I can smell the cooked lamb up the stairs. In our small boot camp near the river, all there is discipline. All us kids are starved till we are on our knees weeping and crying, our pink lips dry. I’m starving. As I reach the top step, the smell gets stronger. My mouth waters. Suddenly I hear footsteps. The chef! Desperately, I hide in the cleaner’s closet.  I am so nervous. The footsteps pass me. I creep out, and there it is, glistening in the light. Lamb stew.

“Hey!” A voice yells behind me. Shoot!

I grab the plate and run.


Writing Task-The Mistake (1000 words!)

Oof! I land on my back, hard. I think I think I heard my bones cracking that time. I keep trying. I always do. Coach Jordan couldn’t even be bothered coming today, so I’m out here. Alone. In the rain. Sweat and rain poor down my face at the same time in buckets, but you can’t tell which one is which. I have been trying to master this kick; the bicycle kick for a long time now, I can’t keep track of how long. And I’ve never made it once. How does Ronaldo make it look so easy?


“Hey mum,” I say grumbling miserably. I slam the door behind me as I walk inside.

“Hey my soccer star, how did it go?” she asks me happily and excitedly. That’s weird about mum. Always happy, and gets things right all the time, first try. It’s like she has no problems. I wish I could be like her. I walk straight past her without answering. Her wide grin turns to just a hint of a smile. She knew I STILL had not made the kick yet. I take off my muddy ‘Manchester United’ jersey and my shorts and put them into the wash. I go upstairs and change into my pyjamas. I am still dirty, but I do not feel like having a shower or eating. I feel like I want to puke, fall into a hole that will open up on the ground to suck me up. Something…


The next day I do the same. Get a new jersey out, Neymar this time, and practice the kick again. Over and over. The first kick I did actually came closer than ever before. I actually made contact with the ball. That is an achievement for me. Am I mastering it, or is it just plain luck? I notice my friend Jack is watching me. Now, I would not say Jack is a good striker, I would say he is a GREAT striker. He has scored the most goals in this half of the season. He leads for the title by eight goals! He sometimes comes to watch me, but he has never asked me this before…

“Can I have a go?” he asks. I look at him puzzled and surprised.

“Sure, but I think you will fail,” I say, smiling smugly. He will fail. I know he will.


CLANG! Thoomp! The ball skids the back net.

“Crossbar goal,” Jack says, whooping, after scoring his forty-second bicycle kick goal in a row. He mastered it first try. How?

“We have a game tomorrow,” he says. “And I’m pumped,”

We are one of the best teams this season because of Jack. We are The Purple Dragons. Our fifth game is tomorrow. I’m excited.


Game 5: The Purple Dragons vs The Leprechauns. This team is good. They are all Irish.

We won. 2-0 Our way. Jack scored both the goals, but no bicycle kicks were scored.

Game 6: Purple Dragons vs Brunswick United FC. 3-1 our way. My other friend Bill scored 2 goals and assisted another goal, a header goal by Steve, but still, no bicycle kicks were scored.

Game 7: Purple Dragons vs The Cobras. It was a 2-2 draw. Their striker booted 2 goals past our goalie in the first half. We had an eye on winning that game, but I missed the penalty that would have given us the win. Jack scored a goal again, and Fred scored a goal too.

Game 8: Our last game, because of the BYE next week.

Jack comes towards me, limping. Why is he limping?

“Hey dude,” he says. “I hurt my leg. I can’t play,”

“W-What?” I stammer. “But you’re our best striker,”

“I’m sorry. I can’t,” He replies. He forces a weak smile. “You go, striker, just for this game,”

Whatever he says. Jack is my best friend, of course I will go striker for him.

The whistle blows. We kick off. Nothing happens most the game.  Some shots and attempts from both teams, but no goals. After the first half, it’s still 0-0.

*5 Minutes Later*

The whistle blows again. They kick off this time. Bill steals the ball and makes an attempt for goal. He shoots, but the keeper just saves it. It rolls over the sideline. Our corner. Bill is our best corner taker. He can bend the ball the best. He does an amazing curve, and I realise that I have a chance for a goal! A bicycle kick goal! It is coming straight at me. This is my chance to do a bicycle kick. I throw my body up and swing my leg forward hard. I make contact. I land on my back really hard. I rub it for a while. I look over at the opposition goal, but the ball is not there. Huh? I look at the players, their team’s players and my team’s players. They are gaping like fish. I turn my head slowly to look at our goals. The ball is in the goals! I AM HORRIFIED!  I had scored an own goal bicycle kick from the other side of the field. I can’t believe it. My team can’t believe it. 0-1 their way. Can we get this win back?


We have so many attempts and close shots. We try everything, but nothing works. No one passed to me the whole half. They hate me. I might lose the season for them; after all, this is the finals game. One goal will save us. One goal will take us to penalties. The three whistle blasts blow to signal the end of the game.

