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  1. Hi Jenny and Mary-Ellen,
    Thanks, these are great ideas. Would you be able to give me an example of what you mean by a framework and an example, for a year 4 class.
    Cheers,
    Emma.

  2. Hi! So happy to see you have started a new adventure together. We are still implementing your strategies, you trained us well!

  3. Hi Sonia,
    Thanks for dropping by.
    We talk about you and the team all the time. If we can think of a way to work it out, we will be on the next plane!
    We hold your achievements very close to our hearts.

  4. Jenny, working smarter not harder is my motto as well! I’ve always found that tracking student reading levels this way not only helps to cater for my students’ learning needs as they emerge, but is a great summary of achievement for both students and teacher when evaluating and reflecting at the end of a term or year.

  5. Jenny, I think this is a great way to not only keep focused but also to celebrate our daily & weekly progress! I also like how the proforma reminds us formulate our “Next Step” using their current needs and strengths.

  6. Thanks Jenny. After your recommendation I tracked this down and then found ‘I want my hat back’. I have been reading this to teachers and talking about the cross curricula capabilities of the Australian Curriculum. These are BEAUTIFUL books. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Ah! Such fun. Your tour guide has done a better job of explaining the use of Shakespeare’s language. Or I cannot remember what I was told. I do remember that it was all small and close and that I was totally in awe. He wrote here!

  8. Last year my now 9 year old daughter did her NAPLAN test. I am a HomeTutor at a Qld School of Distance Education and we did NAPLAN via correspondence. On the day of the test we phoned in for a test…the first my daughter had ever done….she was very nervous because it was a test…she likes to do well, as most of us do.
    The teacher talked through the requirements and then they all signed off to complete their tests alone. I sat in the schoolroom for the required time watching my daughter work. Her time management was OK simply because I had been using it to help her do tasks alone so I could work with my other child. She did her writing task…persuasive writing, she had been working on it all through Term 1 and into Term 2. The test days were on Thursday and Friday on Monday of that week we had started a new unit of work…creative writing. My daughter was and is very good with her writing but she loves creative writing…she was asked to write so her argument for her writing became the most wonderful creative writing piece. I was horrified. It stressed me no end. Her reading seemed to be OK. She did not finish her maths, one answer she wrote….”I have not been taught this so how can I answer it”…fair point.
    I found it most stressful having to watch my daughter work her way through her first test. I looked at the Reading and Comprehension…she had prior knowledge on every article…she has had many experiences and watched many documentaries with her parents…she was lucky.
    She did very well in her NAPLAN test. Her reading was in the top bracket 100%. Her creative writing piece which had not a single element of persuasive writing about it put her in the top end of band 5 (6 bands in total) her spelling was top of Band 4 her Grammar and Punctuation was in Band 6 her Numeracy was middle band 4. For her numeracy she got everything correct but did not finish the paper and wrote a rude comment about not being taught things, so how could she possibly do the question.
    NAPLAN was far more stressful for me than her, as parents you do not normally have to watch your child do their tests. I was amazed by her results and could not believe her creative piece of writing did so well…nothing persuasive about it. She did the test and did not ask about it again. I got her results and all it made me realise was just how stressful it all is for students, teachers and schools and yet everyone around me was saying it really is not important. Then why do it?
    We had two school days taken up with NAPLAN tests and we did not gain anything other than I will not stress about her creative writing again. She writes beautifully and can write an incredibly well structured persuasive text when she needs to…just not on test day. She did OK…English is her first language, she comes from a middle class educated family and her life experiences for someone her age are broad. Of course she is going to do OK. NAPLAN is a waste of time.

