Primary School/s

Wenona School for Girls (primary and secondary)

Five Dock Public School (for one month -1994)Springwood Public School (Year 1-2, 1994-1995)Hornsby Heights Public School(Year 3-6, 1996-1999)

Tamworth East Public School K-6 (before that Monetssori Preschool, half days for 2 years)

Home School, Lion's Club School (Kenya), Kerugoya Primary (Kenya), Oately West Public School, Armidale City Public School, Black MOuntain Public School

Years attended





Secondary school/s

Ku-ring-gai Creative Arts High School (Co-ed)

Oxley High School (Co-ed)

Presbyterian Ladies College-Armidale, Danebank Anglica School for Girls

Years attended





North Sydney

North Turramurra




Private girls K-12 with about 700 students, including day-girls and boarders. The school was conservative and was non-demoninational, however had close ties to St Thomas' church in North Sydney. Each week one attended two assemblies presided over by Miss Jackson, the scary principal. We sang hymns (by Wesley and others) and a prefect read passages from the bible. Day girls attended church at the beginning and end of each year, borders attended each week The school had strict uniform requirements, borders had to wear panthose and gloves to church even in Summer.

Ku-ring-gai focused on the creative aspects of education. Had a program called NOVA that consisted of four 80 minute periods a fortnight.NOVA was a program that students could choose from a range of creative subjects and be taught this elective that year. Each NOVA class had students ranging from 7-10. Ku-ring-gai also had extra-curriculuar activities (always concerts or plays or dances) happening.North Turramurra is a very affluent area, however this school consisted of Anglo-Australians from as far north as the Central Coast.

My schooling was fairly standard k-12. I went to the two 'best' and biggest public schools in the area which were within walking distance of each other but were half an hours drive from my home in the neighbouring village of Kootingal. Both schools were prodimantly anglo-saxen - teachers, students, and parents. But there were students of other backgrounds I can recall, especially by highschool, but I can't remember a teacher of differing background at all.

State Public Schools, k-6 (two were Kenyan- curriculum is based highly on rote learning). High school was a private girls school, presbyterian-run. Chapel was once a week and assembly twice. There was a high christian influence, as with my second high school, an Anglican girls school. Students went from K-12 in both schools. One was in the country and the students were less multicultural. The first school was very music based and fostered creativity in this area and sport as well. It kept me very healthy.

Primary school K-2

K-5 had classrooms in an old, dark, Victorian House. I can’t remember much about kindy to second class except I had a very mean teacher who scratched me under the chin and chastised me a lot. I feigned illness often to get out of school. I enjoyed art.

I did not attend K. As there is no K in WA (where I am originally from) I was placed straight into 1. Cannot remember much from that time, only that I had no trouble reading as I learnt to read at home. Year 2 I had a teacher named Caverth (I only remember this from my paretns saying "first you Caverth the turkey"), I was interested in playing footy but Caverth told me I had a small neck therefore can't play. I also used to stop into the principal's office just for a chat.

I was preped for kindy by 2 years of pre-school and even already knew a handful of kids on first day of primary school. My Kindy teacher was female and a middle aged to older lady and so was my year 1 teacher. I think I equated being old with being knowledgable. My grandma was old too and she always helped me with my school work. So I looked at learning as simply part of the process of growing up - as natural, as something everyone could and should do equally. I didn't understand why students would interupt classes or refuse to come back in after lunch or recess. But I remember I was no favourite to either teacher and resented that they prefered some students. I don't remember much about my year 2 teacher except he was older and a guy and that he taught satisfactorily by my opinion as his student.

I was homeschooled for half of kindergarted and went to an Australian primary school for the other half. The students sent me letters when i went overseas which has always stayed in my memory. The Australian primary school was in the bush and had a nice atmosphere. I was behind in maths due to my overseas education, and no teacher picked up on this until i was in year 5. Went to school in Kenya for half of year two. They still used the cane and I remember being hit for talking in class. I also remember being the only white child in the class but that i was comfortable in this evironment. I found it difficult to return to Australia.

Year 3

Introduced to Book Club. This was extremely exciting for me and I was very impatient until the bundle of books was delivered.

