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mETAphor Issue 1 2017

In Issue 1 2017 you will find the 2016 Ken Watson Address by Professor Liam Semler on the systematisation of education plus articles on: Visible thinking, teachers and writing groups, a comparative st...

mETAphor Issue 4 2016

This issue contains reviews, holiday reading lists and articles on: textual concepts, creative writing, Bell Shakespeare, writing thesis statements, oral communication, Ten Canoes, 1984/Metropolis. I...

mETAphor Issue 3 2016

This issue includes: English Textual Concepts ; English Studies; Teaching Sidekicks by Kostakis; Science fiction; Jasper Jones ; Creative writing for discovery; Rosemary Dobson unit; reviews; the Kib...

Discovery related texts and Linguistics: Including Frost’s ‘Home Burial’

Mel Dixon takes a linguistic approach to discovery related texts and shows how linguistics can yield insights into Frost’s poem ‘Home Burial’ as a text about discovery.

More Digital Poetry for Digital Portfolios

Tony Britten offers more on how to respond to and compose digital poetry.

People, politics and silences of Brave New World

Steve Henry demonstrates how Brave New World addresses the Module C Representations of People and Politics elective by looking at the silences in the text.

SETEL essay sturcture

Dave O’Donohue shares his useful SETEL scaffold for essay writing

Contemporary Australian short fiction in the Stage 5 English classroom: Maxine Beneba Clarke’s ‘Shu Yi’ from the collection Foreign Soi

Tony Britten offers a unit using Maxine Beneba Clarke’s short story ‘Shu yi’.

Julius Caesar and The Prince: Intertextual Perspectives

Derek Peat shares his insights into the intertextual connections of these two significant canonical texts Julius Caesar by Shakespeare and The Prince by Machiavelli.

Tim Winton’s Blueback and Stage 4 Students

Luke Bartolo shares his lessons on Blueback

SAMR as scaffold for classroom technology

Cassandra Pride shows how the SAMR scaffold gives guidance on how to analyse the effectiveness of a digital site for teaching

The Art of Travel: Representations of landscape

David Strange offers ways into Module C: Representation of People and Landscapes using the text The Art of Travel.


Prose Fiction : Crime Scenes , Edited by Zane Lovitt; Freedom Ride by Sue Lawson; The Comet Box by Adrian Stirling; The Haters by Jesse Andrews; Endurance by Tim Griffiths; Picture book: MILO – a mov...

metaphor Issue 2 2016

This edition of mETAphor contains articles on: Discovery related texts, 'Home Burial' by Frost; Brave New World ; Julius Caesar and The Prince ; an essay writing template; lessons on Blueback ; The Ar...

Concept PD

A PowerPoint template for guiding a faculty in exploring a textual concept and how it may be taught.

English in Australia 51 - 1

Contents Vale Paul Brock ‘This above all …’: The Place of Ethics in English Teaching - Ray Misson ‘Poetry does really educate’: An Interview with Spoken Word Poet Luka Lesson - Daniel Xerri The Teachi...

mETAphor Issue 1 2016

This first issue of 2016 has articles and practical ideas on: grammar, spoken word poetry lessons, writing digital poetry, Inquiry based learning on speculative fiction, reading, The Curious incident ...

Games in Literature

Stewart Mc Gowan considers the value of using games as related texts.

Grammar in Wonderland: what might a reimagined grammar look like in contemporary school English?

Dr Mary Macken-Horarik shares some of the stimulating ideas that she presented for the Ken Watson address at the state conference 2015. She uses Alice in Wonderland and other visual and written texts...

Distinctive qualities of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time

Cherida Chapman shows how The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time responds directly to the syllabus statements for Standard Module B.

Digital poetry for digital portfolios

Tony Britten shares practical advice on extending students creativity through writing digital poetry.

Speculative Fiction: a genre study using inquiry based learning

Ilona Mc Lean uses a guided inquiry process to lead to more effective creative writing in stage 4.

The Western Reading Path as a Pedagogic Tool

Christopher Spencer challenges the way we read in Western culture and shares action research in his class based on reading.


Reviews of: Novels: Fuzzy Mud by Louis Sachar; The Life of Houses by Lisa Gorton; The Boy with Two Lives by Abbas Kazerooni; The Cut Out by Jack Heath; Graphic Novel : Kid Glovz by Julie Hunt & Dale ...

