The Book of Bees by Piotr Socha

I love bees and this book is a wonderful resource to teach adults and children about the history, science and importance of bees in our lives.

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The book of bees by Piotr Socha is a  book can be read word for word or can be enjoyed by just perusing through the pictures and short stories.

Bees are such an important part of human activity and I don’t think people really understand the importance of bees in our everyday lives.

Exposing children to these books allow for us to have conversations about important issues and how we can make small differences in our lives to ensure that creatures such as bees are cared for.

The Book of Bees by Piotr Socha outlines the history of human interaction with bees, the important role honey has played in our lives and the different types of bees and hives there are in the world.

The science behind hives is explored along with the make up of the colony.

The illustrations add detail and humour to the facts and the end papers are beautiful!

If you ever see this book – grab a copy and share it with a small person in your life, not only will they learn more about these tiny insects that many of us are scared of but they will also realise how life as we know it will not survive if we continue to use pesticides, deplete green spaces and introduce pests.

So how do you encourage your child to appreciate bees?

– Walk outside and look at flowers – are there any insects inside the flowers? Keep an insect diary.

– Look at the bee diagram and draw your own bees, differentiating between the queen, drone and workers.

– Open your cupboard and fridge and write down what wouldn’t be in the fridge if bees didn’t exist.

– Draw up a timeline of human bee interaction.

– Make your own bee hive or beneficial insect home and place it in your backyard, balcony or local park. Keep an eye on it for visiting bugs!

– Check where your honey is from – make sure it is locally made. Local means less pesticides.

Buy your own native bee hive – we have one and we love it. 

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Have a home reader? Read this:

We have just started bringing home ‘home readers’ and even as a teacher I have found it difficult to really understand the role these books play in my child’s education.

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I understand that it is great to expose children to books and texts they can possibly decode BUT I am starting to see it causing more worry in my child than joy.

We have been told to read the story first to our child – but I do not see the point as she can quickly memorise the words and then is she actually reading? Or just copying what I said?

These home readers are the only books we have access to for early reading and although there is are some great new readers out there, we do not have access to them.

If your child does not feel rewarded in an increased ability to read there can be feelings of anxiety developed towards reading.  Your child needs to feel confidence and enjoyment from the start. If you can, do these extra activities at home and tell your child it isn’t about the child who reads the most books but rather the child who can sound all the words out and know what it means. 

So what are we doing?

  • I ask my child to tell me the initial sound of each word. We break down the word into sound chunks and syllables before I tell her the whole word.

 

  • We talk about the letter name and the sound it makes (remember not all children have been exposed to all sounds in Term 1)

 

  • If there are any words which can rhyme easily I write them down and after we have finished the book we think about other words that rhyme and spell the same as the one in the story.

 

  •  Try to keep the book for two nights (if possible – I know my child is not keen to do this as she wants to read them all!). If you keep it for two nights you can try the sounds again.

 

  • Make up a new story with simple words in it. Make it repetitive but not as simple as the home reader. E.g. Is Bob in a mop? Is Bob in  pot? Is Bob in a hat? Is Bob in a kit? There is a company called Little Learners Love Literacy: http://littlelearnersloveliteracy.com.au/pipandtim-books#. That create books like this. You might be able to talk to your school about using these books?

 

  • Have fun with the home readers -even if it is only for ten minutes each night. Make the experience worth while. A child who can just parrot the home readers isn’t really getting the full benefit of what home readers are set out to be.

Millie Loves Ants by Jackie French and Sue deGennaro

Is there any where in the world that functions like an ant colony?

 

My friend Millie just loves ants.

Mille Loves Ants by Jackie French and Sue deGennaro is a sweet story about a little girl who is intrigued by a delightful echidna and those little insects who creep in and out of our houses on a daily basis.

This is my pre release copy:

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Millie is a spiky bush friend who adores ants and tracks them wherever they go – even if that means going under the bath, into the kitchen, in hollow trees and on the bed!

In Mille loves ants, We see the power of children and their desire to explore their world and expand their knowledge. We also see the ability of children to be able to sit and watch, living side by side with native animals and insects, knowing that without them and the things they do, we would not exist in the way we currently do.