Started my new school and moved to the area I am currently living in. Really cannot remember much of school,except I had a teacher who screamed at us because we could not identify that having too many 'ands' in one sentence was an error.

I remember this year as the year times tables were learnt and drilled. My teacher, again an older woman, was strict and gave feedback in a way that made me feel like I was constantly in trouble. We were made to "preform" our timestables mercilessly in front of the whole class in turns repeatedly. I was so mortified I couldn't learn them. I'd completely avoid them every time and cry when forced to do them and to this day I still can't do my timetables. On math days I would try to stay home instead but mum would always send me anyway .This started my great hate of maths.

I was at Oatley West primary school for half of year 3 and then Armidale City Public school for the other half of year three. I made friends decently easily but compared to my old school, Armidale City was enormous. I felt as if i was sucked into the crowd and cannot remember a single teacher standing out to me.

Year 4

Last person in the class to be allowed to write in ink rather than pencil. Told often how messy I was. Practice drills held every Friday in spelling and times tables, therefore I feigned sickness most Fridays. I do know my times tables though.

I remember getting my pen license. I was one of the first to recieve this award and was most impressed. Do not really remember too much of the work but I guess not remembering equates to a mundane if not pleasant time

This was the year of running writing and handwriting practice in my memory. My teacher was again an old woman. She was known amongst the students to have a terrible temper. Despite this I liked her. She was fair but strict, and always expected and gave the same to everybody. Even though I was one of the last to get my pen license I enjoyed writing and learning that year. My teacher put me forward to take the Gifted and Talented (GaT) test to be placed in the GaT in the school for the next 2 years

Began school at a tiny country school when we moved. It had 32 students in total. The teacher would take all of us on the floor and then give each different year group their specific instructions, e.g. 'year 4, go and do page 32 of your maths book'. He always told us to write questions down on the side, which he would address when all the class was at work. It was a very closely knit school but the teacher had favorites.

Year 5

Can’t remember except I played Joseph in the Nativity play and the teacher told me to smile as I ‘should be ecstatic, you are the father of the son of God’. That did not make sense to me, hence no smile. I was known as an eccentric child and often sought attention by talking in class. I was disciplined for this well into secondary school.

Had one of hte best teachers I can remember. My primary school was hard to staff with young teachers so the principal at the time went and hired a local, older teacher who had daughters in the school (these girls were actually in both my year and my sisters year and are very good friends). This teacher had this amazing presence in the classroom. She was so loud and booming but not in a threatening way. She made us want to learn. Her favourite activity was saying 'PENS DOWN' and she would proceed to tell us what we thought to be a random fact when in fact it was an integral part of the course.

Placed in the GaT class (composite yr 5-6, 15 year 5, 15 year 6) I was the only girl in year 5 though there were 6-7 year 6 girls also in the class. Sometimes the class worked together and sometimes we split by year (esp. maths). The teacher took special care of me because I was the only girl in the year 5s. However, even though I was placed in the GaT class my maths was still average and as a result I was made to work out of a different textbook on my own while the rest of the class did advanced maths together. I remember feeling humiliated and separated from the class. I used to leave my maths textbook at home on purpose. I remember projects were frequent and creativity was encouraged. (eg. for my project on Holland I built a 3D windmill as big as myself and pasted my work around it). GaT extracurricular activities: Joined the debating team, area debating inter-school, entered the Tamworth Eisteddfod, won prizes - was recommended to a speech and drama teacher (outside school).

Year 5 and 6 were hard for me as I had a teacher who played favorites. He was a very good teacher, but he had a preference and a passion for the indigenous students in the class, and those of us who came from decently placed economic circumstances, were often neglected. Also, those of us who were not adept at sport were left behind, as the teacher was obsessed with sport. This left me, being a non-sporty person, often feeling like i was not good enough for the teacher, and resorting to 'little girl' tactics to get attention. Starting fights and competing in other areas, such as the creative areas.

Year 6

Broke my writing arm rollerskating and did not receive any dispensation for messiness even though I could only write with my left hand. My teacher, Miss Lambert, was a very tall, angular, nice women, who looked a bit like Maggie Smith. I don't remember much about the lessons.

Was involved in everything but school work. We had a revolving door of year 6 teachers and i really did not connect with the content of the course, except for the creative writing aspect.

