Four routes to Australia

In their HSIE unit, British colonisation of Australia, Stage 2 students are investigating four different travel routes to Australia from Britain:

Plymouth (August 1768), rounded Cape Horn, Tahiti (observe transit of Venus), Pacific Islands of Huahine, Borabora and Raiatea (all claimed for Britain), unsuccessfully attempted to land at Rurutu, then New Zealand, then Botany Bay, then north along Australian east coast, then Batavia in Dutch East Indies, rounded Cape of Good Hope, then arriving at Deal in Britain (July 1771, almost three years later).

The first voyage of James Cook

Route to Australia - Cook

Portsmouth (May 1787), Rio de Janiero, Cape Town, through Great Southern Ocean to Botany Bay (January 1788), then Sydney Cove, Port Jackson.

First Fleet – Behind the news

Route to Australia - Phillip and First Fleet

Britain, Port Said (in Egypt), Port Aden (in Yemen), Colombo (Ceylon, now Sri Lanka), Fremantle, Melbourne, Sydney.

Suez Canal time lapse mp.4

Route to Australia - via Suez Canal

In 1935, the route from London to Brisbane had taken 12.5 days, which included a rail trip between Paris and Brindisi. QANTAS first flew the route in 1947, from Sydney to London, with stopovers in Darwin, Singapore (overnight), Calcutta, Karachi, Cairo (overnight) and Tripoli. Return fare was £585 = 130 weeks x average wage.

In 1960, fastest trip was 34 h 30 min with eight stops. In 1989, QANTAS set a world distance record for commercial jets when a Boeing 747-400 flew non-stop, London to Sydney, in just over 20 hours. From 2012, all QANTAS services began making Sydney-London stopovers in Dubai.

The longest hop – Qantas’ Kangaroo Route

Route to Australia - Qantas Kangaroo

Australia’s place in the world

These video clips of Australian maps will enhance the lessons in which Stage 2 students invesigate Australia’s location on the world globe for their HSIE unit, British colonisation of Australia:

World map – Australia & Oceania

Australia’s geographic challenge

Climatic zones of the Earth: British colonisation of Australia

Despite the Equadorian slant and the misspellings of “Arctic” and “Antarctic”, this short presentation is a useful summary of information (“Equator”, “hemisphere”, “northern”, “southern”, “climate”, “temperature”, etc) already covered in HSIE lessons with Stage 2. It also introduces the terms “precipitation”, “tropical zone”, “temperate zone” and the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn.

Climatic Zone – Logos Academy

Book Week approaches

Aldi world map

Teacher-librarians had been mentioning that Aldi supermarkets were stocking a large, exclusive, felt map of the world, which might prove useful to decorate the library for Book Week (this year’s theme being, “One world, many stories”). I checked out my local Aldi today and, sure enough, there it was. It comes with 100 small felt pieces to attach to the map: iconic buildings, animals, birds, people, products, rivers – and labels for the oceans and continents. Looks great!

Family forest display

Congratulations to Class 1H for creating this beautiful display for the library on the picture book, “Family forest”! This and other class displays are in my Flickr slideshow.

A quick & dirty mud map

I’ve been asked to help other teacher-librarians, about to move into their new BER libraries, to provide a “mud map” of the floor plan, showing the arrangement of the shelving bays and where our Junior Fiction, Fiction and Non Fiction sections start and end.

Library floor plan mud map
(Click to enlarge.)

The Key is:
C = Computers
CC = Connected Classroom
IWB = Interactive WhiteBoard
LP = Listening Post
PRC = Premier’s Reading Challenge
R = Reference
SPIN = Spinner Rack (one for Animal NF and one for Fiction Quick Reads)
TR = Teacher Reference.

Junior Fiction goes from the returns box to the couch, (Senior) Fiction follows in two “U” shapes, Non Fiction follows in two “U” shapes and finishes at IWB. I realised before unpacking that we really didn’t have enough shelves, so I marked my three targets (ie. JUN Z, FIC Z and NON 999), bit the bullet and just culled ruthlesslessly to fit. I am now very glad to have been that brave. We probably culled about a quarter of a very bloated collection. I know that borrowing will increase as a result of this drastic spring clean. Had I tried to cull in the old library environment, I’m sure I’d have kept a lot of unnecessary stuff.

As you can see, I essentially accepted the arrangement offered by the builders, only switching the positions of a browsing table with a set of bench seating, and sliding one bay slightly to accommodate. The two spinner racks – one for Quick Read, such as “Aussie bites”, etc and one for colourful animal books – plus the racks for Premier’s Reading Challenge, were retrieved from the classrooms where they were on long-term loan.