Saturday, February 09, 2008

Hanningfield Reservoir beauty

It's been a beautiful day today, blue sky and sunshine. I've not been to Hanningfield Reservoir for ages, so I went for a walk in the conservation area. This picture was taken looking out from a bird observation point at the waters edge. Both the wildlife and landscape looked so inviting in the warm, wintery sunshine.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Pancakes: just read the instructions

Here is young Tom, a scout who has successfully made pancake batter and tossed his pancake without it landing on the floor or roof beams.

Although this was a fun activity, we were training the boys in the art of reading instructions. Few followed them which left them making several mistakes, or should I say created several 'learning opportunities. It is a life skill, but in this day and age, is the printed text just not stimulating and interesting enough to read? What if the instructions were a podcast or a video tutorial? Would more have had greater success and neding less adult input?

Truth is, as long as it was food and somewhere close to edible, the scouts simply stopped caring about how they got there!

Junk mail ticketing

I never ever imagined writing or even giving the time to a piece of
junk mail, but this one caught my eye. It's quite a novel idea but left me wondering if Royal Mail postmen are having to put these through letter boxes the right way round? Turn it the other way and the effect has all but disappeared.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Shared Reading

There was a brilliant moment today when children in my class chose to pair up and share the enjoyment of reading with each other. This was totally unprompted by me as I was slow in discovering what they were doing. I took a sneaky picture of them working quietly, reading to each other and retelling the story.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Road Safety Talk

Pupils were given a Road Safety talk by someone from Essex County Council. They brought along a model car and ramp which showed the effect of not wearing a seat belt after a collision at just 10mph. When the presenter asked the children how many of them don't wear a seat belt regularly, about 5 hands went up. That's about 20% of the class. It was staggered by the statistic when it is so well known how seat belts save lives. Incredible.

Pupils were clearly fascinated by the model. They all wanted to have a go which would have made the demonstration perhaps a bit more hands-on and bring about greater opportunity to remember some of what had been mentioned during the presentation.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Xserve power

I'm simply staggered at just how beautifully engineered Apple computers are and I haven't even switched it on yet!

This powerhouse features 2 Quad-Core Intel Xeon processors and 4GB of memory, together with over 1 terabyte of storage space. Although this isn't my server, it is interesting to reflect back on my first WWW server, a Macintosh IIcx featuring a 16 MHz processor and 20MB of memory. Before I adopted Minnie the Minx, she was someone's work machine. Imagine having all that power today!