The walls that towered us glistened in bare crystal silver. Our jewelled shoes made deep echoing sounds on the stone floor as we clutched hands searching for the treasure. Not a drop of colour was in sight, it was as if our eyes had been turned colour blind. Hallways, rooms and more rooms past but were all empty, it was like an impossible maze to the treasure. Then suddenly colourful lights appear ahead. They were coming from a room with a slightly open door. As we enter I start to gasp at the bright colours… I pick up a paintbrush
The early morning sun shone bright onto my cracked face. Sand felt like it was plastered on, so thick and heavy like a brick. My ragged clothes smelt deeply of salt and my head ached like it never had before. I press my fleshy hands into the sand trying to move closer to the sea, but I give in with a mouthful of despair and exhaustion. What I would give to be back with my family, all I prayed for was them; and a letter in a bottle. I had not communicated with a single whisper of life for weeks.
Below is my second entry that involves the real author’s purpose:
Please let me stress with you that you still have hope. Your unfortunate encounter with Typhoon Haiyan was a very distressing time, I’m sure that you will agree with me, but it has made you a stronger person. If you weep alone in places beneath the deceased your heart will never know about the spectacular vision of hope and how it heals the most impossible wounds. Tears won’t bring back your beloved, but hope will place them in your heart.
You’re not alone; others where left stranded. You’ll be okay; you’re lucky.
From a believer with much respect.
This week started with an obvious change; seating arrangements! It was boy – girl and the tables where set up in a circle so everyone could see each other without anyone in the way. We started with a talk on how Ratna edit’s work and she handed out a helpful sheet. Everyone took turns in reading out a paragraph and discussing what it meant and shared examples of times they came across them in a book or some of there past readings. The session seemed to go very quickly and it was soon over, I’m looking forward to next Friday!
It was a misty autumn morning the day I went missing. I still remember the joy of crunching leaves with my favourite pair of gumboots and staring up at the huge oak trees that towered me, dreaming that I one day would be able to fly through the tree tops with all the singing robins . When I came across an abandoned dam I felt the urge to splash about, I didn’t care about soaking myself through.
Then the man took me away for 6 years, until he pushed me into the dam he found me in. I was horrified.
To watch the video I watched, follow this link: http://www.abc.net.au/btn/story/s3880235.htm Enjoy!
Recycling is extremely important because it helps keep our environment healthy, but did you know it can turn out to be creative too? If you had a bunch of old unwanted tapes and you really just didn’t know what to do with them, has the idea of knitting, crocheting or weaving with them and making them into a hat ever came into your mind? it may sound unusual but people like Evelyn Roth, an artist from Canada has being doing this all her life. She makes bouncing mats, hats, bags, clothing, tea cosies, outfits and much more out of old tapes from cassettes!
She now lives in Australia and loves teaching kids how to use old tapes that would otherwise been thrown out to make interesting and unique items. But of course how do you make a pile of old tapes into a crocheted bag? It starts with smashing open the tape by using a hammer until you get the tape to just fall out into your hands. You are then ready to crochet which involves a lot of looping and to help you can even use crochet hooks to speed up the long but worthwhile process.
So if your looking for something a bit different to do, pick up some old tapes and let your creative imagination go wild!
This was our first ever session of the creative writing group, run by Ratna; a book editor from America. We started off with Ratna introducing herself and what she has been doing in the past few years. We had a chance to ask questions and just to talk to Ratna. We then started our first activity, it was called 6 word memoirs and it involved writing six words about yourself in a short sentence. My one was: I am the goal defence writer. We also got the chance to share our memo and this helped Ratna get to know us all. After the memoir activity we did a game where we made up a story by going around the group and saying a sentence. The final product was pretty crazy! We did this again a few more times and then decided to choose a main topic to create a story about. We did a vote on all the brainstormed topics and ended up with “Stick people going into the real world”, then we made groups to help write the story; the beginning group, the transitions group, the conflict group and then the ending group which I was in. We started this activity but then decided to do 2 sentence starters that had a particular genre, I did horror. When we finished the activity we shared and then the session was over. I thought the first session was really fun and I can’t wait for the next one!
