Youth Class Blog

Just another weblog

Medicine -from the doctor or from the bush?

Link to the VILC video on An Ambulance Paramedic-story of a day in the life of a young ambulance paramedic and the long night shift she works. What are the hard things about her job? Would you like to work at night? What would be the advantages and the disadvantages?

Ooh look at this news article about YUMMY foods to eat!! I am not kidding. Insects are nutritious!

What does Jane and Fern have to say about some of the insects we see on display in the markets in Thailand? Read this article and write a comment on this blog post.

Students in 2D:- as part of your assessment for the subject, “Demonstrate understanding of a written information report”, please read this news article and comment on the following questions:

  1. What is this news article about?
  2. What are some of the names of the insects?
  3. Write some of the details-who eats this insect, how does it taste or how do they cook it?

I look forward to reading your comments.


Here is some reading about a photographer who lives in the outback. I like listening to this story.

Dan McIntosh



Medicine is for illness, relief and safety…what else?

This week our class will be learning some English about medicine.
It can be frightening to go to the doctor when you are feeling sick, and you don’t know English.
We will be working on a few different websites. Learn the words condition and treatment.
VILC has a few listening exercises about ‘living with medicines’ and ‘Going to the hospital’.

Listen to this recording about medicine labels
Next we will look at the website Better Health.
Read about conditions and treatments- write down a few of these words-they are in alphabetical order. Look at the breakfast menus on the healthy living tab!! Warning- you might feel hungry!!
There is a lot of information on this topic. Another good website is Teens Health -
work together and find something that interests you to read and write notes about.

Jane will help you with this lesson

Swimming Safety

Welcome back to Swinburne after the holidays. I have had a great few weeks off work to do my own thing. I went away to the beach for a few days. It was too cold to swim, but the water looked so still and clear. Some days were hot. I stayed at home and did a lot of gardening. It was perfect weather for this.

We will talk about swimming safety now. The season is getting warmer, and some of you will want to dive into the water to cool off. Lets look at some questions:

How do you learn to swim?
What are the challenges that new migrants and refugees face when they go near water?
How can we avoid tragedy?

Lets listen to some of the students in 2D who give us advice about water safety.
Firstly, Isbella wants to tell us about the National Drowning Report for the 2014 year.

Here is Cung talking about safety around the pool.

Moo Eh talks about swimming lessons. She says it is never too late to learn. Listen to what she says-To Moo Eh

Juma talks about the dangers near water. Listen to his advice.

Achan has some advice on what to do if you are swimming in rivers and dams. Listen to Achan.

Here are some written texts about water safety on the VILC website. Look at the ten commandments of surf swimming.

  • Do Not swim at beaches not patrolled by lifeguards or lifesavers.
    Do Not bathe outside the red and yellow flags which mark the safe swimming area.
    Do Not bathe directly after a meal or under the influence of alcohol.
    Do Not bathe when beach is closed. Observe the visual sign “Danger – Reserve closed to bathing” and the red flag.
    Do Not bathe where there are no safety flags in position.
    Do Not get excited if caught in a current or undertow, but raise one arm up and float until help arrives.
    Do Not struggle if seized with a cramp, but raise your arm for help, float and keep the affected parts of your body perfectly still.
    Do Not go out far when a yellow flag is flying, it means the surf is dangerous.
    Do Not bathe if unsure of surf conditions, but seek the advice of the lifeguard or lifesaver.
    Do Not struggle against a rip or current, but swim diagonally across it.

Here is a recent news article about the national drowning report for 2014.

Here is a short film about the RIPS which are currents of strong water.

Statistics, People and Places

Hi everyone in the youth class. I hope you had a great weekend. It is Spring time and the weather in Melbourne is sometimes very beautiful, warm and sunny. At night it can still be cold though. I love to eat a picnic outside in this weather. I love going to the parks and gardens. It is great weather for camping, fishing and exploring new places. Will you be going somewhere in the holidays? Will you go to see new places around Melbourne or maybe in the country?

Here are some things people like to do on holidays. Click on this link to “Things to do in Victoria”

Choose 5 places you would like to visit and write an email saying why you want to go to these places. What do you want to see? You can write 5 things about 5 different places you would like to see.

Have a look at the statistics of the Australian population on the ABS website. Look at the dots on the capital cities. Write the population of people who live in the major cities around Australia.

Decimals and numeracy

Hi students in 2D. I hope you have had a good weekend. It is wonderful to welcome our two new volunteers to our class today. I hope you can get to know them.


This is a link to the  AMEP survey.


