Verbal and visual elements and imagery in literature

The night we Made the FlagDuring Grade 5’s unit on the Australian Gold Rush last year the book The Night we made the Flag by Carole Wilkinson allowed the students to explore and gather details of life in the gold fields. Working in small groups the  students gathered information from the book of both verbal and visual details, they extracted information about women, housing, food, clothing, entertainment, health, demographic right, crime, police, gold licences and immigration. The findings were organised onto a worksheet.
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Relationship between literary elements and verbal/visual details in picturebooks

A Literature Companion for Teachers by Lorraine McDonald released in 2013 by PETAA  has been one of the best teacher resource books providing practical  insights and ready to use ideas linked to the Australian The Red BridgeCurriculum English. Part 1 of Chapter 12 ‘Reading and viewing picture books’ provided a clear explanation and functional ideas that were easily incorporated into two lessons for Grade 3. The book The Red Bridge by Kylie Dunstan allowed for perfect exploration and fitted well into the Grade unit on China. Continue reading →

Exploring Characterisation

At the end of 2013, Grade 3 students were introduced to strategies to help gain an understanding of ‘how authors Charactersmake stories exciting, how writing is moving and absorbing and holds a readers’ interest’ (ACELT1605). In order to do this in a series of 3 to 4 lessons the focus was on ‘close looking’ at techniques in character development in a sample piece of writing and then for students to explore these techniques from a book of their choice. Continue reading →

Isabella’s Garden – alliteration and personification ready to explore

Isabella’s Garden by Glenda Millard and illustrated by Rebecca Cool was a superb read for Grade 4. A book that covers life cycles, gardens and seasons linked in well with the current study of plants.

Isabella's GardenAt the end of the story the students were prompted to look for examples of alliteration. They were then introduced to personification and examples were located promptly. To assist doing this with the whole class as a quick activity a sample page of Isabella’s Garden was taken with an iPad camera, the image was then imported into the Stage App which allowed the students to underline examples of alliteration and personification for the class to view on the IWB. Use of the technology allowed for extension and new learning in a tight time frame. Below is what one of the Grade 4 classes found! Continue reading →

Belonging – a good idea to start the year with Grade 6

Nobody Owns the MoonNobody Owns the Moon by Tohby Riddle is one of those books that can be read over and over, I have read this to many classes and there is always a new aspect that appears. An emotional story that provides discussion points on friendship and belonging as a base. The play on words and  visual literacy allow the reader to pause on each page and enjoy. Continue reading →

My Country – a classic start to Grade 5

Reading My Country by Dorothea Mackellar and  illustrated by Andrew McLean made an engaging start to the year for Grade 5. My Country

This classic poem showcased Australia’s landscape and environment. Rich descriptions of Australia’s past throughout the poem provided sound discussion points regarding the significance of the poem and connections to the Australian landscape today. Following the reading and discussion of My Country students selected one line to illustrate their visual interpretation onto a small postcard which was hung in the Library for display. Continue reading →

A book within a book – perfect for Grade 3!

Screen Shot 2014-02-06 at 8.03.25 PMWolves by Emily Gravett provided the most wonderful platform to kick off for 2014 with Grade  3. The book not only aided discussion about Libraries and borrowing, it opened interesting discussion regarding what was happening to Rabbit as he read the book ‘Wolves’ selected from the Library. Some students were convinced that Rabbit had become so involved in the story he did not look where he was going and by chance ended up walking up the tail of the wolf, across his body, ending up on top of the snout! After some additional questions and thinking the idea ‘it all happened in the Rabbit’s imagination’ was provided by a thoughtful student.

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