Webinars

Live cast and recorded

Stay in the loop with PETAA webinars for members. Our new series will explore tips and topics relevant to your day-to-day work: the practical ins and outs of teaching English, language and literacies in the classroom. We have an exciting range of presenters and discussion areas lined up to deliver to you wherever you are.


Each webinar will run from 45–60 minutes, and the live cast will take place over lunchtime, or after school times where you can participate in a Q&A with the guest host. If you can’t make the live session, recordings will be accessible for members from this page.

Image of woman at computer and text 'webinar' on keyboard

PETAA webinars are free and exclusive to members — if you’re not a member:  JOIN US HERE

Please note: PETAA webinars are not accredited professional learning.


The Music Advantage: English and literacy, with Dr Anita Collins

Live cast on Tuesday 22 September 2020 | 3:30pm–4:30pm AEST

Join us in conversation with Anita Collins PhD, an award-winning music teacher and researcher in brain development and music learning, who wrote one of the most-watched TED Education films ever made, titled ‘How Playing and Instrument benefits your Brain,’ and appeared on the ABC TV series, ‘Don't Stop the Music’. Anita is music teacher and conductor at Canberra Grammar School, and Associate Fellow of Music, Mind and Wellbeing at the University of Melbourne. We’ll talk about how music benefits a child’s brain and wellbeing, and how music can be used to boost English and literacy learning.


The Music Advantage book cover and author, linked to event booking

Reserve your place Book now for the livecast

Bush School: an extraordinary teacher’s life, with Peter O’Brien

Live cast on Wednesday 21 October 2020 | 3:30pm–4:30pm AEDT

In 1960, at only 20 years old, Peter started work as the only teacher at a bush school in Weabonga, two days’ travel by train and mail car from Armidale. With few resources, Peter became responsible for the education of 18 students — from ages 5 to 15. Now in his 80s, Peter is a former teacher and academic who was instrumental in starting up ANTaR, to promote harmony between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and non-Indigenous Australians — work that was recognised with an Order of Australia. Join us in conversation with Peter about this fascinating time in his life, the importance of learning, and the transformative power of teaching.


Bush school book cover and author to left, linked to event

Reserve your place Book now for the livecast

Read for Your Life! with Ursula Dubosarsky

Live cast on Thursday 10 September 2020 | 3:30pm–4:30pm AEST

Watch a conversation with award-winning author and Australian Children’s Laureate 2020–2021 Ursula Dubosarsky to explore the power of reading in a young person’s life, and the important role teachers and libraries can play in inspiring a lifelong love of reading.

This event was held in partnership with PETAA and the Australian Children's Laureate Foundation and has been made publicly available.


Teaching Grammar Easily and Effectively, with Dr Rod Campbell

Live cast on Tuesday 11 August 2020 | 3:30pm–4:30pm AEST

In the work of Dr Campbell teachers are shown how to use the language and experiences that children bring to their learning in order to understand and use metalinguistic terms like clause, phrase, and the parts of speech when talking about texts. That knowledge is developed and strengthened as they interact with the written texts in guided reading lessons, and in the writing they produce for providing information and for creative expression. The teaching strategies and information Dr Campbell’s work communicates are grounded in theories drawn from Halliday, Freeborn, Crystal and other writers about language and linguistics.


Teaching Grammar Easily and Effectively linked to booking page

In this free webinar for members Dr Campbell drew upon his experience in his own writing and published books, and from presenting courses, including our perennially successful course, Teaching Knowledge for the Art and Craft of Writing, to provide an insightful overview.

Members page to Watch the recording

PETAA member webinar with John Marsden

Live cast on Thursday 30 July 2020 | 3:30pm–4:30pm AEST

Renowned author, teacher and founding (and current) principal of Candlebark School John Marsden will provide practical tips and writing activities for your classroom. In his own words: ‘I've got more than 400 books about the teaching of English and more than 500 specifically about the teaching of writing, so I take these subjects seriously! My criterion for a 'how to teach' book was that if, as I thumbed through it in a bookshop, I found two fresh and motivating lessons I could use, I would probably buy it. If I found three or four I would clutch it to my bosom and rush to the cash register. So, collecting worthwhile lessons was not a quick or easy process (or a cheap one!).’


John Marsden photo and webinar title linked to event booking

‘In this PETAA workshop I'll share a good number of English lessons which you can use (with little or no preparation) tomorrow. The emphasis will be on creative writing activities and challenges.’

Members page to Watch the recording

What’s the big idea? Session 2 of Understanding and using English concepts, with Michael Murray and Dr Lorraine Beveridge

Live cast on Thursday 18 June 2020 | 3:30pm–4:30pm AEST

Dr Lorraine Beveridge is a curriculum advisor for the NSW Department of Education, a former PETAA Board member and co-editor of the award winning PETAA book The Alphabetic Principle. Michael Murray has contributed to the development of NSW English syllabuses, including the English K-10 Syllabus incorporating Australian Curriculum content, and led the development of professional learning and resources to support the implementation of the new English syllabus. Michael works as an independent consultant. In 2019 Michael and Lorraine co-authored PETAA Paper 215: Let’s write a unit, which underpins this webinar series.

If teachers are familiar with English textual concepts and have been using the English textual concepts website, they may choose to view just the second webinar. Otherwise, viewing both webinars is highly recommended.