These are the things that I have learnt over the holidays, they are grouped either in “Knowledge” or “Facts”.
When playing “Cluedo” with my friend Jasmine and her sister Maya I learnt that sometimes you just have to deal with any circumstances even if it’s not your piece of cake. I found this out when Maya always wanted to be Scarlett and I would maybe have liked to too but she was always her so I just let her be Scarlett and moved on.
Baby Animals can get stressed and frightened just like human babies so don’t chase them and be crazy with them to much.
This is an understanding on what my partner Josh learnt on the holidays:
When playing “Cluedo” I learnt that you shouldn’t just put any player in a room and guess because you probably won’t have much of a chance to win. Instead you should really think about it and plan it out.
The odd smell of wet grass, dirt and rain loomed heavily around Greta. Her face sighed as she pulled her worn out boots on with not a whisper of enthusiasm. Just like every morning on Yorkshire Farm the old rooster crowed, the cows mooed and Greta got out of her straw bed, ready to start a long and bitter day of being a slave. The tired and rusty metal gate creaked as Greta opened it and started prodding along until she arrived at the old water well, filling up her pail for the cow’s trough. ”Imogen, water time” Greta’s sweet voice coxed Imogen out of the paddock mist and Imogen started to drink slowly through her velvety soft lips. Suddenly, a flash of indigo green swirly light appeared through the mist; Greta’s heart leapt.
Greta had never been to this part of the forest before; it was luscious green and filled with the swirly lights and soft whispers.
Being Greta, she had dare fully followed the lights up until sunset, they still appeared in front of her then also behind and all around her! Greta suddenly became uncomfortable and was beginning to feel as if she was in a dream, an illusion. Greta had stumbled twice and had landed on the most bizarre ground covering; it was the colour of emeralds with a refreshing taste and smells but as soft as moss in a summer field. Although Greta was empty of all energy she carried on walking through an odd green land with swirly lights and whispers. It was as if the world had spilt a pot of emerald green dye over a forest in England, and everything was turned instant green, even the birds that flew gracefully in the treetops.
Greta had been walking for days without rest and she was sure her eyes were starting to play tricks on her. For example, occasionally the indigo green swirly lights would shape change into faint images of Greta’s master back at the farm, but instead of an image of his weary old face she would see him eating a bowl of hot porridge at the large oak table in the farm house kitchen. This unusual picture never changed so Greta’s formerly imaginative head turned into a breeding ground for migraines.
At the start of the journey she decided that she would never stop following the lights until they stopped but after about a week of walking without rest Greta had finally decided to stop and rest somewhere in this new green land. Greta collapsed on to a bed of mixed grasses and moss just as two beautiful green phoenixes swoop down beside her. “I’m using every last drop of energy I have to smile at you two, but now I must rest” Says Greta tiredly. The phoenixes blink with their soft moon shaped eyes, Greta senses they understand and silently she falls into a deep green sleep. Greta had been too tired to imagine what would happen to the lights, would they wait for her to wake up, or would they just disappear because they thought Greta had given up walking? Part of Greta thought that when she woke she would be lying in her straw bed at Yorkshire Farm and this would all be a dream, but that was ignoring the fact that Greta had pinched herself a number of times and not woken up. Greta had not just noticed the indigo green lights but soft whispers everywhere in the emerald green world. They were so soft and tiny that you had to strain your ears to hear them, they sounded like lots of little excited voices whispering together but at the same time they sounded wise. Greta had first thought that the whispers were coming from just the air but then she suddenly started to hear them in the trees and flowers! There was one thing Greta new for certain, the emerald green land was very strange and weird indeed! All these thoughts kept going through Greta’s head as she lay asleep in the forest with to beautifully green phoenixes watching her every breath in silence.
“There is a messy, lost looking young lady asleep in the Emerald Forest Gardens. We have two phoenixes watching her” reported the elf. “Is there any chance that this young lady’s name is Greta?” The King asked wonderingly. “Yes indeed sir, very much indeed!” “Well then bring her to the Emerald City!” “Of course your majesty, indeed”.
