All Aotearoa New Zealand Schools To Receive Free Digital Technologies Resources From January 2024
From 1 January 2024, Ed Tech charity Grok Academy (Grok) will offer its extensive range of coding and web design resources free of charge to every student, teacher, and homeschooling parent in New Zealand. Teachers can now register their accounts at grok.nz/free to begin preparing their Term 1 lesson plans.
Grok Academy’s online platform and classroom resources are made available free of charge in New Zealand thanks to a partnership with WiseTech Global, one of ANZ’s most successful technology companies, which has pledged 1% of its annual pre-tax profit to enable tech education initiatives that develop technology skills and passion for creatively solving real-world problems in school-age children.
Aligning with the curriculum for students in years 4–13, these resources help simplify planning and support delivery of digital technologies classes and are designed for educators of any experience.
“Digital Technologies are an increasingly vital component across the levels of the New Zealand curriculum,” says Malcolm Clarke, President of Digital Technologies Teachers Aotearoa and Digital Technologies specialist teacher at Kōwhai Intermediate School in Auckland.
“The importance of integrating and embedding these skills early is paramount, as they are not only essential life skills but are increasingly opening doors to diverse career pathways. Amidst the growing demand for educators, Grok Academy stands out by providing a comprehensive and structured platform that offers equitable access for both learners and teachers. Grok Academy’s resources support teachers, especially those new to teaching Digital Technologies. The resource also equips educators with well-structured and easily deliverable programs, ensuring equity in the educational landscape by catering to diverse learning needs and empowering students to experience options that otherwise might be out of reach,” says Malcolm.
Since 2013, New Zealand schools and kura have been subscribing to Grok Academy's coding and web design resources. More than 300 schools already use Grok's materials, and this number is expected to increase when access to the educational learning content becomes free next year.
"Early engagement and positive experience in the creative world of digital technology is critical to attract more young people to technology careers,” says Richard White, CEO and Founder of WiseTech Global. “What students experience in primary school and in the early high school years strongly influences what they elect to study later in high school and university. It’s also time to dispel social biases about what’s appropriate for girls to study, so that they don’t self-select out of technology subjects and consequently out of high-value, well paid tech careers. Through our partnership with Grok Academy in New Zealand and Australia, we aim to inspire and enable more young people from diverse backgrounds to enter the tech industry."
Grok's platform includes hundreds of courses in coding and web design, ‘unplugged’ activities for classrooms and homes, and a full suite of teaching resources including a student portal to track progress.
"Thanks to WiseTech Global’s support, more schools will be able to access our coding and web design resources as the cost barrier has been removed. Ensuring every teacher and homeschooling parent has access to top-tier computing education resources empowers our next generation to succeed in an increasingly digital world," says James Curran, CEO of Grok Academy.
Teachers are encouraged to register at https://groklearning.com/register/.