Issue 4 2015

In this issue you will find articles on: HSC Advanced speeches; Asian Texts; Julius Caesar, Machiavelli and context; Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Gatsby; John Steinbeck; Hamlet classroom idea; rela...

New Advanced Module B Speeches

Amy Hughes gives suggestions for studying speeches on Module B: Paul Keating’s ‘Redfern Speech’, Doris Lessing’s ‘On not winning the Nobel Prize’ and Geraldine Brooks ‘A Home in Fiction’.

Exploring Asia

Laurinda Bailey reports on the Asia/Pacific 2014 conference on writing and translation.

Julius Caesar and The Prince: the effect of context, purpose and audience on the shaping of meaning

Derek Peat offers ideas for understanding and comparing the contexts of Julius Caesar and The Prince

The Great Gatsby and Elizabeth Barrett Browning: where does the Jazz age fit in?

David Strange shows how context can be integrated into the discussion of the Great Gatsby and Sonnets of the Portuguese.


Jessica Knight offers a quick fun lesson for Hamle t.

Try this: Classroom Activity for Diverse Voices

Cass Pride has this quick lesson on voices using Erin Gough’s YA novel The Flywheel.


Find reviews on: Prose fiction : The Pause by John Larkin; Stay with Me by Maureen McCarthy; In the skin of a monster by Kathryn Barker; Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews; Poetry: Out o...

Lysistrata: not just a sex strike

Dr Frances Muecke offers a reading of Lysistrata which appears on the Extension 1 Comedy course.

King Lear and ‘Dignity of man’

Saurabh Bhattacharya shares his comparative study of humanity and humanism in Shakespeare’s 1604 tragedy King Lear and Giovanni Pico della Mirandola’s 1485 essay ‘Oration on the Dignity of Man’.

Voice in poetry: using Neruda’s I’m explaining a few things’

Anita Dawe shares a short lesson using Neruda's poem I’m explaining a few things’ to introduce the concept of voice.

Miles Franklin Literary Award 2015

Cassandra Pride edits the judges’ reports for the Miles Franklin shortlist 2015 – followed by an activity for the classroom.

Metropolis and Nineteen Eighty Four: Writing a formal extended response

Stewart Mc Gowan shows how to guide students to write effectively for Module A using Metropolis and 1984.

Series fiction and Sally Rippin’s Billie B Brown series

Tessa Wooldridge explains the appeal of series fiction and its importance in the classroom.

Rolf de Heer’s Ten Canoes: Real, remembered and imagined landscapes

Rolf de Heer’s Ten Canoes : Real, remembered and imagined landscapes David Strange gives a reading of the film Ten Canoes and its place in the HSC Module Representations of People and landscape.

The Tempest: a text from the Age of Discovery

The Tempest : A text from the Age of Discovery Magar Etmekdjian offers a reading of The Tempest as part of the Age of Discovery.


REVIEWS: Prose fiction : A Small Madness by D Touchell; Off the Page by J Picoult and S Van Leer. Poetry: Devadatta’s poems by J Beveridge; Jam sticky Vision by Beesley. Non-fiction: Guarding Eden: C...

Issue 3 2015

mETAphor Issue 3 includes articles on: The Tempest ; 1984/Metropolis ; King Lear ; Ten Canoes; Lysistrata; Neruda; series fiction; Miles Franklin Award with lesson ideas and the usual columns on lead...

Issue 2 2015

This issue contains articles on Alice in Wonderland and children's classics; Journey to the Stone Country (Navigating the Global), Run Lola Run, Swallow the Air, A Short History of Nearly Everything....

Exploring ‘conflict’ in Rolf de Heer’s The Tracker

Melinda Low offers lessons suitable for a Preliminary HSC course on Conflict, focusing on the film The Tracker

Navigating the Global: Theories of global and local spaces and Alex Miller’s Journey to the Stone Country

Professor Robert Dixon explains some theories that can be used to support Extension 1: Navigating the Global; he offers a reading of Miller’s Journey to the Stone Country using these theories.

Literary responses to the Space Age: An annotated bibliography

Mark Azzopardi lists related texts suitable for use in Extension 1: Genre Science Fiction, all with annotations.

