Unleash and Unload from the 18 July 2012

Unleash One.... What about Visas? Is a working holiday Visa suitable for this? I've tried to make sense of the Visa information on the government's website, but failed so far.

 What experiences have other people had getting VISA’s to work as a governess or nanny in Australia? Or even just getting a VISA to work on a property?

Would love to hear others stories and experiences.

We came from New Zealand and NZ and Australia have an agreement that NZ citizens can work in oz, we get a special category visa stamped on our passport when we come in , no need to apply for it b4 hand.We worked on NT stations for 3 years.
I had a working holiday visa and it was fine but the problem is that you can only work for a family for 6 months, which kinda sucked.. i would love to have stayed for longer but even though i was eligble for my 2nd year i still couldn't keep working for my family :( a bit annoying but i still had an amazing time in the 6 months i was there :D

The station next door have some Irish teachers as their govies this year, but I think they only stayed for three months maximum? Not sure though sorry. We have had others that work as gardeners and govies and in the stockcamp

I came out on an working holiday visa. Technically you can only work with a family for 6 months but there are ways around it. If you are employed by the family and they have more than one abn number they can change to pay you through that abn after 6 months. If you are paid through in home care you can apply to change the income care centre the family goes through. I was lucky enough to get sponsored as a teacher by my family and have worked with them for the last two and a half years. It's a great way to familiarise yourself with the curriculum over here.

Unleash Two... Can someone like me (teacher from England) get a job as a Governess? I was thinking about starting after the Easter holidays (since I won't be arriving til March) and then working term 2 and 3 (and maybe term 4 as well). Is it even possible to governess, but not for a full academic year?

i'm from denmark and worked term 3 and 4 lasy year :) got a job without too much trouble

Bauer lots of people want govies at different times, maybe another govie didn't work out, or if they can get someone for at least part of the year, then that is better than not at all.

Yes there are always families looking for govies

If you are travelling on a working holiday visa you can work on an abn number for the maximum of 6 months. However if you are getting on very well with your family there are ways to get around this. If you are being paid through in home care you just have to change the in home care centre the family goes through. As soon as you get in the country try and organise your blue card (working with children card) or the equivalent for the state you chose to work in. As a teacher you should get a govie job with ease.

Unleash Three... I don't have very much experience of teaching children under 10 years old, will that matter? (I enjoy working with them, just don't have much experience!).

Nope! Just keep an open mind and don't be afraid to ask the kids if there is something better you could be doing or ask how the school room could be improved. They'll appreciate that you asked for their opinions and you know how they are feeling!

as above!! I had no experience when I first started teaching my girls, I just went with the flow pretty much and worked it out as I went along

Just go with it. With what you feel and most of all make it fun

Unleash Four... What ways do different school communities communicate with each other? Our school community group is looking at online communication such as websites, blogs, fb group/pages, twitter, etc. We want to know how others communicate and share so we can introduce different ways. Try to use methods which are effective. Does every still have weekly Home Tutor sessions? I know due to timing being after school it is hard to attend as a teaching mum.

Morning notices over the phone each morning plus an email version, facebook support group for home tutors, home tutor discussions at clusters & other organised school days, home tutor workshop 1 week/year, started out with HT sessions at the beginning on the year but they have drifted off. We get very comprehensive notes for each unit from the child's teacher though and lots of emailed info.

we use a portal, which everyone logs into with a password. We don't have home tutor sessions. The school that my oldest daughter in year 11 attends, send emails and a newsletter.

Unleash Five... I'm very nervous about heading out to my new job. I'm 20 and always lived in a town. What sort of things should I organise to take? What is the thing you enjoy most about living in the outback?

I can't comment on coming from a town because I'm a farm girl, but the outback gets in your blood. There is just something about being out here :) This is my first year as a Govie and I'm just loving it. I love the open space (I mean we had it at home but its just different!) and the fact I can get myself into such a good routine, but then you have days where its like "Actually because we finished our work, lets go for a picnic" and then heading out into the middle of nowhere to the most amazing spots :) I love riding horses so going out with the kids on their ponies is something I absolutely love :) But I would take lots of movies/ TV series for when you just need to chill, or doing study or something at the same time would work really well. Goodluck!

Think about your hobby, what you do to relax, unwind and take the things you need. For me I love to cook as bake so recipe books. I also like to paint so all those supplies. DVDs and books - unless you could borrow from the family. Also keep in mind that you will have a major centre near you to use the library (which out if broken hill they send you books in the mail) also often a big w to get resources an supplies. It really depends what your bosses are supplying you with, so do you need to bring bedding, kitchenware, things like that. If not go your hardest on everything that will keep you entertained (including phone and laptop of there's phone and Internet coverage). Dont forget photos, posters, wall art and little accessories to make your room/cottage/house feel like your home! Hope this gets you thinking in the right direction.

