Today is Australia Day here in Down Under land. It celebrates the arrival of the first fleet into Botany Bay, marking the beginning of white mans’ occupation of Terra Nullius – literall meaning “Empty Land”. Quite a large presumption really, and to the aboriginal people who had already lived here for over 40,000 years it was not quite such a cause for celebration. Even today, Australia’s indigenous population still refer to it as Invasion Day. Anyway, that could be the subject of a whole other discussion …
The point is that January 26 in Australia is celebrated as Australia Day and a quick visit to the Google Australia home page at www.google.com.au has the Google logo swapped out for another one with an Australian theme. Swapping the Google logo for temporary logos derived from the original one is not new… Google does it all the time and you can browse the collection of past special logos in their Holiday Logo gallery.
The logo being used today is a little different… it was designed by Janelle San Juan, a Year 6 student at the School of the Good Shepherd, in Victoria, Australia. Janelle’s logo was chosen from a competition run by Google Australia called Doodle for Google. Watch the video below to find out more about the logo, the competition and how it all happened.
You can see from watching the video that it must have been a wonderful experience for the students involved, getting them to create and collaborate on an authentic, real world task that was not just about producing work to make the teacher happy but rather to meet a genuine design brief for a genuine problem for a genuine company with the opportunity for their solution to be displayed to a genuine audience. We need to think about how we can create more opportunities for this type of learning in our classrooms.
Congratulations to Janelle and all the other kids who took part, and good on you Google Australia for running the contest. We need more of this sort of thing.
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Doodle 4 Google by Chris Betcher is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.