Category Archives: curricula

When will we EVER learn?

Could it be that the apparent decline in educational standards in Literacy and Numeracy here in Australia is just a temporary aberration?

Could it that a few simple decisions — applied within just weeks — could bring about a genuine lift in student (and teacher) outcomes in these two vital curriculum areas?

And, could it be that significant improvement, not only in academic performance, but also in developing all-important positive attitudes to learning in primary schools, could come at NO additional financial cost? Just better stewardship of the funding that’s already there?

Could it be that today’s “Holy Educational Grail” — technology — is actually getting in the way of real, effective learning in real time?”

Well, the answers are “Yes, Yes, Yes and Yes”.


Students want it, teachers want it, Principals want it, parents want it, and the community would relish it!

So, let’s support curriculum innovation that makes the very BEST use of the skills, enthusiasm and commitment of today’s teachers, by providing them with curricula that actually allows time for the “Big C” — consolidation — to take place in the classroom.

Time to allow students to DIGEST what is being taught, to ponder it, to get a real feel for it — a “Vibe” — that will help them build on their present knowledge, and challenge them to strive to learn more! Or, as perhaps Telstra would say, to “Thrive On!”

Let’s encourage everyone to move from the known to the unknown, and by giving them the time and tools to help new learning “mature” in their minds.

Not difficult! Not expensive! Just SOUND pedagogical practice.


Who would have thought . . .?

Maths lessons tend to be quite predictable. Follow the curriculum set way back at the start of the school year. Relevant or not! Helpful or not. Boring, or not.

But then . . . along comes some real-life event that interests everyone — yes, EVERYONE!

And what do Maths lessons do? Well, nothing new, usually.


You see, each week we write and email out Maths resources DIRECTLY RELATED TO REAL-LIFE HAPPENINGS. And not just current affairs! Often they are about the latest movie releases for children, or the latest pop tunes, or the top-of-the-ratings TV shows, or sporting heroes, or the weather, or . . . whatever!

Things that interest EVERYONE. But with a worded Maths question attached. Fun. Stimulating. Positive Maths!

You’ll never know how helpful these resources could be in YOUR CLASSROOM unless you try them out — FREE — and share them with your teaching colleagues, and chat about them in the Staffroom.

All we can do is encourage you to take a look at these worded maths problems.

Tens of thousands of students Australia-wide are using them each and every school week.

Could they help YOU and YOUR CLASS?

Please consider

Which is right? “BOMDAS” or “BODMAS”

Well, who would have thought?

There I was, asking a simple Maths question to challenge the Facebook masses.

And challenge the masses I did, judging from the kazillions of responses.

“What’s the question?” you ask.

Here ’tis . . .


Is the answer 9, or is it 1?

There are strong feelings on both sides. Where do YOU stand on this important issue?

BUT, importantly, if there is some confusion in the teaching ranks (and others, too!) about such a seemingly straight-forward question as this, WHAT HOPE HAVE OUR STUDENTS OF GETTING IT RIGHT?

Now, I’m prepared to enter a discussion in favour of either answer. But the truth is, I’m quite certain that I KNOW the correct answer, whereas many others are — well — just a little less certain.

My main point, however, is that a curriculum that creates uncertainty about such a fundamental thing as BOMDAS or BODMAS (or BEDMAS, as some would have it!) is a curriculum that needs to be fixed. And NOT by the very maths geniuses that created the uncertainty. Rather, by those of us who want our kids to enjoy maths, to be fascinated by maths, to LOVE solving that equation, to actually ENJOY vulgar fractions.

Oh, by the way . . . what IS your answer to the question?????


No, Sir! It’s NOT the Teacher’s Fault!

Who to blame?

Declining standards in primary school achievement levels Maths, in English, in Spelling, in Grammar, in Punctuation, in . . .  well, you name it!

The research is in.

And, it seems, Australian students are struggling to achieve what students in other countries are achieving.


Well, maybe . . . just MAYBE . . . the “Educational Authorities” are asking far too much of teachers, while simultaneously ignoring the need of teachers for structured, sensible, PRACTICAL curricula that can actually BE implemented in classrooms around this wonderful nation.

Some of us are providing worthwhile materials that HELP students to develop the skills needed in these areas.

Others just TALK about it. And talk is cheap.

We need curriculum support materials that genuinely help teachers to help their students, without demanding time-consuming preparation.

We need Educational Leadership to actually DELIVER THE GOODS. Not theorise about it, leaving teachers to “close the gaps.”

Our Worksheets are a great example of stuff that actually WORKS in the classroom.

To the benefit of all — students, teachers and schools. Thousands are now using them. To great effect.

Give them a go!