Sue deGennaro’s illustrations have been drawn in soft pastel shades and add to the warm and fuzzy feeling the reader will feel whilst they are reading this story.

The underlying messages of this story are beautiful – a mother echidna caring for her puggle and the importance of ants to our living environment. Both messages are ones which all children need to read about in order to deepen their appreciation of the natural world.

So what can you do with this book? 

 

SUSTAINABILITY

  •  Go on an ant hunt! Where do they ants live around your house and outside area? Watch where they go, what they are carrying and where they live.
  •  Where do Echidna’s live in Australia?
  • Although not all breeds of Echidna’s are endangered, some are and although they are a protected species, their habitat is not. Find out about breeding programs and conservation for echidna’s.
  • How do ants make the soil healthy?
  • What are the different roles of ants – soldier ants, queen ants , drones and worker ants? Draw up your own ant colony with labels.
  • PROJECT: Are ants the smartest insects? Compare different insects and try to come up with the winner!
  • PROJECT: What are your local ants favourite food? Do different ants like different types of food?
  • Check this out: http://www.schoolofants.net.au

LITERACY

  • Rhyme plays a role in this story. Which words rhyme in this story? What else rhymes with ants?

NUMERACY

  • Calculate how many ants might be in your backyard by working out how may are in 10cm2 and multiply it!

 

Why do we need poetry?

This week, on Tuesday 21st March, the world celebrated World Poetry Day!

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Poetry reaffirms our common humanity by revealing to us that individuals, everywhere in the world, share the same questions and feelings. (UNESCO, 2017)

So why do we need poetry?

  1. Poetry teaches rhythm, rhyme, beat and space. Many poems rhyme or have some sort of beat to them. By reading poetry to each other we incidentally learn how to speak to a beat with feeling.
  2. Poems are written to be read out loud. When we read out loud we learn to pronounce words with more feeling. When we listen to poetry being read out loud we can feel the words and the feelings that the poet has put into the prose.
  3. Poetry can bring about many different feelings in a short amount of reading or listening time. Poems can make us laugh, cry, move about, remember, cringe and even feel scared!
  4. Poetry is another form of literature that can allow reluctant readers or slower readers to feel a sense of achievement and enjoyment.
  5. Poetry incites creativity in many different forms. Many children struggle in the creative realm but through reading poems we are able to escape into a creative landscape and be inspired to create our own.

We all have  access to so many wonderful poetry books  some are picture books, pure anthologies, disgusting poems, laugh out loud poems and the classics. See what you can find and share it with someone!

Sounds to help reading

Learning the alphabet and the sounds associated with each letter is the first place parents and teachers should be looking at when helping their child to learn how to read.

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My previous post on sight words was read by many which made me think how much importance parents do place on the skill of reading. As parents we play a very important role and can help your child learn, just as much as your child’s teacher does.

Most schools will be introducing at least 2 new letters per week and the different sounds associated with that letter but parents can play an important role in reinforcing those sounds through short, fun activities.

  • Link in with the sight words – Group your sight words according to initial sounds. This will word best with decodable sight words.

 

  • Ask your child to find the same letter on a page in a book. Point to it and parent can read the word out loud.

 

  • Parent points to a letter in a book and asks child to make the sound of that letter.

 

  • Ask your child to look around the room and find words that start with a sound. Discuss if the sound might start with a different letter.
  • Make different letters with letters, sticks, leaves etc . It is a great way to make sure they are forming the letter in the correct way.
  • Find an old book and allow your child to circle around a particular letter. Read each of those words out loud and discuss if the sound changes. It is important to let your child know if some letters make different sounds so they have those tools ready for future use.

Most of all, have fun with learning letters and sounds.

And keep reading for pleasure every day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m Australian too by Mem Fox and Ronojoy Ghosh

Australia Fair is ours to share, where broken hearts can mend. 

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 I’m Australian Too
I'm Australian Too

I’m Australian too by Mem Fox and Ronojoy Ghosh is a marvellous picture book which highlights the amazing multicultural country Australia is.


Throughout the story we hear about families from Ireland, Italy, China and Syria. We meet the ancestors of  the first people of Australia and also the refugees who are still waiting to be a part of Australia.

Mem Fox celebrates the diversity of Australia and the friendliness of the community through children’s eyes. Rhyme is used along with the thought provoking repetitive question:

How about you? 

