Student Blogs

We are super excited to announce that we have started our journey with Edublog’s Student blogs. Each student in the class has their very own blog to share work and the exciting events happening in our school year.

Edublogs has endless themes to choose from, and the students have enjoyed creating their blog with widgets and posts. We have teamed up with Mrs Pratt’s year 4/5 class in rural South Australia to create blogging buddies. They have completed one task and will continue further tasks as the year progresses.

One exciting aspect of Edublog Student blogs is that I can give students digital badges (created by Edublogs) when they show that they have a good understanding of digital citizenship skills. We are currently working on writing a quality comment, and the students are working towards receiving their first badge.


I want them to be able to:

1. Write a compliment about someone’s work

2. Add information – possibly something they have in common with the person, discussion about new learnings or add info they may know about the topic

3. Ask a question to promote further discussion

We have talked about leaving a positive mark online and the importance of being respectful at all times.

Our blogs are going to become a hub of activity so make sure you check back soon to see all the wonderful posts being published.

Collaborative Math Tasks

We are continuing our collaborative math journey. Today students were grouped into teams of four and assigned a role. As a team, they were required to solve a financial mathematics problem. The four roles were; Tables Guru, Sum Constructor, Solution Finder and Quiet Observer. I ran four rotations using these roles so that each participant was able to fulfil the job description.

Our students who were more confident completing the task became our Bartec workers and bankers. They individually had to solve the same problems, mark the groups work and give change.

After the session, we came back together to reflect on the task. Students noted that they were able to pinpoint where they made errors such as forgetting to carry and writing the sums out incorrectly. The hardest role they had was the quiet observer. One student noted that he could see an error, but he needed to leave his teammates find their mistake.

Screen Shot 2015-08-05 at 4.07.35 pm



The Importance of Learning to Type

Typing skills have become very relevant to our classroom this year. In previous years, student work was published in a variety of ways with technology included in some units. We have seen a big change this year with more unit assessment published via computers.

During our last assessment period I noticed students were experiencing some difficulty getting their work typed up in time. One task, in particular, took four hours to complete for a group of students. Knowing that Term 3 English units required students to type, edit and publish two pieces of assessment, I decided to add something new to our day.

After consulting with Craig Kemp, a renowned educator in Singapore, I have introduced 5SK to Typing Agent. We are currently on our trial at present, and the students are enjoying the modules. Our current focus is accuracy, and we will move on to wpm when students become more confident.

Enhancing our Math Lessons

One of my biggest goals after returning from EduTech 2015 is to provide more hands-on activities in the classroom. Well, today we did just that! 5SK were given the task of solving a real-life math problem in small groups. Not only that but they were also asked to present their answer via video to the class. Were they excited? YES! Were they nervous? YES!!

They broke into groups and brainstormed what they would need to know on the left side of their chart.







The next step was to decide on the best strategy to solve the problem. It was interesting to see their choices. Three out of the four groups chose Split Strategy. The final group went with the Lattice Method. They solved their problem together on their rough draft and then repeated the process for their video.

We came together at the end to watch the videos. By then the nerves had eased, and the students were eager to watch. 5SK’s videos were quite good for their first attempt. In our next filming activity, we can see where we can improve. (Not filming around bell time)

One positive aspect watching the videos is that we could see areas that needed a little tweaking like putting the measurement on the right-hand side and multiplication order. One group added thought bubbles and a second operation to check their answer which was a great idea. Overall it was a great experience that we will use more often.

Makerspaces in Schools

Stepping through the doors at EduTech 2015 was an exhilarating experience. Eight thousand attendees were gathering in one location to talk all things education is my equivalent of a shopping spree. There were dazzling resources from one end of South Bank Convention Centre to the other.

One area that caught my eye was the makerspace. It brought out my inner child. There were multiple tables laden with hands-on activities for each of us to complete. I saw teachers create circuit bracelets that glowed when fastened, pianos created out of simple home objects and synthesisers made from tiny magnetic circuits.

All I could think of is how much my students would love these within our school. Keep an eye out for some new additions soon. :)

Persuasive Writing – Minecraft

5SK are currently developing their persuasive writing skills. Our current unit requires them to write a feature article about bats at Larossa Bay. Over the last few weeks we have worked through some of Jen McVeity’s Seven Steps for Writing Success.

Brainstorming was first on our agenda as it is so important prior to writing. The students were given a range of topics from the Seven Steps Persuasive booklet. We worked on this skill for a whole week in groups, pairs and then individually.

Students were then shown how to map this information on the Seven Steps story graph in week 2. From there we worked on TEEL paragraphs, Sizzling Starts and Exciting endings.

5SK then created a persuasive together around getting Minecraft into schools.

Creating for the Future

Students are clustered around the Minecraft stations creating historical digital worlds. Ideas are flowing in quick succession back and forth between the teams. What are they designing? Their future!

Minecraft would be a great addition to every classroom in Queensland. The program promotes learning through hands-on creativity. Students can recreate historical events, make math videos for peers and design animated stories. To enhance students’ education, Minecraft must be included in the Queensland curriculum.

Working towards a common goal using Minecraft enhances students’ social skills. They learn to communicate, work within a team and interact with others positively. Minecraft challenges students to build their confidence around others when building upon classmates ideas. Access to Minecraft will encourage the development of social skills within the primary classroom.

Jobs of the future will require vast technology skills. Students will need experience and ongoing access to a wide variety of new technologies. Programs such as Minecraft will lay the foundation for growth and pave the way for continuing success.

Minecraft must be introduced into Queensland schools. It will develop creative students who can collaborate as a team on a common goal. Do something now to provide our students with future career opportunities!

Science – Unit 2

We are very excited to start our second Science unit. Our classroom library is now filled with many wonderful books about planets, astronauts and space discoveries.

5SK are required to research planets, astronauts, astronomers and NASA for their assessment piece. The data collected will then be collated in a PowerPoint in their student folder and published on their KidBlogs.

The ThingLink below will assist with Part A which requires the students to fill in a data table.

100 Word Challenge: Fairytale

Once upon a time there lived a tall beautiful princess named Diana. She was the most popular girl in town. The strong brave Prince David was riding his muscular horse through the busy town searching for Diana. The ugly evil wizard Hugo lived in a small stick shack in the deep dark deserted forest where Diana lived. When Diana finished shopping she walked home until she saw the old wooden shack and she had to have a look inside. The door yells as she opens it! There was magic everywhere as she fell helplessly to the dirty brown floor.


100 Word Challenge: The Sign

Ererererererererer. I rushed out of bed and opened my bedroom door. Next thing you know my annoying little brother was standing there with his tiny red bongo drums bashing it like it was his worst enemy. My sister danced out of her room yelling, “It is so exciting, we are going to the circus today!” Okay, I must admit that was really weird but anyway I start walking towards the kitchen. I pour some cornflakes in a bowl. I eat one cornflake and I notice something. There are all these signs saying ‘Lion on the run’. My family comes in and I hear a ROAR!


100 Word Challenge: Can’t Believe My Eyes

I was sitting under a big shady tree. My mind was bored so I got out my drum and saw a cornflake on it. I put it in my pocket and started playing. While I was playing a lion came out and danced. I was frozen and speechless, so shocked but it was exciting. The lion ran quickly at me so I ran too. My foot slipped and I grasped a branch. The lion stared at me and I realised that it wanted the cornflake. I threw it up and the lion ran away. “OH NO,” as my hurting slimy hand slipped. Will I survive?