GaT class still. Was class captain. Was allowed to join regular maths lessons with everyone. Began speech and drama lessons (outside school)- more debating (inside school) and eisteddfod (inside and outside school). The GaT class students were rejected by the rest of years 5-6 (students and teachers) to the point of not being invited to the year 5/6 end of year parties. We coped by rejecting them back and we planned our own separate end of year parties.

I had a similar experience in year 6 as in year 5, albeit a little better as I was now at the top of the school along with two other students in year 6. That's right, there were 3 of us. This year was a bit more fun, as i was good friends with one other year 6 boy and he made life more enjoyable.

Secondary School Year 7

Only recall a relief French teacher who had love-bites all over her neck and made us colour in pictures of castles every lesson for about ten lessons. We did not learn any French. My Maths teacher, Ms Smith (a pseudonym) had no chin and thin blonde hair in a bun. She said in one of the first lessons, 'how long is a peice of string?' She then stretched her arms out and said, 'it's not this long', (arms down, then pointed out the door), 'it can go out the door, across the tennis court and one and one forever!' I was moderately impressed by this concept, however that was the only animation she showed all year and I learned nothing. I wrote and starred in a play based on 'Fawlty Towers'. I was Basil. We studied 'The Outsiders', which I loved and 'Mr God, this is Anna', which I hated.

Remember being heavily involved in NOVA (the music elective). Also remember doing quite well in music, science, and english. My older cousin was in the year 12 class above me when I was in year 12, therefore I recieved all the bonuses of being an honourary Year 12, i.e. back seats on the bus, protection, and could push in in the canteen line. I was also the first year 7 person to allowed to play in all three of the major bands in the school, a feat matched by my best mate a month later.

I was moderately disappointed with high school because it presented nothing challenging after the GaT class and I'd already studied alot of the content. I enjoyed the class changing and more science and art. It was also the first time I studied a language, French, which I enjoyed even though the teacher was reputed to be cranky and strict. She was honestly a good teacher with little tolerance for mucking around in class regardless of wether student thought language was a real subject or not. My maths teacher was quite but patient man, who never forced anyone to 'perform' their maths to the class or made distinctions in ability. I didn't hate maths that year. Straight A English student but found alot of the work boring. GaT class project skills carried me through ahead of other students - I'd already done this, they were learning it new.

I began school at Presbyterian Ladies College (PLC) Armidale. I loved my first year in year 7. The teachers were very gentle and enthusiastic about their subjects. I had a wonderful time and the school really fostered my interest in music. I made good friends and participated in a lot of sport, even though i wasn't brilliant at it. The nature of the school meant that everyone wanted to have a go. The school had a fantastic peer support program where year 11 students mentored year 7 for the year. It encouraged me considerably.

Year 8

Did not work very hard and my school reports invariably said I was the class clown (I hate that expression) and I could do much better. I was pre-occupied with the BBC series of 'Brideshead Revisited' and spent most of the year writing letters in the manner of Sebastian Flyte to one of my friends. Boarded for a while. My friends turned on me and were very nasty. It was extremely upsetting, however I believe it is common for girls to become evil bitches at this age. As is evident, social and personal life took precedence over school work.

This was the age where I was the most disruptive. I could not concentrate, got into fights (always minor, me always losing) and really did not connect with any subject at school. I didnt like school at this time. This was shown when I opted to study art instead of music in this year's NOVA program (the first year i was not involved in anythign musical)

Studied Japanese, loved it. Teacher was kind, quiet, but strict. She never seemed rushed or aloof. Always took her own time. Her classes were fun. I was enthralled by the Japanese characters, loved learning them, like a code. Straight As in English again, still boring.

Year 8 was similar to year 7. I loved it and had a wonderful learnign experience. I was interested in learning, sport and music. There was a great sense of community.

Year 9

I think I boarded at school most of this year. Did two hours of 'prep' from 7 till 9 in the library, then supper of biscuits and a glass of milk and back to the dormitory. The boarders did NOT form study groups, a squandered opportunity. I derived much pleasure from the school library, which held such gems as a definitive 'real' history of vampires. At some stage I went back home to live and got a Maths tutor. This was not a success, as I kept asking him why the problems were so and so. He gave up before I did.

