ALaN WA Newsletter – April 2014

Welcome to edition 12 of the Adult Literacy and Numeracy Network of Western Australia Newsletter!

Views expressed by contributors to the newsletter are their own and, unless expressly stated, do not reflect the opinions of their employers/organisations.

This contents page links individually to each article enabling you to go immediately to those of your choice. Alternatively, if you go to the main blog link, you can access the articles by scrolling down the page.

We welcome your comments and contributions to our newsletter. If you are an Adult Literacy/Numeracy practitioner in Western Australia or indeed, anywhere in the world, we invite you to subscribe and comment. If you are interested in joining the GoogleGroup for our network, please visit our “How to join” page and complete the online form.


1. ThingLink! Linking to content from images

A neat online tool for using images with links to further information

2. New time for the WAALC conference

WAALC is piloting a new time of year for the WAALC conference

3. Excellence in Language, Literacy and Numeracy Practice Award

A national focus award in the Australian National Training Awards

4. WA curriculum update April 2014

Re-accreditation activities

5. PD coming up/continuing

PD available through the network and beyond

6. Some conferences this year

Update on conference information for 2014

ThingLink – a different way to share!

In one of our regular webinars a couple of weeks ago someone mentioned “ThingLink”. Over the follwing weekend I spent a bit of time exploring this tool.

ThingLink is described as a tool that helps you share content using images. The idea is to use an image and to add “tags” which link to content. The tool has been developed so that you can add many different types of content link including audio, video, webpages and polls.

Here are a three different ones that I have created – these are fairly simple and just link directly to content relevant to the spot in the image where the tag is positioned. The images can be easily embedded in websites and blogs. If you don’t see the links on the images immediately then move your mouse onto the image, you should then be able to checkout the content links.

The scene from Gooseberry Hill


  A “Toon” for introducing e-pedagogy

Free E-tools for teaching and learning

For me this has immense possibilities for use in literacy/numeracy contexts. Here is just a very quick “off the top of my head” list of some of the possible uses:

Students making their own “ThingLinks” to evidence their own understanding and research eg in “Current Issues”

  • Students developing their own audio, visual or written explanations of maths concepts and linking to them via tags
  • Students making ToonDoos eg related to Internet safety and linking to the source of their information
  • Students collecting a series of images recording project progress with tags linking to videos of different project activities and/or other project documentation
  • Language of shapes with links to audio files and or text glossary items.
  • Maths concepts with links to practical applications of the concepts in the real world
  • Managing student web access in exploring a topic to ensure that the sites they visit are of suitable quality
  • Writing prompt images with related information links as tags in the image

One of the reasons that I liked this tool straight away is that basic use is very quick and easy to learn. So it makes a great addition to the repertoire of quick and easy to learn tools that can be used by students while also having potential for developing engaging learning resources.

If you explore and try this one out please let us know by commenting on this post – we would love to know how you use it and what you and your students think of it!

Jo Hart (April 2014)

New time for WAALC conference

The Western Australian Adult Literacy Council (WAALC) is piloting a change of conference time from July to April. As a result, they will not have a conference in July 2014. The next conference will be April 2015.

Proposed Dates are 16th and 17th April 2015 (at the end of school holidays and after Easter).

Conference planning is starting now.

Please book 16-17 April 2015 for the conference into your organisation’s calendar (and advise of any clashes with other events substantially affecting LLN teaching staff).

Send ideas to include in the conference: suggestions for Keynote speakers, topics, workshops or other activities that you think would make for an  inspiring event.

WAALC offers professional learning independent of employers and government priorities.  Your support is needed to help newcomers to the LLN field and to re-energise and update the experienced worker.

We plan to call for Expressions of Interest in September/October so be talking to new presenters with something to share and reminding your favourite presenters that you want them back!

Excellence in Language, Literacy and Numeracy Practice Award

Don’t forget that nominations close at the end of May for the second Excellence in Language, Literacy and Numeracy Practice Award conferred as part of the Australian Training Awards. Jo Hart was a finalist in the inaugaral award last year. It would be great to have a finalist or a winner from Western Australia this year too.

The Australian Training Awards are the peak, national awards for the vocational education and training (VET) sector, recognising individuals, businesses and registered training organisations for their contribution to skilling Australia.

Applicants may have the opportunity to reach the national stage in November this year and gain Australia-wide recognition for their work.

There are 18 awards, including seven ‘direct-entry’ awards. More details at

Curriculum updates – April 2014

52426WA Certificate I in Entry to General Education will expire 30 September 2014 and the review is well under way. Drafts of new and revised modules will be available soon. Email if you would like a look.

Course in Applied Vocational Study Skills 52626WA (CAVSS) is ready to use with new Business Rules available. You need to be preparing to use this new course from April when the previous one expires.

52379 Course In Underpinning Skills for Industry Qualifications (USIQ) has been re-accredited, the Business Rules are currently being reviewed. STARS has been updated with the new course number and information.

PD coming up and continuing April 2014

PD within the WA ALaN network

The face-to-face Collaborative Numeracy workshops with Beth Marr are continuing on 14-15 May. Beth is also delivering an in house program for Centacare during April and plans are under way for another two day workshop soon.

The “What’s in a number!” project continues and is due to finish in May. Checkout the recent posts on “Estimation”  then on  “Percentages”   and the most recent on “Exponents” and catch up with any others you have missed. Don’t forget to check out the comments and feedback and add your own!

Other PD

Coming up from IBSA/Velg are “Foundation Skills Workshops for VET Practitioners”  the Perth one is on June 4th – NOTE that the target audience for these is NOT LLN/Foundation Skills specialists but VET practitioners. However they may be relevant for others in your organisation. As we already use CAVSS here in WA to support vocational learners through team teaching, these workshops which have a focus on identifying foundation skills in units and then using the Foundation Skills (FSK) Training Package are perhaps less relevant to our VET practitioners than they would be elsewhere.

Conferences update – April 2014


The National Adult Language, Literacy and Numeracy Assessment Conference 2014 will be held in Melbourne on May 1st and 2nd 2014.

Not specifially LLN but there are usually some LLN related sessions. Registration is now open for our own State Training Providers’ Forum 2014. This takes place at Crown Perth on Monday 19th and Tuesday 20th of May.

The Australian Literacy Educators Association has a focus mainly towards the school sector, however with many young students now in the VET sector rather than in school their 2014 National Conference “aNTicipating New Territories: building strong minds, places and futures” in Darwin from 9-12 July has increasing potential for relevance to our network.

The 2014 conference of the International Applied Linguistics Association is being hosted by the Applied Linguistics Association of Australia and takes place from the 10th to 15th of August in Brisbane.

This year’s ACAL Conference “Literacy: a learning spiral for life” is on October 2nd to 4th at Surfers Paradise in Queensland. Keep up to date by registering an expression of interest on the ACAL website. Call for papers is open now. You are invited to give a 45 minute paper presentation, or a 1.5 hour colloquium, in which a group of presenters will give a series of papers on a theme, or a 1.5 hour hands-on workshop.

Australian Council of TESOL Associations – International Conference 2014 with the theme “Meeting the Challenge” takes place from September 30 – October 3 2014 in Melbourne. For information available to date check out the website.

The next Western Australian Adult Literacy Council state conference is planned for April 2015.  That’s a different time of the year than usual and there won’t be one in 2014.

A little further afield

In New Zealand this year – the 14th National Conference for Community Languages and ESOL has the theme “Essentials for Learning and Teaching: Ko te Pū, ko te Ako”