50 years of decimal currency in Australia

Several classes are researching the 50 years of decimal currency in Australia. Here are some useful Youtube clips.

Dollar Bill and Australians keep the wheels of industry turning

Decimal currency, 14 February 1966 – Television advertisements

New decimal coin designs

50 years of decimal currencyStudio 10 segment

Decimal currency – Behind the News

Royal Australian Mint Tour – Behind the News

More information is available HERE, the website of the Royal Australian Mint.

The path to Federation

Stage 3 students have been learning about democracy in HSIE. Now we move on to the Australian arena. A rather irreverent look at the history of Australia, by Daven Bettridge, this animated video clip demonstrates several elements of persuasive texts.

A brief history of Australia

We then investigated the Youtube search engine and found that by adding the descriptor “Parkes” (as in Sir Henry Parkes, Father of Federation), with “Australia” and “Federation”, we could bring up a useful selection of short student assignments from other schools, and promotional clips aimed at tourists. We discussed potential problems and strategies for using such information, and ways to enhance our own learning. Two of the most useful clips, for an introduction to Federation in Australia, were:

The Federation Show with Henry Parkes and Smiley Smiles

Grave of Sir Henry Parkes, Faulconbridge, NSW

How the birds got their colours

Stage 1 and Early Stage 1 students are learning about Aboriginal Dreaming stories.

How the birds got their colours by Pamela Lofts and Mary Albert

A student, from somewhere in the world, adapted this story as an animation, setting it in the Philippines:

How birds got their color by Naufal Shukri

How smart are crows?

Crow intelligence – multi-step tool action test

Joe the talking crow

Smart crow uses cars to crack nuts in Akita, Japan, near Senshu Park

Last time we visited this part of the cycle, students enjoyed this Youtube clip.

The man, the boy and the donkey

Early Stage 1 and Stage 1 are studying fables this term. We found this great short video, with accompanying song, on Youtube:

Song: “A Man, a Boy and a Donkey” – Children’s Music Video

And here’s an award-winning music video version, by Derek Sonic Thunders, of Craig Smith’s “Wonky donkey” picture book and song:

Wonkey donkey song unofficial music video

Last term’s Stage 1 book rappers are doing an extension activity with me during our Literacy time: investigating claymation (stop motion) video presentations using a kit from the local post office, “Make your own haunted house movie” by Nancy Hall (Hinkler Books, 2010). We have already storyboarded our Halloween story, but have now checked out a few claymation fable videos on Youtube:

The story of the boy who cried wolf – claymation

Bugs and books 2008

Frogs, frogs, frogs: life cycles, fables

Early Stage 1 and Stage 1 students are studying the season of spring – and life cycles. These Youtube video clips (below) will help with the trickier concepts (frog attributes, such as their sticky tongue, etc) not conveyed visually in the big book, “Tadpole diary” by David Drew.

Time-lapse: frog spawn

Tadpoles eating bread

Frog fail! (Dragonfly escapes frog attack)

And, for a bit of fun:

Super Fly carries frog (haha)

We are moving onto Fables this term, and the first fable ties in quite nicely with the work on frogs in Life Cycles:

The frog and the ox

La grenouille et le boeuf – The frog and the ox

The frog and the ox fable

Fastest animators in the west

The Stage 3 students – four boys – in our school’s hearing unit made this short animation with me today:

We used Xtra Normal with very minimal knowledge of online animation programs, and created the above clip in about thirty minutes. The ability to edit and re-edit over and over, and so quickly, kept the students very engaged. Despite their hearing losses, which required them to split their attention between the IWB and the teacher’s aide signing them the dialogue, the boys were getting such a lot out of this program. We were going to do some interactive Antarctica activities this afternoon, but the lesson took a dramatic tangent into the lesser-known world of Web 2.0.

A few words of caution: I think it is best used with the teacher registering and small groups of students collaborating with it, under careful teacher supervision. That way all the productions are stored together, under the teacher’s log-in name. I did notice that some of the “demo” animation samples on the site are very inappropriate for use with students. For example, the Tiger Woods parody!