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Barbara Murray wins two prestigious EPAA awards

Firefly Education’s Nicole Forrest, Curriculum Content Manager (Literacy), and Peter Stannard, Director with the awards for Sound Waves Foundation.

Barbara Murray, author of the new four bookset Sound Stories, which helps children learn to speak, read and spell, has won two awards at the Educational Publishing Awards Australia (EPAA).

The EPAAs recognises the best of the best in educational resources with 2019 producing outstanding resources for student learning across the country. Twenty vital learning tools produced by local publishers and used in primary, secondary and tertiary classrooms were awarded.

At the awards ceremony held recently, Sound Waves Foundation, authored by Barbara Murray and Terri Watson and published by Firefly Education, won two awards:

  • Best Primary Teaching Resource: Sound Waves Foundation (Teacher Book, Online & Student Book)
  • Outstanding Primary Resource: Sound Waves Foundation (Teacher Book, Online & Student Book)

Barbara Murray and Terri Watson’s Sound Waves was also a winner in 2017 with its Sound Waves Online version of the program.

Judges of the awards said Sound Waves Foundation was awarded the most outstanding primary resource because it was innovative in harnessing sound searches and bespoke images to help students use sound for literacy development.

2018’s revamp of the Sound Waves Foundation program included explicit teaching lesson plans, engaging teaching tools, full-colour illustrations and more.

Nicole Forrest, Firefly Education’s Literacy Specialist, advocates that, “all schools need systematic, evidence-based approaches to spelling and reading instruction. The last few years have propelled change, and we are in the middle of an exciting and productive time for literacy teaching.”

The Sound Waves Foundation is a systematic synthetic phonics and word study program that aligns with research on the best practices in early reading and spelling instruction. The Foundation program has a two-phase structure that reflects the highly specialised nature of instruction required when teaching students to spell and read in their first year of school.

New Sound Stories from Barbara Murray

Following on from producing this phonics program, Barbara Murray recently launched Sound Stories, an illustrated boxed set of four beautifully illustrated books that provide 43 stories to introduce the 43 sounds to young children.

The Australian National Curriculum strongly recommends that all Australian primary schools include phonemic awareness and synthetic phonics in their literary program.

The new Sound Stories series is perfect for parents and grandparents to introduce the sounds to early childhood aged children, and, importantly, as a teacher’s resource in schools and early childhood centres.

The four books in the set are:

Book 1: An Introduction to Consonant Sounds, Part 1. The Bolton Boys’ Balloon Adventure and other stories
Book 2: An Introduction to Consonant Sounds, Part 2. Robbie Robot to the Rescue and other stories
Book 3: An Introduction to Vowel Sounds, Part 1. Anna Ant’s Antics and other stories
Book 4: An Introduction to Vowel Sounds, Part 2. Bertie Bird and the Earthworm and other stories

Each set of four books comes with a colourful box for easy storage and safe-keeping.

Source: Barbara Murray

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