  9. I was given a set of “sorting hoops”. I had no idea how to use them. I put them on the schoolroom shelf and got on with “boring school stuff” according to my 5 year old. Then one day we were asked to sort…mmm…sorting hoops anyone. Well my five year old now loves sight words…he gets to throw bean bags at them in sorting hoops. He has to say the word then throw the bag. For an active five year old getting up and throwing at words is pretty cool. Another day he had to sort books….the texts were a variety of books he knew and had had read to him, books about things he knows about, books he did not know but would like……I guessed, and non-fiction. He had to sort them into YES, NO and HELP piles. YES, I know and can read, or know what they are about, HELP I have not read or know about but want to have read and learn about and NO…I am not interested in the book. I was amazed at how much effort he put into the task. He likes sorting…so he went through each text…20 in total and looked at them all in detail. Only two texts went into the NO sorting hoop, they were work journals of mine and my husband…just wanted to check he did the task properly.
    He likes to be the schoolroom clown and yet sorting hoops really sort him out. He loves them and he seems to feel he is doing something…not just sitting at his desk. I love the sorting hoops…now everyone in the schoolroom wants to use them.

  10. I am in the process of planning to make these….we drink milk by the 3 litres so are heading to the big smoke soon and I am planning to get smaller milk bottle containers to make these great cubes. I need them to have changeable faces…little pockets so I can use them for many years to come. My 5 year old loves rolling these dice….we have made small ones for various schoolroom activities…again the more excitable ones love getting out of the chair and moving a toy around…oh are you learning? I think you just might and you didn’t even notice….you are way clever kid.

  11. So inspiring. With two students in the schoolroom I will ponder how to include this idea.
    I have a very keen year 4 reader and a very reluctant prep kid. The prep kid says he cannot read…he picks a book and I ask him to have a look at it and see if he can tell me what the book is about…..1 minute later, I get the story and his thoughts on it and then he says “now just read it…the words are heaps more interesting”. He is a reader….a very discerning one at that. Any ideas on how to work a Bump it Up Wall Chart into my schoolroom? Would really appreciate any ideas.

  12. I can’t see Alice! I shall have to come and visit to find Alice. Do the children know where she is?

  13. Many thanks Lisa. We thoroughly enjoyed working with teachers who are so passionate about their students’ learning.

  14. Fantastic! I love the fact that the focus wasn’t on the cutting out but on the sort according to the sound pattern. I love WTW.

  15. Hi Jenny,
    Saw you today at Parkes. This blog is great, but it is limited in its representation of what creative and inspiring presenter(s) you and Mary-Ellen are. Literacy pedagogy is awesome in theory, but on my/our two hour drive home, my peers and I discussed your ideas in the context of our own classrooms. (Pity you weren’t in the car). May I say, you lovely ladies are exceptional catalysts for the creative, critical literacies that permeate today’s education. THANKYOU.
    PS. Please don’t critique this post’s grammar:)

  16. Thanks very much Michaela and carload of peers. We greatly appreciate your taking the time to acknowledge our efforts. Jenny finally has someone commenting on her blog. Ta heaps!

  17. Hi Jenny
    Loved your courses on Maths and English this week and particularly the name that number game. How often we forget that these simple games are such a great ‘hook’ to start a lesson!
    PS yes we do read your Blog!!:)

  18. Thank you Jenny for a fantastic presentation today. I found your examples to show different aspects of visual literacy most engaging. As a primary school librarian who has promoted and discussed and analysed picture books, their covers etc for many years, I learnt such a lot today that I had passed over before.

  19. Thank you Jenny for an informative, practical session at our TL conference. Your session crystallised for me how the visual literacy aspect of the new curriculum links to what I already do and identified a could of gaps in my practise. Love the TRIO website.

  20. Hi Jenny, I was scrolling through your website for ideas and it was lovely to see my adjectives poster from 2014. I’m now teaching in the Riverina. How do I create a Trio account? Not sure if I had one previously or not.
    I hope our paths cross again.
    Kind Regards
    Katherine

  21. This has been a fantastic resource for use on a daily basis.

    In my first year as a teacher, it was an absolute life saver to have a proforma with the scaffolding already set out. It has saved me so much time and energy over the years. I particularly like that the focuses for each reading level are already there, while there is still room for adding your own touch.

    I cannot recommend this resource enough, and continue to pass it on to colleagues today.

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