Ms. McGraw's English Wiki

Being an English Teacher

Human beings use a variety of sign-making systems to represent their thoughts. Language is one of the most powerful modes of representation, and I love the way that words can be written down to capture the gap between thought and speech. Like other cultural artefacts the written and spoken word can be recorded and revisited over time, and an English teacher (like their students) will have more interest in some recordings and artefacts over others.

As a teacher of a subject called 'English' (though it is not given this name in every curriculum across Australia, or the world) WORDS, both spoken and written, are my core business. The use of words to express how we feel, to share ideas, and to capture our thoughts amazes me. But I also believe that when it comes to expression, the study of words alone is not enough.

I am also passionate about visual representation, and intrigued by the ways that new technologies are opening up new ways of representing ideas and creating meaning. I believe that, while spoken and written language are essential tools for understanding and expressing thoughts and feelings, that developing an understanding of language in relation to other modes of representation (or semiotic systems) is the key to understanding the multitude of ways that human beings seek to represent their experience.

Why a resources wiki?

I have made this wiki so that I have a place to store my English teaching resources and links, and share them with other English teachers and their students.

The first pages that I made were on areas that many teachers were seeking resources for:
After developing my own understanding of the different types of 'language' that we come across in an English classroom, I then moved on to making pages that contained useful information on:
I have also added resources from specific class lessons on Macbeth and Romeo and Juliet.
There is of course an abundance of information on both of this plays on the web, but I hope it will be of use to see some of what I did in my own classes.
I will continue to add to these pages, and build new pages as I collect new and exciting content.
I hope I can inspire other teachers to do the same!

What's here for preservice teachers?

At the end of 2010 I took a position as Lecturer in Secondary English Curriculum at Queensland University of Technology.

Any of my students there are welcome to use and modify resources from this wiki, HOWEVER... aware that some of these materials are from my own early years of teaching in NSW and may require adaptation for use in your context.

You can cite this wiki in APA style with the following reference:
McGraw, K. (n.d.). [Title of wiki page], Retrieved [date] from Ms. McGraw's English Wiki:[RELEVANT_URL_END]

The following page has been created to house links and resources for any English teacher (including preservice) to connect with professional development resources:
It's still a bit thin...any suggestions for what to place there are welcome!

The Blender


You can also find me on my blog at

...and on Twitter as kmcg2375