Today the long awaited Rose Review on the future of the education system was published in the UK. Unsuprisingly many of the suggestions within it had already been announced. Here are just a few;
I signed into the admin side of my website hosting company (1and1) this morning just to check on a few details. Clicking through the options available I suddenly realised just how many domain names / packages / contracts I had that I wasn't using anymore.
Did you know that wikipedia have produced content especially for schools in the UK? No, neither did I until I was pointed towards it today by @dannynic
Wikipedias own explanation;
"This 2008/9 Wikipedia DVD Selection is a free, hand-checked, non-commercial selection from Wikipedia, targeted around the UK National Curriculum and useful for much of the English speaking world. It has about 5500 articles (as much as can be fitted on a DVD with good size images) and is about the size of a twenty volume encyclopaedia (34,000 images and 20 million words).
Wikipedia is the free encyclopaedia anyone can edit, and develops accurate content but suffers vandalism. Wikipedia is not necessarily a childsafe environment and has "adult" content. This selection of topics have been carefully chosen, tidied up, and checked for vandalism and suitability (by SOS Children volunteers, whom we gratefully acknowledge). We also gratefully acknowledge the Wikimedia Foundation for their support and their agreement to our use of the Wikipedia logo, and tens of thousands of contributors to Wikipedia who have written and researched the content in the first place, including this year adding content where gaps in the school curriculum were not covered"
The entire content of the Schools Selection can also be downloaded (no need to go online at all - ideal for a non internet PC), or as a DVD from the SOS Children website.
I was pointed to this stop-motion animation by @joecar. It is an amazing piece of work, and as Joe said on his blog "Expect to see advert made like this in next six months"
The creator of the video explained how he made it;
At first I photographed stop motion animation. And I displayed the photographs in my room and photographed it again. I used 1,300 printed pictures...Some musicians add music on my video and reupload it. Thank you very much.
Not long ago I was bombarded with emails / TV adverts and bus shelter adverts telling me to celebrate with a pint of Guiness because "March 17th is St Patrick's day". That's great, lovely, nice idea. Except I live in England. I am English, and my patron saint isn't St Patrick - it's St. George.
Today is April 23rd, St George's Day, and how many emails / TV ads and bus shelter ads have I seen telling me it's time to celebrate with a pint of Pedigree, or Spitfire? Exactly 0. Nil. Zilch. Zip. None. Not a single advert anywhere.
Why are we so crap at being proud of being English? We should have a national holiday today in England. We should be flying flags. We should be eating a roast dinner and drinking English ale. We should be celebrating all things English, but do we? Of course not.
If I was in school today I would be making sure that the children knew exactly who St George was. I'd have use the foam javelins for a jousting event in PE. I'd have had themed lessons related to St George and Dragons. (I've done it before in schools and the kids love it).
Stand Up. Be Proud. Celebrate. It's St. George's Day. It's England Day.
Link for schools:
I wish I could remember all the work I did on Flash a few years back in my digital teacher project days. I have had a great idea for a teachers whiteboard resource, but I cannot realise the idea until I can remember some of the stuff I've forgotten!
So I rang my insurance company yesterday to ask about how my critical illness cover will be affected by recent events. Today a claims advisor rang me back to "have a chat" about what had happened. Apparently they don't send out claim forms anymore. Oh no - they have a much better system!!
Reading an article on the BBC website;
A concerned father-of-two plans to hand-deliver bunches of bananas to pupils after Wigan Council took them off the menu because of "expense".
Councillor Gary Wilkes, who lives in Bryn with his two daughters, said some of the young pupils have been deprived of their favourite foods...