Move, Move, Move!

This persuasive book outlines three clear arguments for the benefits of exercise to a person’s health and wellbeing; physical health (improves fitness and heart health), mental health (makes you feel happy), and social benefits (provides opportunities to have fun and make friends).

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Text download

Move, Move, Move! as PDF (11.3MB) (opens in new window)

Move, Move, Move! as PowerPoint slideshow (10.1MB) (download)


Printable worksheets

What's your opinion? (134KB)

'Move!' memory game (2.4MB)

Exploring nouns and verbs (3.5MB)

Cause and effect (74KB)


Teaching & learning sequence

This teaching and learning sequence outlines classroom strategies for Move, Move, Move! including:

  • ways to incorporate the ‘Big Six’ core elements of reading development
  • fun, engaging and adaptable student activities for a diverse range of abilities
  • links to the Australian Curriculum.

Download a PDF of this teaching sequence (921KB).

Text features Cross-curriculum link to the Australian Curriculum
  • Text structure – statement of position, arguments to justify the position, and a concluding statement
  • Emotive language
  • Logical arguments
  • Speaks directly to the reader
  • Emphatic statements (for example, ‘Moving is fun!’)
  • Images support the arguments
  • Labelled photographic summary of the arguments
  • Foundation: Participate in a range of activities in natural and outdoor settings and explore the benefits of being physically active AC9HPFM03
  • Years 1 and 2: Participate in a range of physical activities in natural and outdoor settings, and investigate factors and settings that make physical activity enjoyable AC9HP2M03


First read

As a whole group, enjoy sharing the text and learning together.


Have the students engage in a quick 5- to 10-minute burst of activity such as a run outside, a dance to some music, some simple exercises or a quick game of chasey.

Initiate a whole-class discussion. How do you feel after that activity? Do you like the feeling of moving, and being active? Do you think moving is good for you? Why?

Read aloud

Show the front cover of Move, Move, Move! Talk about the title and the image. What do you think this book might be about? What might we find out by reading it? Discuss students’ predictions.

Read the book aloud, stopping to answer questions and listen to comments that the students may have. On the final double-page spread (pages 10 and 11) talk about the labelled photographs and the way they have been used to summarise the main arguments.

Read the blurb on the back cover of the book. Explain that it is called a blurb, and discuss its purpose. What is the purpose of a blurb? Why might a book have a blurb? Would reading this blurb make you want to read the whole book? Why? Discuss.

Make meaning

Ask students to turn to a partner and tell each other what they learnt from Move, Move, Move! Have students share their ideas in a class discussion.

Talk with the students about what type of text Move, Move, Move! is. What type of book is this? What is its purpose? Discuss and draw out that it is a persuasive argument aiming to convince people that they should move and be active.

Encourage students to think critically about the text and its message. What is the author’s point of view about being active? What is their message to people who read this book? Does this book persuade you to be active? What did the author KA Nagle do to try to convince you? Discuss students’ opinions. How else could you persuade people about the importance of being active? How could you encourage them to move more?

For more detailed information on guiding discussion surrounding the author’s intent read about the use of dialogic talk in the 'Scaffolding meaning and oral language' section in Teacher talk.

Revisit the text

Return to the text several times to look more closely at different aspects of its content, structure and language features. This is a great vehicle for exploring the ‘Big Six’ of literacy in an integrated way, with all components linking to the same text.


Reading is about making meaning. Choose from these comprehension activities to help your students explore the text deeply, make personal connections, develop new understandings and draw conclusions. The activities will also help students analyse the text, think critically about it and form their own opinions.

Diversity and inclusion 

The text Move, Move, Move! provides an opportunity to discuss diversity and inclusion with your class, particularly if there are members of your school community who have physical disabilities or challenges. You could:

  • discuss the concept that people can have different levels of movement
  • talk about ways to include everyone in physical activities
  • practise ways of positively interacting with others to include them in games.

Why should we move? (whole-group activity)

Discuss: What are the author’s arguments for being active? Use students’ ideas to list arguments on a chart – for example, helps you to stay fit and healthy, makes you feel happy, helps you to have fun and helps you to make new friends. Explain that these reasons can be grouped under the categories of physical health, mental health and being social. On a large chart, model how to record this information as a concept map, for example:

At the centre of this diagram is a circle with the words 'being active'. An arrow points up to the text 'keeps you healthy'; an arrow points right to the words 'helps you have fun with friends'; an arrow points left to the words 'makes you feel happy'.