Ronojoy Ghosh’s illustrations tell us more about each child, how they live and the different dynamics of the family unit.

As we read this story as a class the children were bubbling with excitement about the fact that they had a story to tell about where their parents came from. As I read it to my own two children we were able to talk about the different people who live here and perhaps who had a story similiar to ours.

We all have a story to tell and all stories should be told. By reading this book to your own child or a whole group of children, all voices can be heard and appreciated!

Links for your child, your students and you. 

Families – Find or draw a family picture and underneath write about where you all come from. Children always love to know where their parents and grandparents came from and perhaps even before that! Create your own rhyming paragraph just like in the story.

Geography – Using a world map, find out where the children are from in this story. How far have they or their parents travelled? Why did they all move here?
Thinking – Who is an Australian? What makes you belong to a country? Is there a checklist? Is there a feeling you must have? Explore what makes us belong to a country – how do we feel we belong and how do others decide if we belong? How does this feeling of who belongs create problems in the world
Punctuation – what sort of word is I’m? Look for other contractions within the story and discuss why we use them and what they ‘stretch’ out to become.

What is a question mark? How many are used within this story? Create your own questions about this book to share with each other. Make your own question marks out of different materials (such as a long piece of grass!)  IMG_4637

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Lucy’s Book by Natalie Jane Prior and Cheryl Orsini

Libraries are full of adventurers, scouting out the prized treasure and seeking new pathways to undiscovered lands and long lost times times – don’t you think?


I’ve always loved libraries – the quiet space, the smell of the books and the opportunity to read and discover many new things.

I can still remember my primary school library and the local library so they must have been pretty special places.

Lucy’s Book by Natalie Jane Prior and Cheryl Orsini is a wonderful adventure about borrowing books, sharing stories and running away with imagination.

Lucy loves reading and has finally found the perfect book. She reads it over and over and shares it with anyone who has the time. When the book is returned we meet many new readers who devour the book just as much as Lucy has until one day when her book is no longer around.

Lucy’s Book highlights the love of literature that many young children have and through finding the right type of books for each other we can deepen a love of reading.

Literacy

  • Why did Lucy love this book so much? Why did her friends love it so much? Explore the text and illustrations to find more answers.
  • Why did the librarian get read of Lucy’s favourite book?
  • What might have happened to Lucy if she did not find her book?
  • How might the book feel about the adventures it has?

CREATE

– What is your favorite book? Draw or write about the book you love the best.

EXTEND ONE

– Re write the story from the Book’s perspective. How did the book feel as it was read by different children and taken to different places?

EXTEND TWO

  • How can book’s be kept in circulation for longer? Design a way in which books can be physically borrowed without being harmed. Or consider how books can remain in circulation (and not be forgotten on the bottom shelf) .

International Read to me day

This Sunday the 19th of March is International Read to me day.

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Why read?

images-2 We need to read to ignite curiosity.

images-2We need to read so we can achieve our hopes and dreams.

images-2Reading blossoms ideas and imagination.

images-2Being read to helps others to understand the concepts of letters and sounds and how they link together.

images-2Being read to helps us to become better talkers and better listeners.

images-2Being read to helps us to sit still, be patient and take some time out.

images-2We need to read to be employed in most sectors.

images-2Those who are read to more often are more likely to understand the concept of reading earlier.

images-2Learning to love books comes from a young age. Parents need to install a love of a variety of books so there is less chance of becoming a reluctant reader. 

What should I read to my child?

imagesThere are so many wonderful books out there – check out my blog and see if you can access any.

images Find out what your child loves and find books that link in with their interests.

 

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/InternationalReadToMeDay

 

 

Reading snacks: Chocolate and popcorn? Who knew?

 

We all read reading snacks and if the snacks are healthy then we can eat more and read for longer…right?

Here is a wonderful recipe that is homemade, nut free and mostly Australian grown. They are also packaging free which is not only great for the environment but great for you as it means one less trip to the bin!

1 1/2 cups of cooked popcorn.

1 cup of coconut – desiccated works better but shredded is fine.

1 cup of melted coconut oil.

1/4 cup of cacao powder.

1 cup of sultanas

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/2 cup of pepitas.

Method.

