What's New for Teachers?

Our team is constantly changing and updating ZooWhiz to make it better for you. Below is a list of some of the recent enhancements.

Book a ZooWhiz Walk Through

Want to get started with ZooWhiz but not sure how to go about it? Just book a “ZooWhiz Walk Through”. One of our friendly staff will help you start your FREE Teacher Management Account and show you a few of the key features you will need to get up and running with your class. All you need is 15 minutes, a phone and your computer.

To book a “ZooWhiz Walk Through” simply click here and complete the form or call us on 1800 023 069.

Meet the team…

NAPLAN Correlations coming soon!

NAPLAN graph
We are just days away from releasing a revolutionary NAPLAN correlation with over 12,000 activities covering Reading, Word Skills and Maths for years 3, 5, 7 and 9 with the activities banded into easy, medium and hard for each grade level. This revolutionary approach will enable teachers to precisely diagnose children’s weaknesses before sitting NAPLAN and allow teachers to construct learning sequences to address the deficits. At the same time the graded challenge materials provide clear, easily implemented materials to extend more able children and raise the overall NAPLAN score for the school. There is no other system online or paper based with capabilities remotely akin to this revolutionary ability. The official NAPLAN reports are generated months after the fact but the ZooWhiz NAPLAN materials let you pre-diagnose!

Now precisely correlated against the Australian Curriculum

All 17,000 activities in ZooWhiz have been correlated against the Australia Curriculum uniquely allowing teachers to select and report by the Australian Curriculum Content Descriptors. No other learning system currently in use in Australian schools has power remotely approaching the incredible content selection and analytical tools now built into ZooWhiz.

ZooWhiz Education Structures

ZooWhiz Education Structures

About Education Structures

Educators organise and sequence learning using a variety of hierarchical Education Structures including curricula, syllabi, outcome lists, and testing criteria.

Uniquely, ZooWhiz reproduces these Education Structures preserving their internal organization and terminology correlating the 17,000+ ZooWhiz activities one-to-one with the finest grained elements of each selected structure.

Content Selection

By selecting the relevant local ZooWhiz Education Structure parents and teachers have precise control over the educational content presented to each child.

Reporting

Parents and teachers can generate reports using the hierarchy and terminology of the selected ZooWhiz Education Structure. Produce big picture comparisons or precise activity-by-activity analysis with ease!

Detailed animal profiles coming in PREMIUM edition of ZooWhiz

We’re getting near the launch of the PREMIUM version of ZooWhiz. Children with FREE Keeper accounts can access general information regarding each animal’s scientific name and taxonomy. PREMIUM Zoologists however will also be able to access detailed information concerning habitat, diet, threatened status and more. ZooWhiz is designed to ignite kids love of animals and develop it into an informed passion!

Here are some examples of the detailed PREMIUM Zoologist screens for the Chimp and the Humpback!

ZooWhiz hurtles towards 100,000 users!

We are delighted and astonished at the rate at which parents and teachers are registering for the FREE management accounts and adding FREE accounts for the kids in their classes and families.

Some time this week we’ll pass 100,000 accounts! We think that’s phenomenal! You can find out what other teachers are saying about ZooWhiz here…

You can help make it happen! We’d love for you to share ZooWhiz with a friend or colleague – you can simply send them to a link to www.zoowhiz.com/pass-it-on

ZooWhiz whizzes past 80,000 users!

Kids teachers and parents are loving ZooWhiz. 

ZooWhiz, EdAlive’s new  online learning system is growing rapidly and this week passed 80,000 users!  We’ve had over whelming feedback from parents, teachers and children around the world.

Here’s a taste of what people have had to say…

Sophie says “…I thought that overall, the site was great because there were lots of features on it. The Learn & Earn feature was really good because you had three different subjects: Reading, Words and Mathematics. In it you can earn coins by learning new things. I also liked that there were different age groups and different stages in them for people on different levels…

“…I am the parent of two children (aged 4 & 6) who have been using your site for the past week. Both of them love it! The personal Zoos and Arcade Games are great motivators for them to complete the educational activities (which are fun and engaging in themselves). I find that the girls like to set a money goal for each ‘Zoo Session’ and are competing with each other on getting the biggest number of zoo animals in their alloted time. The fact that they have to ‘pay’ to play the Arcade Games is great too – it means they HAVE to do some of the educational actives before they get to play the games :) ” Hollie – Parent,  Australia

“The interface is fantastic – really appealing to kids and easy to navigate. The activities are also appropriate to the students’ age/level – not too easy, not too difficult.” Jessica – Teacher, QLD Australia

“I am a secondary teacher in Queensland. My colleges and I, who have used ZooWhiz with our classes, are struck by the level of engagement it achieves with all our students in our trial classes from Year 7 through to Year 10. Seemingly, they are captivated by the pursuit of earning points to purchase the animals of their choice; while as teachers we are enthusiastic about the style of the questions which frequently enlist higher order thinking skills and revision of procedural skills from their present and past years of study.” Rachelle – Teacher, QLD Australia

You can read more reviews here…

Like the sound of ZooWhiz? Try it out!