How has the author tried to persuade us that we should move? Discuss and draw out that the author has used a range of things to persuade readers. Revisit the book and point out where and how this has been done. Depending on your students’ level of understanding, focus on some or all of the following persuasive devices used in the book.

  • Emphatic statements such as ‘You must move, move, move!’ and ‘Moving is fun!’ Browse through the book and point out where these types of phrases have been used, noting the use of exclamation marks. Why has the author used these types of sentences? What effect does the use of an exclamation mark have?
  • Speaking directly to the reader. Point out examples in the book where the author has used the pronoun ‘you’ to address the reader such as ‘Do you like to move?’ and ‘… makes you feel happy!’ Why do you think the author has done this?
  • Use of logical arguments such as those on pages 4 and 5. Explain that this is an example of using clear, logical reasons to convince. Is this argument easy to understand? Is it clear? Does it make sense?
  • Use of emotive language to create emotions and make you feel a certain way, with phrases such as ‘The more you move the happier you are’ and ‘… being active with your friends is even more fun’. What do you feel when you hear these things?
  • Use of images to persuade. Browse through the book and discuss. What do you notice about the photographs? Do they make you want to get active? Why? (See the next activity for more information and ideas.)

Australian Curriculum links

A picture tells a thousand words! (partner activity)

Revisit the text and browse through each page. Encourage students to think about the images in the book and how they support the argument that we should be active. How do the photos in the book make you feel? Do they make you want to be active? Why? How do the images support the author’s message? Why do you think this?

Have students work with a partner to create a poster about one of the three arguments presented in the book. Encourage them to create pictures for their posters that highlight the argument they are presenting.

Have pairs of students share their completed posters with the whole group.

Australian Curriculum links

Brainstorming (whole-group activity)

Brainstorm a list of activities that people can do to be active (for example, dancing, karate, running, hiking, basketball, soccer, skipping). Use students’ ideas to create a semantic word web on a large chart. Encourage students to think beyond the text, and use their own knowledge and experiences to suggest ideas. Your semantic web might look something like this:

At the centre of this diagram are the words 'ways to be active'. Arrows point to words around the central phrase: walking, skating, playing football, skipping, bike riding, swimming.

Which of these activities would you like to try, and why? Discuss as a class. Encourage students to use persuasive language to justify why they would like to do the activity.

Australian Curriculum links

Connecting with the text (individual activity)

What things do you do be active? Why do you like doing these things? How do they make you feel? Have students turn and talk with a partner before sharing with the class.

Have students write and/or draw about what they do to be active.

Support students where required by providing them with a sentence starter, for example:

Have students share their finished writing and/or drawings in a small group. Alternatively, you could compile students’ writing and/or drawings to create a class book, and share it with the class.

Australian Curriculum links

Phonological awareness (including phonemic awareness)

These activities will help students to hear the sounds and rhythms of language. Guide them as they explore syllables, onset and rime and listen for phonemes – the smallest units of sound within a word. Use the activities to help your students identify the phonemes in words and practise blending, segmenting and manipulating these sounds.

Blending sounds (whole-group activity)

Use one-syllable words from the text to focus on isolating, segmenting and blending phonemes. For example, talk about the word ‘fit’. What does it mean to be 'fit'? Have students talk with a partner. What sounds can you hear in the word ‘fit’? Have students take turns saying the individual phonemes or sounds that they hear (f-i-t) to a partner. Discuss as a whole class, and have the students join together to blend the sounds and say the word ‘fit’.

Use the word 'fit' to practise manipulating phonemes to make new words. What is the first sound you hear in 'fit'? What would the word say if I replaced the f sound with the b sound? (Repeat with other common initial sounds such as p, h, k and s.)

What is the final sound in the word 'fit'? What other sounds could we put at the end of this word to make new words? Have students talk with a partner about this and then share their new words (fib, fin, fig).

Explore the phonemes in other words from the text such as ‘fun, ‘play, ‘park, ‘bike and ‘ride.

