Holiday Post

This week (and for the next few weeks) I’m enjoying a well-deserved (in my opinion) break in Europe. I’ve returned to my home town of Manchester in the UK and am spending time catching up with my family and taking nostalgic tours around all my old haunts. Whilst I’m in the UK the fabulous students from LA14 are in the excellent care of Mrs Vandebroek and continue to blog in the usual way.

Yesterday I had gruelling 18km walk around the hills and countryside of the Hope Valley (apparently the village where all “Hopes” originated). The scenery was incredible and the climb up and down the hills punishing, but the reward was the great photos you see below. I’m sure our amazing art teacher, Ms Svein will enjoy these (sorry there’s so many of them).















Blogging Task #4

This task is all about the year so far. We’ve accomplished so much this year, but what parts of it have stuck in your minds most? Write a post about how you think this year has gone. You may like to consider how you are progressing, maybe how you’ve found the work, perhaps which activity has been your favourite. What are your hopes for the rest of the year? With only 20 weeks of primary school life left after this term how would you like those weeks to go?


Microphones and technology have been a great asset to us in encouraging and exploring opportunities to participate in English activities. We’ve been able to create podcasts on a number of topics and demonstrate our ability to change our speech for different purposes. Some of our podcasts have been very formal and required an interview style format with clear turn-taking, whereas others have been very informal, although these ones also required controlled informality and an awareness that the purpose was still educational. The students have created introductory music and used Audacity to edit them. The podcasts are also a great opportunity to empower students who may struggle to write; they have the option to verbally demonstrate their comprehension of a topic.

Below are two examples of these podcasts. A group of students discussed what they think happens after we die. This may sound very serious, but never underestimate children. They have very valid opinions and are capable of holding very interesting discussions (as you’ll see). The topic came about following the death of a character in a series we are watching. The other podcast is one I did with a student to see how she could address the requirements of completing a persuasive writing text orally.


Cross Country

Last week the whole school (yes, the whole school) took part in our annual faction cross country competition. This year was probably our best ever, but that has a lot to do with our awesome Phys. Ed. teacher, Mr Jones, whose twice weekly running club has helped so many students prepare. The students from LA14 were incredibly successful, especially Riley Crane who won the boys’ race.

Riley (centre), the winner.

Riley (centre), the winner.

Jordan and Elly

Jordan and Elly

Special Visitors

Last week we were very lucky to have some special guests visit the school. On Friday a group of ten students were selected from our class (by our wonderful Art teacher Miss Svein) to take part in an art workshop with Aboriginal artist, Troy Bannell. Troy uses art to express and educate others about his culture and the Aboriginal heritage of Australia.

We also had a visit from the ex-Wildcats basketball player, Tom Jervis. Sadly Tom transferred to Brisbane this year following a great career at the Wildcats which included two premierships. Our awesome Phys. Ed. teacher, Mr Jones, invited him along to run a basketball clinic with the students and they had a fabulous time.

We’re very lucky to have such excellent specialists who are constantly looking to provide stimulating educational experiences for our students.



Jelly Buddies

Our fabulous little year ones have been very busy writing poems about jelly. Once they’d finished, their wonderful wobbly creativity deserved to be printed out and published in class. Unfortunately, our little buddies lacked the skills needed to type up their literary jelly gems so they asked if we could help. We jumped at the chance and spent a fabulous hour teaching the year ones how to type and format their work. Check out the photos below.



Future in Good Hands

“Kids these days!” So many times I’ve heard words like these (I even remember them being said about my own generation). Even the media like to jump on the bandwagon when they need a story with a bit of shock value to sell their papers or boost their ratings. However, being a teacher I get to see the infinite positives in our youth, the positives which rarely get into the headlines. I recently posted a blogging task asking the students to think about a change they’d like to see in the world and the responses were very enlightening. They showed me that the youth of today really does understand the important issues and are prepared to take a stand to make a difference. I think the future looks pretty bright (in LA14, at least). Below is just a small sample of the responses to this latest task.

Kiara, TaylahClaire, DeaconPhoebeHannahCumorah, Maddie,

A Great Weekend

I think one of the best ways to create an interesting blog is to vary the topics you write about. I’m always telling my students this and encouraging them to write about things they do at home and on the weekend, but I very rarely take my own advice. Well, I had such a great weekend that, for once, I thought I’d write a post about it.

Saturday was an awesome day which we spent in Fremantle, having dinner, shopping and waving my daughters off on a three day cruise. However, even better was to come on Sunday as Mr Bakreski (a fellow teacher) and I took a trip to Gingin to visit the British car show. Having grown up in England and having worked on cars for a few years this show was a fabulous, nostalgic treat. We had an awesome day and I took quite a few pictures of the high quality vehicles on show. See if you (or your parents) recognise any.

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Mother’s Day Surprise

Mother’s Day was a mad, hectic and stressful time for LA14 this year. I set the students the challenge of producing a very personalised gift for their mums, but the short time-frame (one and a half weeks) meant we would be cutting it extremely fine. The students created a wooden photo, a rectangle of wood that has their photo transferred onto it and varnished. The students did ALL the work: they accurately measured and sawed the wood; they sanded it and glued on the stand; they took a photo and stuck it onto the wood; they finally (and carefully) removed the paper and varnished their gift. The process had to be done in several stages and squeezed into our usual, busy timetable. Happily, we did it!







Blogging Task #3

This blogging task is all for a good cause. If you’re anything like me there’ll be a number of issues in the world that cause you to get a little frustrated. Amongst the many that concern me are: climate change, deforestation, animal extinction, equal rights, plastic pollution, whale hunting, renewable energy, puppy farms, child labour, poverty, slave labour, girls’ rights, freedom of speech… I could actually go on and on and on! These are, in my opinion, just a few of the most important issues of our time and are well worth fighting for. It’s a great thing to get behind a good cause, it gives people a sense of purpose and meaning in life, not to mention the satisfaction of knowing they’re trying to achieve some good in the world.

Do you have a cause that you’d like to be part of? Is there something happening in the world that makes you frustrated? Is there something you’d like saved? Is there something you’d like stopped? Use your blog to shout out for a good cause or a big issue.