My story…

My story…

Hello!

Firsty, thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy day to find out more about me and how Ridgy Didge came to be.

Initially I started this business as a means of keeping myself busy while living in Central Queensland. My husband was working at one of the mines there and I was on maternity leave, so we decided, we would move from our home in Brisbane, rent a house in Moranbah, in order to give him more precious time with our then 9 month old daughter.

Now, Moranbah is not the coolest of places to live and with limited indoor activities available in town and a child who was still sleeping 2/3 times a day I quickly found myself getting a little restless. I had extended my maternity leave for another year and while I was glad for the additional time I got to spend with my daughter, I began to miss the job I had previously adored.

Cue cute baby photos…

I can’t actually remember the events that lead to me finding TPT and then opening my own store, but I do remember being intrigued by the possibilities this venture could offer me. I could still stay connected to the job I loved and stay at home with my daughter… and maybe even more importantly at the time, it gave me something to do while she slept during the day.

As I began creating resources and then selling them (which to be honest was somewhat of a shock to start off with) I realised the potential I had for helping Australian teachers meet the requirements of the Australian Curriculum. I was reducing their workload and giving them the resources they so desperately needed.

The following year I returned to the classroom but only 4 weeks into Term 1, I required surgery, which lead to complications that prevented me from returning.

Now 5 surgeries later I am so thankful for the provision of my little business – in more ways than one! Not only am I helping ease the workload of busy Australian teachers, I have also been able to provide for my family financially (even though I have spent much of the past 18 months sitting on a couch recovering from surgery) and I have been able to spend precious time with my daughter (who’s existence in itself is a true miracle – but that is another story).

I am so privileged to work alongside so many amazing Australian teachers and help them with their curriculum planning. And this is what continues to motivate me even while I sit on my couch now, recovering from my latest surgery. Thank you so much for your support (and also for reading all the way to the end of this blogpost ;p).

PS If you would like support with planning using the Australian Curriculum please don’t hesitate to contact me: ridgydidgeresources@gmail.com. Let me help take the stress out of planning!

Can I tell you a secret?…

Can I tell you a secret?…

I think I have confessed before my obsession with planning. I LOVE it!! I compare the success of fitting the Australian Curriculum into one year to fitting every last dish into the dishwasher… there is great satisfaction in completing the puzzle – anyone else out there with a dishwasher filling obsession?

However, when I returned to work after maternity leave 2 years ago, the thought of putting this puzzle together I found completely overwhelming. This may have been due to the fact that I was still recovering from baby brain (which I swear is a real condition) and any normal functioning brain cells that had survived my pregnancy were now occupied with remembering nursery rhymes and wiggles songs… but for whatever reason the thought of trying to cram every last piece of content in the year before me, as well as care for my student’s social, emotional needs, was purely terrifying.

AND THEN… I also had to juggle the responsibilities in my own house… cleaning, washing, grocery shopping, nurse, mediator, playmate, teeth cleaner, bottom wiper… the list goes on.

My husband will testify to the anxious mess that I became as the start of the school year approached.

I was determined though to not let my anxiety get the better of me. So, with a block of chocolate by my side and a day free of toddler interruptions I surrounded myself with curriculum documents and set out to plan my whole year. I used the exact same documents that are in my Free Resource Library (the password is available when you sign up to our mailing list) and I mapped out how I was going to fit everything in. I can tell you, it was the best thing I could have done for myself. My year was mapped out. I now had a plan. My brain was now free!! Now I could focus on ALL the other things required of me as a teacher and a mum.

Now, if you know my story, you will remember that I didn’t really get much of a chance to implement many of the plans that I had made for the year ahead but I can assure you it certainly helped having my plans there when I was on sick leave for six weeks, in and out of hospital and still required to send detailed lesson plans for relief teachers that were covering my class. I can not emphasise enough the importance of having a bigger picture plan in place to help balance your home and work life!

So is this something you do? Or is this something you need help with?

Let’s start a conversation… Email me at admin@ridgydidgeresources.com with your curriculum concerns. I’m here to help! I would love to help you find a better home and work life balance as I did!

Simple Father’s Day Craft Ideas

Simple Father’s Day Craft Ideas

Looking for some simple Father’s day craft ideas for your classroom this year? Well have I got some simple ideas for you!

1. Meet Dad’s Chip Clip:

A simple template that you can find here. Simply print, colour, cut and glue onto the back of a peg. Give to dad on Father’s day with a packet of chips. He can continue using his chip clip whenever he doesn’t finish a full packet of chips!

Or you could try…

2. Dad’s notes craft

Another simple template that you can find here. Once again, simply print, colour and cut the template. Cover a thick piece of card from a cardboard box to your desired size with coloured paper. Glue a pad of sticky notes and the Dad’s Notes label on top of the covered cardboard. Include a pen and give to dad on Father’s day to keep his important notes and reminders on. Done!!

Two simple ideas for your classroom Father’s Day craft this year.

ANZAC or Remembrance Day Pool Noodle Poppy Art

ANZAC or Remembrance Day Pool Noodle Poppy Art

Stuck for ideas on how to commemorate this year’s ANZAC Day or Remembrance Day? Why not try this simple art idea in your classroom. It takes very little time to set up and looks extremely effective when displayed in your classroom.

What you will need:

  • Pool Noodle (cut into smaller pieces about 10cm thick)
  • Acrylic/Washable Paints (red, green, black)
  • Lest We Forget Template
  • Small green leaves
  • A3 cartridge paper (this paper is thicker than normal A3 paper – if you don’t have any on hand, normal A3 paper will be fine, just be careful about how much paint is used so that the paper doesn’t become too soggy)

How to create:

  1. Dip the pool noodle into the red paint. Dab onto the A3 paper. Covering the paper with as many ‘poppies’ as you would like.
  2. Dip the leaf into the green paint and stencil on the outside of the pool noodle ‘poppies’. Stencil as many leaves as you feel is needed.
  3. Using your thumb or other finger, dip it into the black paint. Press the painted finger into the middle of the pool noodle ‘poppies’.
  4. Cut out the Lest We Forget Template and glue on top of the art work. And. You. Are. Done! Well done :)
Map of Australia Art Idea

Map of Australia Art Idea

Connecting different areas of the curriculum with art can be tricky. Particularly geography!

Here is a quick and easy art idea that you can use to support the Australian Geography Curriculum in your classroom. It is particularly great for grades 3-4. Printables for this art activity can be found here.

What you will need:

  • Neon paints (or any washable/acrylic paint of your choice)
  • A3 cartridge paper
  • Map of Australia printables
  • Watercolour paints/Edicol Dyes
  • Paintbrushes
  • Art Smocks
  • Glue
  • Scissors

How to create your very own Australia Map work of art:

  1. Using the paintbrushes, paint over the A3 piece of paper in a single colour using the watercolour paints or Edicol Dyes. Set aside to dry.
  2. While these are drying, place a variety of different coloured acrylic or washable paints out for students to paint their maps of Australia. Encourage students to colour each state a different colour. Set aside to dry.
     
  3. Once dried, students can cut out their map of Australia (don’t be too pedantic about whether they cut on the lines or not – it just won’t happen! ;p) and the Australia title.
  4. Glue the map of Australia and the title onto the dried A3 watercolour page. Students can then use the States and Territories of Australia labels to locate the Capital Cities and States and Territories of Australia on their painted map.

ANNNDDD… You are done! Easy hey?! :)