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Think Tank Tinker

Stimulating, engaging and promoting thinking beyond the lesson of the day - that's the support material I seek to produce in the English, Maths and Humanities areas. As a resource manager and classroom teacher for over 30 years, I want to offer practical, get-to-the-point material to broaden, challenge and deepen understanding, provide for a range of skill levels, and make teaching and learning stimulating and enjoyable.

Stimulating, engaging and promoting thinking beyond the lesson of the day - that's the support material I seek to produce in the English, Maths and Humanities areas. As a resource manager and classroom teacher for over 30 years, I want to offer practical, get-to-the-point material to broaden, challenge and deepen understanding, provide for a range of skill levels, and make teaching and learning stimulating and enjoyable.
STAND BY ME Study Guide
jaynorth

STAND BY ME Study Guide

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Nine page handout for use in the study of the classic film about friendship and change, with examination of plot characters and themes. Students undertake writing activities under the following - interpreting, justifying, comparing and contrasting.
KATH AND KIM - Australian Comedy In Close-Up
jaynorth

KATH AND KIM - Australian Comedy In Close-Up

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Three part resource analyzing the distinctive elements of Australian humor. The focus is on the comedic techniques of satire and parody, using the hit television series, “Kath and Kim,” as the focus. The powerpoint is a colorful animated presentation covering (i) the premise (ii) analysis of characters (iii) conflicts and relationships as a source of comedy and social comment (iv) the satire as a slice-of-suburban life /mockumentary sending up ignorant consumerism, cultural insensitivity and small mindedness. (v) the main comedic techniques with examples from the dialogue and plotting (vi) use of idiomatic language The handout presents a character summary of the powerpoint findings, and uses the episode OLD as a case study to examine the elements of the humour. The third item is an annotated exempar of an analystical essay about the episode OLD, discussing characterization, dialogue and themes in the satire. It explains the social targets and the cultural assumptions.
Jason and the Argonauts
jaynorth

Jason and the Argonauts

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Four items to use with the film JASON AND THE ARGONAUTS 1. Assessment task with exemplar film review 2.Comprehension handout 3. Crossword handout 4. Word search handout
The Picture of Dorian Gray - Key Quotes Student Handout
jaynorth

The Picture of Dorian Gray - Key Quotes Student Handout

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Handout sheet for discussion and analysis on Oscar Wilde's chief character quotes in "The Picture of Dorian Gray." Useful for analysing Wilde's witty inversion of the superficial and the profound, and the tragic perspective of the character's doomed efforts to retain that which is impossible - the lustre of youth and the invincible appeal of physical beauty.
Sexism In Advertising - Exemplars, Discussion Stimulus and Activites
jaynorth

Sexism In Advertising - Exemplars, Discussion Stimulus and Activites

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Suited to Years 10 to 12, this four page activities handout examines specific advertising that is sexist and features representations based on stereotyping and narrow gender roles. It contains 1. exemplar analyses of print advertisements displaying gender bias 2. student responses to common gender stereotypes 3. guidance on paragraph writing 4. exercises in paragraph responses to sexist advertisements
THE CRUCIBLE ~ Writing Analytical Essay Responses
jaynorth

THE CRUCIBLE ~ Writing Analytical Essay Responses

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Here is a resource parcel for your senior students aimed at giving them extensive practical help in responding in essay form to the characters and themes of Arthur miller's THE CRUCIBLE. It consists of six items which can be used together as culmination of a unit on the play prior to students writing their own analytical response. This is practical material aimed at enabling your students to practice their writing skills using stimulating exemplars and scaffolded handouts with construction guidelines and content prompts. 1. A closely annotated exemplar of a top standard formal essay on the themes of THE CRUCIBLE, with explanatory pointers on structure, content and wording 2. A powerpoint containing do's and don'ts when students write their essay - it contains specific parts of THE CRUCIBLE to make the points 3.Four scaffolded practice essay handouts - two on characters and two on themes. These are colour coded to guide construction, and have prompt points to assist in the content
OPTICAL ILLUSIONS - Things Are Not Always What They Seem        (useful for "To Kill A Mockingbird")
jaynorth

OPTICAL ILLUSIONS - Things Are Not Always What They Seem (useful for "To Kill A Mockingbird")

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For English and historyteachers and values educators, this power point resource is a pre-timed examination of how we perceive the world, containing stills, animation and challenges for the class to respond to. It is approximately four minutes in length, featuring some of history's best examples of visual illusions, and examines how we see the world in ways that can be inaccurate and distorted. The final slides cover stereotyping and false judgements. The presentation will be useful as a stimulus / starter, getting students to consider how perception and reality are not always the same. Useful for literature studies on racial attitudes, discrimination based on perceived difference and flawed thinking leading to injustice. For example - "To Kill A Mockingbird," "1984," "Brave New World," "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" Useful for values classes in social studies, philosophy and ethics classes.
AUSTRALIAN HUMOUR  - A Powerpoint on Comedy in Australia
jaynorth

AUSTRALIAN HUMOUR - A Powerpoint on Comedy in Australia

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Powerpoint covering 1. What distinctive elements make up the distinctive Australian sense of humour - irreverence / class difference / city and country perspectives 2. Case Study - Classic Australian cartoon ("Stop Laughing this is serious!") 3. Case Study - The Bush Comic (George Wallace) 4. Political correctness and Australian humour The material can be used in whole or part as the basis of a single lesson. There are lots of opportunities for direct note taking practice, class discussion and debate over whether there really is an Australian style of humour, and whether political correctness has eroded its distinctiveness
CREATIVE WRITING TECHNIQUES - Power Point, Exemplar, Comprehension, Assessment
jaynorth