This year started off differently with a new English teacher that helped my understanding of English to grow. Really let me off hte chain a bit so I could practice what I wanted.

Worst Maths Teacher Ever. Highly religious. Loved tons of homework. Which he checked religiously, and lectured about god when I didn't do it. Despite this my maths marks were good, even though I had the worst homework record and had my mother called at least 3 times that year. Liked to make examples of people, like me, in front of the class. Elected Japanese, French, Drama and Media Studies.

I moved schools again this year, my biggest move yet. I moved from the country to the city. I missed my old school so much that I didn't want to go to school, and refused, for the first 3-4 weeks. The school I went to was not as warm an environment as the previous school. The teachers were nice, but not as understanding of a dislocated country student as i would have liked. I made my way however and eventually got used to the nature of both the city, and my school. I was taken aback by the multicultural nature of this new city school. Even though the school was a religious school like the other one, the demographic was entirely different.

Year 10

Hated Maths and found it very difficult because I did not understand the concepts, except for Trigonometry, which I understood. During the School Certificate in Maths I wrote an excellent short story and got 15% despite doing none of the Maths problems.

School certificate was just a stepping stone onto Year 11 and 12. I really just thought this was another year, no big deal. Had a really cool science teacher that respected us and laughed with us but could turn the table just as quick when he wanted us to know a particular part.

Same maths teacher. Same maths hate. Same homework issues. He viewed me as a problem and it showed in his teaching. He labelled me a bad influence for not doing my homework even though I was quite and worked average standard in class.

One of the best years of my life! I had made great friends! Didn't like my teachers so much but i didn't care, because year 10 was mainly a social year for me. I just remember year 10 formal, and lots of birthdays. Oh, and English. I had a great great English teacher! An ok maths teacher. I was pretty bad at maths but i had put it down to genetics. My geography teacher was a weirdo who didn't like me that much. Science teacher was strict and sometimes mean and music and drama were my realm of achievement so i loved them.

Year 11

Started getting serious about school, as I wanted to go to Uni. I dropped Maths and did Biology, Ancient and Modern History (later dropped MH), Art, English and General Studies.

Uni was in sight so I knuckled down a bit. Music was my main priority (I was good at it so therefore tried harder to become better), plus my teacher was amazing. She was our mum. My band (3 best mates and I) were asked to play at the local nursing homes for some extra money. We did so and my teacher drove all the way from Collaroy (a decent trek fromNth TUrramurra) and watched us perform, and transposed some music when needed.I decided that I wanted to become a doctor so I took on both Chemistry (with the cool yr10 teacher) and physics, ADV maths and 3U maths,ancient histroy and ADV enlish.I later dropped Chemistry and caused a sensation within the Science and Maths staffroom. Half hte teachers were for me dropping this course which I found way too demanding, whilst the other half were against. It ended when I was confronted by this teacher in the halls and verbally attacked. He was not happy I left. But after this was sorted out everything when back to normal. Was captain of the school's basketball team from year 11-12

Took three sciences, Chemistry, Physics, Biology in hopes of doing Vet science at Uni. Dropped Bio early on because wasn't required for Vet science at most Unis and chem/phys was. Sciences were hard but boring. Textbooks were taught and memorised. Took Japanese as my relief subject. Enjoyed it but didn't focus on it, marks were so so. Had extension English teacher who never offered any feedback on thoughts or answers. The read the book answer the page of questions lesson style annoyed me. Felt like I could have done it at home on my own, so what was the point of coming to class. Teacher should have given more feedback or input to the class.

I did Modern History, English, Maths, Art, Music, Drama. I liked the creative subjects. I hated my art teacher. She was biased about art works and showed it. I loved my Drama teacher and my English teacher. My Modern teacher was dodgy but nice. I generally enjoyed year 11.

Year 12

3U Ancient History, 3U English, Art, General Studies, Biology. The school’s goal was to maximise HSC marks.

