New Zealand MIE Experts create a sensational Food For Life project for their students!


Microsoft Innovative Educator (MIE) Experts and Howick College science teachers, Steve Martin and Ruby Huang, created a visionary project for their Year 9 students earlier in 2015. Students were required to investigate the science of food nutrition, and used technology to go about this process.

The Food For Life project was designed to help students understand the problem of children going to school on an empty stomach. Students investigated the science behind this problem, and were tasked with designing a nutritious food parcel to donate to the Howick Salvation Army

Students worked in groups to analyse the nutritional content of food, using the FoodSwitch app. After examining the results, the students were able to determine how healthy each food item was, and whether there were any healthier alternatives. Further research saw students investigating how much energy a professional athlete needs compared to a high-school student.

After the research had been carried out, students were required to create posters and flyers requesting food donations. In the final stage of the Food For Life project, the food parcels designed by the students were delivered to the Salvation Army to be distributed to people in need.

Throughout the project students used OneNote to complete their work on a digital notebook. Steve and Ruby designed an innovative OneNote notebook which provided students with the tools, learning activities and science concepts they needed to complete the task. As Steve says, "the OneNote allowed the students to manage their own learning and provided them with opportunities to make decisions about what, when and how they learnt." Steve believes that OneNote and Office 365 proved to be valuable tools for students as they "enhanced the collaborative process between the students in each group allowing real-time and anytime sharing of ideas and also the creation of posters, flyers and presentations". Using OneNote also made the process easier for Steve and Ruby to give feedback and track how their students were progressing with their project.

A copy of Steve and Ruby's OneNote for the Food for Life project can be found here!

About the MIE Expert program

The MIE Expert program recognises educators worldwide who are using digital technology to improve student outcomes and learning processes. Each year a group of MIE Experts are chosen from around 30,000 applications. As an MIE Expert you are part of a global community of visionary educators who are active in their teaching community. MIE Experts can expect free Microsoft tools and technology, exclusive professional development opportunities, involvement in Microsoft programs and events, and the opportunity to travel to Redmond, Washington to attend the E2 Global Educator Exchange!

In 2015, Steve Martin and Ruby Huang were two of fifteen New Zealand teachers invited to be Microsoft Innovative Educator Experts! These educators joined a group of 800 elite teachers worldwide in the program. Steve and Ruby, along with the other thirteen New Zealand MIE Experts, are inspiring examples of teachers using technology to change the way they teach.

Applications will be open soon to become a 2016 MIE Expert! For more information on the program and how to apply, visit the Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert overview!

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