Creative teaching on the Gold Coast


Merrimac State High School, on Queensland’s Gold Coast was the venue for a professional learning event that involved about 45 educators on Tuesday 30th May.

Adobe Education Leaders Rose Duggan (Merrimac SHS) and Larissa Warren (Coomera Anglican College) helped me with this event. Rose ran a workshop on Premiere Pro, Larissa did a session on Adobe Capture while I worked with a group of teachers on some Photoshop Tips & Tricks.


Here are some images of the teachers in action …

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Resources from this event can be found on the Adobe Education Exchange via –



ACA Championships – Malaysia

ACA Malaysia6

Congratulations to the recently announced 2017 Adobe Certified Associate (ACA) Champions from Malaysia. The winner will now be asked to represent Malaysia at the ACA World Championships in Disneyland, California.

The ACA World Championships is a world-wide competition that judges students’ design skills with Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign. Students who complete an ACA certification and win their local competition are invited to represent their respective countries at the World Championship where they will create a designated design project for a chosen non-profit client.


There is only 2 days left to enter into this event in Australian & New Zealand. Find out more via –

Blended Learning @ Swinburne Uni


It was my pleasure to share with almost 40 teachers from Swinburne University in Melbourne how Adobe applications are being used around the globe to enhance both synchronous and asynchronous teaching and learning experiences.


The teaching staff at Swinburne have access to a wide range of Adobe applications so it was great to have the opportunity to share resources such as the Adobe Education Exchange and the Adobe Help & Support site to help the teaching staff make the most of what they have.

Key Adobe applications we looked at included:

  • The Adobe Spark apps
  • Adobe Captivate
  • Adobe Presenter
  • Adobe Presenter Video Express
  • Adobe Connect

My slides for this session can be found on the Adobe Education Exchange via:


Video literacy with Sydney Secondary College Leichhardt Campus


A group of 25 Year 9 students from Sydney Secondary College – Leichhardt Campus visited the Adobe Sydney office last Wednesday 17th May for an Adobe Day focused on video literacy. This video explains what happened …

Check out these great Spark Posts the students made, without any instructions on how to make them. This demonstrates the intuitive nature of the Spark Apps.

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The main focus of the day was to enhance the students use of Adobe Premiere Pro. Here are some images of the students in action with this high end software as they made their own video stories.

Soon after this event, the students put together the following newsletter about the day.

Tas Newsletter Week 4 T2- adobe

Newcastle – Big Day In


On Tuesday 16th May, about 350 high school students from around Newcastle NSW visited The University of Newcastle for a Big Day In event.


It was delightful to hear from a wide range of local businesses in the Newcastle and NSW Central Coast region sharing with the students about the opportunities they potentially have in their region if they study an ICT course and have a passion for modern technology.

Tim Crakanthorp, State Member for Newcastle and Shadow Parliamentary Secretary, opened the event and encouraged the students to talk to the local industry reps, ask them questions and make the most from this experience.


I had the honour of being the opening keynote presenter and encouraged the students to turn their passions into a job now while they are still at school. I told them, to keep studying and learning but not to wait until their formal education was over before they started their own businesses. I encouraged them to think entrepreneurially and globally and develop their digital media skills.


I suggested that if anyone asked what they were going to do when they left school, they should answer by saying I am going to be a lifelong learner and creator.

It was great having Adobe Customer Success Managers Jerry Wong and Anna Nakao with me for this event. They met with many of the students and showed them how to access the Adobe applications (for free if they were from NSW Government schools) and how to get help via Adobe’s Help & Support site –

Creativity at the Top End

As the dry season begins in the top end of Australia, a new lease on digital creativity has been happening in a number of Northern Territory (NT) schools. I had the opportunity to working with a number of NT teachers, students and Education Administrators this week organised by Adobe Campus Leader Mark Christie Director eLearning Systems, Department of Education NT.


A focus for this trip was the NT Catholic sector who have a number of schools who are keen to make the most of their Adobe software to enhance creativity in the teaching and learning process. It was lovely to visit O’Loughlin Catholic College and work with a number of Year 7 students to enhance their Photoshop skills. Some visiting teachers from surrounding Catholic Schools also joined the session to take back to their schools the key message that developing digital media schools can provide students with lots of opportunities to advance their future communication and creativity skills.

Special thank you to John Morton, Education Officer – ICT for Learning, Catholic Education Office, Diocese of Darwin for helping to organise this eve

I also had the pleasure to re-visit Parap Primary School and work with their Year 4 & Year 2 students during the afternoon and a number of the teaching staff after school.


Schools of the Future Conference – Sydney Opera House


The iconic Sydney Opera House was the venue for the Schools of the Future Conference on 5th & 6th of May. About 300 teachers and education leaders from around Australia took part in this event which aimed to look at what schools should be like in the future with a focus on creativity and innovation.