Sign up for your  Teacher Management Account or  Parent Management Account now…

 


ZooWhiz background for Focus Magazine

Hi all,

ZooWhiz is generating a great deal of interest in our home town of Armidale. I have been asked to do a short article about the background to ZooWhiz and what it is all trying to achieve. I wrote the following over the weekend and sent it off to the “Focus” editors. I’m sure they will do a good job with it. I though our regular visitors might like to see the story as well so here it is.

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EdAlive/ZooWhiz article for Focus Magazine

Graham and Barbara East

12th March 2012

What is your teaching history?

I guess teaching is in my blood. My parents were both high school science teachers. I started my 12 years as a primary school teacher in Toowoomba in 1976 then moved to Mornington Island, back to Toowoomba and finally to St Andrew’s School in Adelaide. My time in the classroom helped me to understand the incredible diversity in children and how they learn best when the material they are being presented with is appropriate for their needs.

During the mid 80s the personal computer arrived in the classroom. I was immediately transfixed by the educational opportunities it presented and set about using it in the classroom. I soon found that I, in partnership with my wife Barb, were sourcing and supplying educational software to schools across South Australia.

When did you move to Armidale and why?

I’d had the good fortune to spend time in Armidale during my childhood and knew what a wonderful place it was. Barb is a 5th generation Armidalian the daughter of Bruce and Judy Dewhurst, so we knew that Armidale had a lot to offer our growing family and would be a good place to base our business. So I said goodbye to the classroom at the end of 1988 and we moved to Armidale with our three little boys Ben, Andrew and Chris. Laura came along the following year. We launched New Horizons nationally at the beginning of 1989.

Where, when and why did you start EdAlive?

We started EdAlive as our publishing arm in 2003. By 2000 sales of software to schools had begun to decline but we felt that there was a substantial opportunity to supply curriculum based software to parents for their kids through schools. We adopted a club model, called it the Community Software Plan (CSP) and created our own titles to sell through it. Our first title was Aussie Maths Invaders. It was an overnight hit! We ended up with a whole range of mulit-award-winning titles that have sold 1,000,000 CDs all around the world.

It must take an exceptional team to produce your software?

The intellectual property we have created is the culmination of many years of exceptional work by many dedicated, talented people. We can’t thank them enough for the contribution they have made. Some have stayed for over 20 years others have come, made their contribution and moved on. Our products today are an amalgam of their many and varied contributions.

How has the Internet revolution changed business for you?

We were all still buying vinyl records back in 1995 but by 2000 the CD had taken over. By 2006 sales of CDs had peaked with the Internet gaining popularity year by year. Now in 2012 demand for CDs is weak with the Internet being the source of choice for schools and homes. Not only has the mode of delivery changed but the proliferation of free services on the Internet has raised people’s expectation of value for money with many resources being available for free. The Internet also allows users to be dynamically connected to their data 24/7. Teachers and kids are no different. They expect continuous, integrated, access to learning and the results of that learning.

How have you responded to this change?

We realized some years back that we would have to move online or downsize and fade away. Sensing that the Internet would ultimately be a greater friend than foe we made our existing software available for Internet download from www.edalive.com and then embarked on an ambitious project to convert our key educational IP to a format that could be used as the basis for an online learning system. Our team did exceptional work and by January 2010 we had a bank of over 17,000 activities covering maths, reading, spelling and word skills for kids aged 5 – 15 in an online format.

Where does ZooWhiz fit in?

Once we had the educational content ready for online delivery we set about creating a kid-and school-friendly management system through which to deliver it and to give parents, teachers and kids the 24/7 access they have come to expect. www.ZooWhiz.com, our most challenging and comprehensive project to date, is the end result. It’s packed full of tools for teachers, is fun for kids and gives parents the opportunity to connect with their child’s education. It lets parents, teachers and kids choose educational content that is appropriate for each child’s educational needs.

In this world of free online offerings like Skype and Google we felt that a freemium model (a mix of free and paid premium subscriptions) would be the best way to market our new creation. By October 2011 we were ready to start testing ZooWhiz with family and friends and in some of the schools around Armidale. The feed-back was emphatically positive and knew that we had a real winner. Kids and teachers just love it. Growth was immediate. We were fortunate to have Senator Conroy, Tony Windsor and Richard Torbay in attendance for its official launch at PLC Armidale on 17th Feb. Since then ZooWhiz has continued to grow and now has over 40,000 free users in more than 30 countries. We’re currently working on the premium offering and hope to be generating revenues by June.

