A place to share

Innocence or Ignorance

Harper Lee explores the concepts of innocence and ignorance in her novel To Kill a Mockingbird. Write a post which identifies the characters who best convey the effect of innocence and ignorance.  In your response you should consider how innocence and ignorance impacts behaviour. Finally offer a comment about how understanding these concepts deepens your understanding of the novel’s main themes.


May 1, 2012 Posted by | Teacher | Leave a comment

Simply Because We are Human

Atticus explains, “a gang of wild animals can be stopped, simply because they are human” (p.173)

What do you believe? Can racism be stopped by reminding people that they are human? Provide your perspective below – remember to be persuasive.

March 28, 2012 Posted by | Teacher | | 5 Comments


“You never really understand a person … until you climb into his skin and walk around in it” (To Kill a Mockingbird, p.33).

Write a post (300 words) which explores your impression of this idea. What does this quote mean to you? How true is it?

February 29, 2012 Posted by | Teacher | Leave a comment

Reflect on What You Read

During this Home Study Unit of Work you will be required to maintain an Academic Blog  which relates to what you are reading. Your posts should reflect a critical understanding of what you have read.

Suggestions for posts

The aim of your post should be to inform your audience about the book you are reading,   however you may also like to persuade them to read the book or to consider an issue from a   fresh point of view.

When writing your posts you may choose to explore;

  • Theme (including the messages and ideas offered by the author and, if the author supports their ideas with evidence or through character experiences).
  • Character development (including, what characters say and do, how characters react to each other and the situations they encounter)
  • Style and Form (including language use and narrative techniques e.g. use of emotive or figurative language, use of foreshadowing to build suspense, use of symbols or motifs).

Perhaps you will

  • Discuss how the book ‘draws’ a reader in – does it use suspense or sympathetic characters
  • Encourage your readers to read the book by highlighting the aspects you enjoyed most.
  • Persuade your readers to think differently about a topic you uncovered while reading  (use your book as evidence to support your ideas).

Finally you should include a post which reflects on your reading experience. Has the book ‘reached out’ to you? Do the characters and situations they encounter affect your current understanding of the world?  Have you changed any of your own perceptions as a result of reading this book?

August 18, 2011 Posted by | Teacher | | Leave a comment

Macbeth Rap

Does the thought of reading Shakespeare leave you shaking in your boots? Watch this clip and you will see how listening to Shakespeare can actually leaving you grooving instead.

The key point here is that plays such as Macbeth were meant to be listened to and viewed. So….  let yourself be entertained by a master storyteller who expertly explores the ‘human condition’.

July 28, 2011 Posted by | Teacher | , | Leave a comment

To Kill a Mockingbird

What lasting impression does the story To Kill a Mockingbird leave with an audience? In your response compare the movie to the novel and suggest which is more powerful in conveying textual themes.

Remember to use the language of compare and contrast (e.g. similarly,  also,  as does, however, in contrast, yet)

June 2, 2011 Posted by | Teacher | Leave a comment

Stories Encourage Us To Ask Questions Of Ourself

Stories can reach into a person’s heart and change their mind.

In the movie Labyrinth, Sarah is told by the Goblin King “What’s said is said” even though Sarah exclaimed “I didn’t mean it!”. Hoggle reminded Sarah to “ask the right questions” and accused her of “taking too many things for granted”. Similarly the worm counseled Sarah “things are not always as they seem”.

Thus in the opening 15 minutes, teen audiences attracted to this movie are encouraged to reflect on their communication styles and attitudes toward life. Arguably watching a movie such as this is  more effective than listening to an adult drone on about how to be ‘responsible’.

Do you agree? 

Write a persuasive text which conveys your attitude toward this issue. You can find tips on the techniques used by persuasive writers at isthismystory

April 7, 2011 Posted by | Teacher | , | Leave a comment

Creating a news channel

Spend 10 minutes researching High School news channels on the Internet.
What sort of news program would you create if you were in charge of the school news program?
Think about:  the format, regular items and the look and feel of the program

November 26, 2010 Posted by | Teacher | Leave a comment


Go to the front page of today’s Sydney Morning Herald www.smh.com.au

Choose a news article that interests you. What event does this article describe?

Do you think the journalist has all the information he/she needs or is it ‘work in progress’?

Identify structural and language elements in the article.

November 19, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Mockingbird Essay Question

In her novel To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee encourages readers to reconsider their social perspective. To what extent is this statement true? In your response consider how narrative techniques are used to convey the novels themes.

Themes you may like to consider

  • Growing up – loss of innocence
  • Justice / injustice – social inequity, class based restrictions
  • Prejudice – racism
  • Perspective – empathy
  • Respect for individual
  • Courage          

Narrative techniques you may like to consider

  • plot (foreshadowing)
  • character development (dialogue)
  • symbols
  • figurative language

October 29, 2010 Posted by | Teacher | Leave a comment