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Thrill of the Upskill

Be it crocheting, learning French, teaching your new pooch to staaaaaaay, or finally learning how to make your own website, COVID-19 is proving to be a popular time to up-skill! In April TAFE NSW announced a new suite of 21 fee-free short courses to help assist job seekers and workers learn new skills, with over 84,000 people enrolling in the courses in just a few weeks! In this month’s PULSE, we canvas the stay-at-home educational opportunities available, including short-courses, superstar lectures, educational apps and online tutorials. 


Ever wanted to learn glamour drag from Ru Paul? How about film-making from Martin Scorsese? Creative writing from Margaret Atwood? MasterClass has it all! Launched in 2014, MasterClass is a San Franciso-based online learning platform targeting creative professionals. It produces online classes with renowned personalities who excel at their respective fields. For example, David Lynch teaches Creativity and Film, with a lesson plan ranging from Catching Ideas, to Working with Actors. For $23.33 per month you can access hundreds of hours of courses to consume on any device, whenever it suits you.




The team behind Duolingo believes that anyone can learn a language. With bite-size modules that feel more like games than lessons, Duolingo is completely free and available in 95 different languages (including Klingon, the fictional language spoken by Klingons in the Star Trek universe…) Collecting the learning data from over 300 million users, Duolingo build unique systems, uncovering new insights about the nature of both languages and learning. By learning quirky sentences like “Tu oso bebe cerveza!” (Your bear drinks beer!), you’re sure to pick up the basics fast!




Australian made ClassBento gives members access to local craft workshops, with the overall aim of keeping citizens engaged to avoid burnout in our super connected culture and keep dementia at bay. By staying mentally stimulated and engaging in recreational activity, the team at ClassBento hope to preserve brain health and keep our memory skills intact. Right now, ClassBento has a full series of live online classes aimed at keeping you occupied during lockdown. With craft boxes (and cocktail kits) delivered to your door, ClassBento can make an otherwise boring Friday night both mentally stimulating and fun! Choose from cooking, pottery, ikebana, calligraphy and silversmithing projects, plus many more.




Skillshare is an online learning community where members pay a small membership fee to watch videos made by teachers around topics like Animation, Web Development, Freelance and Entrepreneurship and Productivity. Skillshare teachers might not be celebrities, but they are real working creatives and experts eager to share their expertise. By sharing videos on Skillshare, creatives and teachers can earn money, with the top-earning teachers making $100,000+ each year.



Nat Geo for Kids

Pitched at ages 10 and up, Nat Geo for Kids is like an online magazine for kids, offering articles, competitions and educational videos around different countries around the world. Students can enter competitions to win book-filled prize packs, take quizzes on comets and meteors, and test their memory with the Big Bug Memory Game, all on the one website! The Kids Club section features content written by kids, for kids, covering everything an inquisitive mind could possibly need! 


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