Today we did some work on Numeracy. This is another word for maths. Go to the BBC SKillswise website. We need to learn about decimals. Click on the box ‘PLACE VALUE’. Work on these Quizzes.


Click on the word  VILC and log in with the username and password.

Winter Living – Food, fashion, fun

July and August in Melbourne is midwinter. It’s cold and we need to find ways to keep active, healthy and warm. To do this, there are many things to do.

1.Heating- houses, our clothes we wear.Have a look at these 8 fashions to keep warm in winter. Write an email to a friend about what someone in the class is wearing today, the person who receives the email must reply with the name of the person who they think it is. Please cc to Jane. Thanks.

Health-food -we eat healthy warm food to stay warm strong and fit. We eat to have energy and be fit so that we can do work.

2.What we do- jobs to do in winter. Write another email to a different friend in the class today and tell them about the jobs you did on the weekend. How did you keep warm?

Dear Sian,

On the weekend I was very busy. I had to sweep and mop the floor. I had to …………………………………………………………………….I hope you had a good weekend too, from Jane.

Reply to the email and tell them what jobs you had to do on the weekend.
Learn some English grammar on English Media Lab and you will keep your brain active.

Go to this padlet and write a few sentences about what you love about winter.

I hope you stay healthy, fit and warm this winter!

Thanks for your hard work today everyone.Jane

Using Comics in class

Today we learned about where students can make their own avatar and comic strips. This was an exciting lesson to learn on the computer. We had lots of laughs today as students made a picture of themselves-(An avatar)

It is lovely to see all the students joining in and having fun. I hope to see some more bitstrips on the website in the youth class.

Thanks from Jane

Tag Questions

Melbourne in May

Hi everyone,

Welcome to the Youth Class Blog. Many of the students in our class want to learn new skills for learning English so they can feel confident to walk out into the community and be independent.

This week we will be learning about housing and how to find a house to rent. Next week we will walk to the real estate agent and talk to them.

Here is the link to the real estate website. You can refine your search by choosing from the drop down boxes on the left hand side.

  • Property type – house or units,
  • min price pw= minimum price per week
  • include surrounding areas-tick box
  • click update

2 Nioka Street, Chadstone, Vic 3148

What sort of questions would you ask at the Real Estate agents?

Crime and criminals-descriptions

In this lesson we will look at how to describe people.

If you were in a situation where you had to report someone, you need to know how to describe them.






Here are some listening exercises on crime.




VILC and Famous Someone

Log in to VILC using the current username and password.

Click on: Listen to this, then Melbourne on $10.  Go down to Podcast 5, “Let’s see something new”.


  • Welcome to Melbourne on $10. Podcast 5 Let’s see something new!


  • Seeing great art and being a part of cultural events doesn’t have to cost a fortune. In fact it might not even cost $10! 
  • Start at Federation Square, which is renowned for its colourful architecture.
  • Downstairs you’ll find the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, ACMI. 
  • Admission to the ACMI general exhibition is free. 
  • It’s set on an old railway station. 
  • The displays there will have you seeing the world in a whole new way.

In our next project for computer lesson we will research a topic on someone or something famous.

We must all agree on this before we begin. Please look at the following list and we can decide together which topic you would like to do.


Have a look at some links using google.



NGV Melbourne

The Ian Potter Art Gallery, Federation Square, Melbourne. Our class will go to the NGV in Melbourne next week. This is a great place to go to see some amazing art by some famous artists. We can learn about early Australian history and the story of settlement in Melbourne one hundred years ago.

Barak, respected elder
The powerful portrait of Wurundjeri elder William Barak (c.1824-1903) is a highly significant painting within the Gallery’s display of portraits from the late nineteenth century. Painted by Victor de Pury in 1899, the portrait is on loan to the National Portrait Gallery from a private collection.

Barak was a skilled artist. His drawings, collected by museums in Europe and Australia, reflect his unique visual language and act as a powerful record of his culture.

Arthur Streeton discovered the view of the Hawkesbury River that became the subject of a series of large-scale works, including

The purple noon’s transparent might




Tom Roberts' Shearing the rams, 1890.

Tom Roberts was born in 1856 at Dorchester, Dorset England. He arrived in Australia in 1869 and settled in Collingwood, Melbourne. He studied at the Carlton School of Design and at the National Gallery School before returning to London. His best work was produced in Australia in the late 1880′s and 1890′s. His most famous commission was the painting of the Official Opening of the first Australian Federal Parliament required over 250 individual portraits. He died in 1931.


Australia 1855 – 1917

oil on canvas (triptych)


This triptych is considered one of the masterpieces of Australian art.


The first panel, represents the free-selector, who has ventured into the bush with his wife, and has chosen the bushland property for their future home.