My school was not so interested in marks for HSC, more into making well-rounded students. I dropped my ambition to become a doctor (therefore dropping 3u maths and chem) and decided that a career in teaching (at first history and then English) was a way to go. I applied for a teaching Scholarship and was lucky enough to recieve this the year out of highschool. I had a end of year trip with some friends, teachers and other students in other years to America this year and loved every minute of it.

Did work experience at a Vet's place through school. Was horrified not by the animals, the blood, the guts etc (though I almost fainted in the operating theatre once when they desexed a dog), I was horrified by the people - how careless and heartless they could be and how animals were treated as possessions before they were treated as living things. Decided Vet science was not for me, but too late to change my electives for HSC. My sciences seemed 'useless' now, couldn't focus on them. Extension English teacher still not committed to the class as I saw it. Couldn't feel respect for her. saw her as a waste of everyone's time. Tried to focus in on my neglected Japanese. Decided to pursue it in Uni even tho marks were so-so.

Modern History, Art, Music (should have done Drama instead!), Maths, English. My Maths teacher was great! She knew i was bad at maths and would need extra help to get by, and she helped me every step of the way. I worked hard and eventually got 76 which for an average 45 student was really really good!. I persistently did practice papers and handed them to her to be marked and she just kept on marking them. I appreciated her dedication. My other teachers were pretty cool too, except my music teacher, who was lazy and too busy for her own good or for ours.

HSC subjects: Please include brief details of syllabus, teaching methods, likes and dislikes

3U Ancient History (AH): Ancient Isreal, Greece and Isreal. Instruction method: working from textbooks as well as expositions and handouts from the excellent teacher. Assessment: Essays, trials and HSC. I just Googled Barbara Scanlan, my AH teacher. During the year I was doing the HSC she published a book about teaching junior history. There is also a 'Barbara Scanlan who is married to mountineer, Lincoln Hall. I imagine she is the same person. She was a lovely and inspirational teacher. A family friend lent me some books on Isrealite History that were very helpful. I also studied Greece and Egypt. The subjects were fascinating. In 2007 I went to Athens for the first time and visited the Acropolis, the Agora, the Stoa etc. I still remembered much of what I had learned in 1985 and 1986 about Perikles, demokracy etc. Miss Scanlan predicted with great accuracy the questions for the HSC exam and thus made the whole experience much less stressful.

Ancient History: My teacher was a teacher that was such a prick during the junior years but was amazing in the senior. He really focused on the skills that would help us in the future, i.e. note taking. I remember hte syllabus and was so engaged. One of the most educational and enjoyable subjects I have ever done.

Adavanced English (bottom class on my Extensions teachers recommendation - she wanted me to drop to standard English and stop taking extension): had excellent, committed teacher who was willing to discuss and gave prompt feedback, topped the year in one assessment essay, did none too shabby on the others. Extension English: hated the teacher, felt she was uncommitted to the class and knew nothing. Acted like I was a problem to the class - unapproachable for me to ask for feedback, avoided me in class. Only took it to get to ext2 English Extension English 2: Loved creative writing, even though the teacher (same teacher as ext1) was markedly sceptical about any of my ideas and writing processes. Would have enjoyed it more if a different teacher.

Standard English (I was lazy and wanted to get top of the class, which i did, easily). My teacher was enthusiastic and used a range of methods for a not-so-bright class. We read, we wrote, we drew, we created. She was so enthusiastic about our class that we were always excited about English.

3U English:Yeats, Levertov, Slessor and Lowell (poets) as well as Emma, Hamlet and Heart of Darkness (which I loathe). New Criticism theory predominant, we were trained to interpret the text only and not analyse any outside context. We were allowed to interpret the texts as we wished as long as evidence was provided from the text to support our claims. Method of instruction: Exposition by teacher, individual essay writing. Assessment as for Ancient History.

Adv English: I was in the top English class and was ranked in the top 10 or so. I really did not take too much heed to English until we studied John Donne. Here I fell in love with the way some people can create such beautiful situations.I put this squarely on my English teacher who was tough when she needed to be but was so inspiring. She 'made' this love of English.Everything that we are studying now, I lived through.

Sciences (chem&phys) loved the science, hated the textbooks focus, hated the religious documenting of everything. "useless" now I no longer aimed to be a vet.