If appropriate for your students, focus on the middle short vowel sounds of CVC words, such as the word 'fun'. Let’s all say the sounds in the word 'fun' – f-u-n. Let’s all say the middle sound – u. What other vowel sound could go in between the f and n sounds to make a new word? (a – fan, i - fin)

Australian Curriculum links

Hearing final sounds (whole-group activity)

Use words from the text to listen for sounds at the end of words. For example, you could use the words:

  • ‘fit, ‘heart and ‘must to highlight the t sound at the end of a word
  • ‘class, ‘friends, ‘sends and ‘messages to highlight the s sound at the end of a word
  • ‘karate, ‘healthy, ‘body and ‘happy to highlight the long e sound at the end of a word
  • ‘faster, ‘stronger and ‘soccer to highlight the schwa vowel at the end of a word.

Say each word from the group slowly and ask students to identify the sound they hear at the end of each word. Have them suggest other words that end in the same sound.

Australian Curriculum links

Hearing sounds in syllables (whole-group activity)

On a chart, write a collection of two-syllable words from the text – such as ‘swimming, ‘playground, ‘happy and ‘active.

Investigate each word and have students identify the number of syllables in each word. Ask students to listen for the vowel sound in each syllable. For example, the word ‘swimming’ has the i sound in both syllables, the word ‘playground’ has the long a vowel sound in the first syllable and the ow vowel sound in the second.

Australian Curriculum links


Evidence shows that children learn best about the relationship between phonemes and graphemes when instruction occurs through a daily structured synthetic phonics program (also known as systematic synthetic phonics). Knowing about these relationships will help students to decode, and this is crucial for their continued reading development.

In addition to your phonics program it is helpful to expose students to letter–sound relationships they come across in other contexts, such as during shared reading experiences. Choose activities that are relevant to your students so they can practise and reinforce already learnt concepts, so as to build automaticity in recognising letter–sound relationships.

Matching sounds and letters (whole-group activity)

Revise and practise the m, s and a sounds by focusing on the initial sounds m as in ‘move’, s as in ‘swimming’, and a as in ‘active’.

Point to the words in the title Move, Move, Move! What sound does the letter ‘m’ make in move? Have the students say the m sound. Browse through the book, and find other letters that begin with it (maybe, matter, muscles, makes, messages, more, meet). Write these words on a chart, and ask students to suggest further words to add to the list.

Revisit page 9 and highlight the word ‘soccer’. Discuss the initial sound and the letter that makes this sound in this word (s making the s sound). Browse through the book and find further words beginning with s as in ‘soccer’ (stay, strong, swimming).

Repeat with the word ‘active’ (at, and).

Australian Curriculum links

Identifying words with adjacent consonants (whole-group activity)

Use examples from the text to revise and practise reading words with adjacent consonants at the beginning.

Write the word ‘swim’ on a chart. Ask students to turn to a partner and say the sounds they hear in the word. Discuss as a group and highlight that there are four sounds: s-w-i-m. Say the first two sounds: s-w. Explain that when two consonants sit one after another, the sounds need to be blended together. Have students suggest other words that begin with the adjacent consonant sounds s and w, such as sway, swing, swish, sweat and sweet. Repeat with the word ‘stay’, s-t-ay (stuck, stand, stop, stamp, star, start).

Introduce the word ‘strong’, write it on the chart and have students say and then blend the sounds from left to right: s-t-r-ong. Emphasise the three adjacent consonant sounds at the beginning. Say other words that begin with these three adjacent consonant sounds, such as stripe, straw, street, stream and string.

Australian Curriculum links

Uncommon sounds (whole-group activity)

If appropriate for your students, focus on words that contain more difficult or uncommon sounds such as:

  • the oo sound made by ‘o’ in the word move
  • the ar sound made by ‘ear’ as in the word heart
  • the short e sound made by ‘ea’ in health and by ‘ie’ in friends.

Write the word on a chart, isolate each phoneme and discuss the letters that make each sound.

Explain that the letters that make the vowel sounds in these words are uncommon ways to represent the sound.

Australian Curriculum links

Oral language

Oral language development begins at birth, and having a rich oral language is beneficial as a foundational and ongoing resource for literacy development. Oral language is embedded throughout the shared reading experience as students listen and respond to quality texts.

It is also valuable to involve students in specific activities that will continue to improve their oral language skills. Choose from these activities that support students to develop and practise important communication skills.

What’s your opinion? (partner activity)

Do you think it is important to be active? Why? Discuss as a class.

Introduce the What’s your opinion? worksheet and read through the statements (‘It’s important to be active’, ‘Everyone should join a sports team’, ‘Being active makes you feel good’). Explain the task to the students.

