Indigenous activities : You me : Our Place

13 May

After a long break from my blog, being as I have been relief teaching, I noticed two things.

1. 20,000 people have viewed my blog! A big thank you!

2. Most of the inquiries were to do with Indigenous activities and experiences with young children and I have to admit I look for the very same things!

So.. I was delighted when I found a book called You me : Our place by Leonie Norrrington and illustrated by Dee Huxley

I have found many teacher support notes which I have added to this post

I am yet to try some of the activities with children, but this is first on my list!

3. This is a lovely review by The Book Chook author Susan Stephenson


2. this is a wonderful site where you can read about the author and her loves and passions

you me our place 1                           you me our place 2               you me our place 3





9 Jul

I love the blog crayons and milk! What talent and creativity!

Teachers Quiver Full

I was thinking today about the amazing blogs I follow. There are some truly talented people out there in Blog world! So incredibly gifted and the best part is that they share their ideas with everyone!

1.I have been following Crayons and Milk and really if I just put up the photos of her amazing creations they speak for themselves!


2. Counting Coconuts is another blog I love. I appreciate the great ideas on this blog and as I am about to embark on a full time Kindergarten (maternity leave) job I am looking forward to implementing some of the activities


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I have moved to a new blog!

25 Jan


If anyone is out there?? I have moved my blog and renamed it.

I thought by adding the word ‘teachers’ it would help identify it as something to do with children and learning!

See you over there!

My new blog address is



On a roll with recycling!

21 Jan

Today I feel  inspired to continue with recycling!  The boys are  adults now and I have this box that says ‘One Day I Will  Find A Use For That!’ It has all of those all important toys that came out of chocolate eggs or from those wonderful glass stands in shopping centres, where your children looked at you with those pleading eyes and how could you not pop in a few cents to make them happy! And  you knew at the time you would eventually find them down the back of the couch or strewn over their bedroom floor! Well, finally after much thought I found a way to not only use them but apply educational purpose to them as well!

I hunted around in my cupboard and found some glass jam jars, I started thinking as I had so many I could make an alphabet display for a young child’s bedroom or a classroom. So I set to work. I found some sticky alphabet labels from those cheap $2 dollar stores, my son’s pyjamas (he had grown out of ) and I was ready to go!

Equipment you will need:

a. Glass jars and lids (26)

b. Little toys

c. Material

d. A large lid to use as a stencil with the material

e. Craft glue

f. Sticky labels

1. Collect the bottles (26).

2. Cut a circle of material larger than the lid and glue the material on the lid. I found a tutorial that suggested you make little nicks around the edge of the material  to assist with the gluing process. If you are like me,  I would cover them all with the same material!


3. I then glued the sticky alphabet letters onto the jars and started sorting all of the toys.

These amazing puppets can be purchased from (

4. The finished product!

I used these in a Kindergarten with whole groups and small groups of children. We talked about all the toys inside and the initial sound of the first letter. In small groups I used the toys to develop memory skills by removing one item (while they were not looking!) and observing if they could remember which piece was missing. What I love about these jars is that  over the course of the year more toys can be added. I have used a literacy apron with them and the children have to figure out the clues i.e I have something in my pocket and it starts with an a, it is very big, people are able to ride in it, it has wings…..etc!

Have fun, I did!

Time to start posting again!

21 Jan

I have realized the time has just flown by over the holiday break and it is well and truly time to put some more posts on my blog! When I look at other people’s blogs I realize I have been seriously napping!!! This story bag has a special meaning to me. On my first ever prac at a school I was blessed to be placed with the  most amazing teacher. She allowed me to fly with my ideas and then she wrapped all of my ideas up and helped me present them in a great way! I will always be grateful to her!

The children in the class were Kindergarten age and they had been looking at different artists over the term. I decided to look at Vincent van Gogh as they had talked about this artist and his work. Okay I will be back in a minute!

I’m back! I found a large easel at Uni and pushed it into my Getz! Then I found a print of the painting ‘Bedroom at Arles’. My son did TEE art so he had paintbrushes, paint, a pallet and a canvas. I offered all sorts of bribes and he agreed to draw an outline of the painting onto the canvas! I was thinking how you could draw it yourself if you didn’t have someone who is talented in that area! After searching the net, I found that you can trace on to canvas using graphite paper! Sorry I am off again! I will be back shortly!!!

1. The all important story bag!

2. I took the easel into school, with some paints, a pallet, some brushes and the canvas with the drawing. We talked about why artists use easels and how this gives them the freedom to draw and paint inside and outside. We discussed the way the artists mixed their own colours, and sketched their plans and ideas onto the canvas. We then looked at the picture and talked about what was in the room and what their room looked like at home. We provided paper and pastels for the children to recreate their bedroom with all the different features that made their room special.

Thanks to the talents of my son! I did confess to the children that my son had sketched the drawing!

3. I found this book in a sale, but after some investigation I have finally found where you can buy it! It is produced in France and there are a few more in the series.

This book is lovely as it is written in a diary style through the eyes of the artist.I used this book as a guide, as it provided lots of ideas and thought provoking questions. When I was looking for the book, I noticed the publishers have added some wonderful activities and teaching resources that I must share with you as they are excellent.

4. I created a word document with the bedroom walls and the floor. I then applied colour, printed  and enlarged it to A3. I photocopied and enlarged a print of the room, cut out some of the objects in the room and laminated everything! I placed velco dots on the objects and on the layout, for children to recreate the room.

