Year 5 Melbourne Camp – A photo a week

Click on the photo below to enlarge.
melbourne camp year 5

I hear squeals of delight as children wobble about when the tram takes off, the clicketty clack of train tracks and lions roaring at feed time
I see children proudly mastering ice skating, 3D images of the ghostly remains of the Titanic and the red laser dot shutting me down (again!)at Laser Skirmish
I smell diesel fumes out the back of the ferry, someone’s smelly shoes in room 106 and popcorn in the Foyer of IMAX
I taste 3 different pizzas at Universal Pizza, fresh chicken and lettuce sandwiches and a crisp, crunchy apple
I feel exhausted from all our walking, relieved that the camp went off so well and delighted to hear the excited chatter of children as they relay their adventures to their parents.

Blue and Gold macaws – a photo a week

marg and macaws

The blue and gold macaw is a highly intelligent bird, native to South America. These birds are said to be as intelligent as 4 year old children, and once you have bonded with these birds, you find this to be true. These birds as babies, tend to be playful, cheeky and fond of a cuddle. They make beautiful pets and are excellent talkers. The blue and golds love shelled nuts, sugar peas, corn, apples, oranges, passionfruit and most other fruit and vegetables.

Mutton Bird Island – Coffs Harbour

mutton bird island, coffs harbour resized

My jaw dropped when I saw the steep climb we had in front of us. Hundreds of steps up the side of an Island they call Mutton Bird. Behind us bobbed the fishing boats, the restaurants and the busy throng of tourists, who were all enjoying the perfect winter’s day in the gorgeous Coffs Harbour. Above us, lay a magnificent view of the bay, the airport and the magnificent coastline. The view from the top was breathtaking and well worth the climb.

Photo a week….

Well, after far too many months, I am striving to resume my Photo a week entry. This is a really powerful tool for getting students to write each week. The idea is that each week, the students choose a photo, postcard, newspaper article, movie ticket etc which means something to them, and they have to stick it into their photo a week journals, or on their blogs, and write at least 200 words about it. This not only becomes a sensational personal diary, it is also a sensational way to encourage students to write. The writing is richer and students actually enjoy doing it. So after way too long, here is my entry for the week ending Friday 13th August.

The glorious Charlesworth Bay at Coffs Harbour, NSW

The glorious Charlesworth Bay at Coffs Harbour, NSW

During the end of term holidays, we went to Coffs Harbour on the beautiful northern New South Wales (NSW) coast of Australia. This is Charlesworth Bay, playground to the many humpback whales who swim past and stop to play, on their way to and from the Antarctic waters. It is also a playground to the many dolphins who frolic on a daily basis, in this spot. This lovely outdoor spa was heated to 37degrees so even if the weather was cool, it was possible to enjoy the spa and the views. My 10 day holiday went very quickly and was a fabulous break away from the cold, South West Victorian winter.

A Room With a View – a Variation

My students and I have joined a wonderful global project, called “A Room With A View” which has been created by dynamic teacher, Jennifer Wagner. Whilst I was searching through my photos to see which I might use as my “Photo A Week” for this week, I stumbled across this one of a joey in the pouch of one our wallabies. It got me thinking that if you had to have a view from a room, then this one wouldn’t be too shabby. I love the look on this little guy’s face and I can imagine that every day he pops his head out, he would be wondering where he was. Imagine what he might be thinking. Maybe you can leave a comment about what you think he might be thinking today.

What do you think the joey might be thinking.

What do you think the joey might be thinking.

White Swan

Imagine our surprise whilst we were walking around the gardens of our hotel in Southport, Queensland, Australia, on finding this magnificent white swan swimming in the SWIMMING POOL! Now I know it is a swimming pool, but we kind of thought that the pool was restricted to humans! We couldn’t have been more wrong. As well as this lovely white swan, there were numerous ibis and ducks taking the opportunity to have a refreshing dip. The hotel was so magnificent, that it would have looked odd, NOT to have had a swan swimming around.

Beautiful Beaches at Ballina

This is one of the beautiful beaches at Ballina on the northern coast of New South Wales, Australia. It is a vision with it’s pristine sand, glassy waves and it’s lush, green beach front. We have just returned from 2 glorious weeks spent on the northern coast of New South Wales, dividing our time between travelling and relaxing at Byron Bay. What a glorious part of Australia to explore.

Tori – “there is no secret ingredient” -there is just you.

This is my niece Victoria, or Tori for short. She has her own unique and individual fashion style.
She loves to dress up and experiment with various outfits, often changing 6 times each day! She is very flamboyant and loves to sing and dance. She loves to go swimming, play games on the computer and to write her own stories. Tori loves to go to the movies but doesn’t watch television very often. Her favourite movies are Hairspray, Chicken Run and Matlida. Her favourite dinner is chicken and vegetables and she also loves peanut butter. Tori doesn’t like dogs or thunder storms. She thinks chickens are funny! Tori carries a handbag with her wherever she goes. She travelled a lot as a little girl and still loves to get on an areoplane for an adventure.

Tori is the ballerina on the Interchange billboards you can see around Melbourne and she is currently starring in the Interchange ads on television. Tori is an amazing young lady, with charming manners and the knack of making you feel as though you are the most special person in her little life. I treasure her cuddles, her kisses, her funny little sayings and the way she makes me laugh. My world is so much brighter because of her presence in it.

Life on the forest floor – a photo a week


Rustling leaves and swaying fern fronds
Far off birds so shrill and clear.
Wildlife scratching through the debris
Scuttling away as feet draw near.

Something wriggles, darting sideways,
Moving safely out of view.
Sunlight breaking through the tree tops
Beckoning to the life that’s new.

All round butterflies – darting, gliding
Settling briefly, moving on.
Savouring every precious moment,
Life is short – they’ll soon be gone.

Timeless, seamless, lush green beauty,
Tranquil, calm serenity
Where everything has its turn and purpose
Life – beneath the canopy.

Marg murnane – July 2003
Cape Tribulation – Far north Queensland

Berry Springs – Northern Territory, Australia

This is beautiful Berry Springs where I went last November (2007). I spent a week in Darwin with my son David and his wife Sarah. The weather was extremely oppressive. It was hot and sweaty all day and all night. During one of the nights we stayed there, the temperature did not drop below 27 degrees. Simply walking to the clothesline is an effort with weather like that. Your skin is constantly wet and slimy and you just drink water all day long. Most tradesmen or people who work outdoors, just get used to changing their clothes at least twice a day.

In contrast, we went to beautiful Berry Springs one hot Sunday afternoon. That was like stepping into a postcard. Words elude me on this experience. It was idyllic, serene, restful, refreshing and reviving. Best of all, there were no crocodiles (well that particular day anyway!)berry_springs.jpg