Families who read together…

Thank you to our librarian, Ruth Woolven* for her thoughts on sharing the reading experience –

A couple of weeks ago the Library opened after school for a Family Reading Afternoon. This was an opportunity for families to visit the Library and read together. It was wonderful to see parents and grandparents sharing stories and exploring the library collection with our students. Continue reading

I’m looking for something with a bit of yellow on it…

Guess what we did this past summer (apart from swimming, cricket and barbecues)?

Jigsaws.

jigsaws-22016/17 will be known as The Summer of the Jigsaw in our house and it’s likely that it will also be the Easter Holidays of the Jigsaw. And in case you’re wondering, it’s not because I declared a tech-detox or a ban on all devices and screens… Continue reading

A new year (for parents as well as students)

helloIt was strange walking through the gates on the first day of school this year. For the first time in all the years my kids have been at Kew Primary, it seemed there were more new faces than familiar ones. And babies – lots of babies in prams and toddlers tearing around the playground, no doubt wondering when it’s their turn to go to school.

It’s a natural changing-of-the-guard. At one point, I had kids in the junior, middle and senior school – over their four classes and eight years (my first child started at KPS in 2008), I got to meet lots of families – chatting at pick-up time, helping with classroom activities and at school social events. Continue reading

How do you kick a goal if there are no goal posts?

One of my kids is very outcome focused – less about the ‘journey’ and more about the ‘destination’. This can be a good and a bad thing – on the plus side, someone who is outcome focused simply gets on with tasks and gets things done. Mornings for this child are a breeze, as they tick off what they have to do to get out the door on time. However, the flip side is that when a task requires time for reflection, feedback and adjustment, it can be challenging.

A recent project that this child was given, required a detailed plan, testing of a design, feedback and then revisions to the plan. The usual ‘do the homework on the first night’ wasn’t going to cut it. Much to my child’s horror, the end design didn’t ‘work’ in the way that they’d anticipated and they were worried that they’d get a bad mark for the project. I explained that the point of the exercise was not to have a perfect working model but instead, to show how they had incorporated feedback and made adjustments to their design. And I knew this because of the rubric – very handy tools for students (and parents) in understanding their learning.

rubric-1024x768I asked Sally Marsh and Andrew Wood to share some more information about rubrics and how they are used at KPS. Continue reading

First book, then movie

bookfiend-etsyAs is always the case during school holidays, a bunch of new movies were released. This year, the main offerings were Pete’s Dragon, The Secret Life of Pets and Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. My kids, being a little older, were plugging for Miss Peregrine, until I said “But have you read the book?” Cue massive eye-rolls from children (because I always say ‘first book, then movie’).

I miss lots of new-release movies because I haven’t read the book. In fact, my chief-movie-going-pal often gives me advance warning of movies she wants to see with a simple “Read the book now because the movie is out in a month.” Considerate friend!

Although I usually prefer the book to the movie, it’s not always the case, particularly when it comes to kids books/ movies. In some cases, films are PERFECT translations of the book, the characters and scenes unfolding just as you imagined. And sometimes a movie not only does a book justice but makes it better. Yes, really.

So here are the books that I think rocketed into awesomeness thanks to a fabulous film – Continue reading