Greta awoke to a deep, dark crack in the sky. Her eyes blinked open, she was angry with the sky for waking her up but she was also scared. The phoenixes were still watching her but they were obviously worried about the crack sound in the sky. Suddenly, all the swirly lights disappeared with a flash of indigo green, just like they did in Imogen’s misty paddock. Not only did the lights disappear but the sky turned black and dark swirls of mist floated in the air! It started to rain but it wasn’t real rain, it was more like big drops of thick black paint, the peaceful green land suddenly became a war zone of green and black. Greta was extremely overwhelmed, a big drop of paint landed on her face and she was just about to faint when the two green phoenixes picked her up and carried her through the mist, she had no idea how they could she their way, it was so thick you couldn’t see more that a meter in front of you! Greta was to shocked to scream. She was petrified; so scared that her clothes would rip and she would fall or they would crash into a tree. She was also beginning to feel sick she desperately wanted to stop flying. The mist was clearer now and most of the awful rain had stopped, Greta glanced up to the phoenixes, they really were the most beautiful creatures she had ever seen A large emerald gate with letters carved on it saying “Welcome to Emerald City!” that appeared through the mist interrupted Greta’s thoughts. There were two swirly lights either side of the gate that she noticed as they landed gracefully. The phoenixes entered through the gate and Greta, unaware of any other options followed them.
Greta’s jaw fell. Towering over her was a number of buildings shining proudly as the colour of emeralds. Greta spoke aloud to the phoenixes “Where am I?” the phoenixes stopped, blinked at her then carried on walking. “Where am I Greta?” Greta yelled to herself, the phoenixes didn’t stop. Greta started sobbing as she answered her dumb question, “Lost you’re very, very lost!” As much as Greta wanted to “scream and shout and let it all out”, she refrained, she was going nowhere with her tantrum. The phoenixes were now quite a bit ahead of her so Greta started to quicken her pace. The phoenixes suddenly entered a building made of carved emeralds and sitting on a very fancy chair was a tall man dressed in green robes and a crown studded with large emeralds, he spoke with a happy and welcoming tone; “Welcome Greta to the Emerald City located in the Emerald Gardens!” The phoenixes bowed and Greta was very confused. “Why am I here?” “Who are you?” “Well Greta you are here because I have watched you ever since you arrived at Yorkshire Farm and I knew that deserved a better life and a life you could use your powers in We also need you to help us protect the Emerald Gardens from cruel and evil spirits that try and harm our land and make it black. We need people like you that have special powers called “Chuffley Flower Fairy” powers to help defeat the spirits. And secondly to answer your second question my name is King Emerald and I’m the King of the Emerald Gardens.” “But King Emerald I don’t have any powers and, I only came here because the lights brought me here” “The lights to you but fairy folk to me didn’t bring you here, your heart did. You followed your heart not the “lights”, when you entered this building there wasn’t a path of “lights” in front of you. Following your heart to find your destiny is the only proof I need to know that you have the powers of a Chuffley Flower Fairy, Greta”. Greta couldn’t believe her ears, she had fairy powers! “How come I can hear the fairy folk but not see them and see the phoenixes but not talk to them but I can talk and see you?” “If you decide to become a Chuffley Flower Fairy then you would have these privileges. You can see and talk to me because we both have Chuffley Flower Fairy powers” Greta couldn’t believe she had a choice for such a different life, but she still had one more question to ask the King. “What were the awful mist, rain and crack in the sky?” “That was the evil spirits monthly attack. They harm the Emerald Gardens Forest to try and frighten away any folk and kill some green life. The stuff you call “rain” is actually drops of black sticky mud, I see it’s been on you!” “Yes it has, the feeling is awful” “The mist is actually the evil spirits, sometimes on heavy mist days you can hear them whispering horrible things. Each time the spirits attack a part of a invisible force field cracks off so that’s what the crack sound in the sky is. If the force field wasn’t damaged the spirits can’t get in.” Greta took a moment to take all the new information. “Greta, you are a very special person and if you stay here and become a Chuffley Flower Fairy you could help me defeat the evil spirits and fix the force field. Would you like to stay and live this life or go back to being a slave, it is completely your choice Greta.” Greta imagined a life without a bossy and boring master… It would be freedom and her heart had led her here, to her very own destiny. Greta looked right up into the kind King’s eyes and spoke happily to him, “Yes King Emerald, I would love to!”