The second, centre panel, represents the settled landscape.

The third panel, represents some time in the distant future.

Grace Cossington Smith (-1984), artist, was born on 20 April 1892 at Cossington, Neutral Bay, Sydney, second of five children.
Here is a biography.

Standing cup and cover  (c. 1870)

Standing cup and cover (c. 1870)


John Glover,
The River Nile, Van Diemen’s Land, c.1838
Oil on canvas, 76.2 x 114.3 cm
National Gallery of Victoria
In the foyer in the Ian Potter Centre you will see this art installation.
Read some of the comments made on the sticks that make up up this big eagles’ nest. It’s called: Bunjil’s Nest – a collaborative project by school students around Melbourne. ‘Using the eagle’s nest as a symbol of caring and nurturing, students participated in a NGV statewide project to construct a nest from sticks written with their individual messages of hope for a sustainable future.’

























Here is a link to our photos from our excursion.

Tools We Like to Use


VicTESOL conference


For my presentation this week at the VicTESOL conference I will be showing and highlighting some of the examples of the open source software available on the net, and some of the many features in this blog.

This image illustrates many of the tools that teachers are using in their online environment(PLE) . Many of these can be used in blogs or in their LMS. We use WebCT, and are transferring to Blackboard soon. Please also have a look at the educators PLN

Here is an example of using a survey.

(Or for mobile users read the QR code above to link to the survey).

Please do my Survey on how you think you would use these Web2 tools in your classroom.
Can you think of ways to use these tools to cover different subject/module you are teaching?
Please look at this link by Australian Flexible Delivery Framework.
Could you use these tools as a method of assessment? (Observation, evidence of student engagement & participation, achievement)?
I love to learn online. I went to a PD recently (RSCON3)and I’m constantly inspired by educators around the world. It is (still) amazing to me that I can have such fantastic PLN (Personal Learning Network) of people learning technology and embedding it into teaching and learning. You can read my comments about this on my blog ‘Plunging in Deep,Digital Education‘ about 10 things from #RSCON3. What educators are doing now are they are talking about critical thinking in the classroom and breaking down the walls to make flat classrooms and getting students to make social change, step by step. One of the keynotes at the RSCON3 conference was #chucksandy. It is worth having a listen to the Elluminate recordings on the website.
teachers are using technology to create learning across the globe and share, compare, discuss, research, discover,present, tweet, blog, be active, create change and learn together for the good of equality, health and education world wide. Teachers and students must be learning the technologies for teaching and learning as these are our tools of the future.
I hope you are inspired.


Wallwisher to share experiences. What do you want to use and why?

Here is the link to more of my presentations using slideshare. You can upload your Powerpoint files to this and display them like this. Many presenters use this tool and you can search for more here.

Wash the cl_th_s.

View more presentations from parrpakala.
All teachers thneed a classblog!
I’m being quite useful.  This thing is a Thneed. A Thneed’s a Fine-Something-That-All-People-Need!It’s a shirt.  It’s a sock.  It’s a glove.  It’s a hat.
But it has OTHER uses.  Yes, far beyond that.
You can use it for carpets.  For pillows!  For sheets!
Or curtains!  Or covers for bicycle seats!”
-Words and illustration from The Lorax by Dr. Seuss.For more tools, have a look at Jane Hart’s amazing list she is compiling from educators around the world.

Interviews and Elluminate


Click on the session (recording here) to see and listen to our conference on-line. We did this last Friday in the library. We had Jo and a few other people around the world listening and asking us questions on Blackboard Collaborate (Elluminate).

It’s a bit like  using skype, but with text chat, video, list of people, and a whiteboard. We put this Youth Class Blog on the white board. We also looked at one of our movies of the interview with Lan. Most of us talked on Jane’s computer laptop.

Our session

I really want to thank Jo Hart for offering my students and I a little window space in her on-going series of “Fine Focus” of which she is moderator extraorinaire.

The Blackboard Collaborate session (recording) was done sitting all the students around my MacBook Pro using the in-built mic. Leanne, the librarian operated the overhead and loud speakers, turning this down as we grabbed the microphone and talked. We passed the laptop between us on the table and had a chat to the world. There were people in Melbourne , WA and somewhere in Europe listening in and asking our students some questions.

We had a great time and really enjoyed learning the concept of the webinar. Only one of the students had done this before, and that was in the youth class. This semester we are all of mixed ages and nationalities in the 2A class.


The World’s strangest museums

Lonely Planet’s “World’s Strangest Museums”

New Dehli Museum of toilets.

Melbourne museum aboriginal: BUNJILAKA GALLERY