Curriculum Matters at Kurwongbah
From the LapTop of the CST… No. 10 October 2007
Welcome to the Curriculum Matters Newsletter for
Websites with FREE Downloads:
October and welcome back to another exciting
term at Kurwongbah. To check out the variety and
diversity of Integrated units for this term, go to All of these sites have FREE resources and
http://www.kurwongbss.eq.edu.au/curriculum/integ applications that you can use in an education setting:
rated%20planning/2007overview.htm There is
much to be excited about during term four as www.sketchup.com - 3D drawing software
students engage in authentic units with clear and
explicit assessment criteria and a range of http://download-earth.com/ - see anywhere on
engaging learning opportunities. Keep up the earth from a satellite
fabulous work this term. Your professionalism and
dedication are valued and appreciated.
http://picasa.google.com.au/ - photo editing
Until next month. Denise ☺ software
How important is spelling? Maker/3000-2194_4-10187903.html
I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty
uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The http://people.cs.uu.nl/markov/kids/draw.html - kids
phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, drawing software (like kidpix only free)
aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde
Uinervtisy, it dseno't mtaetr in waht oerdr the hotography/photostory/default.mspx
ltteres in a wrod are, the olny iproamtnt tihng is
taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. http://www.irfanview-pro.com/ - IRFANVIEW is an
The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll image viewer that can view, edit, and convert image
files and play video/audio formats. IrfanView is
raed it whotuit a pboerlm. Tihs is bcuseae the designed to be a lightweight viewer/player which is
huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by noted for its speed, ease of use, and ability to
istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Azanmig huh? handle a wide variety of graphic file formats. It is
yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was simple for beginners and powerful for professionals.
echnologies/producer.mspx - Microsoft Producer
for Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2003 makes it easy
The biggest mistake of past centuries to capture and synchronize audio, video, slides and
images—creating engaging rich media
in teaching has been to treat all presentations. Capture, synchronize, and publish
children as if they were variants of the audio, video, slides, and images to create rich
media presentations viewable in a browser.
same individuals, and thus feel
justified in teaching them the same http://scratch.mit.edu/ - stories, games and
subjects in the same ways. animations
http://www.alice.org/ - interactive 3D graphics
DATE CLAIMER: http://phrogram.com/Default.aspx - stories, games
Quality Teaching Conference, 2007 and animations (may be a licence fee) also try
Pupil Free Day Monday 22 October 2007
Kurwongbah State School
http://leo.eq.edu.au/wcmss/weblinks/23/ - this has
Key Note Speaker and a range of practical, hands-on
links to great educational websites, games etc.
workshops presented “by teachers, for teachers”…
Learning to spell:
Learning to spell involves the integration of sound
(phonemic), visual (grapho-phonic), morphemic (word
families), and etymological knowledge (word origins).
In addition to informally learning how to spell through
reading and writing, children need to explore English
spelling by deliberately investigating how words are
constructed. Spelling is only relevant in the writing
context. The transfer of spelling skills taught in
focused spelling lessons should occur in writing
situations across the curriculum.
This is a fun and easy technique for putting
photos into fun shapes. A good technique to
show to your students. Spelling is developmental. The stages of spelling
development are Preliminary/Role Play, Semi –
1. Use the drawing toolbar. Phonetic/Logo-graphic, Phonetic, Transitional, and
Independent Spelling. Spelling programs should be
2. Choose to draw a rectangle, oval or another carefully planned in relation to the children’s needs
shape. (interests and abilities). Children will be expected to
spell accurately at their developmental level, however
approximations are valued as they encounter more
3. Then just click on the shape you have made difficult words. As students become successful
on your document - go to the paintpot (fill) click spellers, positive attitudes towards learning to spell
"fill effects" then click "picture". correctly should develop.
4. Choose the picture from your file.
5. Don't forget to tick the "lock picture aspect Literacy is constantly evolving – it must as our world is
ratio" box on the bottom left of this screen so that changing so rapidly. In the past 60 years academics have
your picture will not be distorted before clicking debated the merits of the following literacy theories and
6. Your picture will appear in the shape you skills approach
whole language approach
have chosen. (The beauty of this method is that
schema theory and metacognition
you can make coloured borders and all genre approach
sorts of different shapes to fill. You can also social critical approach
move them or make smaller or larger very four resources model
easily). multiliteracies approach
LITERACY IS ABOUT…
1. Literacy is about prior knowledge and background –
connectedness and lifelong learning. We all have
different perspectives and need to acknowledge this.
Also, social and literacy structures are changing.
2. Literacy involves communication AND transformation
– understanding and acting upon texts (the design
3. Literacy should use incidental skills lessons within an
4. Purposeful literacy learning involves using authentic
texts, and recognising the need to use the buyer’s
5. Literacy is always evolving and it is impossible to
predict what will happen next. We need to prepare
students so they can cope with an ever changing
The Literacy Essentials are what effective teachers know
What do you know about spelling? and do to achieve maximum student learning outcomes.
Here are some key points designed to turn the ‘literacy
labyrinth’ into the ‘literacy easy highway’.
