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SMART CLASSROOMS: Innovative teaching no game for Microsoft winner

October 2009

Game on … Crow's Nest State School's Brett Butler was recently named the Queensland winner in the 2009 Microsoft Innovative Teachers Awards.

Game on ... Crow's Nest State School's Brett Butler was recently named the Queensland winner in the 2009 Microsoft Innovative Teachers Awards.

A Toowoomba teacher with a passion for game development has been recognised by software giant Microsoft as one of Australia's leading information and communication technologies (ICT) teachers.

Brett Butler of Crow's Nest State School was recently announced as the Queensland winner in the 2009 Microsoft Innovative Teachers Awards.

'It's exciting to be recognised for the work I do with my students and I was very surprised and humbled to be told I had won,' Mr Butler said.

"Students now expect ICT to be incorporated into lessons,' he said.

Mr Butler - a Digital Pedagogy Licence holder - was inspired to divide his ICT students into game development teams after attending a gaming conference earlier this year.

'My students are involved in all aspects of creating a game, from writing game narrative and logic, to drawing or digitally creating images, to recording sound effects and musical scores, to filming and animating cut scenes and to programming," he said.

'It's hard work but they really enjoy it and we are getting some fantastic results.

'It's important for teachers to be flexible and do what they can to add depth to their lessons and to motivate their students.'

The Microsoft Innovative Teachers Awards aim to identify best teaching practices nationally and share teachers' experiences.

As part of his award Mr Butler will attend the 2009 Australian Council for Education Leaders Conference (ACEL) in Darwin followed by the Microsoft Asia Innovative Educators Forum in Singapore next year.

To learn more about Mr Butler's award-winning gaming projects, go to the Department of Education and Training's Games in Learning Project website.