Creating the WOW! Factor in Your Classroom

The way you measure a society’s soul is by the way that it treats its children.
Nelson Mandela

Issue No. 84 –  9th February 2010

Welcome to Kidz Newz especially to all new subscribers. Kidz Newz is a regular newsletter with information and teaching tips for anyone involved with young children. You are receiving this because you have attended one of my workshops, purchased a book, or you have requested to be on the mailing list. Thank you. Please forward this to anyone you feel it may be of interest to. Feedback is welcome.

New Products Available

Many of you may be unaware that I stock some pieces of equipment, namely Rainbow Rings, Tactile Rings and Parachutes (more equipment coming soon). These are of the highest quality, bright and colourful and are made by Hebi Designs in New Zealand. To have a closer look, go now to and click on products.

You will be pleased to hear I now stock two of Jennifer Jefferies products – the book and the aromatherapy oil ‘Calm Kids’.  Jennifer is a well-known naturopath, author and speaker.  If you are interested in these or any other of Jennifer’s products, visit

Employment Opportunity – Be your own boss!

Looking for a part-time teaching opportunity? Love working with children? Love teaching music and movement? I am looking for people to train to run their own business as Kidz-Fiz-Biz operators. Good returns and lots of fun. If this is something of interest to you now or in the future, please contact me at or phone 0410 642 781.

Creating the WOW! factor in your classroom

I have just been to a Paul Dunn (B1G1) seminar about creating the WOW! factor in business. Paul showed us many examples, including the fly embedded in the vitreous enamel of the urinals at Terminal 3 in Singapore (so gentlemen have something to aim at – it actually works! – no more spills over the floor) as well as having the most over-the-top hand basins you’ve ever seen, even in women’s toilets. He showed us pictures of coffee with lots of various designs on the top. Most innovative cafes will do a leaf or a heart but this was a series of works of art. The one I liked the most though was the interior of the Google offices. Because the company prides itself on innovation, this is reflected in the set-up of their offices. There is imitation snow on the ground and ‘cable car’ offices. If they need to relax and think, they can sit in a one-person hammock chair suspended off the floor nursing their laptop. Dress code is non-existent. To get from floor to floor you simply take the slide (otherwise known as a slippery dip). There were lots of other really cool effects in this suite of offices as well as in others that he showed us.

It made me think of an early childhood classroom. Each holiday the creative teacher dreams up ways to enhance the learning involved within the over-arching theme for the coming term, be it the sea, dinosaurs, fantasy, other countries or whatever. The children come into this wonderland and immediately their imaginations are stimulated. It is no different for adults but we think we’re ‘over it’ by now. Google obviously do not think so.

I remember when one of my children was in year five at school. His teacher was a maverick amongst his peers, none of whom went to the same lengths to make their classroom interesting, possibly thinking that that stuff belonged in kindergarten. I went to see the teacher about something one day and after knocking on the door and hearing ‘come in’, proceeded to open the door. I was confronted by a wall of billowing silk. There was no way around it. I had to go under it. Crawling on the floor I entered the classroom looking totally startled and wondering what I’d struck. When the teacher looked down at my shocked face he said without missing a beat, ‘even the principal has to crawl in here; cool isn’t it?’ Cool indeed. It was obviously a nautical theme. In one corner he had a small round table and three chairs set up, surrounded by bookcases. On two of the chairs were giant fabric people, about the size of adults. When a child had finished the set work quickly and well, he or she was rewarded by being able to sit and read and have a ‘cup of tea’ (water) with Freddy and Daisy. The children loved it. Every day was a joy and an adventure for the children coming into that classroom. This particular group of children was a troublesome lot and yet the teacher had no discipline problems with them. There were too many great things, like school camp, they might miss out on if they misbehaved. They didn’t dare. They were having too much fun being good!

By showing children what is possible you extend their imaginations and give them permission to be as bold as they can be. From your lead they can go on to create worlds we’ve never dreamed of. In what ways can you create the WOW! factor in your classroom? To create really great music and movement lessons to go with your wonderful classrooms, go to the website at and get yourself a copy of the Kidz-Fiz-Biz manuals if you don’t already have them.

Quotes of the Week

Every great advance has issued from a new audacity of imagination.  John Dewey

You may think you are not creative, but this is not true.  When you combine the faculties of imagination and inspiration, creativity is a natural result. One great creative idea could be worth a million dollars to your business. Invest the time to meditate or just go for a walk on the beach in silence. Denise Moser


Creating the WOW factor at work – Inside the Google office


The most useful thing I learned today were the relaxation techniques. I found the workshop enlightening.

Thank you. I found the workshop well worth doing and would enjoy more if the opportunity arose. (from PD New Norfolk, Tasmania)

About The Author

Marlene Rattigan B.A., Dip. Ed. (ECS), CELTA

Marlene Rattigan is an Early Childhood teacher, a teacher of English as a Second Language, and from 1987-2000 was a nationally accredited fitness leader. Her background is in music education. A keen interest in motor development in children led to the creation of Kidz-Fiz-Biz which she taught successfully for 13 years. Marlene also conducts workshops for children, teachers and parents at schools, in the community and at festivals. She has produced teaching manuals complete with audio CDs which are an extension of her ‘Kidz-Fiz-Biz’ program.

PO Box 6894, East Perth WA 6892, Australia
T: +61 8 9325 1204 M: +61 (0) 410 64 2781 E:

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Until next time … continue being a legend in your classroom.

Marlene Rattigan, Editor
Kidz Newz

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