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The Learning Success Blog

It’s the Law: Every Child Must Read at Grade Level by Year 3

Posted by Moya Gibb-Smith on August 3, 2020 at 2:12 PM

Something had to be done!

So, with a vote of 92-3 the Alabama state parliament enacted the Alabama Literacy Act beginning in 2020 to ensure that every child was reading at grade level by Year 3.

They nominated a task force to recommend a comprehensive core reading program and assessments to be used by local schools and that job fell to Tim Solley.

Solley is a kindly, bespectacled, grey-haired man who looks like he could be your kid’s soccer coach. In fact, he is a leading educational advocate and the Assistant Superintendent of the Madison School District which comprises 17 different schools.

Solley takes up the story:

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Topics: School, Fast ForWord, Learning Capacity Success Stories, Educational Neuroscience, Teaching, Successful Schools

Tips for Teaching Older Children about Finances and Taxes

Posted by Jane Shearer on August 3, 2020 at 10:01 AM

A lack of financial literacy can have major consequences that last a lifetime, yet around 50% of Australians struggle with financial literacy as reported in a Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey. The problem is more pronounced in women than in men.

In the survey, 50% of men obtained a 5/5 score when asked five basic financial questions, while only 35% of women achieve this score. Financial literacy is not something that should be left until after school or university, since many Australians will have to make decisions on aspects such as student loans when they are young.

How can you help your child build a good financial base so they can be aware of the consequences of issues like the type of loans they take or the importance of paying taxes when they are due?

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Topics: Literacy & Numeracy

Help Your Kids Learn Key Life Skills Through Games And Role Play

Posted by Jane Shearer on July 22, 2020 at 3:00 PM

With millions of Australian kids back in school, learning has been kicked into high gear as the country’s children try to make up for any lost time in the classroom. While experts have reiterated the importance of classroom learning in a child’s education, there is also plenty of learning opportunities beyond the traditional classroom setting.

For years, studies have shown the benefits of play to a child’s development and provide a great platform for encouraging learning and bonding at home. From developing their financial skills at home to encouraging the growth of their social skills, here is how parents can use role play and games to teach their child key life skills and support their classroom learning.

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Topics: Attention, Following Instructions, Social Skills, Learning, Listening Skills, Social & Emotional Learning, Literacy & Numeracy

8 months language & literacy gains in 2 months: gold standard research study

Posted by Peter Barnes on May 22, 2020 at 3:21 PM

Peter Barnes

Can you get your struggling students to achieve 4 times the reading growth you would normally expect from 2 months of teaching?

One group of primary and early high school students did last year.

Read how in the article below, reproduced from The Science of Learning Blog.

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Topics: Learning Capacity Success Stories, Fast ForWord123

Financial Education At Home: Teaching Your Children Ethical Money Habits

Posted by Jane Shearer on May 11, 2020 at 10:52 AM

In a world where financial literacy is trending, Australia is leading the list of countries that need to ramp up financial education and encourage family involvement in the learning process. The Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey revealed that almost 50 percent of Australian households struggle with poor financial literacy.

Those with low financial literacy were shown to have worse financial health, were more likely to experience financial stress, and had a lower likelihood of saving. Yet, financial education involves much more than how to spend their money. Ethical finance centres on not just how to spend your money, but knowing whether your financial decisions are responsible ones.

The best way to combat this is to provide ample opportunities for your child to learn about ethical financial decision as soon as possible so that it becomes the new norm.

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Fashionista Zombies - An Adventure in London (WARNING: includes Aliens)

Posted by Serena Murali on May 7, 2020 at 11:42 AM

Imagination and words by 7-year-old Serena. Punctuation help by her mum.

Dink Donk! Big Ben struck as I got out of the London airport.

The next morning I got out of my patterned hotel bed to wake my sister so we can go on some London Adventures.

Meanwhile, at the Big Ben tower a shy man was drinking some refreshing Coca Cola out of a recyclable can. When he put his fizzy drink down, he tried to press the shiny red button… suddenly, pshhhh! The fizzy cola spilt everywhere!

Back at the hotel, we were just getting ready to checkout to leave the hotel. The cars screeched on the road! I said to Dad “what’s going on?” Dad said “I have no idea, shall we call the police?”. My sister Mahalya said “good idea”. We typed in 000 and then all we heard was “blblbl”.

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Tips to Help Your Family Learn More About The Environment During COVID

Posted by Jane Shearer on April 27, 2020 at 9:32 AM

Australians are world leaders when it comes to spending time with children, reports The Australian Research Alliance for Children.

Prior to the COVID-19 lockdown, parents were averaging around four hours a day with their little ones. Owing to the current pandemic, many parents who are now working from home are finding that time saved on commuting to work, meetings and office talk has allowed them to explore fascinating topics with their kids - including environmental sustainability.

What environmental issues can you learn more about as a family, and how can you make it as fun and engrossing as possible?

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Topics: Learning

Helping Your Kids Make Education Choices to Maximise Career Chances

Posted by Jane Shearer on April 14, 2020 at 10:14 AM

When it comes to success markers, 91 per cent of millennials say career progression is their number one priority, according to a recent survey by recruitment specialist, Robert Walters. Workers are no longer looking for jobs, but are seeking careers and professional development instead.

Approximately 58 per cent of them would change jobs if it meant more learning and career development opportunities. As those seeking learning opportunities increase, parents need to adapt their children’s learning techniques as they prepare them to enter the world of work.

Helping children prepare for their careers no longer just refers to helping them succeed in their science lessons or maths homework. Rather, it now includes helping your child maximise their chances in their chosen career from the very start.

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Topics: Careers

Coroni Village: How 4 Kids are Coping Differently with School-at-Home

Posted by Peter Barnes on April 9, 2020 at 11:49 AM

Peter Barnes

Coroni Village.  That’s what my 5 year old granddaughter calls the world outside her family’s Sydney apartment, where they have been confined since the COVID-19 shutdown started.

I have no idea how she came up with that expression. No doubt it has to do with the number of times she has heard about Coronavirus. Both she and her older sister are doing school-at-home. So are their two cousins. 

“School-at-home” is a better description than “home schooling” for the situation most students are in now, with their schools shut or their parents deciding to keep them at home. That’s because “home schooling” is a deliberate choice by parents who take on the role of teachers. The “school-at-home” parents did not make that choice.

The vast majority of parents managing “school-at-home” are not teachers. They have no teaching expertise and are feeling uncomfortable being thrust into this role, even with the best remote learning support and resources from their kids’ schools. Plus, many parents are doing their regular work at home as well.

That sounds pretty tough – for the parents and the kids.

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Topics: School, Learning, Teaching

How Recording Yourself Improves Your Thinking & Learning

Posted by Jane Shearer on March 29, 2020 at 12:45 PM

As the brain acquires new knowledge, the connections between the neurons become stronger, creating a more robust network and allowing the neurons to communicate more quickly. This is learning, and the more we rehearse a skill or piece of information, the quicker we are able to retrieve it and the easier it becomes.

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Topics: Memory, Learning

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