The Quest for Literacy: Using Fantasy and Sci-Fi to strengthen reading skills

Author Sean McMullen shares some of his knowledge of the Sci-Fi and Fantasy form and how these can be used for teaching reading and writing.

Using Thick Analysis: Representations of Discovery in Tim Winton’s The Turning

Brigitte Rieger demonstrates with practical activities how thick analysis will lead to insights abut Discovery in Tim Winton’s The Turning .

Related texts for HSC

This regular feature has many related texts for Area of study, Discovery; Standard Module C; Advanced Module C; Standard Module A; Speeches, poems, non fiction

Narrative techniques for students

David Leys takes teachers through four narrative techniques with student activities for creative writing: interior monologue, narrative voice, flashback, and anti-climax.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and other children’s classics

Kate Murphy offers readings of the classic texts : Alice in Wonderland, Little Women and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe showing just how much can be gained in teaching these texts.

From ‘Divergent’ to Literary Canon: Strengthening Literacy skills by encouraging reading in the Lit Gym

Lorraine Dobbie shares an approach to reading that aims to improve students’ literacy.

Swallow the Air: A conceptual approach to discovery

David Strange traces the development of some concepts through the HSC text Swallow the Air , focusing on how the text develops the idea of Discovery.

Run Lola Run: Celebrating Uncertainty

Lori Lebow offers a reading of Run Lola Run as a text for the HSC Module, Distinctively Visual.

A Short History of Nearly Everything: How to read the big fat book

Alison Cardinale gives an overview of this HSC text, discussing form, structure and language with close reading of some sections as well as activities that can be used in the classroom.


Reviews and suggestions for related texts. Poetry: Collected poems of John Shaw Nielson ; Drama : The Voices Project 2014: Bite me Australian Theatre for young people ; Patient 12 by Kevin Summers; T...

2015 membership gift

Paper 1 Practice Exam paper and Marking Guidelines with suggested answers

Issue 1 2015

In this issue : Articles on Wilfred Owen, Asian texts, The Dream of the Thylacine, Persuasion, student writing, writing for publication, boys and poetry; starting the HSC year. New regular columns on...

Writings from the East

Angelina Bea, Premier’s Teacher’s Scholarship Winner 2013, showcases a range of authentic Asian texts for the English classroom.

The personal is political: Little girls and their worlds in Ursula Dubosarsky’s novels

Kate Murphy examines the construction of young females in Dubosarsky’s The White Guinea Pig and The Red Shoe.

Discovering ‘The Dream of the Thylacine’

Lisa Edwards highlights how to use the richness of this picture book to teach a variety of ideas and concepts.

Accreditation at the Highly Accomplished Level

Danielle Vandenberg shares her experience of the accreditation process.

Writing for Publication

Kerri-Jane Burke provides practical advice to inspire English teachers to publish their work.

Persuasion – the art of rhetoric, propaganda or marketing?

Rod Yule outlines the rich learning opportunities using a resource developed by World Vision Australia.

Related texts for Area of study: Discovery

This regular column is focusing on related texts for the Area of Study: Discovery

The Poetry of Wilfred Owen: A sentimental rebel

Heather Stafford provides pathways into exploring the rich poetry of Owen.

The writing mode and our renewed opportunity to teach syntax

David Strange shares a method of thoroughly assessing student writing samples.

Action research – Making Poetry Engaging

r Linda Gibson-Langford shares the results of her action research project which explores the ways that boys can be engaged by poetry.

Teaching the HSC

Teaching the HSC ! Jane Sherlock and Deb McPherson provide advice for teachers when starting the journey of the HSC English course with their students.


Novels: Springtime: A Ghost Story by Michelle de Krester; Captives by Angela Meyer; The Tribe by Michael Mohammed Ahmed; Poetry: brush by joanne burns; Criticism: Alex Miller: The ruin of time by Rob...

Picture Books and Perspective: Zoo and The House of Narcissus

Kate Murphy examines how the narrator’s perspective in Zoo and The House of Narcissus can be used to explore key themes.

Music Videos – Multimodal Texts to Engage and Inspire

Kerri-Jane Burke demonstrates the value of analysing music videos as texts.