Greta walked with her head held high and a spring in her step, she had never felt happier in her life! In a few minutes she would become a fairy, not just any fairy but a special Chuffley Flower Fairy and she would live in what turned out to be a wonderful emerald green land!
Greta followed the Emerald King into a small chamber consisting of just a few shelves full of bottles, a table and another table holding lots of goblets. The King placed medium sized bronze goblet and a bottle misty green liquid on the small table and poured the green liquid into the goblet. “Drink this and close your eyes for exactly forty seconds, you will then become a Chuffley Flower Fairy.” Greta was exploding with excitement and nervous energy, she couldn’t wait to be able to fly and use her powers but at the same time she was worried, what if it goes wrong? She could turn into a monster or lion perhaps! Greta clutched the goblet as she said goodbye to her last moment of being fully human. “Please work!” She lifted the goblet up to her lips and drank slowly; it tasted like magic, fizzy, sweet and refreshing! Greta waited until the very last magical drop trickled down her throat before she counted nervously for exactly forty seconds. When she had finished her body was being lifted up into the air by her very own pair of wings! Greta’s eyes were sparkling in delight and she felt as light as a feather, her messy and tatty old clothes were replaced by a sparkly emerald green dress, glittery emerald studded shoes and finally of course her bouncy, wavy blonde hair was let out and untangled and held in place by an emerald and gold tiara. Greta was speechless in admiration of her new self! “Greta you look absolutely stunning, and I must thank you for choosing to help us defeat the evil spirits once and for all. For now though you must get to know your new home and the special folk that live here, let me show you!” “Thank you Emerald King, I would love that!”
“Master, they have a girl, another Chuffley Flower Fairy!” “How!? We defeated the last remaining Chuffley Flower Fairy potion!” “The spirits on the mission to destroy the potion were killed by the Emerald King before they got to the potion.” “Tell the other spirits that we will attack the Emerald Gardens when they least expect it.” “Of course master.”
“These are the Emerald Gardens Gem Patches; they provide special green energy that is used all over the Emerald Gardens.” The Emerald King’s voice sounded proud just like it had when he showed Greta all the other amazing things that the Emerald Gardens had to offer. Greta was also amazed to see that the indigo green swirly lights were not just lights but fairy folk, elf’s and natures version of soldiers. She had also had the chance to talk to a phoenix that was very wise and graceful. Greta couldn’t wait to spend her first night here as a Chuffley Flower Fairy, and tomorrow she would have flying lessons! Greta was given a special chamber in the Emerald Palace (located in the Emerald City) and she felt like a princess being pampered in so much luxury, being a Chuffley Flower Fairy she even got to dine with the king! “Are you enjoying yourself Greta?” The King asked after supper “Oh very much indeed sir, this is so much more luxurious and comfortable than my old home!” “I’m glad to hear that. I’m very worried about the evil spirits attacking us again; the force field isn’t that strong. I just don’t understand why anything or anyone would want to harm such a peaceful community.” “I agree. Well I guess I should go to bed now, good night sir!” “Goodnight Greta, enjoy your first night as a Chuffley Flower Fairy!” “I will thanks.” Greta climbed into her silk sheets and was soon fast asleep.