The goal of any instructional program
should be independence and not learnt LITERACY ESSENTIALS – Tips
Spelling unfamiliar words can be improved Teach the whole child. Attend to their emotional and
by checking visually, aurally and from prior physical needs. A child can not learn if they are hungry,
knowledge of the way words work. lacking from sleep, ill, angry, restless or feeling that they
have no value. Remain positive. Every negative
Spelling is about internalising patterns. Lists comment or gesture made by the teacher should be
of words related to content are more difficult to balanced by 40 positives.
learn in this way. Know, adopt and support your whole school literacy
Spelling is developmental. Phonic – plan, policies and programs. Nothing is more effective
Transitional – Independent than the consistency and continuity of a whole school,
Spelling is demonstrated through reading team approach.
and used while writing. Improving literacy is not about a single approach.
Requires daily practice in school time. People make programs work. There are enough
resources, and they are mostly free.
Spelling is learned through practice: Aim high. Your high aspirations and high expectations
lead to educational achievement.
SACAWAC, testing, rote.
Promote and encourage curiosity. A curious student
Learning is often enhanced when students’ seeks understanding, reads a book or accesses a
preferred learning styles are catered for: website, asks questions, researches, responds and
kinaesthetic (clapping and hand patterns), visual creates.
(colour codes), aural (chants and music) Give the teaching of literacy the bulk of your classroom
Spelling, word study and vocabulary are not time and energy. Students should be reading and writing
independent from reading and writing. for different purposes - often.
Word study forms a part of Reading and Adopt Literate Futures philosophy. "Literacy is core
Writing. business for all schools, in every classroom, in every
key learning area and for every teacher of students in
Spelling is recognised from reading Years P-12." Therefore, your ‘Literacy Block’ is from
Spelling is practised when writing 9am to 3pm every day, which makes the teaching of
The learning of spelling can be made more reading, writing, spelling and thinking a part of every
effective when students make and test their own lesson.
generalisations about how words are spelt. Develop your own philosophy. Hang charts around your
classroom that support and help you to live your literacy
This can be related to:
teaching and learning philosophy.
Phonological Knowledge: knowledge of the
Teach reading. Nothing is more important. Make it
sounds enjoyable. Ensure students have success. Begin with a
Visual Knowledge: the way word look. whole text, interpret its implicit and explicit
“Where have you seen that word before? meanings, examine its visuals, paragraphs, sentences,
Does that look right to you?” words and sounds. Then put it back to together again.
Morphemic Knowledge: elements of Plan for success. Use a planning model that aligns your
meaning within words, e.g. “ed” endings. curriculum, teaching, learning and assessment.
Etymological Knowledge: the study of word Do less better! Every topic is worthy of attention and
exploration, but don't be swayed off track by the endless
origins possibilities. Focus your instruction and teach what is
Students’ spellings should be generated from: really necessary to achieve your planned goals.
Their reading (Content and Context Design quality assessment that ensures your tasks are
words) intellectually challenging, authentic, credible and
Their writing (Personal Spelling); and accessible.
Core Words (Content, Context and Write it yourself. The best way to determine the literacy
Developmental) demands of a task is to compose it yourself.
The developmental stages for spelling are: Teach the genres: narrative, exposition, report,
Preliminary, Semi-phonetic, Phonetic, transactional, procedure and recount. Explore their
Transitional and Independent. generic structure and textual features. Discuss the
http://www.learningplace.com.au/uploads/documents/store/resou author’s purpose, the intended audience and the main
rces/res_15432_Up_close_and_personal.doc idea of all texts.
(accessed 21 August 2007) http://www.learningplace.com.au/deliver/content.asp?pid=34887 (21.8.07)
a) It is unreasonable to expect that every child will be able to spell every word correctly every
b) Some students who are gifted with a large visual memory for letter combinations will
successfully negotiate the developmental stages of spelling quicker and more accurately than
c) Every child can be can become and effective speller.
d) Every child can become more effective.
The Developmental Stages of Word Recognition
Because students in general pass through developmental stages of reading and spelling strategic
teaching options can be used to maximise student learning.
Stage Student Behaviour Teaching Strategies
Each phase is accumulative. These are the typical These are the kinds of activities
Students will continue to behaviours of students in teachers can use to maximise the
recognise certain words by sight this phase. students learning.
even as adults.
1. Logographic Recognises own name Develop a sight vocabulary of
Recognises that letters commonly used words
During this stage students are and symbols can Label items around the classroom
developing the idea that there is a represent words or Identify signs around the school
Symbol/Spoken-Word ideas e.g. office, girls and boys toilets.
relationship. Find character names in familiar
2. Phonological Can discriminate sound Learn through multiple modes (visual,
groups within words e.g. aural, kinaesthetic) in fun and
During this stage students realise can identify the initial, interesting contexts:
that certain letters or letter final and medial sounds Stretched Consonants
combinations can be used to in single syllable words. Explosive Consonants
represent sounds. Can attribute letter Blends and Digraphs
symbols to an Rimes (and Onsets): Word wheels,
increasing number of phonic fishing, lists…
sounds and sound Short Vowels
combinations. Long vowels
Two vowels walking
3. Etymological Can identify larger Clap the beats contained in a word.
sound groups (syllables) Learn rules for making words
in multi-syllabic words. plural, past tense and adding ‘-ing’.
Makes generalisations Make explicit and learn
and applies rules. generalisations about prefixes,
suffixes and word origins.
4. Independent Correctly identifies Values correct spelling and is
sounds within multi- recognised for spelling unusual
syllabic words and can and difficult words.
justify their choice.
applies rules in