Educational Tools and Ideas

The New Year is the time when most people start thinking about future plans. If you have children, one of those plans might be to start thinking about school choices. But how to choose a good primary school in Brisbane?... Read More


How to choose a good high school in Brisbane

Choosing the right high school for your children is one of life’s most important decisions – if we get it right, all the stars align and everyone is happy. If we get it wrong, it’s time to regroup, make changes, and start over, all of which takes time and money. Readers often ask us for …

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Primary School Tutoring Brisbane

Tutoring encompasses a range of activities focused on helping children improve their learning confidence, skills and understanding. It includes instructing, monitoring, encouraging, developing material and resources, mentoring and many more. NumberWorks’nWords provides after school maths and English tutoring at their dedicated learning centres. Tutoring is done face to face and is tailored to meet the …

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The Silver Fox – Connecting Generations Through Classroom Projects

The Silver Fox Community is a non profit organization that is changing views on how we age. Its main activity is to promote positive ageing and combat ageism through harnessing the professional skills of men and women, in their mid to later adulthood, in leading school projects with students from junior and senior grades. The …

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Ways to Help Prepare and Excite Your Child For Starting School

This article was sponsored by Hippo Blue You know the saying, don’t you?  The days are long but the years are short.   It’s one I love to quote, mostly because it seems the older both I, and my children, get the more this rings so very, very true.  And never more so it would seem …

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How to Teach Kids How to Use a Mouse

Kids nowadays are pretty tech savvy, and when it comes to touchscreen technology they seem to be born total whizzes, somehow inherently knowing how to slide, swipe, pinch and tap (and getting annoyed when this doesn’t word on old-school interfaces)! Yet the prominence of touchscreens in the devices they have regular access to is meaning …

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Free vision screening for all Brisbane Prep students

Every Prep student in Queensland will have their vision screened under the new Primary School Nurse Health Readiness Program, which was launched in Brisbane last month. The program aims to detect any vision conditions early, including amblyopia (or a ‘lazy eye’) which affects about 1 in every 50 Australian children. If left untreated, amblyopia can …

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Composite Classrooms Pros and Cons

Composite classrooms, also referred to as “multi-age”, “multi-grade” or “combined” classrooms, exist when children of varying ages are combined within the one grade. These types of classes are most common within rural schools where overall student enrolments are low. Composite classrooms also exist in larger urban schools when they are faced with the problem of …

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Recipe for a Fun Incursion | Laser Tag in a Box

A Turnkey Activity for Vacation Care Programs Preparation Time: 10 -15 minutes Game Time: Play as long as you like (batteries last around 16 hours, so you can literally play from dawn to dusk) Size: Suits groups of 10 or more students Difficulty: Easy Ingredients: 10+ Laser Tag Phasers from Laser Tag in a Box …

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Toy Fiesta – Buy well-priced, educational toys online

Children need time to play – not just to have fun and create positive childhood memories – but also to give them the opportunity to learn and mature. Playing with toys allows children to practice their physical skills, develop cognitive skills, such as problem solving, and learn social skills, such as turn taking and cooperation. …

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Tangalooma EcoMarines Early Childhood Program

Just 14 kilometres from central Brisbane, our waterways open out into Moreton Bay, a spectacular marine park that is home to around 600 dolphins, 800 dugongs, 1,000 fish species, 2,000 loggerhead turtles, 10,000 green sea turtles, and migratory populations of up to 17,000 humpback whales and over 40,000 shore birds! With all this amazing wildlife …

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Saving Our Waterways and Wildlife | Tangalooma EcoMarines

From fish and sea birds to rays and whales, our bays are teeming with amazing marine life. Where else can you witness baby turtles as they hatch from their nests and paddle down to the ocean, see a pod of dolphins surfing waves off the headland, and experience the joy of a humpback whale breeching …

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LinkSprite Kits | A Complete Kit for Students of all ages to learn about the ‘Internet of Things’

LinkSprite kits provide an amazing introduction to electronics and software programming for students of all ages. These kits make it not only possible, but EXCITING to learn code for all skill levels – from absolute beginner, to those who already have a sound knowledge of coding. LinkSprite Scratch Linker Kits The idea behind a LinkSprite …

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What Is Happening With School Facebook Groups?

