Continue reading: Happy Easter 2021 – readilearn
Teachers around Australia are already thinking about how they will organise their classrooms to maximise learning when the new school year begins at the end of January. They are as excited as the children with hopes and expectations of a successful and enjoyable school year.
To ensure a rewarding year, it is important to begin with a clear idea of what you want to achieve and the steps that will contribute to success. It is useful to keep in mind that one of the most significant contributors to children’s learning is the classroom environment, especially the relationship with the teacher. A supportive classroom environment that welcomes students and their families is essential so that children have a sense both of belonging and ownership.
Rita Pierson makes this quite clear in her TED Talk Every kid needs a champion.
Here at readilearn, our focus is on supporting teachers with lessons that are ready for them to teach rather than on worksheets for children to complete. We recognise the beneficial role of discussions that involve both teachers and students sharing ideas. We also assist teachers to establish a welcoming and supportive classroom environment.
Establish a welcoming environment
Continue reading: And so it begins — a New School Year – readilearn
This week at the Carrot Ranch, Charli Mills challenged writers to In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that features stilettos. Who will wear them and why? Go where the prompt leads!
Here is my response. I hope you enjoy it.
The Princess wore Stilettos
The princess clattered around in stilettos and beads, giving orders and making demands. Servants attempted to fulfill her requirements, but nothing was ever quite right.
“Don’t do that.”
Should they dare bring her juice in the wrong cup, she’d bat it away, “Not that cup. My special cup.”
They would quickly consult, but no one knew what was deemed special for this occasion.
As she grew more unbearable and uncompromising, the suggestion that she retire to her chambers triggered more hostility.
When she finally surrendered to sleep, crumpled on the floor, peace reigned.
Thank you for reading. I appreciate your feedback. Please share your thoughts.
Another month down. While I’m not wishing time away (I think most of us would always like more of that), I’m hoping that, as we step into this last quarter of 2020, we are stepping closer to a world free of restrictions, lockdowns and Covid-19. I’m sure you are all with me on that.
October begins in a wonderful way with World Smile Day on the first Friday in October — this year, 2 October. The day is a great reminder to spread smiles and share kindness with others. One of the best ways to spread smiles is by having an open heart and being friendly towards others.
Here at readilearn, we have many resources you can use to teach your children friendship skills and encourage them to get along with each other. Resources include:
Today it is my pleasure to introduce you to Marg Gibbs, author of Jasper’s Jumbled Up Words as part of a Books on Tour promotion.
Jasper’s Jumbled up Words is a story of a young child’s journey into communication through speech and shows how the encouragement of a loving family fosters the progress. The excitement that is felt when a child utters their first words will be familiar to most families.
The back-cover blurb
Jasper’s Jumbled up Words is a gentle story about a young boy who wants to be understood.
‘In Jasper’s head, strange sounds bubble, but in his mouth the words get caught and only babble comes out.’
Jasper soon finds himself confused and upset. Then one day, he surprises everyone.
Jasper’s Jumbled up Words sensitively deals with the difficulties surrounding language development and offers children, parents and care givers hope.
About Marg Gibbs
Contine reading: Meet Marg Gibbs author of Jasper’s Jumbled Up Words – readilearn
As we step into the second half of 2020, I hope you continue to stay well and happy. So many changes occurred during the first half of the year and life has not yet returned, if it ever will, to how it once was. In some areas where change is required, that’s perhaps a good thing, but many of us mourn the freedoms and security we once enjoyed.
In this post, I list some days and events you may wish to celebrate with your children, whether at home or at school, hopeful that some may inspire you and renew your resolve to work towards a better future.
International Plastic Bag Free Day on 3 July is a great way to start the month focusing on the environment and making small steps towards a positive future. The aim of the day is to increase awareness of the harmful effects of plastic waste upon the environment, especially the marine environment, and encourage everyone to reduce their use of plastics.
Some things to think about and discuss:
- More than 500 billion plastic bags are used around the world each year, about one million every minute.
- Each plastic bag is used on average for less than half an hour.
- Plastic bags remain in the environment for up to 500 years. Plastic pollution doesn’t just affect those of us alive today. It affects generations for hundreds of years to come.