Provide students with a copy of the worksheet and have them work with a partner to complete it. Encourage pairs to talk through each statement and decide what their individual opinions on it are before marking an ‘X’ on the continuum (line) to reflect this.

Students can share their worksheets in a class discussion. Encourage them to justify their opinions.

Print the What’s your opinion? worksheet.

Australian Curriculum links

Role-play (small-group activity)

In a small group, have students create, practise and present a role-play that encourages other people to be active. As a whole group, brainstorm how this could be done before students break into smaller groups. What might persuade others that being active is a good thing? How could you act this out?

Small groups might then present their role-plays to the whole class.

Australian Curriculum links

Presentation (partner activity)

Have students work with a partner to plan and prepare a short talk about why it’s important to be active. What reasons will you give the audience to persuade them that they should move and be active? Discuss.

Encourage students to think about how they will speak to the group. For example, they could focus on using a loud, clear voice and looking at the audience when speaking.

Support EAL/D students, or other students as required, by providing a sentence stem. For example, have them finish the sentence orally: We should be active because ____________.

Australian Curriculum links


Activities aimed at teaching and practising fluency are important for students on their journey towards becoming independent readers. Explicitly modelling fluency and providing opportunities for students to practise reading aloud are integral to this.

Reading using punctuation (individual, partner or whole-group activity)

Revisit pages 2 and 3 and read the text on page 3 aloud with appropriate expression and intonation. Did you notice how my voice sounded when I read the questions? What about when I read the sentence with the exclamation mark? Reread the text, emphasising how your voice changes because of the punctuation.

Invite students to read the text aloud independently, with a partner or as a whole class. Encourage them to read fluently, taking the punctuation into account. Try to make your voice sound smooth and use expression, as if you are speaking.

Australian Curriculum links


Having a rich, broad vocabulary assists students when they tackle new texts. These vocabulary activities will help them to build their growing bank of words.

The activities introduce students to new Tier 2 and Tier 3 words, as well as exploring word families and a range of different word types.

Move memory (partner activity)

Write the following content vocabulary from the text onto a chart: ‘playing’, ‘playground’, ‘dancing’, ‘flying kites’, ‘karate’, ‘fun’, ‘friends’, ‘swinging. Talk about each word and what it means.

Invite a student to act out one of the words from the list, and have the rest of the group try to guess the word. Acting out what a word means is a good strategy to support EAL/D students in building their word banks.

Have each student join with a partner to play a game of memory by matching the words with the correct image.

Print the ‘Move!’ memory game worksheet.

Australian Curriculum links

Adding the -ing suffix (whole-group activity)

Write the action verbs ‘swim’, ‘ride’, ‘play’ and ‘move’ on a chart. Read each word. Have students turn to a partner and say each word in a sentence.

Turn to pages 2 and 3, and read the text aloud. Invite a student to point to the word ‘riding’. Write ‘riding’ next to the word ‘ride’ on your chart. Invite a student to underline the suffix -ing in the word riding. Repeat with the words swimming and playing.

Turn to page 4, and ask a student to find and point to the word ‘moving’. Write it on the chart and underline the -ing suffix.

Turn to page 9 and read it aloud. What words on this page have the -ing suffix? Add these words and their base words to the list.

Your list might look like this: 

Base word Word with -ing suffix

Use students’ ideas to add further words to the list, such as running, hopping, jumping, skipping, climbing and skating.

Discuss if and how each word changes when the -ing suffix is added to it. Talk about what conclusions can be drawn from this. What do the words on our chart tell us about adding the -ing suffix? Discuss and draw out the different ways to add this suffix.

Australian Curriculum links

Compound words (whole-group activity)

Turn to pages 2 and 3 and point out the word ‘playground’. What two words are in this word? Discuss and draw out that ‘playground’ is made up of the two smaller words ‘play’ and ‘ground’. Explain that this type of word is called a compound word.

Turn to page 11. Can you see something in the photos that is a compound word? (skateboard) What other compound words do you know? Discuss as a group.

Australian Curriculum links

Base words (whole-group activity)

Write the word ‘active’ on a chart, with the word ‘act’ underlined within it. What small word in the word ‘active’ have I underlined? Encourage students to blend the word from left to right as they say each phoneme a-c-t. What does ‘act’ mean? What does ‘active’ mean? How are these meanings similar? Discuss and explain that the word part ‘act’ comes from a language called Latin and it means ‘do’.

