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Conversations About Texts

Teach your students to write effectively
Develop the skills to teach grammar in a way that your students will gain an understanding of the basics and learn practical ways to implement their knowledge.

The focus of Conversations About Texts is on teaching grammar in the context of imaginative, informative and persuasive texts in primary school and the middle years. We will explore the teaching of texts as the context in which grammar is taught to support meaning. Knowledge about grammar is only useful if students use it to read and write, and recognise how authors, including themselves, can use language to make meaning.

The presenters have worked as TESOL teachers and consultants in classrooms and recognise a growing need in the teaching of grammar to support implementation. At the same time, they are aware that many participants will review their own grammatical knowledge or address grammar for the first time.

Module 1 – Literary Texts

Mode: 12 hours' face-to-face and assignments

Session outline:

  1. Talking and listening – What's the difference? (grammatical intricacy and lexical density) 
  2. Reading – What's going on? (the verbal group)
  3. Reading – Who and what? (the noun group)
  4. Writing – Where? When? How? (adverbials and theme)
  5. Writing – Creating joint and independent texts (sentence structure)
  6. The third voice in your classroom – Using quality literature (nominalisation and theme)

Module 2 – Factual Texts

Mode: 12 hours face-to-face and assignments
Prerequisite: Module 1 

Session outline

  1. Review – Grammatical intricacy and lexical density; the verbal group; the noun group; adverbials and theme; sentence structure; nominalisation and theme 
  2. Describing – Linking talking and listening to reading and writing (the noun group)
  3. Instructing – Joint construction and strategies for writing (adverbials and theme)
  4. Recounting – Modelled texts and strategies for reading (processes and verbal groups)
  5. Explaining – Strategies for reading (nominalisation and theme)
  6. Persuading – Building the field, technical vocabulary (appraisal)


Each module costs $770* per person including GST. Individual schools or communities of schools that have a minimum of 20 participants and a venue for the workshops, can contact us to discuss a reduced rate.

* Subject to change


Registrations are currently closed.

Please check our calendar for details of our scheduled conferences, short courses and workshops.


Dr Kathy Rushton


Joanne Rossbridge
Learn more about Joanne

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