Wednesday, 2 April 2014

THE well-being of Australian teachers & school leaders.

PROJECT TITLE: “Workplace effort and work/life conflict as factors in the well-being of Australian teachers and school leaders.” REQUEST:

I recognise that as a professional educator you may receive many requests for participation in research but trust that this project may be of particular interest to many school teachers and school leaders.
I am seeking your assistance in two ways:
1. Taking up the invitation to participate by completing the online questionnaire;
2. Passing on the invitation, through social software (e.g. LinkedIn or Facebook) or via email, to any colleagues who are school teachers or school leaders. 

I am seeking participants from Primary and Secondary school leaders and teachers, full-time, part-time and casual teachers, in all sectors. I am also seeking participants from all Australian States and Territories. 

This project invites teachers and school leaders to report on a range of workplace factors as well as the connection between work life and life outside work. With the exception of some Government commissioned workforce data collection, most previous research with Australian teachers and school leaders focuses on one group or the other and has generally not sought participants from all school sectors across Australia. This research is also being undertaken at a time when school teachers and school leaders are expected to play a key role in the delivery of the Australian Government’s reform agenda for education.

In passing on this invitation to others can you please include the preceding information as well as the following statements:
"You have received this invitation through email or social software networks either directly from the researcher or from a teacher or school leader colleague. Your name or personal details have not nor will not be recorded in connection with the collection of data. For ease of use and anonymity, participants are invited to complete an online questionnaire that should take approximately 12 to 15 minutes to complete. The questionnaire can be accessed at the following website:
For further details regarding the conduct of the study, please refer to the Information Sheet on the SurveyGizmo site. The study is being conducted by Geoffrey Bowser and will contribute to the Masters degree project in Master of Psychology (Clinical Psychology) at James Cook University.

If you have any questions about the study, please contact – Geoffrey Bowser or Dr Connar McShane.

Principal Investigator:
Geoffrey Bowser
School of Arts and Social Sciences
James Cook University
Phone: 4781 6879

Name: Dr Connar McShane
School of Arts and Social Sciences
James Cook University
Phone: 4781 6879

If you have any concerns regarding the ethical conduct of the study, please contact:
Human Ethics, Research Office
James Cook University, Townsville, Qld, 4811
Phone: (07) 4781 5011 (".

Thank you for considering participation and if possible please invite teacher or school leader colleagues to participate.

Geoff Bowser

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

WORLD Autism Awareness Day 2 April 2014 Thank you for sharing our “autism life”

What is autism?

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a lifelong developmental disability that affects, among other things, the way an individual relates to his or her environment and their interaction with other people.

The main areas of difficulty are in social communication, social interaction and restricted or repetitive behaviours and interests.

Help spread the awareness!! 

The factors which are likely to contribute to a successful school placement for a child with ASD are:
  • Individualised support
  • Environmental and curricular modifications
  • A structured learning environment
  • Systematic Instruction
  • A functional approach to problem behaviours   

Website resources to support AUTISM

Terrific book resources to support AUTISM

I am sharing this post from:

April is National Autism Awareness Month. April 2nd marksWorld Autism Awareness Day. Light it up blue tomorrow for World Autism Day. Today’s blog post is in honor of these celebrations.
First doctor’s visit. First haircut. First wave. First “Momma.” Autism is measured by these missed developmental milestones, and I have long since misplaced those typically developing checklists and corresponding stickers for my son’s baby book. His first doctor’s visit was for colic and every appointment that followed had its own nightmarish retelling. His first haircut had a similar story: fearful screams as if the barber would slice off a leg rather than a soft shaft of hair. We had no diagnosis, only a sinking feeling that something was wrong. He was a year old. He wanted no part of his birthday party or the birthday cake or the presents or the noise or the company. He got a “first birthday” sticker in his book, but not the stickers that would follow: first wave hello, say bye-bye. He did not say “momma” or “dada” or “milk” or “water” or “bed” or “hi” or “I love you.” We were left with an empty book and too many sticky reminders of those unreached milestones.
This was the autism life as we knew it — managing the daily challenges, triumphs, the revolving door of speech and occupational therapists in and out of our home, the unimaginable patience we drummed up each day, the enthusiasm for small requests, the attempts at eye contact and sounds that resembled words. Autism didn’t just isolate my son from the world; it isolated and insulated all of our worlds. There were no family vacations and too often our best laid plans were force abandoned by meltdowns or overwhelming anxiety.
That’s until I met you: the teacher in his first self-contained special-education classroom. My son was my first exposure to autism, but you were experienced with students on the spectrum. As I tried to explain the nuances of his anxieties, you reassured me and said: I will keep him safe. I cried knowing he would be afraid and confused, and you replied: He will have fun and learn how to be more independent. And each time, you were right. That’s until you kicked him out. You argued that the self-contained classroom was no longer his least restrictive environment, so you helped me find a hybrid, inclusive (reverse mainstream) preschool classroom where he would have typically-developing peers who could help with his speech and social interactions.
So then I met you: the dual-endorsed elementary and special-education teacher who invited my son to the classroom on a quiet evening after a long day of teaching other students. You sat on the floor with him while he looked at trucks and trains. You didn’t ask him any questions. You just sat quietly while he explored, and you joined him. He grabbed a car so you grabbed a car. He put down a block. You put one on top. Then you pulled out a basket and started cleaning up, and he followed in unison without either of you saying a word. Weeks later, you asked your bus driver friend to park outside your classroom during the middle of the school day. I told you he was scared of the big bus, despite his love for anything with wheels. You said: Let me try and led all the students outside, rolled pennies onto the floor, and created a scavenger hunt. All of a sudden, my son was climbing onto a bus looking for pennies — just like the rest of his new friends. You emailed me nearly every day of the entire school year to tell me about his meltdowns, his accomplishments, his response to the fire drill, the student assembly, and you brainstormed with me how we might get him potty trained before kindergarten. You graduated him with honors.
Now onto the big school with the big bus and the big kids. And there you were again: the teacher. This time an inclusive, general-education kindergarten teacher with a huge smile and a high voice and bright running shoes. You taught him to love school, to read, to make friends. You coached him into taking turns on the tricycle. You made him star of the week and came to his first ever friend birthday party because he invited you. You hugged him every day (and still do when he sees you in the hall).
Now we get to track educational milestones — and they’re sticky, too, with glue and finger paint and your silly smiley faces at the top of his first grade work. My son has a favorite author, greets his bus driver every morning, has play dates with his neighborhood friend, enjoys school and told me twice today that he loves me — and it’s largely because of you, teacher. Doctors visits are still challenging, meltdowns happen, haircuts are out of the question, but now I have someone from the “outside” who understands, who will brainstorm interventions and offer objective advice. You have asked me to trust you and, in return, you love my son. You keep him safe, teach him independence, and instill a love for learning. You honor his way of being in the world. You are a part of our autism life and make us all feel less isolated. Never underestimate your role or question whether or not you make a difference. Trust me: You do.
Amy Price Azano is a professor of adolescent literacy at Virginia Tech. Follow her on Twitter@ruralprof.

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Advocacy, My Daughter, Morris Gleitzman & Jackie French

What a great day was had by all the folk who made it to the NSW State Library Day last Saturday
where Darcy Moore (Deputy Principal Dapto High School), 

authors Jackie French and Morris Gleitzman 

Ava Banerjee (SHORE School) and Andrew Taylor, author 

 Michael Grant, creator of Edutainme, provided plenty of learning opportunities.

                                                             See the storify for more insight.
screenshot of storify page.

Darcy Moore (Deputy Principal Dapto High) blogged this post after the day:
Advocacy, My Daughter, Morris Gleitzman & Jackie French
What a great opportunity for a young girl!
Well done to SLANSW for facilitating a student voice in the introductions!

Don't forget to visit the Australian Teacher Librarian Facebook Page to keep up to date.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

The Right to read!!! and write...World Read Aloud Day March 5

A year has passed already since the last World Read Aloud Day

World Read Aloud Day is an opportunity to celebrate reading and storytelling
with entire communities. World Read Aloud Day also highlights the need for
libraries and community centres as crucial spaces to discover, explore and
foster literacy.
Imagine a world where everyone can read... 
On World Read Aloud Day, celebrate by reading aloud or 
taking action on behalf of the 793 million people who cannot read
How did this event start? who had the bright idea? Read this inspiring article:
Huffington Post: Read Aloud. Change the World.
Read Aloud. Change the World by Pam Allyn

"You're never too old, too wacky,too wild, to pick up a book, and read to a child!!" Dr. Suess

World Read Aloud Day is about taking action 
to show the world that 
the right to read and write belongs to all people.

There are many resources available at LitWorld
Download the World Read Aloud Day Classroom Activity Kit. - See more at:
Click to download LitWorld's Picture Book New Day, New Friends:
Activities from Read Write Think courtesy of Barbara Braxton:

I made this World Read Aloud sticker sheet to give out to the children.