I am from Adelaide and I love coffee... So my parents bought me a coffee machine for my birthday at the start of the year to bring up here with me. Where is your new job??

Be prepared to be flexible! Things change in an instant out here - example our bore has blown here and things have just turned to total mayhem! Our phone usage for schoolroom is very limited, workers coming and going, family and friends out to help etc etc.
 I also have a lot of things from home here. Special things just to make it more 'my space' in my cottage. I have teddies, photos, books, dvds, iPod dock etc.
 If you will be outside and able to help in the yards have jeans you are prepared to only want to use outside (think dirty, smelly, hot conditions), long sleeve shirts (for sun protection) and sturdy boots.
 I never let anything run out - loo paper, deodorant very important! You never know when weather changes and you can't get to town or you may only do very infrequent trips to town!
 I have always lived close to town but on an acerage where i am from and it is very different living out here! I love it though! Most people are very friendly and I have very much become part of the family I work for. (kids include me in who is in my family lists etc) when I went home in the holidays I seriously missed here!
 So I might end my essay here but goodluck! Add me as a friend (send inbox so I know govie related) if you'd like to chat more! I'd be happy to help!

I grew up in town and moved two states to start a job as a govie. I took my own personal stuff, like above, but also a few books to read to the kids. I would suggest some stickers/rewards to start the school year off with motivation. If you don't know something, ask!!! Even if you have to work out who is the best person to ask, do ask. There is nothing worse than doing something and feeling like a total dork because you got it all mixed up and about face.

Depending on where you are going, and if its anywhere like the gulf, make sure you pack some nice clothes- heels and dresses. There is nothing like getting dressed up, even if your just going to dinner with the rest of the staff. This is my 3rd year up here and I regret my first year because i didnt bring nearly as many nice clothes as i could have! also don't be nervous. country people will generally be the most friendly and helpful people in the world. ask as many questions as you can, most people will like that you are taking an interest in what they do. have fun!!!!! make the most of it!

I love the space, watching the change of seasons, being involved and the people. A camera, jeans, boots, hat, comfortable clothing for the season, things that can get dirty (no white), stuff to wear to the races, any hobbies, books ... most of all enthusiasm and a willingness to give anything a go. Don't worry to much about it just bring some things that you love to decorate your space a bit but otherwise there is always online shopping. We've all been there, whether you are from the country or city it is nerve wracking starting a new job with people you are unfamiliar with. Just be yourself and have a ball.

Hi, I'm also 20 and was feeling the same as you 3 weeks ago. I have been here for nearly 3 weeks and I love it and the family are great. I second what everybody else has said re what to pack.

I grew up in Adelaide, and have found this to be the life for me. I love the space, the lifestyle, the families and of course the job itself. Every place is different and as such the requirements change too, but for the most part what has been suggested applies to all. I like taking my own linen, some photos, stationery and prizes, a stack of birthday cards, books, dvds, camera, laptop etc, and this year I supply most of my own kitchenware as well. If you're into movies quickflix.com.au is a great idea, and a torch and batteries also come in very handy. If you will be supplying your own food I suggest an esky or cold bag - it's a long way to the shop!

I enjoy the open spaces, friendly people and the variety in the work. When new people come to work here, we are always happy to help them out and answer their questions. As long as you are yourself and genuine, and have a positive attitude it all should be good.

Outback people make entertainment out of anything

Unleash Six... Do you have a trick or particular way that really works for you in regards to teaching times tables? The 2 out of my 3 kids struggle and I am tired of the same old worksheets.

Most teachers that I talk to just say practice, practice, practice... it is boring but seems to be the only way to learn them. there are lots of websites that help as well http://​www.multiplication.com/ this is one that my kids love.www.multiplication.com
www.multiplication.com - activities, games, worksheets to help teach the multiplication facts.

Take it outside the class room. Sort nuts and bolts in the shed, chickens into pens, show them the practical use of the maths. Used what interests them. It doesn't all have to be worksheet learning.

I really like to push the cheats way of working them out. Sometimes it gives the kids a bit of a boost of confidence. Other than that..you are right with the practise. I once had a year 6 who struggled, repetition helped.

I'm only teaching kindy but they're pushing with our kids that they have to know the foundations, as in truly understanding numbers, before anything else will come. So double check they understand numbers in themselves maybe??

A sing along CD helped me in primary school :)

mmmm if you know, tell me pleeeeeease!! Some people I have met swear by patterns, but I must be the least patterned person in the world 'cause I couldn't work it out, LOL, rote learning is the way I think

You tube has lots of different ways, songs, raps. Just google anything on you tube and you can find anything. Kids story books. Counting. So much more.

It depends on the age group, but I have a year 8 student, and we play Uno, doing the multiplications of the card they put down and the previous one just as a fun maths warm-up. It has made the times tables a lot quicker when applying them in other situations. :)

STRATEGIES. x4 means double double. x8 means double double double. x7 means x5 + x2 so if you wanted to work out 6 x 7 you would do 6 x 5 and add that to 6 x 2

I wish someone had taught me like that when I was at school!!!