Social media is playing an increasingly large role in modern society, and the vast majority of the school community uses some form of social media in their everyday life, for connecting with people, keeping in touch and sharing information. With Facebook being one of the most commonly used social media tools, it is a logical …

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How Can I Help My Child Through Naplan

Can you help your child through NAPLAN? YES! The National Assessment Program- Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) tests are held in Queensland schools each May. The purpose of these tests is to assess the literacy and numeracy skills of Australian students in grades 3,5,7, and 9. The Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority is the body responsible …

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Forest Schools in Queensland

Ditching the classroom for the great outdoors is the stuff dreams are made of when you’re a kid and possible with Forest Schools in Queensland soon to be a reality. Thanks to a partnership between Nature Play QLD and the UK’s Forest School Learning Initiative (FSLI), our Brisbane kids are one step closer to making …

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Caboolture Historical Village – yesteryear fun for families

The Caboolture Historical Village is the number one tourist attraction in the Caboolture region, and it’s easy to see why. A dedicated team of volunteers bring the village to life seven days per week, giving families a snapshot of life “in the olden days”. Operated by the Caboolture Historical Society, the village showcases buildings, vehicles …

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How Childcare Works in Brisbane

Whether you need care for your child due to work, study or other commitments, or you wish to give your child an opportunity to socialise with other kids and learn new things, childcare is an invaluable service for families. With anything from occasional or casual care services to long day care, there are great childcare …

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How to Use My School to Rank Schools in Brisbane

The My School website, found at myschool.edu.au, is a much visited site that can be a great tool for parents and educators alike. However, using this website to find and effectively compare or rank schools depends on first knowing what the site is and how to use it, what it can tell us and also what its …

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School Excursions to the Museum of Brisbane

There is no question that the world in which our little ones are growing up today is one that is vastly different to the one in which their grandparents and great-grandparents inhabited.  More so than just the usual advances that occur, it feels like in the last 10-20 years in particular things have not just …

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Fun Possum Facts for Kids

Possums are iconic Aussie animals. Their cute and fluffy appearance coupled with their non-aggressive nature makes them firm wildlife favourites. These beautiful night-time visitors may thud around on our rooftops or cheekily nibble our garden herbs, but we’re so lucky to have such amazing animals right in our own backyards! If your Brisbane Kids love …

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How Do I Tell Which Is A Good Brisbane School?

Choosing a school for your Brisbane Kids will be one of the biggest life decisions you make for them, dictating their future friendships, early education experiences and ultimately playing a major part in their life direction. So how do you make a choice that you will be happy with. How do you do due diligence in …

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School Camps In Outback Queensland

Outback Queensland Education Subsidy Scheme The opportunity to have a school camp experience in Outback Queensland seems like an expensive pipe-dream except it is not. The Outback Queensland Education Subsidy Scheme is a subsidy for school students, in years 5,6,7 and 8,  towards a school camp in Outback Queensland. The purpose of the subsidy is to …

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Tassie Devil Facts for Kids

The Tasmanian devil is the icon of Australia’s most southern state, Tasmania. Whether it’s due to their appearance like small dogs or through Disney’s beloved and crazy character Taz, kids seem to love devils. And now more than ever, we need to nurture this love in this generation if we are to preserve this amazing …

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Kids’ Literacy Learning Apps | LessonBuzz

Many kids struggle with literacy or find themselves at a level that is higher or lower than their class at school. Helping them to focus, develop and be challenged can be difficult, but now there is a collection of iPad apps that are not only engaging for kids but also an amazing cohesive, developmental and …

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Teaching Sight Words At Home

Sight Words (the Dolch word list) are a set of 220 common words and 95 nouns said to comprise 80% of the text children read and 50% of the text adults read. There are two types of sight words – those that can’t be phonetically sounded out and those that are high frequency. It’s critical …

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Brisbane School Of Distance Education

Have you ever welcomed your children home from school, eager to hear about their day, only to hear the words “I hate school”? Or wanted to travel around Australia but worried about the kids missing out on school? Sometimes, traditional school classrooms just do not work for some children. And sometimes, children do not have immediate access to …

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Where To Buy School Supplies In Brisbane

Whether you’re preparing for the back-to-school rush, or you’re just needing to replenish a few items, we have the most comprehensive list of where to buy school supplies in Brisbane. Teachers will also love this list of resources, featuring both Brisbane-based online stores as well as physical shops situated around Brisbane. School supply shops in …

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Koala Facts for Kids

Koalas are one of our best known Australian native animals, with many tourists coming to Australia to catch a glimpse of a koala. I first fell in love with koalas watching Blinky Bill and Nutsy on tv as a child and kids these days have the koala brothers on abc. Although they don’t represent real …

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What Is Spelling City?

