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.

And The Tears Flowed!

Sadly, today was the last day of the year and the last day ever for our amazing year 7s. I must say, they held it together brilliantly throughout the day, signing each other’s shirts and, as we’ve come to expect from this group, running around the school to help move desks and chairs to different classes. However, as the final siren approached the cracks appeared and the tears flowed. This was the first group of year 1s in the school and they’ll be the final group of year 7s, so they had a special kind of bond between them. This was clearly evident as they made their final farewells to each other, the teachers and their school. Whilst some may stay together, others are going it alone at a variety of high schools, so for them the farewells were final.

As a teacher, we often receive the thanks of the students and the parents at the end of each year for the time we’ve spent with them. However, the thanks must come from us to them. We become teachers because we want to help children, to make a difference and to see our students grow both educationally and emotionally. This only works when we have the cooperation and commitment from students and parents and with this group we had both, in spades. This meant we could do our jobs properly and, in my own case, go even further with some topics than I ever thought I could. Consequently, the rewards I received from them, the immense feeling of satisfaction and pride was the embodiment of why I love my job. I only had to drag my ageing, aching bones into the class and receive their smiling “Good Morning” to feel refreshed and energised for the day ahead. Our job satisfaction is measured in smiles, growth, those amazing “Aahh” moments of discovery, the creativity and imagination that blows our minds and the knowledge that we have made a difference and have had the trust and friendship of incredible people. The rewards we get are a reflection of the partnerships and relationships grown over the year and the commitment and effort from everyone working together. These rewards are massive and are the reason we are teachers. So, for the incredible rewards I’ve received this year and the reaffirmation that teaching is the best job in the world I say a big “thank you” to the wonderful (ex) students of LA19. Have a great summer break and enjoy your new adventures in 2015.

What Can I Say..?

A couple of weeks ago our amazing Art teacher, Ms Sveinbjornson, asked me to put my homemade Tardis DVD cabinet in the school’s art exhibition. Whilst a little tentative I agreed, but what I didn’t expect was that it would win the People’s Choice award! I was very taken aback and not a little guilty, thinking I’d stolen the award from the students (as my wife still thinks), but also very humbled that the students had actually voted for it. To show my appreciation here’s a photo of it in my movie room with the certificate on top and a few very meaningful and cherished accessories on and around it.

Award Winner!

Award Winner!

Holiday Blogging

We may be on holiday, but that doesn’t seem to have stopped several students from maintaining their efforts on their blogs. I have to admit that Aarlyah, Abbey, Georgia, Aimee and Ritihia have put me to shame by posting way more than I have and they’re all well worth checking out. Also, in a “blast from the past”, one of my students from last year, Holly, has been putting in such an effort with her second year of blogging that she also deserves a bit of recognition. As for myself, I am stuck way up here in Kalbarri with limited wi-fi, so it’s a little tricky. However, here’s a photo of me kayaking and a one of my campsite and caravan which (sadly) has a couple of bags full of English and Maths books inside. Yes, poor me!



As part of our studies from the excellent My Place television series we’ve been looking at the Vietnam War, particularly the causes of the war and Australia’s involvement. The episode entitled Lily looks at the 1970s and features a character who is an asylum seeker from Vietnam. The programme has allowed us to look at different styles of government, such as communism and democracy, and how different perspectives and interpretations of situations can lead nations into conflict. We also had the opportunity to investigate the differences between asylum seekers and refugees and discovered how events after the war led to an increase in the Vietnamese population in Australia. This topic enabled us to look at Australia’s not so rosy past, in particular the White Australia Policy, and from this we developed our knowledge of the current offshore policies of recent governments.

Last year I was able to spend some time traveling in Vietnam and discovered an amazing country with fabulous, friendly people. The photos below show some of the military hardware left over from the war and myself descending into one of the tunnels used by troops from the then communist North Vietnam.


Going Underground

US Tank

US Tank

Monkey Mia Take 2

After trying (very unsuccessfully) to post a movie from my iPhone I finally had to go back to my computer and do it the hard way. I sent the movie from my phone to Dropbox, then uploaded it to the online file conversion site Zamzar, and finally downloaded the converted file from the link in my email. Anyway, I hope this works. I changed the format to mp4 so it should play on most computers. Just click the link below and it will take you to another page with the link on its own. Click again and wait for the movie to start. It’s only 26 seconds long but it’s quite a large file so it may take a few seconds. Be patient and keep your fingers crossed!

Monkey Mia MP4

Monkey Mia 2 Avi


Monkey Mia

We had a drive out to Monkey Mia today and it was very enjoyable.We set off at 5.00am, but straight away we hit trouble; we ran into fog so thick we could only just see the white lines and kangaroos were darting in front of the car. In the dark and the fog we could easily have hit one, but luckily we didn’t. Anyway, here’s a short video with the dolphins that came in for a free fishy feed.

Well, the video was supposed to be here, but as I’m trying to do this on my iPhone and iPad it gets a little complicated. I will try and figure it out, especially as I would like to work out how to be able to use these devices for blogging. It may be that it’s the wrong file format, but I can’t change that til I get my computer. Anyway, I will check it out. Fingers crossed!

On Holiday

This post is a personal one, and also a bit of a test for myself. Seeing as we’re off school for two weeks I’ve come up to Kalbarri for a bit of a break. However, that also means I don’t have my wireless or computer so I’m doing all my posts and comments from my iPhone.

I’d have to admit that I don’t find the Edublogs App very easy to use. In fact, having installed it on my iPhone and tried to use it I am extremely put off by the level of complexity. I’m not sure how the images on the examples on the app store are supposed to be relevant but, no matter how hard I try I simply cannot get it to link to my blog. I am logged in with passwords etc. but I just keep getting frozen screens and links to the website. Non of the navigation or tools that are shown on the instructions appear, even when I click on the icon shown in the same instructions. I just get a link to My Sites which then tells me I don’t have rights! VERY frustrating and disappointing.

Ah well, I am still going to try and post this with a photo, so fingers crossed. Kalbarri is great, as usual, even though there’s not much to do. I guess it’s perfect for relaxing and building my energy back up so I’m ready to face the students for another term! Here’s a photo of Kalbarri – I hope!

Well, the photo proved too difficult for the iPhone app to figure out. I will keep trying, just don’t hold your breath. From the frustrated and annoyed (can you tell?) teacher of LA19!


This one’s for the students. While I’m in Vietnam I’ll post photos on the Edmodo Vacations group for you to see. Pass to the other teachers if you wish or get Mrs Brayshaw to put them on the whiteboard.