Modern History. Consisted mostly of note-taking. We complained and then she improved. She gave us a whole lot of essays and group work to do. This group work helped me learn. She also did a lot of jigsaw. We ended up with reams of information but she didn't teach to different learning types. I don't know why I did history at uni, she didn't inspire me that much. I guess i just loved it. She was a nice teacher though, and personable. It made a great difference.

Biology. Cannot remember syllabus but recall working mostly from the textbook.

Physics: Hate every lesson. Was just passing, can't really remember much except I made a God-awful barely working motor, and my teacher brought an interesting item to class every lesson that tied into the lesson's aim

2 Unit Maths: Still not fond of maths, had a good teacher -passionate, friendly, laid back - got decent marks.

Music. Consisted mostly of sitting around and playing stuff. We worked on our pieces every lesson except one, which was aural. The teacher was hilarious because we could always treat all over her. She was always so frazzled. But we had fun in music. Mostly because of peers.

Art and art History. Produced a painting, done over a year as part of the assessment as well as art history, taught from a text book that each student had from year 7, Gardner's 'Art Through the Ages'. Individual interpretations of artworks were discouraged. European painting and sculpture dominated the syllabus, with some Chinese and Japanese examples. No African or Indigenous art. I found the exam questions vexing as they asked me to compare and contrast works of art between which I could see little connection. I valued my Art History education, however and the priciples I learned about painting and sculpture have stayed with me.

Music: My crowning glory. Played way too much music, way too loud and way too often. Wrote a large amount of music, which I learn learnt how to mix and master tracks. My teacher also helped us to analyse pieces of music which in turn has helped me immensly in my music teaching of late.A large plethora of music styles were taught

Japanese: my relief, enjoyed it even though not really good at it. Felt at ease, not judged or paraded around. Teacher readied us for HSC without teaching us to the test, we learnt without stress.

Art. I loved the subject, hated the teacher. That's the only thing that got me through. She was biased, subjective and unhelpful. Later I found out she had a mental breakdown.

What facilitated your learning?

What impeded your learning learning?

How could your learning be enhanced using different approaches, resources


Excellent teachers, who knew their subjects and inspired curiosity in their students. Pedagogy concentrated on students doing work individually, except in Biology, when experiments necessitated group learning activities. My English teacher, Dr Goulding, attempted a more constructivist approach to our learning. She saw herself as much as a facilitator as an instructor. She encouraged us to question and intepret literature in our own way. We would analyse each and every word of a poem. She would ask us what we thought it meant and provide suggestions herself. She never discouraged us from venturing an opinion. I was amazed by the depth of understanding I felt I attained by this method of analysis. Dr Goulding also taught me in Modern History (MH) in Year 11. In this subject she provided an extensive reading list and abhored 'spoon feeding'. I felt overwhelmed by the demanding nature of her approach and found MH dominated my study time. I ended up dropping the subject.

Boredom was my biggest problem. Also, if I didn\'t like a teacher, I ended up not liking the subject. Maths: I didn't understand the fundamentals and never caught up. Was in the lowest classes and had the worst teachers. Generally: Learning only from a textbook was uninspiring. I recall things that were out of the ordinary, which usually involved hands on learning and excursions and there was not enough of that. Not being able to express myself in certain subjects was frustrating and led to a disconnection with that subject.

I will say at the outset I was very privileged to attend a good school with good teachers. Technology in the 1980s consisted of an overhead and the occasional video. The following things would hav enhanced learning:

  • Study groups when I lived as a boarder. Amazingly, we used to sit in the library during prep time and work individually.
  • Less working from textbooks.
  • More encouragement to venture our own opinions (as we did in English).
  • A Curriculum that was less content driven and more into the learning process and metacognition.
  • More time spent on study skills and time management. I believe these skills are imperative and should be explicitly taught.
  • All the wonderful technology that exists today. When I was revising Educ 260 yesterday (Literacy), I reviewed the lecturer's PPP, listened to Podcasts and watched Podcasts on his website, which led me onto other interesting sites, read the texbooks and did some writing. What variety! It was most enjoyable.