  1. Whizz up the sultanas – they are tricky to whiz so at least make them as mushy as possible!
  2. Whizz up the sunflower seeds and pepitas.
  3. Mix all of the dry ingredients together then add the coconut oil.
  4. Set in the fridge for at least 4 hours before eating.

 (excuse my poor food photography!)

Florette by Anna Walker

Have you ever felt like the world you live in lacks green? Or perhaps you can’t remember the last time you saw a flower bloom or a butterfly flap past.

Florette by Anna Walker is just the book to read to inspire you to turn your world from grey, brown man made landscapes into luscious green spaces that encourage laughter and love.

Mae’s family moved to a new home, away from friends and her garden. Mae misses the apples trees, daffodils and leafy cubbies. She misses the wavy grass, daisies and space for a swing.

Until one day she discovers a Florette and  a small stalk of plant. Mae doesn’t know where the stalk will take her but she has a new spring in her step, hope in her heart and inspiration in her mind.

Anna Walker’s illustrations bring this story to life as we watch Mae transform from the dull grey landscape into the living green space she creates.

Florette is a beautiful story for those who might  live in a world of grey, showing that with a little inspiration we can all have our own green patch.

So what can you do?

At Home

  1. Grow your own seeds: Grab an old egg carton and some seeds (use apple seeds, tomatoe seeds or store bought seeds). Place some tissue in the carton and then place a seed on the tissue. Cover with another layer of tissue and add water.
  2. Where are the local green spaces in your area? Find them – can you walk to them?
  3. What is the purpose of a Florette? Investigate any local Florette’s in your area.
  4. Grow a new plant from the graft of another plant. Investigate which plants can do this – you will be surprised!

In the Classroom

  1. Inferencing:

START

– Focus on Mae’s point of view – how is she feeling? How can we learn what she is feeling? How do we know this. Discuss if these inferences are justified. Then move onto her parents point of view. (Page can be split into two)

– How do they both feel about their new home? New view? New lifestyle? Find images and words in the story to help justify this.

CREATE

– How would you feel in this landscape: What would you do? Draw your viewpoint.

Extend 1 :

–  Compare the different points of view. How and why are they different? Use a Venn diagram to compare differences and justify these differences through quotes. Draw the differences of what they might see out the window.

Extend 2:

–  Create an image to recreate from both Mae’s and the mothers point of view. How might they see the garden differently? The new house? Are each of their view’s fair on each other? Could one viewpoint overtake the others? What would it mean if one viewpoint was to disappear?

Numeracy

Plan a garden of your own in a space in your neighbourhood or backyard!

Those things called sight words…

Perhaps you have been given a long list of sight words by your child’s teacher with simple instructions as to help your child to learn them.


Firstly, don’t try to learn lots of words at the same time. Try to break the list down into 3-4 words a week. This way the words can be focussed on and learnt properly.

Secondly – give meaning to the words. There is no point just learning a word if your child cannot comprehend the word. Comprehension is key when learning to read. Give your child a sentence with the sight word within that sentence. Help your child to make there own sentence with this word too. Read books that have the weekly sight words in them.

Thirdly – encourage sounding out. Your child isn’t going to sound out the word forever so by helping them to understand the sounds that are in that word you are giving them skills to read more words. Some ‘sight’ words do have different sounds but by allowing your child to attempt sounding out you can then teach them how some letters have a variety of sounds.

Fourth – Don’t rush learning sight words. You need your child to understand what they are reading. You need your child to understand how they are decoding. There is no point just learning a word as this will not help them to be able to read in the future.

Fifth – Find the whole sight word list and reorganise how you introduce them to your child. So you can: 

  • Rearrange the words into similar sounds (but, by, big etc.)
  • Words that rhyme (be/me/he/she/we)
  • Group words that are the same base word but with different suffixes (play, played, plays) If one of these words does not appear on the list there is no harm alerting your child to it.

If you have more time, check out some more ideas on this fantastic resource: http://www.spelfabet.com.au/2015/08/reorganising-high-frequency-word-lists/ . It breaks down the sight word list into seven stages of learning words and also different ways you can group the new words.

Follow this blog for some more updates on how to make sure sight words make meaning to your child!

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I’m sure many new kindergarten children are very eager to learn to read but what if that eagerness fades with sight words?