I also made a puzzle, just for fun!

I found this colouring book in a $2 store. I have to say I am not really into colouring in but just sometimes it is quite relaxing for children. The book is filled with colouring sheets from the old masters including 2 from The Bedroom at Arles.

Some websites that offer lessons and teaching resources:

Younger children—spaces-lesson-plan/

Older children

Catch you real soon! I hope to move this blog to Word Press in the near future. I will keep you posted!!

Back to my story bags! Pirates!

21 Jan

Here I am back again with my story bags! When I was on a prac at a primary school in my second year of Uni the Kindergarten children showed a great deal of interest in pirates. So I found the book ‘Tough Boris’ by my favourite author, Mem Fox and set to work to plan an outdoor  pirate activity, that would of course, incorporate math language(following the treasure map directions) and society and environment learning outcomes and themes (history and past times).

1. First of course the story bag! I have realized now, looking back, that I cannot remember where I found the image of the pirate map (apologies to the creator of the map, I will keep looking and add the info).

2. As I have young men in the house, their boots, which we had used on a trip to Europe, were taken out of the cupboard,  traced around onto black paper and laminated! ( I will explain!!)

3.This is the strange part I have to admit! I decided to do the whole dressing up and the talk like a pirate thing! I am not given to dressing up but I have found I do things out of my comfort zone when children are involved! I had a long black coat, a pirate hat from a toy store, a stripey black and white tshirt and a red scarf!

4 I had taken a photo of the outside play area and having an artistic son he drew all  the recognizable landmarks. He was keen to burn the edges of the map to make it look authentic! He was saying, “this is so cool I remember doing this with you years ago”. He got a bit carried away and burnt a rather large section, ah well! We did the whole coffee bag thing and voila our map!

5. I found an old wooden box and decorated it with pirate stickers. The $2 dollar stores are so handy for jewels! I found some chocolate gold coins (enough for everyone) this can be an issue (allergies) so I also had gold coin cut outs just in case.

6. I had paced out how many steps it would take to reach the treasure (bearing in mind they would be small steps!)The treasure  had been placed in an old rowing boat in the sandpit ! I lay  ’dress up clothes’ strategically around the boat and hid the treasure box out of sight! The scene was set!

I came inside and using my good old pirate voice I called the children outside to see if we could find the treasure before Captain Long John Silver came back!

We had a wonderful time, and as the Kindergarten had two groups we got to do it again the next day!


A treasure box made with felt with the poem:

‘Pirate Pirate on the ship’

‘How many pieces did you get?’

The children counted out the pieces as I lay them in the box. They then played  with them with a friend.

We played pirate tic tac toe with these wooden toys I found in Paddy’s markets in Sydney! ( Just start the virtual tour and turn a little to the right and there is the shop!

Books :

I wish I had a pirate suit (Pamela Allen)

The great pirate activity book (Deri Robins/George Buchanan)

Pirate things to make and do (Usborne Activites) This is where I found my stickers for the treasure box.

Websites: This blog has a wonderful array of creative ideas (you will need to use the translate option as it is in french!)

A different project

21 Jan

I have made lots of literacy bags, so I will  do something different and then go back to them! Through the summer break from Uni I discovered The Crafty Crow ( ).

I poured over this site for weeks. It was wonderful hopping in and out of wonderful magical worlds of craft, sewing and  knitting so many people have created. Most of the blogs are from America and the weather there was so chilly, it made the summer days here bearable!

One of my favourite blogs is I am in awe at the projects this amazing woman creates. One of my favourites are the apples made from recycled drink bottles. I couldn’t see a tutorial so I created one of my own.

Equipment you will need:

a. Two one litre bottles (to make one apple)

b. A sharp craft knife

c. Good sharp craft scissors

d. A range of coloured tissue papers

e. Leaves, pipe cleaners and coloured card

f. Tape (to seal the sides)

1. First you take  your  2 one litre bottles. Lay the bottle down on a wooden board. Using a sharp craft knife make an incision about 5-6cms  from the base of the bottle (this will give you a little lip to join the 2 halves). Use the knife or scissors to cut around the bottle until you have 2 halves.

2. This is the adult only bit!! In one half pierce a hole in the middle of the plastic to provide  a place for the ‘apple stalk’. When you are attempting to make the hole I found that if you used a winding method you are able to control the size of the hole. As I was doing this I was thinking how hard plastic is to break down. I think my contribution (small that it is) will be to make an orchard of fruit to prevent at least some plastic going into our waste system! Now I just have to find a use for the rest of the bottle! I have seen people turn the bottle upside down,pierce small holes in the side  and grow herbs in them!

3. You could use a pipe cleaner for the stalk, card or for fun I put in a real leaf!

4. I purchased a range of tissue papers, red, dark green, light green. I am still on the lookout for any other shades of these colours.

5. I took a quarter of the sheet for each half and filled them to the top.

6. I then slotted one half into the other. After making a few I found some slotted in easier than others so I taped them just to make sure they stayed together.

Have fun but watch out they are addictive! I have already started making little apples. I found myself going through the water bottle aisle looking at different bases on bottles and wondering if I could make other fruit!!

I did find a tutorial on these apples! This tutorial shows a neat way of hanging the apples up to display them!