Punchbowl Boys High School
COVID-19 prompts a total digital transformation at Punchbowl.
One school’s innovative use of technology for learning and engagement has proved popular with teachers, students and their families.
An online robotics and engineering club is just one example of how Punchbowl Boys High School in Sydney’s western suburbs has leveraged technology in ways that will continue in a post-pandemic world.
The school uses high-quality video to update its community about various developments; it has invested in a fully-equipped film room for students, and; it has launched a series of EdTalk videos where teachers and students share their experiences with the rest of the school community.
The talks tackle a wide range of topics, such as online learning, critical and creative teaching at home, flexible learning spaces, and student voice.
Averaging over 700 views per episode across student, P&C and alumni networks via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, the EdTalks have been so effective in fostering student and teacher engagement that they will continue as a regular part of the school communication system.
Virtual assemblies were used also to recognise and celebrate student achievement and enable parents, caregivers and other community members to attend.
The school website was transformed into a single hub that connects all of Punchbowl Boys online communications, attracting up to 1000 views per week at the height of the pandemic.
Even the school newsletter went online and included high-quality videos, photo galleries and social media posts.
Inspired by Australian school teacher Eddie Woo, best known for his online mathematics lessons published on YouTube, Punchbowl Boys adopted the flipped classroom model. All of the school’s teachers filmed a five-minute lesson to familiarise students with online learning. These video tutorials were shared via email and on social media platforms.
The school also developed its own YouTube channel hosting video tutorials, EdTalks, updates from the school’s principal and deputy principal, and from the library and other faculties. Student voice projects are stored on the channel too for all of the community to enjoy.