Have students turn to a partner and talk about other words with the word ‘act’ in them. Use students’ ideas to add further words to the chart, such as actor, activate, react, activity, activated, acted, action and reaction. Invite students to underline the smaller word act in each word on the chart.

Talk about the meaning of each word and how this relates to the word ‘do’.

Australian Curriculum links

Comparatives and superlatives (whole-group activity)

Revisit pages 4 and 5, and read the text aloud. Highlight the word ‘faster’ and write it on a chart. What base word can you see in this word? Write ‘fast’ on the chart. Say the words in a sentence such as: Vinay is fast, but Ruby is faster. Ask: What word do we use if someone is even faster than Ruby? Discuss and draw out that the word ‘fastest’ is used, and add this word to the chart:

Have students turn to a partner and say these three words in a sentence.

Repeat with the word ‘stronger’ from the text (strong, stronger, strongest).

Turn to pages 6 and 7 and highlight the words ‘happy’ and ‘happier’, and introduce the superlative ‘happiest’. Repeat with the words ‘healthy’, ‘healthier’ and ‘healthiest’.

Revisit pages 8 and 9 and discuss the word ‘fun’ and the use of the phrase ‘even more fun’. Introduce the phrase ‘the most fun’, and discuss.

Australian Curriculum links

Exploring nouns and verbs (partner activity)

Introduce or revisit nouns and verbs. Draw up a T-chart with the headings ‘Nouns’ and ‘Verbs’. Browse through the book and use input from the students to add words to the chart, for example:

Nouns Verbs
dance class

Reinforce that a noun can be a person, a place or a thing, and that a verb is a word that describes an action. What other words can we add to our chart? Add further words. Model saying a sentence using one word form each column such as ‘I am joining a dance class’ or ‘I like playing at the park’. Have students say sentences in the same manner to a partner.

Introduce the Exploring nouns and verbs printable worksheet. Read through the nouns and verbs listed in the word banks and have students work with a partner to complete the task.

Print the Exploring nouns and verbs worksheet.

Australian Curriculum links

Reflecting on learning

Help students bring it all together and reflect on their understandings by completing the graphic organiser either independently or with a partner.

Cause and effect

Initiate a group discussion to synthesise students’ understandings and new learnings. What happens when we are active? Discuss and draw out the benefits that come with an active lifestyle. Introduce the Cause and effect worksheet, and explain the task for students to complete.

Print the Cause and effect worksheet.

For families - new for 2024! 

Reinforce your classroom learning by telling families in your class about Move, Move, Move!

Families can share the text at home and use the information provided to build knowledge and instill a love of reading.

Find out more about Move, Move, Move! (for families)


Teacher talk

Read about evidence-based theories that underpin best teaching practices. Teacher talk includes:

  • pedagogic practices surrounding the 'Big Six' core elements of reading development
  • instructional strategies to scaffold learning for a diverse range of students, including English as an additional language or dialect (EAL/D) students and students from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds
  • guidance for integrating these theories and strategies into your reading program.

Download a PDF of Teacher talk Move, Move, Move! (343KB).

Teaching practices & strategies

Try these strategies as you share Move, Move, Move! with your class, and use them in other aspects of your reading program too.

Scaffolding meaning and oral language

Reading aloud to students provides a tool for the implementation of purposeful, strategic conversations. Reading books to students and sharing books provides countless opportunities to introduce students to decontextualised vocabulary, which is vocabulary that they may not have the chance to encounter and use in their everyday lives (Wasik & Iannone-Campbell, 2012).

Reading Move, Move, Move! with your students will engage them in exploring the theme of fitness and health. It will also help them to become familiar with new concepts and vocabulary and to understand the persuasive nature of the text.

Move, Move, Move! is a persuasive text whereby the author sets out to persuade the reader to be physically active. The text presents an introduction stating that moving is good for you and then engages the reader by asking them a direct, personal question: Do you like to move? Information about different ways to move and stay active is then presented, followed by sections of content that inform the reader about the benefits of being active.

This text has examples of declarative sentences – that is, sentences that make statements, provide facts or offer explanations. After the introduction the author uses factual statements, followed by explanations, to voice a point of view. The images, text and diagrams used throughout the text aim to motivate the reader to keep active.

Using dialogic talk

You can use dialogic talk to help your students understand the author’s message. Encourage them to contribute jointly to the learning discussion. This type of interaction between teachers and students is called dialogic teaching and is vital for literacy learning (Lowe, 2016).