Rote learning also helps, but if you know what the times tables MEAN, you can think about them. Start with doubles, then fives. x3 is just doubles plus another set. x6 is just x5 plus another set. x9 is the finger trick, and then you've got most of the facts covered.

I made up a outdoor games called timetables rugby worked a charm

My 6 year old knows them from a cd. Pm if you like and I can send you a copy. Also my 3 year old knows her 2,3,5,7 times tables from listening as well.

Unleash Seven... Will the fact that I'm a teacher put people off? (I realise that the pupils belong to Schools of the Air and so already have a 'teacher' and that the govie doesn't decide what the children have to do each term).

Definitely not!! They will love it! You may not decide what the kids learn (which really just takes the boring bit out of being a teacher :P) but you are the one to teach it, so if you are a teacher they will absolutely love it! :)

Lots of families, many of those with multi age school rooms advertise for teachers...

A lot of people chase teachers!

go for it and enjoy :)

Bauer some people prefer a qualified teacher, but you won't get paid the same wages as you will in a school. I think as long as you have enthusiasm and are genuine with the kids anyone will get on good

most people would love a qualified teacher on hand, someone with background knowledge of education. You will still have to conform to the schools curriculum and only get govie pay but there are tonnes of upsides like a small class.

I'm more worried about being a MOTHER who is a teacher. I have to work in a nearby community school while my kids do School of the AIr with a govie - wish I could teache them myself but I need to work for $$. So I am always worried that I give too much advice or am overly careful not to put pressure on our govie... I still like to help prepare the work though?

I guess if your govie is happy with you helping, that's ok, it is a two way street Kate

The majority of teaching happens in the schoolroom rather than on air. For that reason with qualified teacher on your cv you'll be snapped up quickly.

Unleash Eighth... What equipment do you think a schoolroom needs? We are just setting ours up and have an open budget as it will be used for many years to come.

Loads of games, card games, board games, puzzles, boggle, jenga etc

I love small plastic rectangular containers which you can stack with all the different maths equiptment. Clear containters. Whiteboard.

Shelving and boxes!! Storage is key. And loads of colored paper, craft gear. A laminator!!!!!!!!!!!!! And laminating sheets of course. And... Stamps and stickers to give to the kids as soon as they finish their work because waiting 2 weeks - 2 months until the school work is returned and the reward comes is waaaaay too long for most kids

lots of arts and craft and paper of various sizes...imagination rules!! :)

MAB blocks, adjustable height desks with tidy trays, linking cubes, letter bricks, art and craft supplies, storage containers, 100's board, posters, word walls, books, blakes guides to everything (maths, spelling, english etc)

Photocopier and pigeon holes made my life do much easier this year

TOYS TOYS TOYS TOYS TOYS!!!! board games, counters of different types (little animals, australian toy money, plastic bugs, 5 prong jacks, bouncy balls, marbles, tooth picks, paddle pop sticks - concrete materials are key!) then some more toys, a few more board games, and agreed with Kim, arts and crafts galore!!! - don't forget things like stencils, stamps, glitter, PVA glue, different implements for painting (sponges, brushes, etc) and play dough!!! always have play dough!

If you can't afford a photocopier, I use the sota supplied scanner and printer to copy ;)

lots of tables!!!! if you can get the boarding school style ones, which is a desk and a set of shelves on top, like a cubicle, they would be realy good for each child.

comfortable adjustable chairs, we bought ours through an office supplies so they posted them to us. Lots of area to display work. Curtains to cut direct sunlight but not too heavy to make it too dark. A couple of bean bags or big cushions for comfy reading spots. We always used lots of coloured paper, glue and paint in the earlier years. A set of balance scales, we made ours with a coathanger and two icecream containers hanging from string off each end. Kitchen measuring cups were also something we used heaps of and lots of recycled containers as some of the maths was, how much water do you think this container will hold, will it be more or less than this one etc etc. Also with younger kids, lots of recycled containers for construction. We use the styrofoam trays that meat comes on for paint trays and once they get a bit ordinary you can ditch them and margarine containers for holding feathers, glitter etc. And most importantly I think, if you have an open budget, a good heating/cooling system to make sure the kids have a comfortable environment to work in.

Most schools supply MABs, unifix blocks, counters, an abacus and geo board, so I would check first. My laminator gets used an awful lot, and I would also suggest a world globe, calculator, good quality stapler (that can staple 50+ sheets), a big sticky tape dispenser, hot glue gun, white board markers, permanent markers, pastels, high lighters, how to draw books, cork board or netting for displays, display folders, poster paper, games like scrabble and monopoly, a kids dictionary and govie dictionary, and a heap of books. With your printer, laminator, piles of blu-tack, you can create a lot of your own posters and resources.

LOTS of art stuff - like a kid in a candy shop!

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