The author releasing his first novel in the Team Savv-i series at Twitter HQ in San Fransisco
Writing a story takes a lot of time and planning. Usually, something triggers the idea and from then on you work on it... until finally its done.
As an educator, I experienced the impact of ICT on schools first hand. Most of it good and exciting but there was another side. Students gaming on their devices in class, teachers struggling with new technology and parents deeply worried about the pitfalls and dangers of it all.
In response to all this, I created an eLearning platform for Middle-Grade schools that fosters discussions about how to make good and safe use of ICT through the use of moderated forums. This work made me realize that there were no interesting books about this emerging topic available for young people. Of course, there are lots of wonderful web-based resources but no page-turning novels. So I set out to write a few. I call them edufictional tales.
The character-driven series will start with a number of graphic novels for elementary students and those that find reading a struggle.
The first one is in progress and is about what the physical Internet looks like. Here are a few initial sketches made by the illustrator. In this story, Mia gets lost in virtual reality after receiving the latest console causing her friends to search for her throughout the cyber world.
For Middle-Grade students
The novel, Team Savv-i Ten Secrets of the Cyberworld, is all about learning how to be safe, savvy and social online. You will learn many secrets about the Internet. This book is supported by an engaging eLearning platform, which is available free for schools. It runs on the school's server and is managed by their own teachers. Parents can get involved too.
The sequel story is called Team Savv-i The Lipizzaner Stallions, where the Team sets out to clean up the Internet. This story will teach you how to sort fact from fiction. It will also have a supporting eLearning program that makes it a wonderful themed learning tool for schools (Grades 6 to 8).
The third book, Team Savv-i Enhanced. Deals with the increasing possibilities to enhance the physical body with technology. This book is written for Grade 8 onwards. This book is due to be released by December 2018.
Two more books are being planned in the series, that will deal with tech-related issues affected older teens.
I was born in the Netherland sand migrated to Australia when I was seventeen. I studied marine biology and zoology at James Cook University and continued to do my doctorate at Queensland University. All the way back in 1984, as a matter of interest, I studied computer science learning about some of the early languages. I became an environmental consultant and specialized in habitat fragmentation. An unbelieving world was stunned when I showed on National TV that koalas were happy to use wildlife underpasses. I invented special floppy-top fences that prevented wildlife from wandering on highways. I started working with a science documentary team that made numerous award-winning films for TV. In 2009, I felt moved to become a teacher and enter the world of education.
Technology was having a great time causing havoc there. In other words... exciting times!