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Relief Matters An Update for Members- July 2016

Welcome to Relief Member's Update for July. It has been a weird month here in sunny Queensland! Like much of Australia, we have copped our share of winter storms. Our thoughts are with those who suffered damage. Our household joined the NBN and I must say, I was a little underwhelmed. The speed is not what I expected it to be. Fast but not lightning fast. I am not sure whether super-speed will make a positive difference to us, anyway. There has to come a time when we look at slowing the pace of living down just a little. Waiting seems to be an activity we won't tolerate. We need microwaves to cook our meals faster, we need instant access to our money and we need instant access to our internet services. I wonder how this "need-for-speed" impacts on our classrooms. Maybe we should be teaching the skill of "waiting". I hope you enjoy this month's update. Cheers. Bob

By The Numbers


Most visitors on any one day


Pages viewed in May 2016


Visitors in February 2016


Visitors from Ireland so far this year


Visitors in 2015 who checked CRT Pay Rates


Visitors from USA in 2015


Page Views in 2015


Pages viewed in first full year (2012)


The number of FREE online lessons


reliefteaching.com kicked off

Try the Crossword Makers for FREE

My Picture Crossword Maker and My Crossword Maker Plus are both available as FREE downloads from the shop. You can try these and test them out with your class. That way you will know if you like them before you buy them. There is a small 50 cent download free to discourage internet piracy.

My picture Crossword Maker
My Crossword Maker

Teaching Tip

A powerful reward is a phone call to mum/dad in front of the class. I have used this a lot. Whip out the phone, call in front of the student and the class. A 15 second conversation which goes something like this. “Hello Mr Brown. This is Bob Brandis. I’m sorry to interrupt but I just rang to say Bill is having a fabulous day and trying his hardest at his school work. Thanks for your support at home. Have a nice day!”

Honestly, every mouth drops in the class and Mr Brown is probably receiving CPR at work. I have even left the same message on answering machines. You can imagine the student rushing to get home and wait for Mum/Dad to arrive so they can get the message.

The impact on the class is immediate.

Teaching Tip

When marking the class roll, have the students look around and mentally picture the student who is in front of them in the roll. The first student in alphabetical order says "Brian is here", The second person continues, "Jeff is here" and so one. The teacher says nothing. Every student will be focussed on when it is their turn and whether students keep the order. If a student is absent the student next in line says "Jenny is away. Graham is here." In the long term, it makes marking the roll quick and easy rather than a long drawn out process.

Anyone who follows me on Twitter already knows what I did during the holidays.

In the Members' Lounge

FREE RESOURCES available from the Member's Lounge.

From June

This Month

7 Successful Habits for Teachers

Based on Steven Covey's best seller - 7 Habits of Highly Successful People, this examines the practical application for teachers.

We can learn much from what successful people have been applying for YEARS. Steven Covey's book has sold over 15 million copies and is the most widely read book on self improvement. This book applies his principles to YOU. 

Next Month - August

Feel like a chicken running around with your head cut off?

Is your house a mess? Papers piling up on your kitchen counter. You can no longer see what color the top of your desk is. And it's getting harder and harder to feel comfortable in your own home with the mess. The hectic schedule. And the unorganized life.

There comes a point when you must say, "Enough! I need to get organized now if it kills me!"

Sometimes all it takes is a little push in the right direction to get started. To make just a few changes to a busy life that makes it more manageable.

Teaching Tip

Decrease the amount of time you talk. Try different ways to incorporate questions to get the students involved. Students are more likely to participate and engage in what they are learning if they feel like they have a choice and a voice in the activity or lesson.

Ask a question to the class. Have each student explain the answer to their partner - not you.

Take turns sharing answers with each other. This strategy certainly keeps students focussed.

In the Executive Suite this month

Executive RESOURCES - from June

Executive Resources - July

Word Place and Word Search are spelling and logic challenges.

Spelling Demons – use the most misspelled words in the English language.

Students must place the words in the blank grid. Not all words are included in all puzzles. Some puzzles are less complex than others.

Students must strategize word placement by logically working forwards.

Spelling Demons is available from the Executive Suite

Teaching Tip

If you are new to a class, one GREAT activity would be to prepare a crossword including the jumbled names of all the students in your class. This is a great way to focus and create a connection between you and the students. Student names is the first link in the connection chain. This activity is easily achieved if you have the My Crossword Maker which has an automatic scramble word option. It is a free part of the Life Members (RT3) package and is available to download free from the Executive suite.

Scramble Crossword Maker