The early sun broke through the tree tops, lighting up the Emerald Gardens as Greta and the Emerald King made their way to a clearing where Greta would start her flying lessons. “Here we are Greta” said the King as he sat and smiled through his old creased face. Greta looked around the small and peaceful clearing and thought it was a lovely place to learn to fly! “Let’s begin shall we, I want you to feel as light and floaty, let your mind be peaceful and flick your legs just a little above the ground” She did as she was told and could feel her body lifting herself up into the air, her beautiful wings flapped calmly and she could hear the King whispering in admiration. “You may come down now Greta” “Ok” replied Greta as she started to turn around. Suddenly with a flash the sky turned into a thick fog of dark mists and it started pouring with huge drops of black sticky mud. A number of cracks in the sky sounded again and they seemed to be the sounds of hundreds of glasses smashing. Greta couldn’t see and she could hardly breathe, she felt herself plummeting down towards the earth in complete darkness. Greta landed with a thud and her head was extremely dizzy, she tried to call out to the Emerald King but the sticky mud was suffocating. Just then, the Emerald King appeared though a flash of indigo green light and though his fingertips came sparkly and small emeralds! The emeralds glowed and slowly parts of the mist cleared and the sticky mud rain wasn’t as heavy, Greta was amazed at what was happening in front of her. “Greta use your powers to fix the force field, you can do it – just believe in yourself!” Greta couldn’t believe her ears; she had never used her powers before, now she had to fix a force field! Greta was terrified and very unsure but then suddenly she had a thought, this was her destiny! A feeling of calm caught over her and she felt both peaceful and determined. Her arms raised into the air ready to let her powers out!
There were hundreds of tiny green emeralds flowing out of Greta’s fingertips; they floated up high and formed light green panels like a green puzzle in the sky! Greta couldn’t help smiling at the sight and she felt proud of her new powers. The last panel of force field drifted up and filled its place making the whole force field shimmer before flashing back to being completely invisible. Happily, Greta turned around to find almost every fairy, elf and phoenix cheering for her including the King of the Emerald Gardens.
“Did I do it?” Greta asked the King “Thankyou Greta you have done very well, you are a natural! I’m sure you will do well here in your new home and now the evil spirits will never come back, so I think we should celebrate our victory and the arrival of Greta!” The happy folk cheered in agreement and started throwing petals and sharing laughter and happiness. Greta looked up though the treetops to a starry night sky and felt belonging, this was her home, this was her destiny and more importantly she, Greta had found it!
My Reflection on “Emerald Destiny“:
Firstly, I wrote this piece aimed towards a younger audience. I do not love this piece but I still think it boasts good story writing elements such as description, detail and sentence structure. Although I think the descriptive elements in this piece are good (for example: “with not a whisper of enthusiasm” or “lots of little excited voices whispering together”), I do believe that I should spread out the descriptive words a bit more, for example in the first paragraph there is quiet a lot of description compared to other paragraphs. If I wrote this piece again I would probably spread out the description. Overall I think Emerald Destiny is a good and detailed piece of writing that has a little bit of room for some future changes!
Part One – The Journey
It was impossible to hear him, it was impossible to see him. We were squashed together like we were in a can of sardines, not like I’ve ever tasted them I’ve just seen them on a billboard when I stole those gorgeous frilly pink shoes. Captain Arthur Phillip is talking somewhere ahead of me, probably telling all us convicts what’s going to happen to us for the rest of our lives, like we don’t already know. We are going to someplace far away, it’s called “Australia”, I don’t think it exists. I glance up away from the cobblestones covered by black feet, even the sky is the colour of Portsmouth, grey and gloomy. Suddenly everyone starts to trudge forward, I enter a enormous ship and I have the feeling we won’t come back out.
I’m only ten and I’m a little girl called Janet who lives in England, I shouldn’t be here surrounded by smelly people in a ship travelling around the world. My mind is fuzzy with dehydration and hunger, but no matter what I say I’m still a convict on a ship. A plastic cup with water in it comes around towards where I’m uncomfortably sitting. A dirty middle aged man takes up the offer and sips the liquid. Unsurprisingly, after he drinks, he vomits up everything left in his body. I guess he has refiled the communal cup for us. Moments later three more people vomit from the sways of the ship. I start to wonder if I was right about us not coming back out – everyone’s sick.