Will the NBN help you?

The NBN will be a real boon to us. The transference of data and remote working is critical to what we do and with the increased speed of the NBN all this will be so much faster and cost effective. It can’t come soon enough!

What next?

www.ZooWhiz .com has incredible potential. The Internet has eliminated national boundaries and we fully anticipate that ZooWhiz will be used by millions of kids, parents and teachers around the world in the years to come! ZooWhiz is free for all, easy to use and highly motivational so if you’re a teacher, parent or grandparent get started with your kids today and tell others about this great Armidale/Aussie based online learning system!

Want an online learning system that motivates your students? Check THIS out!

There’s two methods to motivate kids to learn – the “stick” and the “carrot”. The “stick” method of motivating kids takes the no pain, no gain mentality, focusing on the merits of effort and hard work. On the other hand, the “carrot” method of motivation kids to learn offers a reward for learning.

Both forms of motivation have their pros and cons. For example, although the word “stick” has negative connotations, this motivational technique allows to children to learn a concept “by heart” – children can still remember the topic years later “like the back of their hand”. However, when taken to far, this method causes kids to learn by rote, preventing them from having a deep understanding of the subject matter.

Likewise, the “carrot” form of motivation also has pros and cons. Children can often focus on the reward more than the learning, and don’t realise that learning can be a reward in and of itself. Conversely, appropriate rewards that relate back to learning experiences trigger positive emotions in the human brain, which can greatly improve memory. Making learning fun can also have widespread effects, changing social attitudes towards education.

Most teachers agree that having  a balanced approach to student motivation encourages a balanced perspective on life – life is fun, but sometimes you have to knuckle down and get the job done. That’s why ZooWhiz balances hard work with rewards – kids must complete educational activities in order to earn coins, with which they can do other fun stuff, like buy animals or play arcade games.

We took a quick look at some of the statistics today, and, boy, are the kids in ZooWhiz working hard! To date, the kids have earnt nearly 15 million coins! But we also know that the kids are having a whole lot of fun too – they’ve spent most of their coins – nearly 14 million coins – on just having fun. However, with ZooWhiz, kids don’t just alternate between learning and having fun: the educational content itself is fun, and the rewards themselves are often educational. For an online learning system, ZooWhiz really knows how to motivate your kids! If you haven’t yet signed up as a teacher, I recommend you sign up now. It’s completely free, and the online learning system of choice in mathematics, reading and word skills.

The fact that the kids 15 millions coins speaks for itself.

New animals coming soon! And with educational content!

As far as free online educational software goes, we think ZooWhiz is the bee’s knees (there’s an idea – what do you think about having killer bees in the Zoo Shop?). That’s the feedback we’re hearing from parents and teachers anyway, but we were recently wondering what some of the kids thought of it, both in terms of the educational content and the fun.

During the developmental phase of ZooWhiz, we spent a lot of time with kids working out what they liked and didn’t like, in order to produce a product that was both of a high educational quality and a lot of fun. At the time, most of the kids really enjoyed purchasing their own animals and building their Zoo. This is what we expected, as at that stage the Arcade Games had only been online for a few weeks.

Now that the Arcade Games have been around for some time now, we put ourselves in the kids’ shoes again (my feet are still sore!) in order to take a fresh look at which was more fun – the animals or the Arcade Games. We all thought the Arcade Games were fantastic and would be much more popular than the Animals (we each have our own favourite Arcade Games – mine is Bubble Plunge). However, after getting some feedback from the kids, we’ve found that they’re still purchasing lots and lots of animals. Lots of animals. It’s probably quite a close competition.

In fact, just to see how many animals the kids were purchasing we decided to look up the details. You won’t believe what we found – the kids had spent over 2 million coins on nearly 10,000 animals in the last 30 days! The top six children had each spent over 56,000 coins on animals! That means those kids had answered at least 5,600 activities correctly! ZooWhiz must be full of whiz kids!

Anyway, because the animals are still in high demand, we’ve decided to make a few more. And on top of that, we’re also going to be adding educational information to the animals! This means that kids are not only learning through highly educational activities, but they’re also learning while they’re having fun with the animals! ZooWhiz truly is an integrated learning environment – online educational software just doesn’t get any better. If you haven’t yet signed up as a teacher, do so now. It only takes a few minutes of your time and will benefit you and your classroom kids for the whole year.

We’ll be making the new animals live in the next few weeks, so stay tuned!

The Dragon - The Most Expensive Animal in the ZooWhiz Free Online Educational Learning System