Listening: The Forgotten Mode

Stefanie Lia provides a practical guide to developing listening skills in the English classroom.

Your School TV News Program

Tim Creighton shows the benefits of students composing their own TV news program.

The Literary Voice

Heather Stafford explores the concept of ‘voice’ from a linguistic perspective.

Time in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet

Angela Rose examines the significance of time in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.

Conflict in Romeo and Juliet

Mel Dixon provides resources to help students explore conflict in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.

Camera Rolling and Action

Tim Creighton outlines the steps involved in a movie making project that will help develop students’ understanding of film.

Why Sentences Matter

Jane Sloan highlights the difficulties and the importance of the writing process.

Environmental Fears in Science Fiction

Angela Rose looks at how fears about the environment have a direct link to the genre of Science Fiction.

The Value of Twitter

Danielle Vandenberg demonstrates how Twitter can be used for professional networking and collegial support.

Teaching Shakespeare in Stage 5

David Strange shows how a study of Macbeth can be enhanced by applying the different modes.


Reviews: Novels : Two Wolves by Tristan Bancks; The Incredible Here and Now by Felicity Castagna ; Short story collection : The Promise by Tony Birch; Teacher Resources : A comprehensive guide to cla...

2014 Issue 4

This edition of mETAphor contains articles on picture books, the Kibble awards, music videos, the listening mode, voice, Harry Lavender, Romeo and Juliet, the power of sentences, twitter and reviews a...

The Stream of Communal Ideas: Reading Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and Fay Weldon’s Letters to Alice in context

Associate Professor Rosalind Smith places the two Module A texts Letters to Alice and Pride and Prejudice into a theoretical perspective that responds to the Module aims.

Attacking Hamlet from Left Field: How to create an original response

David Strange offers a new approach to Hamlet.

Panic Stations: Post-war Experience and Writing After the Bomb

Dr Melissa Hardie shows how Le Carre and Plath can be read as part of the Extension elective After the Bomb.

Idealism in Literature: A Conceptual Unit of Work

Saurabh Bhattancharya presents a unit outline for a preliminary Area of Study on Idealism using Thoreau and Chekhov.

The Justice Game as a Related text for Module C: Representing People and Politics

David Strange shows us how to keep what we know for Module C.

Artistic Wrecking ball or Loving Translation? Turning Joyce’s classic story ‘The Dead’ into film

Rogan Jacobson looks closely at the short story ‘The Dead’ by James Joyce (in The Dubliners ) and its translation into film.

2014 Issue 3

This Issue

Writing Analytical Sentences – The DIAS Way

Mel Dixon devises an acronym DIAS to develop awareness of different sentences used for analytical writing and offers some activities to teach this.


Kerri-Jane Burke and Mel Dixon review novels: The Gravedigger’s Book by Neil Garman; Nona and Me by Clare Atkins; As Stars Fall by Christie Nieman; The Protected by Claire Zorn

HSC Standard Module A Elective 2: The distinctively visual world of Vertigo

Kerri-Jane Burke proves how interesting this novel Vertigo by Australian author Amanda Lohrey is to teach, offering an overview balanced with close reading.

TS Eliot: Modernism and Religion in The Waste Land, Ash Wednesday and The Hollow Men

Rogan Jacobson analyses TS Eliot’s poems focusing on religion and modernism. The Hollow Men is a prescribed poem for Module B Advanced.

Discovery in Advertising

Mel Dixon offers a lesson to use for the Area of Study Discovery.

Language devices in Hamlet

David Strange’s example of language devices in Hamlet are connected to meaning and effect, providing a model for students.

By the River: Innovative techniques and the verse novel form

Kate O’Connor’s reading of Herrick’s verse novel as experimental fiction offers an excellent example of locating complexity in a simple text.

Contemporary poetry as a stimulus for imaginative writing for the new Area of Study Discovery: ‘Pitihaya’ by US poet Craig Arnold

Tony Britten presents ways of teaching poetry to stimulate imaginative writing on Discovery in the classroom focusing on the poem ‘Pitihaya’.

Seeing Frankenstein and Blade Runner through different eyes

Mel Dixon traces the motif of eyes in Frankenstein and Blade Runner and shows how a close reading lends itself to a contextual comparison.
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