Tag Archives: school

Your MATHS lesson “silver bullet”? Maybe not, but pretty close!

One way to build a POSITIVE vibe in your Maths lessons, and it only costs $4. Try it out! Literally THOUSANDS of primary students around Australia are benefiting each and every week using this tremendous resource.

Practical Maths Leadership materials in primary schools are hard to come by.

And INNOVATIVE, CREATIVE Maths materials are even harder to find.

BUT . . . they exist, they’re written freshly each week, and they’ll add a real, GENUINE SPARK to the way in which the children in your class think about Maths, right now and into the future.

Give them a go! Just $4 and you’ll IMMEDIATELY receive this week’s Maths Pack via email.

Visit http://www.EdShop.net.au/math-worksheet-for-teachers/

Just $4 to discover “Maths Gold”!

That’s http://www.EdShop.net.au/math-worksheet-for-teachers/



New Technology — What Parents and Teachers Should Be Buying

What’s a parent, or a professional person, to do in an age of ever-changing technology?

We have MP3 players, mobile phones, laptops, big tablets, small tablets and 2 in 1 computers. How can a parent decide wisely on the technology in which to invest?

Well, the good news is that parents don’t have to decide that alone.

Recent advice via the electronic media suggests that maybe, just maybe, it won’t be quite as difficult as it seems.

A major “silicone valley” manufacturer, and a major software developer, have together recently (December, 2014) suggested the following as guidelines:

1. For the early learners in our primary schools (and maybe even pre-schoolers!), the advice is that a tablet, or a 2 in 1 computer, could be the go. This allows for a large screen size in both cases, but the 2 in 1 offers the increased flexibility for a family of a laptop at no extra cost.

2. For the creative users — publishing, videoing, music, creative arts — the more expensive, but highly powerful ultrabook is the professional suggestion. In wide use in the advertising and publishing and media industries, the software available for these machines is second to none.

3. More technical (and in a sense more basic) users would be best served by a powerful laptop computer. those involved in software development, IT, business studies or science/mathematical areas of the curriculum would do well to follow this recommendation (especially as prices for laptops have come down amazingly in the past few years).

4. And for those academics, teachers, researchers, ambitious senior students and anyone else who hasn’t quite decided which form of technology to invest in for the next few years, the advice is to “go with the 2 in 1”. The flexibility of tablet and laptop combined into one unit has so much to offer the thinking person.

So, there it is. That’s the recommendation from the experts.

But, what would they know? Do you agree with them?

The new school year is just around the corner here in Australia, so school stationery and equipment purchases are imminent. Good luck with that!

Let’s know what you think of their recommendations. Helpful, misleading or just plain crap?

Teachers and an “Online Parable”

There’s something very special about ordering stuff online!

Something that’s not talked about.

Something that’s a given, but not really respected.

It’s a bit like the life of a teacher, really.

People expect so very, VERY much from we teachers.

Unrealistic expectations in many cases.

Not really discussed anywhere. Except by teachers themselves, in the staffroom, or at the pub.

But, let’s get back to the “parable”.

When we order something online, sure, we usually get a better price.

Or a better colour range, or the exact size we want.

What we don’t get is an IMMEDIATE delivery.

But, in a sense, that’s one of the most exciting and fascinating things about our online purchase.


We have to anticipate it’s arrival. It’s a bit like waiting for Christmas Day to open the presents.

Waiting with eager anticipation can be, and is, fun.

The arrival of the delivery truck is a source of great joy!

And so it is with teaching.

Not everything can be accomplished to our satisfaction immediately.

But we can work hard, safe in the knowledge and anticipation that the children we teach will benefit from the hard work we put in to them. Every school day.

All that lesson prep, all that energy we put into presenting our lessons in an attractive way, all those countless hours of correction, late at night at home.

All worthwhile!

We have to learn to wait. And anticipate.

Just like online purchasing!

Christmas for Teachers — What NOT to give, and What TO give!

Teachers don’t need a huge, long novel, for starters. Concentration levels of teachers at this time of year are shot!
And, among the list of stuff that teachers accept with a smile, but privately “lose” very quickly, are the following, according to our not-so-detailed research:
scented candles
edible things made by kids
hand-made jewellery constructed enthusiastically by children
garden gnomes
coffee mugs

Cruel, isn’t it? So, don’t feel bad as you mentally reject gift after gift, but always with a smile on your face.

BUT, to close, what’s the one TRUE gift for which a teacher longs?

The gift that keeps on giving?

The gift that somehow makes it all worthwhile?

Yes, it’s that hand-written card, usually written by a parent, expressing their genuine gratitude for all your efforts with their child.

No amount of money can buy that!

So, at this time of year, look at the cards you received.

And be willing to accept the compliments that have come your way.

You deserve them!

Rote Learning — The old way, or the NEW way? A Mentor, please!

These days in schools, it’s cool to be cool.

It’s GREAT to be up with the latest IT, the software that promises so much.


So many valuable educational dollars spent on so much fantastic-sounding technology.

So many valuable educational dollars spent on the promise of software that will deliver great outcomes.

So few teachers who are in a position to capitalise on all this “promise” that surrounds them.

So, what is a school administrator to do?

Look good? Appear progressive with government and with peers?

Or SLOW DOWN, and bring along the teachers in an orderly, sensible, encouraging manner?

How about, then we all slow down, take a well-earned, much-needed educational “deep breath”, so that some of the proven teaching and learning methods of the past aren’t “lost” in the “promise” of the new, state-of-the-art technologies and hardware that at the moment seem largely a diversion, rather than a valuable teaching tool.

The old ways, like rote learning. Getting number facts and functional vocab into the long term memory of students.

Like, “automatic response” development, such as the teachers of old used to learn their tables, their spelling, their — lots!

And, how about we encourage each and every teacher to find their own teaching mentor — someone whom they trust, respect, “worship” and can easily learn from as they seek to improve their own teaching performance.

Too much to ask?

Too much NOT to ask!

Best Teacher Christmas Prezzie Ever?

And WHAT does a Chalkie want for Christmas?

Loads of possibilities.

But, I mean REALLY want?

Well, to the typical teacher, it’s as simple as — relaxation.

No meetings, no yard duty, no reports to write, no lesson planning.

Don’t know how Santa can wrap this very special teacher gift up, but . . . he’ll find a way!

So, relax, and enjoy!

You’ve earned it!

Have a happy and holy Christmas.

Education today . . .It’s so frustrating !

Am I just a grumpy old man? Or what?

Is it just me, or do I suspect that today’s teachers are sort of “locked in” to the teaching methods and strategies of 2014, but are disregarding many of the tried and true teaching methods of the past?

Yes, I AM old!

Yes, I did teach for 30 years.

Yes, I did make use of rote learning, of sight vocab in reading, of phonics to support the sight vocab.

Yes, when a student couldn’t cope with a particular method or concept, I’d find a work-around.

Yes, I’m having SOME doubts that teachers of today are being encouraged to disregard those proven methods.

Replace them, maybe, with the latest piece of technology.

For what?

Children need to follow that basic teaching tennet — to move from the known to the unknown.

It’s basic. It’s common-sense. And it’s a real encouragement and motivator for the struggling student.

Yes, I’m grumpy about the number of students struggling unnecessarily academically.

Let’s ALL get behind them, and give them the encouragement and self-confidence they need to maximise the potential they have.

That’s my plea!

And if we do, then maybe I won’t be quite so grumpy.

Don’t you agree? What’s YOUR view?