Writing Den www2.actden.com/writ_denis a Canadian site that promotes writing, drafting work, and research for creative writing exercises. It includes visual and aural support for the animals it uses as a focus. The site aims to improve students’ writing skills and the ability to write a variety of essays, as well as the development of students’ vocabulary, comprehension and visual literacy skills.
Media and Multimedia Stage 5 Blackadder Goes Forth (the ‘Goodbyeee’ episode)
BBC (video and DVD)
Rowan Atkinson presides over this witty spoof on World War I that will occasion much humour in the classroom and provide a valuable model for parody and satiric writing. The final scene in this episode is compelling, offering an alternative to the humour that has gone before. It could be used as an introduction to a study of the poetry that was motivated by the Great War. (See also the website The Great War.) Schools should note that this episode only is annotated. Any other episodes should be reviewed to determine suitability.
Directed by David Batty
The travels of a group of young Aboriginal men through outback Australia give rise to some inventive engineering. To get the rock band to their first gig some vehicle modifications are required and the bush mechanics are capable of solving any problems. The three episodes in the series provide insight into contemporary and traditional Aboriginal life and culture with humour and inventiveness.
Creative Writing for Teens http://kidswriting.about.com/?once=true& provides an exhaustive list of writing support and guidance for students. The students are led through a series of questions to target their needs and then are provided with generalised information about that topic. The most valuable element of this site is the range of texts covered that include captions, slogans, epublishing, names of characters and software.
CyberGuides: Teacher Guides and Student Activities www.sdcoe.k12.ca.us/score/cyberguide.html are supplementary, standards-based, web-delivered units of instruction centred on core works of literature. There are some particularly useful guides to an exhaustive list of texts, both American and European. Each ‘CyberGuide’ contains a student and teacher edition, standards, a major assessment task and a process by which the elements of the task may be completed.
eidolon.net: Australian SF Online http://eidolon.net/ezine/index.html contains an exhaustive list of Australian Science Fiction and Fantasy text resources, reviews, short stories and details of SF events around Australia. The material is regularly reviewed and contains articles and stories by well-known Australian authors such as Sara Douglas, Sean Williams and Sophie Masson.
In the Footsteps of Sir Douglas Mawson www.mawson.sa.gov.au/netscape.htm highlights aspects of Mawson’s achievements – his adventures, his success in taking science to extreme environments and the scope of his accomplishments. It also illustrates how Mawson’s achievements are part of ever-evolving scientific endeavours. Mawson’s achievements are inspirational and act as a stimulus to understand the world in a scientific way, and to lift aspirations.
Jane Austen Information Page www.pemberley.com/janeinfo/janeinfo.html includes annotated and illustrated hypertext version of Pride and Prejudice and some of her early writings. It is a scholarly site. There are research essays and a range of support materials available for students studying Jane Austen.
MarsdenNet www.panmacmillan.com.au/johnmarsden/index.htm is Marsden’s ‘official’ website and provides a source of general information about the author and his work including previews, reviews, newsletters, speeches and lists of details about John Marsden.
Mr William Shakespeare and the Internet http://daphne.palomar.edu/shakespeare is essentially an index for, and offers links to, resources about Shakespeare on the web. It is a very thoroughly prepared and highly organised site. It is easily navigated and provides a range of links to other Shakespearean sites including an annotated guide to the scholarly Shakespeare resources. It provides a range of other material on Shakespeare’s life and works that is not available through any other net source.
New Poets Press – Writing Tips www.newpoetspress.com/writetips.html is a practical guide and support for students who wish to analyse the quality of their poetry drafts. It provides a clear series of steps to assess the quality of the poetry as well as some additional links, providing students with feedback on their writing and wider references for poetry writing.
Ozlit Australian Literature Resources on the internet http://avoca.vicnet.net.au/~ozlit contains more than 500 pages of Australian Literary information as well as more than 1100 entries in the ‘Books and Writers’ database which is organised by authors, subject and title, and includes some contact addresses. There are links provided to other useful literature sites. It is a valuable resource for a wide range of Australian writing.
Shakespeare’s Globe Research Database www.rdg.ac.uk/globe is a site devoted to presenting students with comprehensive details about Shakespeare’s theatre as well as theatre in general terms from the Elizabethan period. The site is divided into three main sections: a research database which includes copies of the Globe Research Bulletins and also details of the staging of the plays at the Globe; the story of the Original Globe which includes the archaeology and some information about contemporary London and its playhouses; and the building of the New Globe which includes much detail of its design and the building and decoration of the theatre.
Shakespeare on film www.jetlink.net/~massij/shakes/films/movilist.shtml Imagine comparing Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet to Franco Zeffirelli’s version of 1968. Or perhaps you would like to compare Branagh’s Hamlet to Olivier’s; or Mel Gibson’s (Zeffirelli’s); or even Disney’s The Lion King? All this is possible on this site where a good range of information lies, carefully arranged, on easily navigated pages. The advice on how to watch a Shakespeare film is comprehensive, and includes tips for viewing film generally. A page each is dedicated to the four categories of Shakespearean canon (Comedies; Tragedies; Histories; Romances). There are also links to sites that are often of high visual and textual quality, though these require exploration time to verify curriculum relevance.