- See more at:

Make every day read aloud day - a post  by Donalyn Miller is well worth a read.
"Reading aloud exposes children to books, authors, or genres they might not discover on their own. When choosing books to read aloud, I often pick books with the goal of leading my students to more books they can read on their own."
Reading aloud builds community.
Reading aloud supports developing readers.
Reading aloud reminds children why they love reading."
 Miller also lists many great read aloud books for you to try.
Did you know:
Global Literacy Statistics 
LitWorld works to cultivate a new generation of leaders, storytellers and academic
achievers, effecting change for themselves, their community, and their world. Our
campaigns mobilize children and adults from around the world to advocate for literacy as a
human right that belongs to all people.

Ø Reading aloud to children every day puts them almost a year ahead of
children who do not receive daily read alouds regardless of parental
income, education level or cultural background. (Melbourne Institute of
Applied Economic and Social Research)

Ø According to the latest data (2009), 793 million adults – two thirds of
them women – lack basic reading and writing skills. Included in this
statistic are 127 million youth aged 15-24. (UNESCO)

Ø Since 1985, the female adult literacy rate has risen 15%, which is about
double the growth of the male literacy rate in the same time period.

Ø On tests involving 4,500 to 10,000 students in 43 countries, half of the
girls said they read for at least thirty minutes a day, compared with less
than one-third of the boys. (UNESCO)

Ø In sub-Saharan Africa, girls have less than a 50% chance of finishing
primary school. In some Asian countries, girls also struggle: 41% of girls
in Pakistan and 30% in India fail to finish primary school. (

Ø Poorly-literate individuals are less likely to participate in democratic
processes and have fewer chances to fully exercise their civil rights

Ø A child born to a mother who can read is 50 percent more likely to
survive past the age of 5 than a child born to an illiterate woman.

Ø A literate and educated girl is three times less likely to acquire AIDS,
she will earn at least twenty-five percent more income, and she will
produce a smaller, healthier family. (UNESCO) 

UNESCO: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
Further reading 2@
Huffington Post: Read Aloud. Change the World.

Enjoy one or all of the read alouds below:
I chose a few to cater for different aged students.

Sunday, 23 February 2014

Come along & Build your "iKnowHow" @ Coffs Coast TeachMeet

To see all of the Smore flyer you will need to scroll down the inside bar...
 Register @ Coffs Coast TeachMeet Term1 2014

Please print out the flyer for your staffroom Register @ Coffs Coast TeachMeet Term1 2014
or fill out online.

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Don't miss this valuable reading app: Read with Me Fluency app, currently Free


I love the potential of this app! Give it a go. It's a winner in my book!
****Free for a limited time, while we fix this update
                                                                             ****Please check back in a few days and update

"Many in educational fields have hungered for a system that would actually decrease the work load required for assessment, and it looks like it’s finally here."

Read With Me Fluency is the new iPad version of the award-winning online reading fluency assessment app, Read With Me. Now you can conduct oral fluency reading assessments, or running records in a faster, less-painful way. No more timers, paper, calculators or binders full of testing materials

 Import your own digital texts or take advantage of our own leveled library of passages aligned to the Lexile® Framework. 

Monitor your child or whole class of students' reading progress in terms of accuracy, fluency and benchmark goals. 
Great for teachers who already have their own program, or for new teachers looking for a new, faster way to stay on top of their students' fluency. Used by reading specialists, resource educators, parents, and K-8 teachers . 

Video recording for your running records:

This iPad app takes the web version further by taking advantage of the front-facing camera to record a video session of the student reading a text you assign. By syncing two iPads via the web, you can use your iPad to save the recordings and view them with the student conferences, or for later scoring. Generate quick reports for student to review and track own progress. 

Air Server proves to be great value......but price is set to rise very soon.

Thanks Nathan McGregor for sharing this news about Airserver:

AirServer ( ) is getting a price rise starting March 1st, 2014.

Currently, you can buy three Education AirServer licences for $US12.00, but starting March 1st, Education AirServer licences will increase to $US12.00 each.

If you're interested in getting AirServer for your school, you'll want to purchase your licences before March 1st, 2014. You can still organise bulk purchases. See the current prices below:



Note: Mirroring is only available from iPad 2nd generation or newer, iPad mini, iPod Touch 5+, iPhone 4S or newer, Mountain Lion and Mavericks.

Handy Tip:
If more than one person uses a computer make sure that you go into settings and tick the box for all users if it doesn't automatically do that.
* Recording is available for Mac only and will be coming to
DISCLAIMER: I have no financial interests in this company and will not gain financially (or any other way) from this post.

