Sick Days

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Just recently I logged into my pay and leave information to check the balances. I was astonished to discover I have 26 week’s sick leave available! 26!!!! It got me to thinking about how teachers take sick leave and how tricky it can be for planning and follow up afterwards. We can’t just resume where [...]
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Forming positive relationships with difficult children

Guest Bio Jane is an experienced primary and secondary teacher with qualifications in child and adolescent psychology. She has held Wellbeing positions across both sectors. Currently she is developing and running social skills programs for pre and primary aged children. www.playologyplace.com.au   We have all had ‘those children’ in our class that we would happily [...]
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Advice for New Teachers

I am now heading in to my second year as a ‘real’ teacher. I say ‘real’ because, like many of you, I’ve spent the last four years referring to myself as “a teacher.. well, a student-teacher at the moment”, during many an interrogation by well-meaning relatives and friends into the purpose of my time at [...]
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Social Media

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Happy New Year everyone! This is an excellent time to reflect on our own personal use of social media, possibly after we’ve given our accounts a work out over the Christmas/New Year period. It’s really, really easy to overshare or to upload things we may regret later. Perhaps this doesn’t matter if we aren’t teachers, [...]
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Reflecting on the Year

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Today marks the final day of the school year for many Australian government schools. Did you drag yourself to the finishing line or did you skip energetically? However you got there, it’s an excellent opportunity to reflect on the year that was. No matter what circumstance you found yourself in throughout 2015, employment wise, there [...]
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Working Quietly

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It’s very easy for the noise level in classrooms to escalate quickly. It’s also true that some classes are just chattier than others and therefore it’s harder to manage the noise level. Personally, I’m a little more permissive with noise levels than other teachers I know, however it’s still important for me to have access [...]
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Attachment Theory

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This popped up on my Facebook news feed a few weeks ago and I thought it so simply summed up the impact a child’s home life can have on their education. Attachment theory explores the link between the mother (or primary care giver) and the child. It originated with the work of Bowlby and Ainsworth [...]
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Gaining Attention

Many times throughout the school day we need to gain the attention of our class. There are hundreds of ways to do this, it’s just a matter of choosing one that you enjoy and find effective. Some are more suited to junior classes and some to senior levels. Classroom teachers There are two main methods [...]
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Transitioning

The curriculum is crowded and it is probably impossible to cover everything required each year. Instead, we often have to choose the sections we feel are most essential to be covered, especially those that are sequentially based. Children are actively engaged in structured learning of some sort for approximately five hours per day. How much [...]
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Dressing up days

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Schools seem to have regular dress up days. I have a love hate response to these. Mostly children love them, parents not so much. I try to never hold one for my class, just the ones the whole school are participating in. Here are some very old and grainy photos of me on primary school [...]
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School Camp

It’s school camp time! I love camp and have even been known to volunteer to go on a few unpaid. Not everyone feels like that though, so I thought some ideas to make the camping experience more enjoyable or endurable might help. Preparation Camp can be a difficult experience if you are not prepared adequately. [...]
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Planning

How are you managing your daily and weekly planning? Need to finetune the process a little more? I have gathered together some key points that will help you improve your technique and help you focus on the content, rather than stressing about the process. Sourcing an appropriate planning template should be your first step. The [...]
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NAPLAN Data

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A previous article covered the lead up and what to do on the day to improve the performance of your students. Today I will help you discover how to make the most of the NAPLAN data from the day after the test, not September when results come out. (Seriously, if the government really wanted us [...]
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Reflecting on Lessons

No matter how many years you have been teaching, it is still essential to reflect on your lesson content and presentation. Sometimes it’s pretty obvious it is not working whilst you are teaching, we might feel we are stuck in a rut with content or activity choice, or we think our students are not progressing [...]
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NAPLAN

I’m not sure I’ve met any teacher who thinks NAPLAN is a fantastic assessment tool. It has its place, but I believe the government (and sometimes principals) put far too much emphasis on its importance and accuracy. This has led to cheating and bending of the rules, in fear of the consequences of poorly performing [...]
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