Tag Archives: literacy

Book Week Activity with English classes

During the last two weeks we have run an activity with our Year 9 and 10 English classes where the students get together in pairs to read each of the books in either the Early Childhood and Picture Book of the Year categories.

Here are some of their responses to the books:

The book I liked best was Kissed By The Moon. I liked it because it had very interesting illustrations and the reflected the words on the page to a good standard. A nice read all ’round. A peaceful story with a happy ending. I like happy endings.

The book I liked best was King Pig. I liked it because it was about greediness and that will always be a huge problem.

The book I liked best was Granny Grommet and Me. I liked it because it had great illustrations and a fun storyline with descriptive words.

The book I liked best was The Swap. I liked it because it made sense and it wasn’t repetitive. The crocodiles were funny.

The book I liked best was Rules of Summer. I liked it because it had very nice and detailed illustrations to impart the story, and with enough text to explain the entire story.

The book I liked best was Banjo and Ruby Red. I liked it because it led me through a series of emotions and left me feeling warm and fuzzy inside.

The book I liked best was The Treasure Box. I liked it because it showed that no matter what you do or don’t have you can be happy with it, and love it and what it means to you.

The book I liked best was Silver Buttons. I liked it because the whole book is set within a time space of one minute, however you don’t realise this until the end, making the child’s first step seem insignificant.

The book I liked best was Parachute. I liked it because it demonstrated the change in grown yup. When he was young everything was exaggerated, until he grew older and then he towered over the elephant.

The book I liked best was Baby Bedtime. I liked it because it was really cute and it had good colours and storyline, The words were interesting and it had a lot of meaning in it.

The book I liked best was I’m a Dirty Dinosaur. I liked it because it flowed really well, it was fun to read and the illustrations were really unique.

The book I liked best was The Windy Farm.  I liked it because it is about hardships and forgiveness, and the book’s ending is enjoyable.



The students had three minutes to read each book, discuss it and then score it out of 10. Then, once six books had been read, the students had to pick their favourite title and write down why. We used an idea from the Ipswich Teacher-Librarian network Book Week activity book, and the booklets were designed by our Junior Teacher-Librarian, Mrs Ross.

The winner of the Early Childhood Category was Banjo and Ruby Red, with The Snap and Granny Grommet and Me as Honour books

The winner of the Picture Book Category was Rules of Summer, with The Windy Farm, King Pig, and The Treasure Box as Honour books.

This activity was heaps of fun for the students and teachers, and we recommend it to teachers to use with all age groups.


Learning to read is learning how to live – The Drum (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Getting your children to read does far more than improve their test results – it also teaches them invaluable life lessons about morality and empathy, writes Kevin Donnelly.

For parents, the good news is you don’t have to be university-educated, pay for after-school tutorials or be able to afford expensive school fees to give your child a winning edge when it comes to education.

Research investigating how parents can help their children succeed at school concludes that there is an easier, less expensive and more effective way.

It’s called reading,….”

Read on by clicking this link – Learning to read is learning how to live – The Drum (Australian Broadcasting Corporation).

Malala Yousafzai addressing the United Nations

It’s not every 16 year old who gets to spend their 16th birthday at the United Nations, but that is exactly what happened just a few days ago.

Addressing the United Nations, Malala beseeched the world to make education for ALL children a priority.  Listen to her impassioned speech which ends with the statement:

1 child, 1 teacher, 1 book and 1 pen can change the world.
Education is the only solution.  Education first.

I’m Not Stupid – National Year of Reading

National Simultaneous Storytime at the GFL

The sight of about 30 three year olds filing in the big entry doors of the Gregory Fish Library on our senior campus was a sight to behold.   At exactly 11.00am on May 25th these cute little ones joined thousands of other young children at hundreds of locations across Australia to listen  to a reading of Rod Clement’s “Feathers for Phoebe”.   The National Simultaneous Storytime, a fun and rewarding event which promotes reading and literacy for young people, is a much anticipated annual event on the school library calendar.  The novelty for children in our Early Learning Centre visiting our senior campus library was a very special outing.  Watching the faces of these little ones as they listened to the story being read by our Head of Library, Miffy Farquharson, was enough to melt your heart.  Equipped with the warmth of a good story in their hearts and a colorful bookmark in their hands, the children departed just a little bit richer than they arrived.

Strange and Unusual

This fortnight the Teacher-Librarians are exploring the theme of ‘Strange and Unusual’. We have been reading (out loud) texts such as Night School by Isobelle Carmody and Anne Spudvilis. Other texts explored include: The Life of a Teenage Body-Snatcher by Doug MacLeod, Doctor Who – Decide Your Destiny, various ‘graphic’ retellings of classics such as The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Hugo) and The War of the Worlds (Wells), Scarygirl by Nathan Jurevicius, and My Hiroshima by Junko Morimoto.

Curled up and reading

Each of the texts has been chosen to reflect an alternative or unusual way of writing, or an unusual subject matter. The students have been particularly interested in My Hiroshima, as it is such an emotive and difficult subject to depict in picture book format – traditionally thought of as a format for younger children.

Perhaps surprisingly, The Twilight Zone graphic novels have also been very popular reads during this time. Each story is complete, and is usually based on an episode of the 1950-60s TV show. Students have made comments such as, “This is weird!”, or “There’s no real ending.” This is part of the aim of introducing this style of writing – that some stories are open ended, or deal with ideas beyond current comprehension.