Language-rich classrooms where shared talk is encouraged can be seen as the heart of effective teaching for reading and comprehension. Lowe (2016) explains that dialogic talk engages teachers and students in genuine dialogue as knowledge and understanding are reciprocally constructed through conversation, investigation and interaction.

Use dialogic talk as an instructional method to support students’ understanding of this text’s persuasive nature. To develop this understanding, the text has been deconstructed into sections for shared talk and exploration. Use small groups to allow opportunity for helpful discussion and feedback.

Questioning and dialogic talk

Questioning can be used to open up dialogue and promote talk (Lowe, 2016). In a small group, ask about the different ways students like to be active.

This inquiry will allow students to:

  • relate personally to the topic (making it relevant to each learner)
  • share their ideas, without the pressure of there being a right or wrong answer
  • hear a variety of answers, and therefore learn from each other
  • think about their own actions, and begin to form opinions.

After this purposeful conversation, collaboratively list the different ways students like to be active. A title for the list could be ‘Move, Move, Move!’ or you could engage the students in brainstorming a suitable title.

Revisit the pages of the book, with the aim of encouraging your students to connect more personally with the information presented through the text and images.

Use prompting questions to find out what students know about why it is important to keep active.

Now use the process of dialogic talk to guide and explore the author’s reasons for why keeping active is important. Extend students' understanding of this by discussing the images and diagrams in the text, role-playing ways of being active, or by viewing videos on the topic. Guide the talk towards having students understand the development of the factual arguments for keeping active, and towards the cohesive summary at the end of the text.

Use the layout of text and images on pages 10 and 11 to encourage students to organise their thoughts. Have them share their arguments for being active, using evidence from the text. As students do this, observe their language, prompt their thinking when support is required, and offer feedback in relation to language choices, structure and selection of information.

Making personal connections

You can use dialogic talk to encourage student exploration of – and response to – the author’s intent. After in-depth shared talk (outlined above) encourage students to think about the author’s message and have them share their own opinion of this message. Aesthetic responses allow students to reveal their personal connection to the text, thus sharing an emotional reaction (Lowe, 2016).

Use these suggested questions adapted from Lowe’s work for deep-level (aesthetic) comprehension.

  • How did the author make you feel?
  • In what ways does this text make you think about how much you move?
  • Has the author motivated you to be active? If yes, talk more about how.
  • Do you think everyone will be motivated to move? Why might it be different for some people?
  • What parts of the text remind you of what you do in school, at home or out of home?
  • What was the author’s intention? How do you know?
  • What questions do you have about this text?
  • Have you done any of the activities in this book? Has someone you know done any of these activities? What can you tell us about them?

Critical/analytical thinking

As a conclusion to the discussion surrounding Move, Move, Move! encourage students to think critically about the information presented in the text and then share their thinking. At a critical/analytical level of thinking, students ask questions, differentiate between facts and opinions, become aware of how language is used to persuade the reader and consider the values or beliefs of the author (Lowe, 2016). To support students at this level, you may need to model or share your questioning and also work through the think aloud process.

Use these suggested questions adapted from Lowe’s work for deep-level critical/analytical comprehension.

  • What audience is the text aimed at? How can you tell?
  • Who benefits from reading the text? What might these benefits be?
  • How does the text make this topic meaningful and easy to understand?
  • What is the author’s view about being active?
  • How can the reader be sure that the information presented in the text is accurate?
  • How has the author used information to support their opinion?

The strategies outlined above will help students develop an understanding of how a persuasive text can influence or change people’s thoughts or actions. This model can show students how facts or opinions can be used to influence behaviour.

To further assist these understandings, use the persuasive nature of marketing for meaningful exploration. In their daily lives students are exposed to marketing through a variety of means, such as shopping centres, toy shops, electronics stores, computer stores, supermarkets, television and the internet.

Australian Curriculum links

Vocabulary development

You can support students’ understanding and development of their vocabulary through purposeful conversation. Vocabulary understanding and development of meanings will support students to make connections to texts and increase their comprehension of texts (Stahl & Nagy, 2006). It is therefore important to plan for an intentional focus on the vocabulary needs of our students, paying particular attention to EAL/D students. Wasik and Iannone-Campbell (2012) advise that to develop children’s vocabulary, teachers need to engage children in strategic conversations, multiple activities and multiple experiences that have an emphasis on explicit development of vocabulary.

