I hope this week’s edition finds you well.
I’ve been on the road a bit the last month with work, listening to podcasts (I’m late to the party, but a convert), and among other things pondering about the style/content of this newsletter.
Each week I try to get the balance between the work I do in schools/networks (I wonder if this gets repetitive), as well as passing on ideas for helpful resources.
Give me some feedback on how the newsletter has been landing for you, and what content you would like more/less of.
“Writing well is not just an option for young people - it is a necessity. Along with reading comprehension, writing skill is a predictor of academic success and a basic requirement for participation in civic life and in the global economy.”
Writing Next: Effective Writing Strategies to Improve the Writing of Adolescents in Middle and High Schools (2007)
FUNNY OF THE WEEK
In schools we tend to have a few causes that we raise money for across the year, which is a good thing.
To complement the fundraising, it is important that our students get opportunities to read/write/discuss the cause in depth. I’m a big advocate for avoiding a crowded curriculum, but content like this is so authentic. It might also inspire career choices for students, or give them a greater perspective on how the world works.
On the theme of inspiration, you can’t go past Neale Daniher. I would love for him to be our next Australian of the Year. On the FIGHT MND site there are many articles and resources worth exploring.
DrawTogether is a resource that I became aware of during remote learning. New York Times bestselling illustrator, Wendy MacNaughton, is the brains behind the site.
See below for the blurb:
“Now, Draw Together is taking a giant leap, offering an interactive show (from a spectacular 100% handmade studio!), a support program for schools and community organizations, and lots of additional resources from a team of special guests, creators, and educators. This learning universe combines imagination, growth mindset, and the occasional silly dance to teach drawing – while also instilling creativity, emotional self-awareness, and confidence. Kids learn along to Wendy’s ebullient there-are-no-mistakes-in-art instruction – put polka dots on that penguin! Scribble wildly to vent energy! – and come away with a finished drawing and sense of pride and accomplishment, while grown ups get resources and activities to go deeper and provide more support.”
UNSW BRAGG STUDENT PRIZE FOR SCIENCE WRITING
The annual UNSW Bragg Prize is a science essay writing competition open to all Australian high school students in years 7 to 10.
The Bragg Prize is an annual award celebrating the best non-fiction science essay written by a student in years 7 – 10. The topic for this year’s competition is – ‘What is science?’
The UNSW Bragg Student Prize for Science Writing is designed to encourage and celebrate the next generation of science writers, researchers and leaders.
The Bragg Prizes are named after Australia’s very first Nobel Laureates, the father-and-son duo of William Henry Bragg and William Lawrence Bragg. In 1915 they won the Nobel Prize in Physics for their work on the X-ray analysis of crystal structures.
The competition closes 5pm Friday 19 August 2022.
Prizes to be won:
The winner will be awarded a $500 UNSW Bookshop voucher. Two runners up will receive $250 book vouchers.
The school with the most entries will win the following books from NewSouth Publishing:
· How to be a Writer by John Birmingham
· Space Warp by Fred Watson
· Kid Reporter: The Secret to Breaking News by Saffron Howden and Dhana Quinn
· The Best Australian Science Writing 2021 edited by Dyani Lewis
· Gum by Ashley Hay
In James Clear’s most recent newsletter he cites a story in Reader’s Digest by Lillian Moore, which highlights what really motivates people. This has implications for how we need to work with all stakeholders in our school communities.
"A few months after my husband and I moved to a small Massachusetts town I grumbled to a resident about the poor service at the library, hoping she would repeat my complaints to the librarian. The next time I went to the library, the librarian had set aside two bestsellers for me and a new biography for my husband. What's more, she appeared to be genuinely glad to see me.
Later I reported the miraculous change to my friend. "I suppose you told her how poor we thought the service was?" I asked.
"No," she confessed. "In fact—I hope you don't mind—I told her your husband was amazed at the way she had built up this small town library, and that you thought she showed unusually good taste in the new books she ordered."
Source: Reader's Digest
Thanks for reading and see you next week,
P.S Feel free to provide me with any feedback regarding the newsletter, or anything for that matter via email. Also, let me know what topics you would be interested in reading more about.
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