We have not seen sunlight for months. Around eighteen people are dead. I’m positive that we are lost and that we are sailing around in circles in the middle of no where. Maybe Captain James Cook was wrong? What if Australia really doesn’t exist?
I watch a family of rats scurry across the grimy wooden floor, trying to find food. I shiver, I hate rats. I hate how they have fur the colour of vomit and a sickly bare tail that trails after their fat body. A sailor suddenly comes skidding around the corner, “Twenty One!” he exclaims. I frown, twenty one people are dead.
I wake up from a restless sleep to the sound of cheering in the cabins above. A messenger dressed in blue comes down from a stairwell. “Captain Arthur Phillip has just spotted the coast of botany bay and says we will be arriving tomorrow. Twenty three people have died over the last seven months aswell.” He scurries of just like a rat. We all just stare, speechless and blank. I don’t think I was the only one who thought Australia didn’t exist.
Part Two – Australia
I stagger off the ship, blinded by sunlight. Most of the governors and captains are already walking around like rabbits in a cage. Their shaking their heads and they have worried expressions printed on their faces. I secretly hoped that they would take us somewhere else, but they made us collect wood, make shelters and attempt to farm. It was horrible. Finally after eight days of hard work they declared that we were to gather all tools and equipment. It was because Botany bay wasn’t working, there was a lack of fresh water, poor soil quality for farming and the sea was open so other ships could see in. We were to move to “Port Jackson” that was on the east coast, It was a journey that no one had the energy for but they still made us walk for days caring supplies.
Port Jackson didn’t seem any different, the trees were still huge making chopping for wood hard and there was still natives, they had darker skin and didn’t speak the Queen’s English. Just getting a glimpse of their faces made me shiver. I hate Australia as much as I hate rats. Australia’s dry and boring with boiling temperatures, it’s too dry to farm and keep cattle so every last crumb of bread is rationed. We are dressed in rags as thin as threads, I’m starting to think that living on the streets of London was closer to heaven than here. Every night I listen to plans for escape and plans to join the natives from the convicts, and every day I watch them fail and get rejected.
I don’t bother to make friends or talk to people because I’ve never been good at it. I just do as I’m told, never planning for escape because I just know this will be the rest of my life forever – as a convict. days past just like they are repeating themselves and my imagination seems to have just disappeared in the heat.
I lie awake listening to the lapping of the waves on shore, it’s peaceful but I still can’t relax. Suddenly I hear the soft padding of feet across the dry grass, I immediately sit up, the hair on my neck prickles up. A native boy is coming towards me, I panic and start to scream but he puts his finger to his lips. I stop, shocked by this sudden event. He motions me to follow him but I can’t move, suddenly he takes out his hand. I take it and I feel his soft, clay like skin.
Now were running; across plains and bare land. A beautiful tree comes up in front of us, he wants to climb it. Our bare legs clamber up the rough bark until we both stop to rest. We burst out laughing. I don’t know what to say, “I am a convict” he stares at me with awe flooding his eyes. We sit in that tree with minutes passing by until he says something so magical, “I am an Aboriginal”. The sentence echoes happily in my mind like it’s always belonged there. I am an Aboriginal.
On the 18th of August, A group of students from school (including myself) went to La Trobe University in Bundoora, to present our completed Tournament Of minds (ToM) work. ToM involves a lot of thinking challengers that involve teamwork and the main idea is to work on a challenge set by ToM for about five weeks and find a solution for it. The challenge areas are: Language and Literature, Social Sciences, Maths and Engineering and Applied Technology.
My team of seven chose the Social Sciences challenge based around secrets and to make our solution to the problem more creative, we performed a play to the panel of judges. On the day you have to present your long term challenge and do a quick spontaneous challenge that is given to you on the spot and you only have a few minutes to discuss it between the group and present by talking. I think every group from our school did a really good job and every one had creative and interesting ideas. I’m not sure if I would do ToM again because it involves a lot of lunchtime and afterschool commitment, but I still had a really fun time and developed much stronger relationships with students I didn’t know that well.
By Grace 🙂