The Ladder …

So we are learning about algebra in Maths and thinking algebraically (is there such a word as this????!) This week, Mary posed a problem for us to think about and work out mathematically …

How many sticks would it take to make a 5 rung ladder?


If we know how many sticks it takes to make a 5 rung ladder, is there a way we can predict how many sticks we would need for a 13 rung ladder, or a 45 rung ladder??

There was some great team work going to solve this mathematical problem and indeed yes, there is an efficient way to calculate how many sticks you would for 13 or 45 rungs .. or in fact, as many rungs as you like.  Here are some photos of us in action:



Can you work out the formula?

Screen printing



All of Grade 5/6 enjoyed working on screen printing. It meant that we had to draw up a stencil and then print over it using screen inks. We managed to do 2 prints on paper and 1 on material. In the photos you can see how its important to apply pressure to the screen to be successful in printing.


OKAY! We have it ‘figured’ out!

IF you have been following our blog, you would know we have been figuring out figurative language! We have explored different types such as similes, metaphors, hyperbole (Mary’s favourite!), personification and dialect. Last week, we played a fast and furious game where we had to grab a sentence and work as a team to decide which type of literary device it was. Fun times and lots of discussion and learning (and the occasional disagreement!) Here are some action shots …







Can you share any great examples of figurative language you have read lately??

Unicef Writing Workshop

Today we had Tienyi, a Young Ambassador from Unicef spend the day with us leading us in a writing project. Three schools have been selected to write a story of welcome for refugees and we were lucky enough to write the middle section of the narrative – the exciting part where the story becomes more complicated. Here is a photo of Tienyi and all of us at the end of a great day talking, planning and writing together:



This week, all the students are writing a blog post on the experience and the best ones will be posted here. Our first one comes from Jackson:

Today I drew an amazing picture of the book we wrote about.  I used lots of different colors in my picture such as grey, black, yellow, brown, red, dark brown and dark blue and light blue. I used these colors to mimic the colors we would see in the ocean, clouds, lightening and a boat and to show the terrible weather in my picture. My picture was of refugees trying to get to Australia from a made up country that the other school thought of.  The refugees are on a boat because there was a terrible war in their country and they were fearful for their lives and the lives of their families and were trying to get somewhere safe to start a new life.

IMG_2095This is Jackson’s group sharing their section of the narrative.

And thoughts from Courtney:

One fine day we were lazing on the beanbags…….UNTIL!!! This lady, who was a young leader of UNICEF, caught our eyes. We spoke about  skillful ways to turn not just boring writing but very boring writing into hot sizzling meat! This gave us the chance to communicate using all different aspects of the writing. We learnt how to write very enthusiastically by doing and listening to what she was saying. She split us into optional groups, one was publishing the writing and the other was drawing the pictures carefully. This day was a very fun day, when we not only learnt to write but learn what the rights of kids are. All kids should get the same support in their everyday lives, no matter what.

It’s not what matters, it’s what counts.

Courtney and Keeley concentrating on the rights of children

Courtney and Keeley concentrating on the rights of children

And from Hannah:

On Tuesday the 27th of May, something very special was happening in 5/6 MK. Tienyi, an ambassador from UNICEF came to our class to do a very exciting writing workshop with us. We knew only a little of how this wonderful day was going to kick off, but we knew we were going to be part of writing a story.  We started off the great day by making a heart contract and exploring who and what a refugee is. We talked about our childhood rights, and those of other countries that are unfortunately not obeying the “UN Convention” of the rights of Children. After recess we read the beginning of the story. We were very lucky that we got to write the middle part of the story. Altogether as a class we brainstormed ideas of how our gripping part of the story was going to take place. We broke off into small groups and Tienyi gave each group a part of the brainstorm to write about. We had to include description, the character’s point of view and dialogue. We continued writing our parts of the story after lunch, and when we had finished our wonderful writing, we read them all out loud to the rest of the class. Half of the class had a very important job of making sure each part of the story flowed and made sense when put all together. The other half of the class were the illustrators. They drew scenes of the story which are going to be sent to a professional illustrator who will recreate our drawings and put them into the book. I had a great, awe-inspiring day full of fun and writing and I am now inspired to write even more.

Hannah and Mal at work

Hannah and Mal at work


Stay tuned for more this week ….


The Skeleton Island Economy


Creative Commons License Photo Credit: Tim Hamilton via Compfight

Welcome to Skeleton Island.

To survive here, you will need a bottle of water each day, a bottle of insect repellent (you should see the mozzies!!) and a fishing rod (well, you have to eat something!!). You have $100 … how many days will you survive?? There is a reason this place is called Skeleton Island you know!

Here is what happened when we ventured out to Skeleton Island:

As you can hear and see, Skeleton Island is a noisy and frenetic place to try and survive. The shopkeepers really know how to maximise profit and how to use supply and demand to their advantage.

What did you learn when selling or surviving on Skeleton Island?