Play snap. Talk about the word when a pair matches up. 

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Mix up the sounds in the words and put the words together. Do this for words that are decodable. (easily broken down into phonemes) 

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Find the words in a book! This makes links to what the word means in context. Read the sentence the words is in. 

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Find other words that rhyme with that word and use the same spelling.

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Play sight word soccer for those children that can’t sit still! 

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Road Trip by Danny Parker and Nathaniel Eckstrom

‘How long is an hour, Dad? Could you please say? I feel like an hour might take us all day!”

Road Trip by Danny Parker and Nathaniel Eckstrom is a journey in a story viewed through the eyes of a child.

Father and Son embark on a long journey to a holiday destination – perhaps lower than the son would wish. Various landscapes are driven through, pit stops are made and games are played but the journey drags on – everyone has been on those road trips – they feel like they never end!

This story tries to teach the reader that although an hour may seem forever when you are waiting for something, it really is a short amount of time. And when you are spending that time with someone you love, perhaps it isn’t the worst thing!

Nathaniel Eckstrom’s illustrations allow us to see the journey through both the father and son’s eyes – the amazement of the countryside and the boredom of the waiting!

Road trip is a great story to read when learning about patience, empathy and the concept of time. Perhaps this should be read just before you embark on another road trip these holidays!

So what can you do with this book? 

Literacy

Punctuation marks – Look for speech marks, question marks and exclamation marks. How are these used in the story and how does it change the way we read out loud?

Rhyme – explore the words that rhyme in this story. Create word banks of rhyming words. Compare the spelling of these words – do words have to spell the same to rhyme?

Parents

Talk about how long an hour is.

Plan some games for the car trip, checklists for your children of things to look for so they feel more in control about what is happening on the trip!

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Road Trip

Soon by Timothy Knapman 

Soon by Timothy Knapman and Patrick Benson is a beautiful story that highlights the importance of parenting and how we can build our children’s trust and confidence if we lead by example, care for them and show them what confidence is. ⠀


Raju the elephant and his mummy go on an adventure through rivers, forests and mountains but Raju always wants to know when he is going home. ⠀

“When can we go home again?” 

“Soon”

It is only when he returns home that he can reflect and see how important that journey was and how much fun he had. His mother not only looked after him when there were dangers but also showed him the world around him so that he may want to be a part of it himself. ⠀

Soon warms your heart with the mother’s love for her son and her want to show him the world. ⠀

The story is easy to read and easy to listen to. Your child can follow the repetitive nature of the questioning by Raju and the approach the mother takes with each difficulty they come across.

How does this link to parenting? 

We can’t wrap our children in paper bags so

  • allow them to see the world
  • protect them from dangers but let them know what is out there so they become caring global citizens.
  • read to your children so they become aware of global issues in a nicer way as opposed to finding out on the news.
  • inspire them
  • lead by example. Do what you want the world to be. Use less plastic, respect animals and love the outdoors. We need more people in this world who care about the future for everyone – not just the now.

Sustainability and conservation 

  • Elephants need our protecting due to deforestation and hunting. Check where your products come from to ensure they do not support this!
  • Elephants have been used by humans for many different activities. Create a timeline to show the relationship -both negative and positive – between humans and elephants.
  • Do conservation groups really help elephants? Investigate different conservation groups and how they use their money.

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Soon

Snail and turtle rainy day by Stephen Michael King

What is friendship? Do we all have a different view of what it is?

What is patience? Can patience be to someone what impatience is to another?

Snail and Turtle rainy day  by Stephen Michael King is a heart-warmimg story of friendship and patience.

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My children and I loved reading this story. Not only does it explore friendship but also about patience and giving people time to feel comfortable when things are worrying them. Rainy days or sad moments in life might get you down but remember there is always a pair of gumboots, raincoats, hugs, friends and a warm cup of tea for after!

Stephen Michael King’s books are always vibrantly illustrated with small details and patterns  to search for while you are reading.

Knowing how to care for people is an important skill for everybody to learn and one which helps to make the world a better place.  This book really highlights the importance of care and patience.

We live in a world where we often expect people to just get on with it, not caring about their need to take things slowly during tough times.