If we can all reduce our use of plastics, especially single-use plastics, it will have a positive impact upon Earth’s future and the future of all its inhabitants, including plants, animals and humans.
What can you do?
Continue reading: Special Days and Events for Classroom Celebrations — July – readilearn
In this post, I am sharing a video by Jane Goodall Sowing the Seeds of Hope.
In a previous post, I shared some insights by the ACT Scientist of the Year, climate scientist Dr Sophie Lewis. Since then, Dr Lewis has been appointed ACT Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment. Some events that shaped Dr Lewis’s journey to becoming a scientist include:
- Her parents took an active interest in the world and natural events, such as the passing of Halley’s Comet, and encouraged Sophie to do the same by including her in their adventures.
- Her family spent time outdoors in the natural environment and encouraged Sophie to explore, investigate and take an interest in every aspect of the environment.
- Sophie received gifts that encouraged and extended her ability to explore and investigate the environment; both up-close with a slide-making kit, and from a distance with a telescope.
- In school, she extended her interest by studying science and maths.
You’ll find that the experiences of Jane Goodall reiterate the importance of parental encouragement in developing positive attitudes to science. In fact, Goodall attributes her success to her mother, who she describes as ‘extraordinary’. Goodall says that she was born with an innate love of animals and that her mother always supported and encouraged it.
One of the first books that Jane bought with her own money was Tarzan of the Apes and, at just ten years of age, she began dreaming of going to Africa to live with animals and write books about them. Although others scoffed, her mother continued to encourage her, telling her that if she really wanted something, she’d have to work hard, take advantage of all opportunities and never give up.
I’m sure, whether educating at school or at home, you will find the words of Jane Goodall as inspirational as I did.
Queensland is my home state and, since we celebrate Queensland Day on 6 June, I thought I’d share a little about my state and its special day.
On 6 June 1859, Queensland separated from New South Wales to become an independent colony. It was awarded this status by Queen Victoria who reigned from 1837 until 1901.
Brisbane, located in the south-east corner of the state, is the state capital.
Continue reading: Celebrating Queensland Day — 6 June – readilearn
An understanding of number is crucial to navigating our complex world. It is something we use everyday whether we are aware of it or not. From things as seemingly simple as matching the number of socks to our number of feet, to scheduling our day, through to more complex activities like balancing our budget, an understanding of number and mathematics is involved.
It always saddens me when people say, ‘Oh I can’t do maths’, especially when those people are young people. I think a lot of the inability and fear was learned. I know it was for me. Perhaps that is why I am on a mission to make learning in maths enjoyable and meaningful. It doesn’t have to be fearfully abstract and complex if we build strong foundations in the early years.
There are already well over one hundred mathematics resources in the readilearn collection, and this week I have added three more. Two of the resources are interactive lessons ready to teach on the interactive whiteboard in the classroom or, for those still teaching online, via screen sharing software. The third is a printable resource. All support your teaching and are open-ended and adaptable to the needs of you and your learners.
Let’s Make Patterns is designed for teaching and reviewing repeating patterns on the interactive whiteboard. Patterns are an important part of mathematics. Learning about patterns with objects helps children understand the patterns upon which our decimal number system is based.
Continue reading: Developing understanding of number with three new resources – readilearn
Easter is coming in 2020 along with school holidays, school closures and lockdowns. While readilearn lessons and activities are designed with teachers of the first three years of school in mind, perhaps, in these challenging times, parents may also find them useful in supporting their children’s learning while they are out of school.
The collection now numbers over 400 resources and more than 70 of these are interactive lessons and stories. All resources can be accessed with a small annual subscription or purchased individually. Many of the resources are free.
While teachers would normally use the interactive lessons on the interactive whiteboard with the whole class or small group, parents access them on their home computers. Just as teachers would discuss the resources when using them with a class, so too, parents discuss them with their children as they work through them together. The most benefit for children comes from the discussion. They are not designed for children to use independently.
Lessons and activities with an Easter focus
Lessons and activities in the readilearn collection cover a range of topics and curriculum areas. However, the focus of this post is on those with an Easter theme and how they can be used to keep the children thinking and learning while having fun. (Note: All readilearn Easter-themed resources can be found here.)