Spelling City is an award winning game based learning tool for spelling, vocabulary and writing. Spelling City can be downloaded as a companion app for the Spelling City website and  can provide an opportunity for students to learn their weekly spelling lists, whilst having fun at the same time. Featuring activities for Prep to Year 12 …

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Scholarship Information for Brisbane Schools

A recent Education Index survey calculated that the cost of privately educating a child born in Brisbane in 2015 could be anywhere up to $400 000. And regional Queensland families who choose government schools to educate their offspring don’t receive much change from $52 000. So what’s the alternative? School Scholarships! Although most scholarships are …

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Six Fun Things Kids Can Do With Google

Did you know you can do more with Google than look up information? Google has some hidden and not-so-hidden secrets. Infact there are six awesome things kids can do using Google that are fun, safe and creative! 1    Google Doodles Google Doodles are both fun and informative. You see them on the Google home page …

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Traffic Light Food System In Schools

Thought red light meant stop? Green light go? And as for that amber light – well who’s really sure? Now there’s a ‘traffic light’ colour system of food categorisation to help identify and promote foods in government schools. The Smart Choices Healthy Food and Drink Supply Strategy has been designed to help children make the right …

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Using NAPLAN to Choose a School

Don’t do it. Yes, it’s really that simple. NAPLAN – the annual National Assessment Program – Literacy And Numeracy- is held annually for years 3, 5, 7 and 9. These are numeracy and literacy tests for those year levels, and those year levels only. Just because a school obtains higher NAPLAN results does not mean …

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Can I Withdraw My Child From NAPLAN

This question is repeated in the heads of parents this time every year when the word NAPLAN is mentioned at the school gates. NAPLAN –  National Assessment Program – Literacy And Numeracy – is held annually in May. It is for years 3, 5, 7 and 9. All students are expected to sit NAPLAN. So…. …

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Jolly Phonics

Jolly Phonics and other phonics programmes are a method used to teach children how to connect sounds to letters. Learning sounds and then connecting them to the letters is an important step in children learning to read. What is phonological awareness and why is it so important? A well balanced literacy instruction program in any …

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Awesome Ideas for School Fundraisers

Tired of the same old sausage sizzles and pie drives? Take your school fundraising up a notch AND have fun with these great ideas! 1. Movie night What better way to bring the school community together than with a big old movie night in the school hall? Tickets can be individual or a family pass, …

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10 Things You Need To Know About NAPLAN

NAPLAN That six letter acronym that can cause major angst among parents and students alike. What is it? Who does it? What does it mean? When is it? What are the tests? There are many questions surrounding NAPLAN and sometimes it can be a bit of a minefield for parents to find the information they …

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Printable Multiplication Tables

Learning Multiplication is a pretty big deal for kids and while there are lots of ways to learn how to do multiplication in the big numbers, there is still the need for kids to remember the first section of timestable sums. We created this downloadable and printable multiplication table so you can make it as accessible as …

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How can I help my child to read?

The key to reading is not one dimensional. You will often hear educators recommend reading to your children from a very young age. While this is so important, providing an environment rich in language experience is absolutely vital if you want to ensure your child has the best possible chance of becoming a fluent reader. …

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The Best School Shoes

The biggest decision to be made for the new school year is, without a doubt, which school shoes to buy. There are so many different brands and styles available that it can seem a little overwhelming at first. We’ve put together a list of the best school shoes to help take the stress out of …

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Fun Kangaroo Facts

Kangaroos are such an iconic Australian animal that they seem to be everywhere you look – Skippy re-runs on TV, staring back at you from a 50 cent piece and even in the sky on the tail of a Qantas plane! If your Brisbane Kid loves kangaroos, here’s the best places to spot one locally …

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Phonics Apps for Kids

These days there is an app for everything and everything is in an app. For parents who perhaps aren’t quite up there and savvy with the world of apps it can be overwhelming to even know where to start looking for the right apps for your child. The number of phonics apps available is vast …

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Best Spelling Apps for Kids

The world of Apps is big. Enormous. Endless. Kids love to learn and kids love apps. Parents love apps because it can give them a few quiet minutes in a busy, never-ending day. Here are some  of the Best Spelling Apps for Kids that will combine all of the above, learning, fun, and hours of …

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What is computer rage?

Computer rage is the expression of anger and frustration that occurs while using a computer or similar device.  For kids, computer rage is usually tied to game playing, where the anger can be directed at multiple different targets: the computer, the game, other players, other objects or people in the room, or even the child …

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The Insider Tips to Have The Best Prep Year

When you start a new school year with your prep student, chances are you are as nervous as them. If not nervous, you are likely wondering how you are going to cope with all things expected from you as a school parent. I created this guide based on my experience. I would enjoy your ideas …

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9 fitness activities that feel like play for kids

Now more than ever, children around Australia are facing a health crisis with increasing rates of obesity and all of the health complications that come with it. But keeping your child fit and healthy doesn’t have to mean boring exercises or strict sport schedules. Here are ten suggestions on how to get your kids moving …

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Help Your Child Master Pencil Grip

