Category Archives: Parental Musings

Literacy First

Well I sort of fell of the blog recently, my life became exceptionally busy with additional paid work, and a new volunteer opportunity.

You see I volunteered to become a Reading Tutor at my child’s Public Primary School. It’s a school that is focusing on putting Literacy First this year. So I go in and spend a morning with students, listening to them read, and working with them building up the skills and confidence to read.  It is incredibly enriching for me, a Librarian and voracious reader. I’ve got a voracious reader as a child, (a blessing I count each and every reading session I do), who took to reading like a child who loves books. They read daily, often the first to pull up a chair at school when they arrive, pull out the one of three books they take with them, and start reading.

But the students I’m working with, don’t have the same opportunities to books as my child and I did. They exist in a world of tablets, games consoles, and mobile phones. I talk with these students about any reading they might have done, and listen to them tell me otherwise.

So when I came across this article, I was heartened to see, that turnarounds in literacy are beginning to happen. It makes me more determined to turn up each week and help out. I do believe that if we can turn more children onto the magic of reading, we will see improvement across their academic careers.


How will you prepare for the future?

the future is knocking

For inspiration and ideas please go to the Zero-Waste Chef.

How to Cope With Environmental Guilt Syndrome (EGS)

A really great reminder, by the Zero-Waste Chef,  for those of us who are trying to make the world a better place, but aren’t quite living up to our own self imposed model of it.

Study Skills: Successful study for parents

Some great suggestions on  Study Skills: Successful study for parents.

I know I was a mature age student with a family when I went back to study for my Library qualifications. It was the hardest but most rewarding course I’ve done, juggling partner, child and study, but so worth it.

person writing on white book

Photo by on

365 Star Wars

Okay so I’ve been a fan of Star Wars for four decades, ever since I discovered my brother playing the movie on his Beta Max video player. And I was like, what is this movie? This is like the best thing I have ever seen. I still feel a joy when I hear the music.

But you know for a long time, Star Wars was really a boys own adventure. As a die hard Science Fiction fan, I’ve never let this get in the way of me enjoying the adventure but……I understand how hard it is, to rock up to an event, look around and realise you’re the only woman there.

So imagine my delight when I found 365 Star Wars, a site dedicated to celebrating the female influence on the Star Wars Universe. I was so excited I wanted to share it with you too….

Lifelong Learners and Effective Teaching

I’m a lifelong learner, I just can’t help but be curious about things, and so I set out to seek the information I need to develop and understanding. So when I came across first this article Feedback to support Lifelong Learning which maintains that there is a key influence on students achievement when teacher’s provide feedback.

What I found really exciting was this paragraph:

A key proposition of Hattie and Timperley’s (2007) feedback model is that feedback doesn’t only answer ‘How am I going?’ (feedback), but also ‘Where am I going?’ (feed up), and ‘Where to next?’ (feed forward). This can be supported by communicating learning intentions, with carefully crafted success criteria that are accessible to learners and allow students the opportunity to self-regulate in moving forward.

My own child’s teacher this year has asked for feedback on the way they teach the class, allowing each student to reflect on what the teacher is doing well, what areas they might need to improve on and hopes for the future. This has really engaged my own child, and it was a great area for us to discuss what a great teacher should be doing.

There is a great podcast too on this subject on what a good teacher should do.

How to apologise to your students (and everyone else)

The Kid Whisperer posted a great post on how to apologise to your students. When I read the proposed script, I thought hey this could work in a workplace, or even at home. No one wants to be yelled at, and I love the idea that we need to model a constructive approach to apologies.

Tales from the Library – Six years ago

Almost six years ago I wrote Tales from the Library.

This was a moment of transition for us as a family as both my partner and I were re evaluating what we wanted to do with our lives. My partner re trained as a Secondary School Teacher and I went back and graduated as a Librarian. But all of this was in the future. I am so grateful that even back then I knew what a valuable asset a Library was to a community.

Where were you six years ago?

Libraries making life better

When US based news site Buzzfeed asked readers how their local library inspired change in their lives, they collated an inspiring collection of anecdotes from readers near and far.
From the dyslexic student who was supported to read regularly, the people who found a safe space to escape to, or the therapy dog who visited children each Thursday, it’s gratifying proof of the important role libraries play in society.  Read these here.

To the White Parents of my Black Son’s Friends

Wow what an article from A Musing Maralee. The fact we all need to talk about racism with our children is so important in dealing with it.

“So white parents, please talk to your kids about racism. If they see my son being bullied or called racist names, they need to stand with him. They need to understand how threatening that is and not just something to be laughed off. If your child is with my child playing soccer at the park and the police drive by, tell your child to stay. Just stay right there with my son. Be a witness. In that situation, be extra polite, extra respectful. Don’t run and don’t leave my son by himself. “


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