Islands of Australasia

This week, Stage 2 students are investigating aspects of the islands that make up Australasia.


Family holidays | Best Fiji island resorts for family vacations | Jean Michel Cousteau


New Zealand top ten things to do, by Donna Salerno Travel


Samoa tourist attractions: 15 top places to visit


One News – Tokelau to be entirely solar powered

The International Space Station

Stage 3 students are investigating the International Space Station (ISS) in information literacy and science lessons in the library:


Tour the International Space Station – Inside ISS – HD


James May rides the Vomit Comet – Astronaut training – James May: On the moon – Brit Lab

Averting exploration disasters:


What if Apollo had crashed on the moon?

Stage 3 and space technology

Our Stage 3 students are continuing to investigate the physical attributes of space and, in library lessons, the technological aspects that supported – and continues to support – the exploration of the solar system.


What Galileo saw with his telescope


Galileo – mini biography


History of human spaceflight


Partners in space: CSIRO and NASA celebrates its 50th anniversary

Stage 2 investigates Australasia

As part of the Stage 2 History unit, Places are similar and different, we are learning about Australia in relation to its nearest neighbours during Library lessons. Here are some Youtube clips we are be examining, concerning the Continental Drift theory, the Pacific Ring of Fire and Australia’s strategic position in the Pacific region.


Continental drift


‘Ring of fire’ threatens a larger earthquake


Australia’s geographic challenge

People exploring space

Our Stage 3 students are investigating the physical attributes of space and, in library lessons, the technological aspects that supported – and continues to support – the exploration of the solar system. We are commencing with the 1969 Apollo 11 moon landing and then looking both back and forth on the timeline.


(HD footage) Restored Apollo 11 moon landing video – via PRC media


In his own words: Buzz Aldrin 40 years later


Aryabhata | Father of Indian Astronomy | Pride Of India


Copernicus – mini biography

Buster the boxer – persuasive digital stories

Each year, UK department store, John Lewis, hires a team to create a special ad for the Christmas season. These ads are excellent examples of persuasive visual texts.


John Lewis Christmas advert 2016 – #BustertheBoxer

Previous annual links to John Lewis ads are HERE.

Happy Book Week!

It’s Book Week again. I was thrilled to have been invited to last Friday’s Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA)’s Book of the Year Award presentations for 2016 at Teachers Federation House, hosted by CBCA NSW.

Classes at Penrith PS have been busily creating displays for the school library. Every few minutes, another display arrives and we seek out an ideal spot for it. This has been a tradition at the school for many decades.

Apart from the links at Mrs Mac’s website and the Kids & Books blog, here are some useful Youtube clips to help us celebrate “Australia! Story Country”, the 2016 theme:


Story Country – Book Week 2016

Read All Day for Book Week 2016 (Guildford Grammar School)

A Vimeo for Silver, Information: Sticky (Phasmid)


Gold, Early Childhood: Mr Huff by Anna Walker – book trailer (Official)


Gold, Early Childhood: Mr Huff trailer (Unofficial)


Play School – Mr Huff – Benita, Karen, Luke, Andrew, Eddie, Leah, Zindzi and Justine

Revisiting the ugly duckling

The last time The ugly duckling came along in our K-2 literacy cycle, I made use of some personal photos taken of a Hans Christian Andersen memorial statue at Sydney’s Observatory Hill.


The ugly duckling – Silly symphony Walt Disney 1939


Our Khaki Campbell ducks~


Khaki Campbell… ducks a must see!!!

Make way for ducklings, the famous picture book by Robert McCloskey, and based on a real life event, is also immortalized in statue form at Boston Common, USA. These statues get dressed thematically at various times of the year.