professional composers. Here's 3 reasons why StaffPad is dominating the music industry. 

1. Handwriting Recognition & The Surface Pen

The integration of The Surface Pen and the Surface Pro touchscreen, together with revolutionary handwriting recognition capabilities is arguably the main reason StaffPad is quickly becoming the most powerful music composition tool in the industry. The marriage of these 3 core elements allows musicians to write naturally and directly onto the touchscreen. 

StaffPad converts these sketchy lines and dashes on the staves into beautifully accurate music notation.
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StaffPad Changes Music Education Forever! First impressions of the stunning app on a Surface Pro 3.

StaffPad has been engineered to work perfectly on the Surface Pro 3. This stunning app has single-handedly changed music education forever and I can't wait to share my first impressions with you. StaffPad on the Surface Pro 3 with the Surface Pen is a recipe for game-changing success. As you'll quickly see, music education will never be the same again with this stunning app.

Developed on Surface. Designed for Surface. 

From the very first moment StaffPad opens on the Surface Pro 3 you are met with a beautifully designed interface.
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Bursting at the seams! How teachers can manage increasing class sizes.

Teachers often struggle to manage large classes. The increased number of students in classes puts a lot of strain on staff who are under-prepared an ill-equipped for the change. Teachers who are left to deal with this problem on their own are more likely to feel unsupported and will inevitably burn out quicker. 

Large class sizes don't have to be the demise of your career! Think of each extra student in your class as another opportunity to light their spark and engage them in your subject.Visit the author's original post

Mental Fitness & Fatigue: How can teachers prevent "Stress"

Teaching children in schools can be stressful, contributing to overall mental fatigue. It's widely accepted that teachers are underpaid and unappreciated and the profession is a well documented killer of mental fitness. In this post I will outline a number of ways you can prevent your "Stress" levels from destroying your mental fitness and fatigue.

What is Stress?

Stress is a part of life and is generated by constantly changing situations that a person must face. The term "stress" refers to an internal state which results from demanding, frustrating or unsatisfying conditions.
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Teaching & Bodybuilding: They have more in common than you think!

Teaching is a profession that requires dedication and passion. Teachers have a unique skill-set that is constantly developing and changing. A great teacher is consistently training to stay in top shape in the classroom. 

Teaching and Bodybuilding require commitment, a clear focus, goals and expectations. Both professions can be broken down into 3 sections; Training, Nutrition and Supplementation. I know you're intrigued so pay attention as I take you through it.


Training programs are precise, well-planned and have a clear focus. Bodybuilders lift weights repetitively to stimulate muscle growth - lift bigger weights, grow bigger muscles!Visit the author's original post

Don’t waste time in class during end of term: Tech-tivities to try post-assessment!

As we near the end of the year you may find time to invest in some classroom activities once exams and assessment have finished. In my experiences the unstructured, dreaded worksheets of crosswords, puzzles and santa drawings often encourage poor classroom behaviour and general unrest in students. 

I suggest that if you do happen to have time up your sleeve that you consider planning some meaningful learning to keep your students focused and engaged in their schooling.

End of year Tech-tivities! 

Listed below are a few ideas for end of year activities which primarily use technology.Visit the author's original post

Sway | Re-imagine content: from boring to amazing!

I was lucky enough to jump on-board with a preview from the Microsoft Sway team today. I quickly got to work trialling the very simple interface. 

My first impressions... It's amazing. 

Microsoft's Sway is such a simple tool to use that offers a range of ways to reimagine content. I was so confident that with Sway I could turn the most boring content inside-out that I decided to reimagine my work program for Senior Drama. 


The result was an amazing and aesthetically engaging redesign of what would normally be pretty 'dry' content.Visit the author's original post

The Learning Journey: Microsoft is a Leader in Education

The Global Forum – Miami is a unique opportunity for education and school leaders, policymakers, top industry experts and also Microsoft partners to discuss the key transformations in Education across K-12 and Higher Education and how Microsoft can support those goals.

Dr Cathy Cavanaugh Head of Teaching & Learning, Microsoft Worldwide Education delivered the keynote address on the opening day. Dr Cavanaugh explained that 

The learning journey consists of three steps that involve technology: 

  • THINK (Digital Ink – thinking scaffolds, and inking is a way of processing that is happening in highly visual ways)
  • EXPRESS (OneNote and Sway - express where they stand in their conceptual understanding
  • COLLABORATE & RECORD (Office Mix, OneNote - students work together and their learning is captured)


The 21st Century Learning Design framework states information is growing exponentially and the meaning of ‘knowing’ has shifted from being able to consume, remember and reproduce information to one where learners actively construct understanding to create knowledge that is new and usable to them.Visit the author's original post

Putting PLAY back in the classroom: Inspiring a passion for learning in students

Like most kids, I was born... I grew up doing what kids did - I played. I challenge educators to rethink about how they can utilise 'play' into the classroom. Instinctively, children will play for hours. They play at school, at home, by themselves, with friends and even with kids they don't know! Educators would benefit by learning how to harvest this natural playfulness and apply it in the classroom. 

Through play, children learn about relationships, gender, race, fairness, unfairness, friendship and exclusion (Grieshaber and McCardle, 2010).
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Feedback in the classroom: How to make it valuable for your students

It's important that educators around the world know how to give valuable feedback in the classroom. I believe it should be taught explicitly when training teachers so that they can consistently be giving valuable feedback in the classroom.

Studies have shown that giving valuable feedback in class can 

"enhance learning when there is a discrepancy between what is understood and what is aimed to be understood. It can increase effort, motivation, or engagement to reduce this discrepancy, and/or it can increase cue searching and task processes that lead to understanding (thus reducing this discrepancy)." (Hattie & Timperley, 2007)

There are three main questions asked by a teacher and/or student which must be answered to generate valuable feedback: Where am I going?Visit the author's original post

Skype in the classroom: Regional Students benefit the most!

The notion of using Skype in the classroom is a new experience for some educators. It has been widely noted the benefits of using Skype in the classroom increases student engagement and profoundly assists educators in delivering content that may require specialist insight. Using Skype in the classroom is surprisingly easy to setup and exponentially rewarding for your students.

Benefit to regional students

Recently, I organised an informal Q&A session with Steven Maxwell of Markwell Presents. I pitched the idea of using Skype in the classroom with my year 11 Drama students and they were extremely excited.
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What it means to be a Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert

The Program

The Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert program celebrates educators who are paving the way for their peers by demonstrating the effective use of technology for better learning and student outcomes. Expert Educators work closely with Microsoft to lead innovation in education. They advocate, share their experiences with peers and policy makers on effective use of technology in education. Expert Educators provide insight for Microsoft on new products and tools in education, and share valuable experiences, lessons and best practices while working together as a community to promote ideas to innovate in teaching and learning. 

Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert Program Launch, Sydney

My Intentions

As an educator in the 21st Century I have an obligation to teach young people how to learn and adapt to the changes in technology as they are preparing to enter the world.Visit the author's original post

Adobe and Microsoft partnership will benefit The Creative Arts in Schools

Adobe and Microsoft are two of the biggest names in the Creative Arts industry. Adobe's recently announced updates tailored for the Microsoft Surface Pro's have the Creative Arts industry buzzing. Adobe and Microsoft have paired an intuitive touch screen interface with powerhouse hardware to deliver an experience to the Creative Arts industry that is unprecedented. Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 is an unmatched entry to the market now flooded with touch capable devices. Adobe has achieved some incredible things through clever development in the back end of its software suite to pair with Microsoft's engineering brilliance. 

Australian educators and students can expect to benefit from this partnership in the long run.
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