As a society we need to slow down and take note of those around us and by instilling this in our children from a  young age by the way we talk to them we are skilling our world to be a better place.

So have a chat with your children about feelings, patience and care.

Of course sustainability and environment are a ket focus for me in this blog but without care from others, sense of community and a good sense of self all of these things may be pointless.

Here are some great links to sites that can help you help your children.

https://www.kidsmatter.edu.au

https://www.ruok.org.au/365-day-resources

 

Hello to you, moon by Sally Morgan, Sonny Day and Biddy Maroney

Are there places in the world where the moon is not visible?

Some people might say nocturnal animals can be a hindrance – how?

The light fades, the moon rises and the animals come out and here we have Hello to you, moon by Sally Morgan, Sonny Day and Biddy Maroney.

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With soft undertones,this counting book explores the night time antics of ten different nocturnal animals as they jump, fly, race and sing under the full moon light.

The pencil illustrations show the glow of different landscapes as the sun sets and moon rises which lead to many questions about why the sky turns different colours.

Hello to you, moon allows readers to explore the whereabouts of different animals around the world as they come out to play through rhyme, repetition, verbs of movement and counting.

So what can you do at home?

SUSTAINABILITY

  • Where are each of these animals from?
  • What sort of habitat do they need to survive and thrive?
  • Could all of these animals live naturally in the same place? Explore this idea.
  • How does the moon play a vital role for nocturnal animals?
  • Do you think humans have an effect on the moon and therefore the lives of these nocturnal animals?
  • At times the moon cannot be seen due to pollution – how does this effect Nocturnal animals?

LITERACY

  • Before you read each page – guess what each animal is and what it is doing. Allow your child to make up the sentences once they have a grasp of the patterns of each page.
  • Look at the different verbs being used for each animal. Can you think of some more verbs to replace or enhance? Understanding the different types of verbs that can be used is vital to developing not only your child’s writing skills but their vocabulary.

NUMERACY

  •  Count the animals before you read the words. Being able to point and count is a great indication that your child has one to one correspondence with numbers and objects.

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 Hello to You, Moon

Reluctant readers

Do you have a reluctant reader at home?

Here are some tips that might help your child:

  • Visit the library together, whether it be the local public library or of an afternoon at school. By visiting the library together you can find out your  child’s interests and then find suitable books. Remember these don’t have to be novels or fiction, it could be non-fiction too – any reading is great!
  • Become storytellers – tell stories over dinner, in the car or before bedtime. By learning the art of storytelling you can start to engage more in other people’s stories on paper.
  • Read manuals, technology focussed novels and websites – some readers want more hands on reading material.
  • Read a book that has become a movie – your child will feel comfortable with the story line therefore find reading it easier.
  • Try Graphic novels! These are books written in comic strip form with thought and speech bubbles throughout. They engage the reader in a different way and allow them to see more of what is happening. There are many graphic novels for both older and younger readers.
  • Play board games, read a map, write letters to family and ask them to send a letter in return – all of these activities will encourage reading in a non-book environment.
  • Talk to your librarian! Librarian’s know the best types of books in their collection and can take the time to take your child through the different books on offer.

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Spark by Adam Wallace

Great teaching ideas in here!

Educate.Empower.

Spark by Adam Wallace is a captivating tale of a spark building into a consuming fire. It has been brilliantly illustrated by Andrew Plant, making the reader feel that they are moving with the fire on it’s destructive journey.
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Buy Spark Spark

Throughout the story, vibrant adjectives and verbs leap out of the page along with personification at every turn – it really feels like the spark is alive

The wind was meant to be my friend but it just laughed and dragged me on.

As I read through the story I felt a relationship grow between myself and the spark  – I wanted to follow it and find out what it became and where it went . As it built up into a raging fire, it expresses how it feels and how things around it feel – giving life to everything it touches.

The story moves at a fast pace…

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Just the way we are by Jessica Shirvington and Claire Robertson

We might not look like your family, but we’re my family – small and perfect….JUST THE WAY WE ARE.

Just the way we are by Jessica Shirvington and Claire Robertson is an uplifting story about all of the different types of homes and families that we all come from.

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Reading this story with your child will help them to know that families come in all different shapes and sizes and because of that we are all shaped in different ways in how we look, feel and act.