Keep in mind that many studies show that teachers do most of the talking (Dickinson & Tabors, 2001), so it is important to provide opportunity for students to participate in dialogic conversations that allow for oral language and vocabulary development (Dickinson & Porche, 2011).

The text Move, Move, Move! provides a meaningful context for vocabulary development. Use these recommendations and considerations to differentiate vocabulary instruction and plan purposefully for repeated meaningful exposures (Wasik & Iannone-Campbell, 2012) according to students’ individual characteristics and vocabularies.

  • Select vocabulary from Move, Move, Move! that requires understanding and development, such as ‘active’, ‘fit’, ‘healthy’, ‘messages’, ‘brain’, ‘positive’ and ‘happier’.
  • Present this vocabulary in the context of being active and relate it back to students’ experiences.
  • Provide explicit explanations of vocabulary to support students’ understanding.
  • Think about the multiple meanings some words – such as ‘fit’ – may have.
  • Provide repeated opportunities to hear the words in meaningful contexts, for example, by creating ‘being active’ situations and picture chats (conversations surrounding images).
  • Have students relate what they already know to new items of vocabulary, to help them construct meaning.
  • Create authentic situations where students can repeatedly use these new words when communicating with others. Think about planning small-group tasks to facilitate this.
  • As a general rule, explain subject-specific vocabulary before reading the text, as too many new words can challenge understanding and hinder learning new vocabulary.
  • Use teacher–student conversation to encourage talk, prompt thinking, support language choices, model language use and provide meaningful feedback.
  • Use open-ended questions to extend conversation and facilitate lengthy responses, concept development and vocabulary usage.
  • Use open-ended questions to give you opportunities to scaffold students’ replies and provide feedback related to vocabulary selection and linguistic choices.
  • Let students know that you allow thinking time for responses to open-ended questions.
  • Directly teach new vocabulary during shared book reading when these words are encountered.

Note that Instructional tasks for vocabulary teaching can also be found in the Teaching and learning sequence for Move, Move, Move!

Use the following prompts suggested by Wasik and Iannone-Campbell (2012), and the text Move, Move, Move! to help scaffold children’s language development.

  • Can you tell me more about …? (Can you tell me more about how you move?)
  • Explain why … (Explain why playing soccer makes you happy.)
  • Describe what … (Describe what your heart does after you run around the oval.)
  • I wonder why …? (I wonder why your heart beats faster. Let’s find out!)
  • Can you tell me why you think or feel that way? (Does being active make you happy? Can you tell me why you think or feel this way?)
  • What else can you say about …? (What else can you say about being active with your friends?)

Australian Curriculum links

Word knowledge

In the text Move, Move, Move!, use the root/base word ‘move’ to implement instructional strategies related to morphology – that is, the study of words and their particular parts. Morphemes, like prefixes and suffixes, can be added to the root/base word ‘move’. Morphemes are important for phonics in both reading and spelling, as well as in vocabulary and comprehension.

Explore these words with students by highlighting and discussing the spelling patterns, base words, prefixes, suffixes and meanings. Consider particular morphemes and use small-group work to support the range of students’ levels of reading, spelling and vocabulary knowledge. Discuss how a prefix or suffix affects meaning. For example, in the word ‘move-er’ the suffix ‘er’ means ‘one who’, so a ‘mover’ is ‘one who moves’. Spelling where the final ‘e’ is dropped can also be a point of discussion.

Prefixes are morphemes that attach to the front of a root/base word.

  • move – remove, countermove

Suffixes are morphemes that attach to the end of a root/base word, or to other suffixes.

  • move – movement, movements, mover, movers, moves, moved, moveless, moveable, moveables

Australian Curriculum links


Dickinson, D. K. & Porche, M. V. (2011). Relation between language experiences in preschool classrooms and children’s kindergarten and fourth-grade language and reading abilities. Child Development, 82(3), 870–886.

Dickinson, D. K. & Tabors, P. O. (Eds.). (2001). Beginning literacy with language: Young children learning at home and school. Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes.

Lowe, K. (2016). For the Love of Reading: Supporting Struggling Readers. Newtown, NSW: PETAA.

Stahl, S. & Nagy, W. (2006). Teaching word meanings. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Wasik, B. & Iannone-Campbell, C. (2012). Developing vocabulary through purposeful, strategic conversations. The Reading Teacher, 66(10), 321–332.