Getting your child to hold their pencil properly is an art. Not so many generations ago, teachers and parents would use the tactics of smacking the back of a child’s hand with a ruler until they held the pencil “correctly” and in the right hand. Today there are many friendlier techniques you can use to …

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Ditch the home readers – real books are better for your child

By Ryan Spencer, University of Canberra As school resumes for the new year, the “home reader” routine for primary school children also recommences. For many parents and children, reading these short texts can be the most agonising part of the nightly homework routine. It’s no wonder that so many children dislike reading their home reader. …

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Apps To Help Identify The Stars At Night

Stargazing can be a fun and educational activity to do with the kids at night, ideal for warmer summer nights or camping trips. In Brisbane we are lucky enough to have the he Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium at Mt Coot-tha and The Brisbane Astronomical Society that has regular viewing nights. If you have a budding astronomer there …

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How To Set Up a Homework Routine That Works

Setting up a homework routine is an important practice for your child. Not only does it ensure that homework is done in time for school the next day, but it also teaches your child some very important life skills such as how to manage their time effectively, how to prioritise, how to motivate themselves and …

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Latest research: Guidelines for the use of interactive devices by children

Tablets, smartphones, hand-held games – today’s kids are exposed to far more varied and complex forms of electronic entertainment than previous generations ever were. The humble television has been surpassed by a plethora of gadgets that are not only portable, but also interactive; both of which add greatly to their appeal. Love them or loathe …

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Kindy entry age changes affect Brisbane families

Many Brisbane families may be unaware that there was an abrupt change recently introduced which affects the entry age requirements for children attending kindergarten (pre-prep) in Queensland. Previously, a child needed to be four years old by June 30 to participate in a kindergarten program. Under the new changes, introduced in January 2015, a child …

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Top ten tips for avoiding school gate cliques

As the new school year swiftly approaches, many parents begin to get anxious about casting their children off into the throng of the schoolyard alone. Will they be accepted by the other kids? Will they fit in? Or will they be judged, picked on or excluded? Sadly, though we may have thought we left such …

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Samford Museum – Old fashioned family fun

The spirit of yesteryear is alive and well at the Samford Museum, where Brisbane Kids can step back in time and experience life before modern convenience. Things to see and do at Samford Museum Since the museum opened in 1986, its members have been collecting objects from the district’s rural, domestic, educational, railway, timber, transport …

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Top 10 best-selling educational iPhone apps that are designed for children under the age of five

The iOS marketplace is packed with all sorts of apps for kids. Some are entertaining, some are educational, and some are both. Advanced technology makes learning so much easier these days, and it’s a definitely a good idea to instill a passion for learning in your child from a very early age. Here are 10 …

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Home Reading Tips for Parents

The new school year has started and our Brisbane Kids are in full swing with their homework. For many families, this brings a whole new level of stress and angst. After a full day at school, many children are exhausted and frustrated from sitting and listening – it’s hard work!! Home readers are the most …

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Heaps of Riddles for Brisbane Kids to use in their School Talks

A Riddle is a posed question requiring the listener to use their ingenuity to figure out what the answer may be. It can often be so obvious that it becomes difficult. Riddles are often discussed as part of the English Curriculum helping to create “confident communicators, imaginative thinkers and informed citizens” (ref. http://www.qsa.qld.edu.au/) What makes a …

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10 Science Apps for Kids

You don’t have to be a scientist yourself in order to help your child learn the basics.  Sure you can get out the old Bunsen burner and telescope if you are keen for some at home live demonstrations but, for most of us, trying to get our little people interested in the world of science …

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Maths Apps for Toddlers and Kids

Mention the word “maths” and you are usually greeted with an array of groans and fake yawns.  Most kids (and let’s be honest – adults too) find the idea of teaching or learning maths tiresome but there are actually some fun apps out there that will have your kids learning the basic skills whilst having …

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Back To School Tips For Parents of Prep Students | Teacher Perspective

Heartstrings are being pulled- Starting school for the first time Being a teacher of Prep students comes with huge responsibility and a need for lots of patience for both the students and the parents. We are their first teacher and they come into our classroom with fresh impressionable minds, but are also often anxious about …

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Fun Learning Apps for Kids

As of 2013 there are literally a million apps out there for you to choose from and with thousands more being created daily how do you go about choosing which ones are best for your kids?  Most parents look for something fun and entertaining that will hold the interest of their child but also teach …

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Where To Buy School Uniforms Online In Brisbane

Shopping online for school uniforms can save time, and money, and dragging your Brisbane Kids around the place. Shopping for uniforms can be fun with the first child but trust me, when you have three children at school you may reconsider your enthusiasm for uniform shopping. Brisbane families are lucky to have the opportunity to …

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