What’s the big idea? Session 1 of Understanding and using English concepts, with Michael Murray and Dr Lorraine Beveridge

Live cast on Thursday 21 May 2020 | 3:30pm–4:30pm AEST

Dr Lorraine Beveridge is a curriculum advisor for the NSW Department of Education, a former PETAA Board member and co-editor of the award winning PETAA book The Alphabetic Principle. Michael Murray has contributed to the development of NSW English syllabuses, including the English K-10 Syllabus incorporating Australian Curriculum content, and led the development of professional learning and resources to support the implementation of the new English syllabus. Michael works as an independent consultant. In 2019 Michael and Lorraine co-authored PETAA Paper 215: Let’s write a unit, which underpins this webinar series.


Te Rito Toi: Helping teachers and students return to school after COVID-19, with Professor Peter O'Connor

Live cast on Thursday 7 May 2020 | 12:30pm–1:30pm AEST

Professor O’Connor is an internationally recognised expert in making and researching applied theatre and drama education.

Te Rito Toi is a suite of resources that help teachers work with children when they first return to school following major traumatic or life changing events. It does that by providing research informed practical classroom activities and lesson plans to help children better understand their changed world and to begin to see themselves as being part of the promise of new and better futures.

In this webinar, Peter beautifully encompassed and embodied the heart of Te Rito Toi to provide insight into how and why, Te Rito Toi came to be, along with a live demonstration of some of the amazing resources available on the site and how they can be used by teachers, school leaders and students, as students begin to return to school following COVID-19.


Engaging Children with Literacy through Drama, with John Nicholas Saunders

Live cast on Wednesday 29 April 2020 | 12:30pm–1:15pm AEST

John Nicholas Saunders is the Director of Education and Community Partnership at Sydney Theatre Company.

Initially a Drama and English teacher, John has extensive experience in Arts, English and Literacy Education and has taught in primary, secondary, tertiary and community contexts. He has held positions Head of Department: The Arts at Southern Cross Catholic College; Senior Curriculum Co-Writer with the Queensland Studies Authority; Board member of Playlab Press; Associate Academic at Australian Catholic University; President of Drama NSW and Drama QLD; Education Consultant to the Brisbane Festival and guest lecturer at The University of Sydney, Western Sydney University and University of New South Wales; Chair of the Australian Major Performing Arts Group (AMPAG) Education Network and Drama Curriculum Advisor to ACARA.

He currently holds positions as President of Drama Australia and Chair of National Advocates for Arts Education.


John Nicholas Saunders

John is an Honorary Associate at The University of Sydney where he has recently completed his PhD exploring the impact of drama-based pedagogy on English and literacy learning.

Members only page to watch the recording

Reading with your child, with Jennifer and Samuel Asha

Pre-recorded and posted on Thursday 23 April 2020

In this short video, Jennifer Asha, renowned literacy expert and experienced classroom teacher, shares tips and tricks for parents who are reading and learning with their children at home during the Coronavirus pandemic. Jennifer covers ideas for engaging your child with literature through Talking, Reading, Writing and Making.

Jennifer has written the units for the PETAA Teachers’ Guide to the Children's Book Council of Australia Book of the Year Awards, Picture Book category 2012–2020 and is the presenter and moderator of face-to-face and online courses for PETAA.


Image of parent readin to child linked to members only recordings page

This video is also openly available for parents to watch the recording.

Reading Writing Prompts: Making the most out of picture prompts for composing narrative, with Dr Katherine Bates

Live cast on Tuesday 24 March 2020 | 12:30pm–1:15pm AEDT

Images are powerful communicators of story and used richly in and out of school. As such, it is understandable why current curriculum mandates the inclusion of the visual mode in teaching and learning cycles from the early years. However, reading images in the visual prompts provided in writing assessment contexts may not come naturally to all participants, nor may the prompts provided engage all viewers.

This webinar addresses the notion that students provided with opportunities to develop skills in examining snapshot visual narratives may interact with prompts more deeply and thus spend more time on composing a story than unpacking the prompt potentials. It is suitable nationally for teachers of Foundation to Year Six.


Katherine Bates and visual image of Figure from PETAA Paper 207

For additional reference see Katherine's PETAA Paper 207: Making the most out of picture prompts for writing in assessment contexts (member resource)

Members only page to watch the recording

Literature and latte, with Jennifer Asha

Live cast on Wednesday 26 February | 12:30pm–1:15pm AEDT

Grab a coffee and dive into quality texts. In this webinar, Jennifer will lead you through a tour of quality children’s literature. Discuss texts (including multimodal texts) that are perfect for the F–6 classroom, with hot tips on programming these rich works into your classroom within the Australian Curriculum: English. This session will help you spend less time searching for quality resources and more time getting into the heart of teaching, using quality children’s literature.


Young woman at laptop

Members only page to Watch the recording

The Strathclyde Three Domain Model: rethinking the pedagogic process, with Professor Sue Ellis

Live cast Tuesday 18 February | 12:30pm–1:15pm AEDT

INTERNATIONAL GUEST! Your opportunity to hear from UK Professor Sue Ellis from Strathclyde University Scotland, co-author of the influential Joseph Rowntree Foundation report on Closing The Attainment Gap In Scottish Education. Before joining Strathclyde University, Professor Ellis worked in Primary Schools in West Sussex and in the east end of London. She is Co-Director of the Centre for Education and Social Policy. Don't miss this opportunity to broaden your perspective and spend time with an expert. The recording for this event includes a download PDF of the presentation slides for PETAA members.


Book cover for Applied Linguistics and Primary School Teaching with Sue Lewis (co-editor) on right

Members only page to Watch the recording