Interim reports

Education Learning Log

Funny faces

So I’ve used Ewan MacIntosh’s idea with staff where he shows the youtube cup stacking video and the Mom just doesn’t have a clue. There’s an important point there about how much time children spend developing skills which we are not always harnessing in school.

I think this guy’s face making skill may be slightly less useful but still, he’s spent a long time perfecting these faces. I can see now that all is not lost for those wee rascally boys at the back of the room who tend to start doing this at the Primary 4 stage…..

More useful than these faces, was recently listening to Richard Holloway talk about leadership. He reminded us of what we can learn from geese. I remember watching this video a long time ago, but it was good to be reminded of it by Richard, and good to watch it again. Not so helpful is that everything on youtube or myspace is blocked for use within school and to use resources which are found on eg youtube you have to spend valuable time at home getting them into an appropriate format.

I’m still reflecting on what I saw and heard at the Learning Festival and I agree that it’s time we had sensible conversations in education about the use of these sites without the hysteria that so often comes up. Neil Winton talked about this at TeachMeet and it was interesting to hear his perspective on the use of these spaces in education and his thoughts on cyberbullying – how can you deal with it as a teacher, if you don’t have access to the spaces where it happens? Access means you can monitor and deal with issues, no access means it goes on unchecked.

Something I’m not so keen on having access to is chronic tv. I’m all settled down with my duvet, snuffly nose and those general aches and pains teachers always get in time for a holiday. Saturday night – prime time viewing and what do I get? “Worlds greatest Elvis” impersonator. I don’t have the words….

I did see Scotty Moore play the other year and that was a real pleasure. The woman sitting next to me in The Cottier Theatre was having a ball, screaming at every song. She just  about put up with my quiet viewing through Scotty’s set (and DJ Fontana on drums), but she gave me a steely stare at the end when I admitted I’d never been to Graceland.

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September 22, 2007 Posted by | Nonsense | , , , | Leave a comment

Rich Tasks and Wee Gardens

Our learning community are about to further develop rich tasks. One group are taking forward a P3 rich task and the group I’m working with are looking at a P6/7 one. One of the teachers involved in the P6/7 task has just returned from study leave to Malawi so it made sense to develop something which could use her expertise and develop links with her link school in Malawi. We were kind of swimming in the dark a bit with where to go first with this – we’ve got the funding in place for development work and for staff from the schools involved to spend time working together, but where to start?

So it was fantastic to discover at the Scottish Learning Festival that Argyll and Bute council have developed a suite of 24 rich tasks based on the Australian model, all linked in to ACfE. What a great starting point for anyone looking to develop work in this area.

I’m hoping to have a spending spree in the Garden Centre this weekend. I loved Don Ledingham’s idea of permission to learn cards for the adults in school and  our p1 teacher and nursery teacher are going for it with a bit of risk taking. They’ve joined up for play every Monday afternoon and are using numeracy as a backdrop theme for work in developing our garden. So I’ve been sent off with a shopping list – seed potatoes, compost wormery, bulbs, herbs, fruit trees – the school fund is going to take a whack! Wiggly wigglers have great wiggly resources for school gardening.

My latest amazon parcel came the other day with a few books I’ve been meaning to read. Everything is Miscellaneous, David Weinberger, Wikinomics Don Tapscott, The Starfish and The Spider Brafman and Beckstrom. Looking forward to sitting down and reading this September weekend. And when I’m not out and about or reading I’ve been loving this for jumping about and snacking on all sorts of stuff…

We’re waiting on freeby dance mats from RM after doing them a wee favour at their presentation at the Learning Festival and I’ve been reading with interest the consolarium blog on LTScotland. I don’t know how many parents come to see me and say my son/daughter never reads at home but when you ask about console use they’re reading a lot of complex stuff and learning all the time, but do we take this into account at school? I doubt it.

September 22, 2007 Posted by | Rich tasks | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment