Support

The ELSA team can help you run the pilot in your preschool service

Get Support from the ELSA team

Educator working with children on iPads

You can also call 1800 931 042. We will get back to you as soon as possible about your issue.

FAQ

Responses to frequently asked questions about ELSA

STEM is an integrated approach to teaching science, technology, engineering and mathematics by exploring the real world.

Children learn STEM through play when they:

  • create a community garden
  • build structures that are strong or tall
  • fill different containers with water or sand
  • create patterns or draw designs.

STEM practices include:

  • exploring and challenging
  • problem finding and solving
  • generating ideas
  • using tools to produce artefacts
  • curiosity
  • team work.

Exploring STEM practices helps children develop strong skills in problem solving and communication that can be used later in life.

We define a preschool service as a structured, play-based learning program, delivered by a degree-qualified early childhood teacher, aimed primarily at children in the year before they commence full-time schooling. Preschool services are also known as kindergartens, child and parent centres, and early learning centres.

Applications for the 2018 ELSA Pilot have closed.

If you would like to receive updates about ELSA, please sign up to our newsletter.

The ELSA Pilot will start in preschool services in Term 1, 2018. Apps and further workshops for educators will be rolled out during 2018.

ELSA apps will operate on iPad and Android tablets.

Not at all. ELSA is all about STEM concepts and practices. Educators already adopt this approach by encouraging children to ask questions, make predictions, try things, and reflect on what happened and why. By participating in the pilot, educators and families will find new ways for children to engage with STEM concepts and practices.

Absolutely. The ELSA Pilot supports educators to incorporate tablets and digital learning within existing preschool programs. Contact ELSA support with any technical questions you might have.

ELSA will use tablet apps to create meaningful opportunities for children to explore rich digital learning environments.

Children are expected to spend a maximum of 40 minutes per week engaging with the ELSA apps. This is likely to occur across multiple shorter sessions, and is consistent with screen time guidelines from the Australian Government. The apps are being carefully designed with early childhood experts to support active play.

We take privacy seriously. The privacy of all participants - including children, educators and families - will be protected when participating in the ELSA Pilot.

For example, data on app usage will be collected to help us improve the program. This data will be stored securely on Australian servers. If you have any questions about privacy, please contact us at team@elsa.edu.au.

Yes. Families of an ELSA Pilot preschool service are encouraged to participate. We are developing a Families app to support a strong connection between children's homes and preschools.

Find out more about how families can be involved on our For Families page.

Technical FAQ

Information to help educators use the ELSA apps

You can reset your password using the Educator app:

  • Enter your mobile number (make sure you use the same mobile number you provided to ELSA initially, as this is connected to your account).
  • On the 'Sign in to ELSA' screen, tap 'Forgot your password?'
  • On the 'Reset Password' screen, enter a new password. Then touch 'Update password'.
  • A verification code will be sent to the mobile number you entered.
  • Enter the verification code on the 'Verify your phone number' screen.
  • Touch 'Get started'.

Note: if you do not remember your mobile number, or have new accounts that are not already linked to ELSA, please call our support team on 1800 931 042. We will need to set up your new details to give you access.

Privacy is important to us. To keep your preschool service's information secure, we keep a list of approved staff at each centre.

To add someone to the list, please fill out a support form or call the ELSA team on 1800 931 042 and provide:

  • your preschool service's name
  • the educator's name
  • fill different containers with water or sand
  • the educator's mobile number and/or email address, so they can verify their account.

We will double-check your request with our primary contact at the preschool service before adding a new educator to the list. This process can take up to a week. Once the new team member is added, we will notify them via their mobile number or email address.

You can use all the ELSA apps without WiFi, but we ask that you access WiFi at least monthly to upload usage data and check for updates. Some features on the Educator app do require WiFi.

Features that require WiFi:

  • downloading apps
  • signing up to apps and logging in
  • uploading usage data
  • finding out how much time children have spent on the apps
  • accessing new reflections and data from the Educator app on the ELSA website
  • sending and receiving messages on the Educator app
  • downloading new content.

The ELSA apps are designed to support each child's unique progression by offering certain tasks and activities once they are ready to work through various levels of complexity. So it's a better experience for the children if they play using their own profile.

You can reduce the likelihood that a child will accidentally use someone else's player profile by supervising children at the start of each session. This is when the apps will prompt children to make sure their picture is selected before playing.

ELSA data is stored in Amazon Web Services (AWS) Sydney data centre.

The ELSA Families app does not contain session data. However, if parents or legal guardians want to know how much time their child is spending on ELSA each week, this information is available via each child's profile in the Educator app.

We encourage educators to share ELSA content that children have created with their families.

By connecting the apps, session data and ELSA content can be sent from the children's apps to the educator app.

Educators can then view session times and ELSA content created by the children participating in the pilot.

Follow these steps to see how long each child has spent on the ELSA apps for children:

  1. In the Educator app, tap to the 'Children' tab in the main menu at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Tap the profile picture of the relevant child to view their details.
  3. Under the child's profile image is a section called 'Activity'. This displays time spent during the current week, and total time spent, for each activity.

Adding notes to portfolio

Ask our support team at ELSA. We are ready to assist you with any STEM questions. Call 1800 931 042 or get in touch via our support page.

If you want advice from other educators in the pilot, you might like to try posting your question in the Messages section of the Educator app. Your question can be read by all the educators in the pilot, and some may be able to help you. You need to have WiFi switched on to use Messages.

To mute the audio (music and voice) in one of the ELSA children's apps, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the main menu screen of the children's app.
  2. Tap the button at the bottom of the screen that says 'Educators'. App 1 menu screen
  3. Answer the math question to get access.
  4. Locate the 'Device Settings' section.
  5. Next to 'Music enabled' and 'Voice enabled' tap the buttons so they say 'off'. Educator's Area

Tap the 'Educators' tab on the main menu in the children's app. You can access the educator settings by responding to a simple addition question. Educator tab to access settings Choose the class for the day by tapping 'Select active class'. This will allow you to change the class. App 1 settings daily class If you would like to be automatically prompted to select the class for the day, ensure that the 'Prompt startup daily active class selection' button is on. App 1 settings daily class prompt

You can edit a child's profile via the Educator app or the children's apps. We've explained each method below.

In the Educator app

  1. Tap the 'Children' tab in the main menu at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Tap the profile picture of the relevant child to view their details. select child
  3. Tap 'Edit' in the top left of the profile to make changes. edit
  4. You can update the following details in the Educator app: child's name, month and year of birth, child's class, and delete profile.
  5. When you have finished, tap 'Done' in the top left of the profile or 'Cancel' in the top right to discard changes. edit details When you have finished, tap 'Done' in the top left of the profile or 'Cancel' in the top right to discard changes.

In the children's apps

  1. Tap the 'Educators' tab at the bottom of the screen on the main menu of the children's app. You can access the educator settings by responding to a simple addition question. Educator tab to access settings
  2. In the educator settings, select 'Edit children details'. App 1 settings child details edit
  3. You can edit 'Name' and 'Appearance'. The image choices for 'Appearance' are: child's initials, animal avatar or a photo.
  4. Once you have made changes, tap the back arrow button and changes will be saved. Edit child avatar app 1

When you first log in to one of the ELSA children's apps, you will be guided through three steps to give access to the camera, microphone and camera roll. On each screen touch 'Grant Permission'. Then touch 'OK' on the pop-up windows.

If you accidentally touch 'Don't Allow' on one of the pop-up windows, or need to update permissions later on, follow the steps below.

iPad

  1. Go to the main menu screen of the children's app.
  2. Tap the button at the bottom of the screen that says 'Educators'. Giving permission to camera microphone and camera roll 1
  3. Answer the math question to get access.
  4. Locate the 'Permission Settings' section and tap the 'Settings' button. Giving permission to camera microphone and camera roll 2
  5. Locate the Microphone and Camera icons on the right side of the screen.
  6. Move each button to the right to allow access.
  7. Tap the Photos icon.
  8. Select 'Read and Write' (this gives access to the camera roll). Giving permission to camera microphone and camera roll 3

Android

  1. Go to the main menu screen of the children's app.
  2. Tap the button at the bottom of screen that says 'Educators'. App 1 home screen Android device
  3. Answer the math question to get access.
  4. Locate the 'Permission Settings' section and tap the 'Settings' button. App 1 settings screen on Android device
  5. Locate the ELSA app in the list of apps on the right side of the screen.
  6. Tap the ELSA app. Apps list on Android device
  7. Move the 'Camera', 'Microphone' and 'Storage' (photos) buttons to the right to allow access. About to change app 1 settings on Android device

Follow these steps to add a child in the Educator app:

  1. Tap on the 'Children' menu tab at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Tap 'Add...' in the top right hand corner of the screen.
  3. Tap 'Add Child' from the drop-down menu. Add child
  4. Type the child’s first name and first letter of their last name.
  5. Type their year and month of birth in the next field.
  6. Check that the child is assigned to the correct group/class. If they are not, tap 'change' and follow the prompts. Add child assign to class
  7. Choose an option for how to identify a child with an avatar image. We suggest using a photo of a personal artefact (such as a their backpack or a favourite toy) that is easily recognised by the child. Alternatively, you can use one of the preset ELSA animal symbols or default to the child’s initials. When you have finished, tap 'Done' in the top right corner of the screen.

Follow these steps to add a class or group in the Educator app:

  1. Tap on the 'Children' menu tab at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Tap 'Add...' in the top right hand corner of the screen.
  3. Tap 'Add Group' from the drop-down menu. Add group
  4. Type the group or class name.
  5. You can enter notes in the box below.
  6. Add an image to represent the class or choose a preset ELSA animal avatar.

Follow these steps to edit a class you have created in the Educator app:

  1. Tap on the 'Children' menu tab at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Tap the 'edit' button on the right side of the screen next to the class you would like to edit.
  3. Update the name and image and then tap 'Done' Note: a class with children cannot be deleted. To delete a class, the child must first be moved to another class. edit class

Yes you can. Follow these steps to add reflections and notes in the Educator app:

  1. Tap on the 'Children' menu tab at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Tap on a child's profile image to view their profile detais.
  3. Select an activity and view the content created by the child.
  4. Tap on the section called 'Portfolio', and add notes and observations. Add notes

Follow these steps to view content created by a child in your group:

  1. Tap on the 'Children' menu tab at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Tap on a child's profile image to view their profile detais.
  3. Select an activity and view the content created by the child. You can listen to audio descriptions and view content that has been created in each activity. Portfolio
  4. Tap on any image to view details. view user generated pattern

Children and educators can create photo stories in the ELSA Patterns app. These will then appear in the Educator app for educator approval.

If a child has created a photo story, the educator will see a notification in the child’s profile under the 'Photo story' activity. review content story Educators can either approve or decline the content. If the photo story is approved, the group will be able to access the story from the app.