Happiness abounds throughout the text as we explore the different ways families can exist and how each child can be happy no matter who their parent or parents are.

The illustrations represent the different people who make up our community and the importance of all of these differences

Claire Robertson’s illustration are filled with happiness that shows that although we are different, we can all be happy. This book really links in nicely with the current SBS theme of racism and the hidden discriminatory undertones many of us have without knowing.

This story is stirring and vibrant, allowing us to look inside of the homes of the many different families


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What can you do at home?

  • Talk about who is in your family. Ring up an older family member and ask them about their family who may have passed away. From this your can create a family tree.
  • Are any of the families in this story like yours?
  • Compare and contrast the different families using a Venn diagram.
  • Print out some family photos and make an arrangement with them that represents your family and what you love about them. It could be in the shape of a tree, a slide, a rollercoaster, a river…..
  • Why is the sentence “Just the way we are” repeated?.  Play around with the sentence by talking about your family and why you think it is perfect.

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Just the Way We are

The Three Little Monkey’s by Quentin Blake Emma Chichester Clarke

“But that is the sort of thing you have to expect if you have three little monkeys.”

Some people have pet dogs, others pet cats but Hilda Snibbs has three monkeys!  Three Little Monkeys by Quentin Blake and Emma Chichester Clarke is a heartwarming tale for anyone who has loved there own little monkeys!

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The collaboration between  Quentin Blake and Emma Chichester Clarke creates a colourful, humourous and timeless picture book which will make you laugh, cry and possibly feel a little anxious!

The Three Little Monkey’s teaches us about patience, love and the things that we do for those we care about.  It also teaches us to perhaps look at situations from different perspectives before we make a judgement.

Collage and pencil form the eye catching illustrations and give more meaning to those big round monkey eyes, despairing Hilda and many marvellous monkey antics!

This is a wonderful read for children of any ages – and especially meaningful to parents through those trying times!

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So how can you use this book at home? 

Look at Speech Marks – If the monkey’s could talk – what would they say? Create your own sentences using speech marks.

Download these speechmarks to use when writing sentences OR use them when talking and listening – just put up one when you are starting

Visual literacy – look at the different facial expressions of Hilda Snibb’s throughout the story. How do we know what she is feeling without reading the story? Link emotions to facial expressions. Being able to understand how people are feeling through their facial expressions is a very important tool for everyone. This is a fun way to understand feelings.

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Three Little Monkeys

The hairy nosed Wombats find a new home by Jackie French.

Did you realise that the health of the land depends on wombat burrows?

How many different species might burrow in a wombat burrow?

Would you trust a wombat dentist?

Square poos…..hmmmm

 

The Hairy -Nosed Wombats find a new home by Jackie French and illustrated by Sue deGennaro is a gorgeous story based on one of the world’s most endangered species that is now restricted to only two sites in Queensland.  Through hard work by scientists and conservationists the population has risen to 200 but still so much more work needs to be done.

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The story of The Hairy-Nosed Wombats find a new home tells us about 176 wombats who were situated in just one place in the whole world and the need to find other locations in case that one place caught fire or flooded.

Sue deGennaro’s illustrations bring a light hearted touch to the story of some of the Wombats being moved to start a new home – first the five big brave boys and then the girls cycling over to start a new life with good green grass and deep cosy burrows.

The Northern Hairy nosed wombat is more endangered than the Panda but there is a good chance that a third home will be found and that the population will keep rising.

 

So what else can you do?

SUSTAINABILITY

  •  Do some of your own research on the different breeds of Wombats that there are in Australia.
  • Why are Wombat homes being destroyed?
  • How do wombat’s keep the soil and water of the land they live in in great condition? Investigate wombat burrows and design your own underground home.
  • Using a map, find out where the Hairy-Nosed Wombats live and then research into other locations of different wombats.

LITERACY

  • Questions – Within this story there are a few questions asked. Find those questions and the question marks. Discuss what questions are and why we ask them.
  • Make your own question mark about of natural material, take a photo or glue it onto paper and every day ask a new question about anything at all about Australian animals! Record these questions and find some time to answer them.
  • What is a rhetorical question – these are the types of questions asked in this story. Why did the author choose to write these?

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 The Hairy-Nosed Wombats Find a New Home