“Good job, bozo,” says Bill shoving past me.

“You made us lose loser!” Jim says.

I am rained with abuse from every player. I guess I deserve it. I did just lose the finals for our team. I see Jack walking off slowly with his crutches, shaking his head. I am so disappointed. I am such an idiot! What a mistake!




Lit Circles week 4-Once

Lit Circles

Page 102, ‘I was brushing my teeth so hard’

I can connect to this because when I brush my teeth I scrub them so hard that they bleed. Sometimes it is because I am angry or because I just want to get my teeth as clean as possible. This is a text-to-self connection.

There is another book by Morris Gleitzmann called ‘Boy Overboard’ and it it is also about a war that is going on in a country. This is a text-to-text connection.


Comprehension Director

Page 75. What did Zelda do when the Nazi shot the woman?

Answer: Screamed.

Page 90. What does Barney do to signal for Felix to be quiet?

Answer: He put his finger to his lips.

How did Felix feel about the Nazi coming in to the dentist suddenly?

100wc-…why would I do that?…

As I walk off, I think to myself, ‘why would I do that?’, and the truth is, I really don’t know. I guess… punching a kid in the face isn’t that bad. Oh actually, I did hit pretty hard, so yeah, it was bad. I remember Billy’s face when my fist connected. And the blood. Lots of blood. The next day my mum forced me to write an apology letter.

This is what I wrote:

Dear Billy,

I am sorry for punching you. I won’t do it again. One question though; why are you such an idiot?

From me, Dan.

Literacy Circles #3-Once

Passage Reflector-Literacy Circles

Passage 1: ‘Zelda is standing by the haystack rigid with fear. Next to her, pointing a machine gun down at her head, is a Nazi soldier.’

Page 60, Paragraph 2?

This passage surprised me because I had no idea that a Nazi would just randomly come out of no- where. I also got scared because I thought Zelda would die here because the Nazi would shoot her.

Passage 2: ‘Also because I’ve got a horrible suspicion I know the answer to the question. Maybe it’s not just our books the Nazis hate. Maybe it’s us.’

Page 65, Paragraph 1.

I learnt something from this passage. The whole time, as well as Felix, I also thought that it was just the books that the Nazis hated. Maybe it actually is the Jewish people themselves.




Why would Felix try to comfort Zelda by not telling her that her parents are dead?

Why do Nazis hate Jews so much that they would kill them?

Why would the locals laugh at the Jews?



100wc-…Flame Ice Lime Regularly Clock

It is ice cold. Is that a….- helicopter? It’s time! I have been out in this horrible jungle for a week now and I cannot bear it anymore. I regularly go camping, so I hope this is the last time. The helicopter floats down and I grab the rope. I get in and they give me a lime Icy pole, even though I’m freezing. We get home and they take me to an emergency centre. They sit me in front of a warm flame. I glance at the clock. 4:45! I thought it was still morning! Time flies in the jungle.

Literacy Circles Week #2-Once

Right there: What are the little kids playing?

Right there 2: What is Felix Wearing?

Think + Search- Summarise what happened when Felix went into his old house. What happened?

On My own: What would you do if you lost your parents?


100wc-Picture Prompt (98)

Wow! There is a-? Window…? A blue window? Wait, a handle. It’s a door! I open it and it reveals a jungle on the other side. Cool! I think, stupidly. I jump through the entrance, closing the door behind me. I look back. No door. I’m stuck here!

I walk around for hours. Sweaty. Tired. I am so thirsty. I feel like I am dying. My lips are so dry. I sit down, with my back against a tree. I see glistening of blue. The door. I approach it, legs trembling. I slowly turn the handle. Wait…. Mongolia?

Writing-Show Not Tell

“GOOOOOALLLLL!” yelled the commentator. The whole stadium went up in loud cheers. Half the stadium stood up, screaming. My shoulders dropped. I let out a massive sigh and look down at my can of lemonade. As the ball flew into the net I knew that we would lose 2-1. Play on I guess… The ball was booted into the crowd, when I realised it was coming right at me! I got up and tried to catch it, but the person next to me, a fat man, got in front and snatched it out of my grasp before I could catch it. I slumped back into my seat and took a long, sighing sip of my lemonade.

Literacy Circles #1

Book: Once

Pages: 1-27

Vocab Expander

Word 1: Catholic- including a wide variety of things; all-embracing

Page 12, Paragraph 4.

Word 2: Dormitory- a large bedroom for a number of people in a school or institution

Page 16, Paragraph 4.

Word 3: Nazis- a member of the national socialist German worker’s party

Page 20, Paragraph 3.

Word 4: Singe-burn lightly

Page 19, Paragraph 2.

Word 5: Nuns-a member of a religious community of women

Paragraph 4, Page 25


Why do you think that Felix wants Dodie to have his soup?

Why was Felix leaving?

Extra: Is the carrot really a sign, or just a carrot?