Valerie Hannon (co-founder of the Innovation Unit in the UK) was the first keynote speaker. She challenged the participants to consider that education has to be about learning to thrive in a transforming world. Her latest book Thrive: Schools Reinvented for the Real Challenges we Face discusses how the education system needs to be addressing acute concerns around rising unemployment, especially among young people. In her address, she questioned how an education system so focused on standardisation can effectively equip young people for an unknown future.



Kevin Brookhouser (The20time Project) from the USA was the second keynote. He shared many of his experiences as an educator in California and his passion for encouraging students to learn to code.


Kevin’s book, Code in Every Class, How All Educators Can Teach Programming outlines how Computer Science is still very much an option in schools, yet it should be a fundamental part of the curriculum for schools to best prepare their students for the future.

Stephen Harris, Principal of the world renowned and very innovative Northern Beaches Christian School, was the third keynote for day one. He shared some of the amazing facilities that he has been able to build to provide NBCC students & teachers with an innovative environment to learn and teach. He also provided some of his thoughts on where education should be heading in the future.


I had the privilege of  running a creativity workshop at the end of the first day with a focus on Adobe’s free Spark tools. Most of the teachers and leaders in the room had not used Adobe Spark before so it was great to show them what was possible. It was particularly helpful to have a group of NSW Adobe Education Leaders (Chris Betcher, Brett Kent, Gary Poulton, Daniel Rattigan & Andrew Lai) with me along with Adobe Customer Success Mangers Jerry Wong and Anna Nakao. They moved around the room assisting the teachers to produce some creative digital outcomes with Spark Post, Spark Video and Spark Page.

Here is a set of images from the event …

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My resources for this event can be found via –

Special thank you Frank Newman and his team from the Sydney Opera House for putting on such a successful event. Adobe was proud to partner with you.

Careers Market at Prariewood with Google & Adobe


Prariewood High School in South Western Sydney held a special Careers Market for its 1,200 students, as well as other students, from surrounding schools on Thursday 4th May.

Most Prariewood students come from a non-english speaking background and the school also offers a selective academic program.

Prariewood’s Careers Advisor Penny Evans, organised the day for the students to engage with industry, local higher education representatives , the defense force and many others. I had the pleasure of talking to two large groups of senior students about the skills (in particular the digital skills) that industry is looking for in young people as they leave the education system and enter the workforce.

The students also had the opportunity to listen to Deepa Cijo from Google. Deepa is a computer scientist and a product specialist at Google. She inspired the students to develop a wide range of skills and think broadly about a future where they are likely to working in multiple careers, many of which are yet to be invented.


Deepa Cijo from Google, Prarierwood Principal Alan Maclean and me.

I’d like, to congratulate Prariewood’s Principal Alan Maclean and his leadership team for supporting the vision that Penny Evans had to put on this day. I know the students gained a lot from the experience.

Creative Dapto – NSW


On Tuesday 1st May, I had the pleasure of running an Adobe Day at Dapto High School in New South Wales.


Dapto is located just south of Wollongong, NSW between the mountains and Lake Illawarra. The school is part of a community that has a focus on creativity which was the theme of the day.

Dapto High Assistant Principal and Adobe Education Leader Darcy Moore, organised this special day which began with me addressing the whole school assembly.

The rest of the day involved activities with a group of about 35 students from a mix of year levels chosen because of their interest in multimedia and their leadership potential. The aim of the day was to create a series of video stories based on the theme – What does Creativity mean to you?

The students worked in groups with Adobe Spark Post and Adobe Premiere Pro to produce their stories. At the end of the day about 30 members of the teaching staff met with a few of the students to see what they had a achieved and took part in a professional learning event about the importance of creativity in education.

Special thank you to Darcy Moore and the students and staff from Dapto High for a wonderful day of digital creativity.


Big Day In – Sunshine Coast – 2017


About 400 students from the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia spent Thursday 27th April at the Sunshine Coast University for a Big Day In event listening to a range of speakers recommending IT as a future career option.


Professor Meredith Lawley, Acting Head of School of Business, University of Sunshine Coast, welcoming the students.


Councillor Mark Jamieson, Mayor of Sunshine Coast sharing IT Career opportunities on the Sunshine Coast.

I had the pleasure of talking to the students about 21st Century life skills, the importance of formal certification and I suggested ways that the students can brand themselves to stand out from the crowd when applying for future courses and jobs.

I particularly enjoyed meeting Dominic Williamson from Microsoft who shared his story from being a Brisbane student where he taught himself how to code and made a number of apps, to now working for one of the largest IT companies in the world. A truly inspirational message for the local QLD students.



The next Big Day In event that I will be involved with will be at The University of Newcastle, NSW on 16th May.