By Nigel Paull

Title: Understanding Australia: The land and its people Level: Upper primary
Publisher: Department of Education Victoria
RRP: $85.00
ISBN: 1 87597 205 6
SCIS Order Number: 919614
System requirements: Windows and Macintosh compatible. 486DX/33MHz IBM compatible PC, Windows 3.1 or 95, 8MB RAM, 256-colour monitor, CD ROM drive. Colour Macintosh, 8 MB RAM, 256-colour monitor, CD ROM drive.

Review: Produced by the Department of Education Victoria, this CD ROM provides information about Australian history, geography, culture, economics, and political and legal systems. The ten topics addressed include Gondwana, ancient times, sailing ships, transportation, gold and minerals, settlers, wars, near neighbours and reconciliation. The program is easy to navigate and on-screen instructions are clear. Narrators' voices are clear and well modulated and the graphics are of a h igh standard. A useful resource for topics on Australia, this CD ROM provides up-to-date information, while developing students' online search skills.

Reviewed by Gwenyth Carver. Education Department of WA
First published in Primary Focus Non Fiction 1998, p 101.

This product is available from:
Curriculum Corporation
Tel: (03) 9207 9600
Fax: (03) 9639 1616
Email: [email protected]

Title: Moving School: A guide for families, employers and schools Level: Primary and secondary
Publisher: Curriculum Corporation
RRP: $16.95
ISBN: 1 86366 401 7
SCIS order number: 931412

Review: Moving School is an invaluable and . practical resource for everyone involved in the transfer of students between schools in Australia: students, their families, schools and employers. It is organised in easily-identified sections offering advice and information:

  • on the issues associated with moving schools and the impact of the process on students and their families;
  • about the most common difficulties for students moving interstate -school entry, transition points, differences in senior years, appropriate year-level placement, handwriting, and catering for children with special needs;
  • for families on choosing a school, timing the move, providing the right information to the new school, who to talk to and who to ask for;
  • for employers on how to assist employees and to understand and consider their families needs; and
  • for schools on ways to assist parents and students in the transition and on sharing information.

Moving School contains useful checklists for each group, tables and charts which show the variations in the structure of schooling and the different terms used in the various systems. It also provides the latest contact points for the State and Territory government education authorities, and a list of teenage fiction and picture books about moving, suitable for all ages.

Moving School was funded by the Commonwealth Department of Employment, Education, Training and Youth Affairs (DEETYA).

Review reprinted with permission from Sue Kroemer.
NT Department of Education.

This product is available from:
Curriculum Corporation
Tel: (03) 9207 9600
Fax: (03) 96391616
Email: [email protected]

Ireton, T, 'Digital cameras -school buyers' in School PC Australia, November 1998, pp 30-33.

If you are contemplating purchasing a digital camera for school use in the near future, you should read this article. The article succinctly explains what features to look for when comparing cameras. It has a handy section dealing with the jargon and acronyms that are used in digital imaging. The models tested are al I between $400 and $1 OOO and are both PC and Mac compatible. The author lists the pros and cons of each of the five models tested and gives individual overall value ratings. Links to the websites for the manufacturers or distributors for each model are included.

Jones, J, 'Isolated no longer: Internet solutions at Moree Technology High School' in Scan, 17(4), November 1998, pp 33-35.

Jill Jones, Teacher Librarian at Moree Technology High School, outlines how computer technology, and in particular the Internet, has diminished the isolation of this school 800 kilometres north west of Sydney. By embracing the Internet and email, and integrating them into the curriculum, teaching and learning have been enhanced. She outlines the implications in successfully using and promoting the Internet for the Teacher Librarian, types of projects undertaken that integrate the Internet into their structure, and the continuum of skills that are necessary for both staff and students to successfully use the Internet.

Wigan, P, 'Curriculum change and electronic information: Impact on the role of the Teacher Librarian in Victorian secondary schools' in Access, 12 (4), November 1998, pp 28-30.

A welcome addition to Access is 'The research window'. In this issue the timely and significant research undertaken by Pauline Wigan into the changing role of the Teacher Librarian is featured. Wigan sought to , specifically investigate the changing Teacher Librarian's role, brought about by the introduction of the Victorian Certificate of Education and Curriculum Standards Frameworks and the growth in importance of electronic resources in Victorian secondary schools. Her research centred on the degree to which Teacher Librarians have assimilated and accepted these changes. Among the results, she found that Teacher Librarians were slowly embracing the roles being advocated in current professional literature. She concludes that one of the implications of this is that they must become more proactive in meeting the challenges offered by information technology.

Nigel Paull

Nigel Paull