My music teacher showed wonderful initiative in my later years. Seeing as the HSC music course is predominately practical, with this teacher allowing us to go into the music rooms and do whatever led to a more enjoyable, more productive learning environment. If she just sat us down and told us to practice our pieces at home or to write our music in a designated time, our marks would have suffered immensely. Rather the respect of us as learners (our diversity etc) and her as a facilitator led to this experience as one that is still memorable to this day.

Definitely lack of respect. The poorer teachers at the school had this draconian idea (in both primary and secondary) that they were the ‘teacher’ and I was the ‘student’ and these boundaries were completely fixed. I did not engage with this idea at all. Rather I pulled away and became more disengaged with the subject, resulting in a completely failed learning experience. So this situation of me being superseded with the ‘all-knowing teacher’ is a true example of lack of respect.

Here it would definitely be technology, i.e. the internet. We used the internet sporadically and watched a lot of DVDs for docos and English texts but I feel the internet was used mainly for the fulfillment of the ICT component of the course. Never was I encouraged to use the internet or other technology as a tool, rather than a requirement.


- teachers I could respect as committed, responsible and fair individuals -teaching skills and knowledge, not tests or performance. - respect from teachers, feedback as equal member of class -passion and enthusiam form teachers

- work or study that seemed 'meaningless' to me - large amounts of repetitive drills - being made 'an example' of in front of the class. - being made to "perform" in front of the class. - lack of feedback, lack of discussion - teachers who made decisons for me what i was capable of and waht sort of student I was.

- work and study practices that seemed meaningful. - not 'teaching to the test' - assessment tasks that assisted learning not just tested it. - teacher who didn't label, judge or decided what a student is capable of for them. - teacher who encourage everyone equally, challenged the class as a whole, respected everyone. - open minded teachers, ready to adapt and learn. - teachers who presnted themeslves as passionate, committed professionals.


Good teachers, a love of the subjects that I studied and friends. Teachers who were enthusiastic helped more than anything. Teachers who gave us interesting tasks. I loved being spoon fed information, in a logical way. I know it sounds easy but it really did help my learning. I didn't like having to think for myself until uni.

Boring teachers.Hot days.

I don't really know.

Members reactions to the learning by other group members


There is nothing really radical in anything any of us have discussed, it appears all of our schooling was fairly conventional. During our dicussions it was apparent our teachers had a big influence on whether we a) liked a subject and b) did well in it. Jarryd's epiphany re John Donne was very interesting, I too had an English teacher who made English come alive. I recall Dom talking about a 'dumb bitch' English teacher, who failed to provide any feedback, which made it very difficult to learn, as all 'learning' was done in a vacuum. Rachel's comments about her primary school teacher were interesting, his compassion for Indigenous kids had a negative impact on other students, as he spent an inordinate amount of time with them. The influence teachers had is really obvious now I have read everyone's contribution. As Dom said, wow! It just hit me what a huge responsibility we have in childrens' future and how we can make a BIG difference to their school experience and their outcomes. Rachel's Year 12 English teacher sounds fabulous and that's the kind of teacher I aspire to be. Constant evaluation and reflection will be crucial, so we don't become complacent. I saw my HSC English teacher on 4/6/09. She gave me some good tips, the most important being: have the students evaluate your performance every year at least once and really urge them to be honest. Analyse the feedback and make any necessary changes.


Sasha’s learning experience is completely different to either Dom’s, Rachel’s or mine. Which adds an element of diversity. Her disengagement of some subjects is interesting because a more modern approach to these subjects may have ignited a more influential learning experience. Rachel’s experience is like none other. Experiencing education in a third-world country, I believe, has given her a more worldly understanding of the role of education in society. Dom- I don’t really know too much about your schooling (I actually don’t remember too much from the discussions) but I will add more when you complete your column of the table.


My reactions were pretty simple really - wow, we all had such different schooling experiences even when our ages were close together, and wow, teachers really have such a big effect on how students do in a subject, enjoy it and feel about themselves - that's pretty daunting to think about as a pre-service teacher.


I guess I just have this general idea that everyone is different and that's what I'll hear. I was interested in Dom's learning as she learnt in the country like myself. I am interested in teaching in the country and so I guess I related to this. Jarryd's experience seemed so creative and different to all of us. It sounds like he went to a really interesting school. In some ways Sach's schooling was quite similar to my high school years.

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