This Teacher idea provides information about and links to the TLF learning object 'Dream machine'. Chris McLennan describes how 'Dream machine' helped her students improve their descriptive writing by exploring the meaning and use of similes:

I started with a small literacy group, which included some Koorie students, and we all worked together to build their dream machines. They showed a lot of interest, especially with the vocabulary being so spacey and futuristic. The learning object led into writing passages using similes that described these bikes and enhanced their descriptive writing. The students from this literacy group showed the next literacy group what to do and read them their descriptive writing. It got the other students dying to have a go themselves.

The Koorie children in my class like a lot of visuals, a lot of hands-on. The learning object is very colourful, very visual, with simple instructions. They found it really exciting and were able to get involved quite readily, selecting from the menus and going through the modelling that goes with the object. The results were better sentence structures and more descriptive writing. Reluctant writers were more willing to have a go.

'Dream machine' helps the children who struggle with reading texts. They can hear the text and understand it and still get the learning without having to read the text on the screen. The objects provide immediate reinforcement and feedback to the children, which is really wonderful. Even if they make an error they receive feedback in a positive way with an opportunity to rethink how they went about solving the problem.

I think they're excited because there's a lot they've achieved and they've used a lot of strategies. They loved looking at each other's different bike designs and talking about them. It's a terrific object. And it's been really good for their writing.

Teacher ideas slideshow
L1174 Dream machine: similes
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'I like using them and the children have had positive and excited responses ...'

Chris McLennan,
Traralgon Primary School, Victoria

Curriculum area

Year level

Using similes in descriptive writing.

Learning objective
  • Students use vocabulary and imagery to enhance the meaning and aesthetics of a text.

The resources listed below are related to this Teacher idea. Click on the links below to view the resources.

(1 resource)The [email protected] Federation (TLF) digital curriculum resources

Dream machine: similes learning object Dream machine: similes Dream machine: similes TLF ID L1174

Build a dream bike using fantasy parts such as a 'time-travel frame' and 'supersonic jet pedals'. Choose similies to make an interesting description of your own fantasy bike.

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Dream machine: similes: sample printout document Dream machine: similes: sample printout Dream machine: similes: sample printout TLF ID L1174

View a sample of the printout available from 'Dream machine: similes'.

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Dream machine: series description document Dream machine: series description Dream machine: series description

Read about the full series of 'Dream machine' learning objects.

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