CREATIVE WRITING TECHNIQUES - Power Point, Exemplar, Comprehension, Assessment

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This is a middle school creative writing lesson and (practice / homework?) assessment task. The power point and student diagrammatic handout gives an outline of main techniques in creative writing. The exemplar and comprehension task provides a rich example of descriptive writing and the questions tied to targeted concepts which are themselves explained (Justify, Explain etc). The assessment task provides for a range of student abilities, with an outline of suggestions about what to write about in the descriptive passage. The criteria for the writing task is explained in simple language to provide student feedback.
JURASSIC PARK Original Film Study Notes
jaynorth

JURASSIC PARK Original Film Study Notes

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A four page handout on the original film, containing close exercise on the plot, comparing and contrasting John Hammond and Victor Frankenstein, and an enquiry of central quotes, who said them and their significance.
POETRY COMPREHENSION Social Conscience Poetry - Reading for Meaning
jaynorth

POETRY COMPREHENSION Social Conscience Poetry - Reading for Meaning

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STREETS OF LONDON Multiple Choice Levels of Meaning Listening and Reading Stimulus and Test Suitable for early middle school Years 7/8/9 Theme of Social Commentary and Social Protest. Along with a dramatic cover sheet with the song lyrics of Ralf McTell's famous ballad urging us to look and see the hardships of the underclass around us, there are 20 questions, structured as follows 1. Five "Right There" specific / literal questions 2. Five "Gather the Information" questions requiring longer reading across the entire text. 3. 10 Inferential questions based on the implied meaning and the writer's intentions.
War Poetry AND THE BAND PLAYED WALTZING MATILDA Comprehension and Extension
jaynorth

War Poetry AND THE BAND PLAYED WALTZING MATILDA Comprehension and Extension

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Here are two handout items on the anti-war poem / song lyric AND THE BAND PLAYED WALTZING MATILDA by Eric Bogle. The first contain the text of the poem / lyric which use has shown works best by playing the video version from Youtube to being to life this immensely powerful and moving lyric. There are a series of comprehension questions which can be used for formal assessment or group discussion. The letter writing task contains an example of a letter to the editor about the thematic relevance and literary qualities of the poem. The student is then provided with a question task of their own to complete on a war poem of their choice.
BOY - Comprehension and Vocabulary Study Guide
jaynorth

BOY - Comprehension and Vocabulary Study Guide

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This is a practical study guide for Roald Dahl’s “Boy.” It is an 8 page handout* that will guide students through the plot, characters and themes of the autobiography, and is presented in a visually appealing way to make the analysis enjoyable, while building vocabulary (significant words and their meanings are provided), challenging deeper reading of the text and creative exercises. The emphasis in this resource is a practical comprehension and vocabulary unit that is self-working for students who read ahead, and is able to be immediately used without teacher explanation because of direct, clear activities. The activities are comprehension questions for each chapter vocabulary and meaning for each chapter grammatical exercises to identify parts of speech creative questions to develop the ideas in the memoir the pages are numbered - a pet issue with me to avoid time wasting “where are we?” questions and immediate “go to” in giving class instructions
THE OUTSIDERS Unit of Work including study guide, activities and assessment
jaynorth

THE OUTSIDERS Unit of Work including study guide, activities and assessment

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This is a unit that would cover approximately four to five weeks, involving reading the S E Hinton novel, viewing the film, and completing the study guide questions on plot, characters, theme. There are a number of practice tests that would take a lesson each, in which students practice the core skills of justifying, comparing, contrasting and drawing their own conclusions. An oral assessment task is also included, with an exemplar (annotated) of a student script.
SPELLING COURSE 15 Weeks
jaynorth

SPELLING COURSE 15 Weeks

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These weekly handouts are for middle school use. They comprise a weekly handout with alphabetically listed words based on themes such as cities, emotion and food. Each word has a meaning, a designated common usage part of speech and an accompanying chart shows the word again, with space for a syllable breakdown to aid pronunciation, and spaces for write outs to practice correct spelling.
WRECK OF THE EDMUND FITZGERALD Ballad and Comprehension
jaynorth

WRECK OF THE EDMUND FITZGERALD Ballad and Comprehension

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Gordon Lightfoot's stirring ballad THE WRECK OF THE EDMUND FITZGERALD is a powerful tool to use when teaching the ballad form. The enthralling and terrible tale of the mighty transport ship that never made it across Lake Superior in one of Canada's greatest naval disasters is presented here as 1. a film clip, MP4 with the full lyrics 2. student handout with the lyrics and comprehension questions
JAMES  by Billy Joel Poetry and Creative Writing
jaynorth

JAMES by Billy Joel Poetry and Creative Writing

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This is intended as a N A P L A N or general classroom activity to get students to respond to the multiple levels of a poem and to respond in a structured way to indicate their understanding. On the theme of growing up, friendship and the influence of peers on our development, here is a beautiful ballad about a childhood friendship by Billy Joel brought to life to show the way we change and grow apart. The lyric in full is given along with a video of the performance of the lyric.
THE HIGHWAYMEN  The Ballad - Lesson of Work
jaynorth

THE HIGHWAYMEN The Ballad - Lesson of Work

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This is a lesson in itself, or an assessment item as preferred. Alfred Noyes' celebrated ballad THE HIGHWAYMAN in full. Visually realised with the text is fully annotated, with difficult words explained in side bars. Reading comprehension about literary elements. Then a letter writing exercise on point of view. Do play the best recording of the poem by PHIL OCHS obtainable on You Tube as part of your presentation.