Subordinating conjunctions and vocabulary – Blue Banded Bees

I shared two resources in a previous post and I thought I should add a third to the sequence. My approach is to take a reading stimulus from a range of sources: newspapers, magazines, novel extracts, ABC articles, textbooks and on a range of topics. Here is some of our stimulus material: Slug Poo and…

Small group learning – Social Media and the Law

I’ve returned to school and one of the things I am doing is creating resources for the COVID ISLP program. I don’t have time to write about it now, but below you can find two samples of the work. As a general outline, each lesson the small group completes the ‘Do Now’ activity, the vocabulary…

Tactile sentence craft

This extends the previous post where I provided a simple activity for students to play around with sentence structure and craft. All of this stuff builds on the ideas I wrote about in The Art of the Sentence. This activity adds a layer of complexity and creativity through the range of phrases students could choose.…

Simple sentence craft task (Stage3/4)

I’ve been really busy and I know everyone else has too. I’ve quickly put together a simple resource to accompany some of the sentence craft stuff I’ve shared. I’ve made this activity into either a word document or a google slide. What I plan to do with this is to print out the slides and…

Energising passages

In this post I’ll give you a strategy that can help students understand that verbs power sentences and create motion picture images. Students often choose weak verbs like ‘went’, ‘looked’ or ‘moved’ whereas professional authors avoid these to keep action moving. Some students have trouble of thinking of verbs and the activity below is a…

Grammar in context #1

In this post I’ll show you a few ways to embed the basic subordinate clause into your teaching. This is one of the clauses assessed in Australia’s National Assessment Program Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN). This approach can be used with the various sentence structure concepts I outlined in The Art of the Sentence. This approach…

Boy Overboard

I had a request for a resource on Boy Overboard by Morris Gleitzman and so here it is! If you want to ignore the explanation behind the resource and how I’ve designed it for you to pull bits and pieces from, scroll down to the bottom and you can find where to download the resource.…

Teaching inference through writing and sentence structures

Everyone knows that inference is one of the weakest skills identified by NAPLAN. I’m not pretending that what I outline below is the only way to teach inference, but one tool for teaching this skill to struggling students. The way I have found success is through combining reading and writing skills. So, in this post…

Story Impressions – an excellent prereading activity

I unearthed this prereading strategy in a journal paper on evidence based practices. The strategy was shown to improve student reading comprehension in both Primary and Secondary students. The strategy is simple; you provide a list of words from the story/article in a vertical column and students make a prediction about the text. The screenshot…

The art of the sentence

I’m conscious that readers want to get to the point and not hear about my Damascus road conversion. So in this post I’ll: outline some basic ideas and provide you with explicit teaching slide decks to download.link you to Harry Noden’s Image Grammar where you can learn more about the brushtrokes mentioned below. Every Secondary…

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