Sunday, 10 November 2013


Terrific ideas for preparing for 2014 English from the awesome Lizzie Chase

Lizzie Chase shared: 2014 Stage 3 & 4 blogs

 – From Week 3 each term, for 5 weeks

 Term 1: Raft, river, rainbow - All about me blog - - AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL blog Click on 1.CHEST for Week 1 student writing

  Term 2: Band of heroes QUEST blog FANTASY blog [See 2013 version at - Click on 1.BAND for Week 1 writing

  Term 3: Hats, boxes, magic, moon - IMAGE based writing - Using images to inspire narrative writing - Click on 1.HATS for Week 1 writing, etc]

  Term 4: Super 6 plus blog - DIFFERENTIATED tasks - Minimum requirements: Students complete ONE task per week from the CONNECT, PREDICT, QUESTION, SUMMARISE and VISUALISE tasks. Enrichment options: Students complete as many tasks as they like, including the CRITIQUE, CREATE and ACT options.

  What are the Super 6 skills? Connecting, predicting, questioning, monitoring, summarising and visualising – these six ‘super’ skills form a repertoire for actively processing text and making meaning.
 When we share these skills with students – and name the skills so students can name and use them independently – students greatly improve their reading comprehension and inferential reading skills. - Click on 1.CONNECT for Week 1 writing and as if that is not wonderful enough Lizzie also shared:

BOOK WEEK ART: I have built a website featuring Samira Chami's Book Week art work at As of yesterday, this site now has DOWNLOADABLE teaching notes!!
Last go through EVER - Stage 3 & 4 Fiction with a twist blog, starts Week 3, Term 4 - goes for 5 weeks at 

 Check out Super 6 based activities at:

 2. [David Wiesner picture book activities]
 3. [Emily Gravett picture books activities]

Time to review iPad use in class....How is your workflow?

Greg Swanson, Senior Project Officer eLearning Catholic Education Office, Sydney,
 has a very valuable and helpful blog for educators implementing iPads in education called Apps in Education

In this post Apps in Education: Student Documented Workflows for the iPad: Greg states: " Students love to share how they do things. This is especially true when they are working on iPads." Visit the link to discover more. The three posters below are shared by Greg who also states that "If students and or teachers want a more detailed explanation than the step-by-step instructions are available."

Monday, 14 October 2013

2014 schoolstechOZ conference ATTEND? or PRESENT?

Dear Colleagues
We would like to let you know about our exciting new conference, schoolstechOZ - 2014.
schoolstechOZ (one big conference) is a consolidation of our four national conferences: 

  • Leading a Digital School Conference
  • Interactive Teaching and Learning Conference
  • Masterclass Conference
  • Digital Classrooms - NZ Conference
 It will be held at Firbank Grammar School, Melbourne on Friday 12, Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 September 2014.

A fantastic Launch Special is available until 30 September 2013 (only a few weeks away). There are 2 options for this Launch Special:
  • 3 Day Option - AU $595.00 or
  • 2 Day Option - AU $395.00
If you are unsure of names at this stage, simply email with the number of teachers you would like to register and you can confirm names a little later.

  • For all staff in the K-12 school education sector - network with 750 delegates
  • Explore the essence of contemporary and future digital classrooms and digital schools
  • Choose from 240 thought provoking and energizing breakout session over 3 days
    • Leadership strand - targeted to current and emerging school leaders, presented by those in leadership positions with a reputation for leading digital technology in their school (if you like our Leading a Digital School Conference this is the strand for you)
    • Classroom practice strand – targeted to classroom teachers, presented by teachers who integrate digital technology in the classroom to enhance teaching and learning (if you like our Interactive Teaching and Learning Conference this is the strand for you)
    • Cutting edge future strand – targeted to experienced users of technology, presented by award winners passionate about discovering technology initiatives to excite teacher and student imagination (if you like our Masterclass Conference this is the strand for you)
    • Cut across strands as you like!
  • Attend 7 high profile expert keynote addresses over 3 days

Download the conference brochure 
here Yes, I would like to register
We hope to see you in Melbourne in September (2014) - a great place to be.

Are you interested in presenting at our exciting new conference schoolstechOZ?

The conference will be held at Firbank Grammar School, Melbourne, VIC, on 12 – 14 September 2014. Find the current conference brochure at

Join in the program with the 7 high profile keynote speakers who have already been confirmed. (We have received over 80 expressions of interest to present to date so do not hesitate)

If you are interested, and we hope you are, we would like you to present the equivalent of two different 50 minute sessions. A double session counts as two different sessions.

We are looking for submissions with:
  • A leadership focus - presented by school leaders
  • A classroom practice focus - presented by teachers
  • A cutting edge future focus - presented by technology award winners
Every two (50 minute) sessions filled in the program attracts one complimentary registration for the full 3 days of the conference.

