On 8 and 9 June 2016, Microsoft Innovative Educator Experts (MIE Experts) from across South Africa and Lesotho attended a Hack the Classroom Forum at Microsoft in Gauteng. The aim of the Forum was to bring together the most active MIE Experts to learn from one another’s best practices and get up to speed on the latest Microsoft educational tools.
MIE Experts particularly enjoyed networking with other teachers who are using technology in creative and engaging ways in their classrooms. A highlight of the Forum was a group work task which involved MIE Experts working together to develop an idea for a project that would hack a common problem shared by the team. The winning “hack” was produced by Keshma Patel, Mabore Lekalakala and Andries Bogatsu who came up with a project idea to answer the question “Can technology encourage a heathy diet?” which they presented as a sway. Some of the MIE Experts who attended the Forum shared their ideas for using technology in the classroom during the TeachMeet. A range of clever project ideas and uses of tools were presented and Mokhudu Machaba’s TeachMeet idea on “Using Apps to Create Content” was voted as being the best of the session. Phuti Ragophala was recognised for being active on social media and using this tool to share ideas for using technology with teachers in her network. After learning how to use the Office Mix add-in for PowerPoint, MIE Experts were challenged to create an Office Mix to teach others about a randomly assigned topic. Well done to Catherine Mullen, whose Office Mix on making pancakes made excellent use of the interactive features of Office Mix.