Further information about schoolstechOZ is available on our website at

Please contact to express your interest and she will send you further information about submitting your sessions.

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Best regards,

Val Macaulay and Margo Metcalf

Phone: +612 4647 0783
Fax: +612 8456 5707
ABN: 29 112 252 034

Sent with the permission of Margaret Lloyd.
Shared with the permission of Margot Metcalf.
Disclaimer: I do not benefit in any financial way by promoting this educational conference.
My intention is to share the news.
Register for schoolstechOZ @

Saturday, 12 October 2013

You could be about to embark on a whole new journey in the world of education. POWTOON!

One of our highly respected, innovative NSWDEC Teacher Librarians, Joachim Cohen, scored tens of thousands of free POWTOON accounts for other innovative teachers to use. These vouchers will run out soon, so get on to them!!
 Here are the instructions:
 1. Go to:
 2. Once the payment wizard pops-up, type in your district's coupon code: TOONUP243
 3. The payment amount due will revert to zero. There is no need to enter any credit card info in the payment wizard.
 4. Each teacher account includes 30 individual student accounts as well and is good for one year.

 PowToon in the classroom -Visit  Getting Started  to get an overview.

 Tutorial for teachers
 Tutorial for students
 We also have a facebook group set up specifically for teachers where you can share ideas and experiences: Animated Videos Video Marketing Animated Presentations

COMING SOON Desktop player Continuous music loops Music fade out PowToon publisher

Disclaimer: I am not associated with this company nor will I profit in any way from anyone deciding to sign up.

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Terrific Australian Curriculum support resources from Aus Lit.

AustLit is a searchable, scholarly source of authoritative biographical, bibliographic, critical, and production information about Australian writers and writing. It also documents the publishers, newspapers, magazines and scholarly journals that make this work known.

AustLit aims to be the definitive virtual research environment and information resource for Australian literary, print, and narrative culture.
is available to all Australian schools for free
Access for AustLit for DEC schools:
Go and initiate a search, and login when prompted
You will need to access the confidential DEC User name & Password 

 By drawing on resources from specialised areas of research within AustLit, AustLit can help teachers address the three primary cross-curriculum objectives of the National Curriculum.


Three AustLit research areas provide useful background about Australia's relationship with Asia.
– Asian-Australian Children’s Literature and Publishing provides information about fiction for children that is
— set in Asia
— represents Asian-Australian cultures and experiences
— published in selected Asian languages.
– Children’s Literature Digital Resources make available a number of children’s literature Research and Learning Trails.
– Australian Literary Responses to 'Asia' tracks literary responses by Australian writers to that diverse region called 'Asia'.


BlackWords provides searchable information about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander writers, storytellers and their published and unpublished books, stories, plays, poems and criticism. It includes works in English and in Indigenous Australian languages.
Children's Literature Digital Resources is a full text digital repository of Australian children’s literature from 1830 to 1945. Users can read online the complete texts of a selection of early Australian children’s literature, both popular and rare.
Digitised items include children’s and young adult fiction, poetry, short stories, and picture books.
Creative Commons Licence

Great for new Australian Curriculum

The Asian-Australian Children’s Literature and Publishing (AACLAP) project investigates and records details of Australian children’s literature either set in Asia, works that contain Asian-Australian content or characters, works that represent Asian-Australian cultures and experiences, as well as hundreds of Australian works that have been translated into at least one Asian language.

The collection includes autobiographical works, fiction, criticism, poetry, drama, short stories, and picture books.

All Australian schools have free access to AustLit plus registered patrons of Australian libraries, such as national, state and territory, university, or government department libraries, have full access to AustLit through their membership of those libraries.
Teachers and students of Australian schools enquiring about access should contact their school's state-based education authority. Your school liaison librarian or teacher/librarian may also have access details.

Sunday, 25 August 2013

WonderNote- Wonderful

WonderNote described in iTunes as " a wonderful diary book which can help you to record your life with text, photo gallery and voice, from now on, your life will become remarkable."

Features Highlight: 1. Support text, photo gallery and voice.2. Support both iPad an iPhone, sync notes and configuration to your iDevices automatically.3. iCloud backup, your notes will always be there.4. Support background color configuration, life is always colourful as it should be.5. Support passcode to protect your notes.6. Weather information retrieved automatically.7. Share your wonderful moment via twitter, email or just save it to your photo library.8. Notice on time to write an essay, which makes a great habit.9. Support All orientations. and it's FREE. 

Don't miss out as it is a very handy app for students in class.