Perspective

February 22, 2011 at 5:52 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments
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What a day. Posts like this one probably come along quite regularly. This one isn’t really about teaching and learning but that’s okay. It is still a reflection of the day.

I’m currently sitting in my son’s bedroom as he goes to sleep. He’s had trouble getting to sleep recently so this is a bit of a regular occurrence. I love being a dad and spending time with my kids. I try to get home as early as possible so I can spend time with them. Today was no different. The train times have changed slightly so my normal train home now leaves 7 minutes earlier than it did last week. I made it today! I was amazed. But we sat and sat. About 10 minutes after it was supposed to leave an announcement came over that it was cancelled and to catch the next one. Usually this would really frustrate me. But today was different. I guess the events of the day really had me quite sober. Today the 6.3 magnitude earthquake hit Christchurch, and believe me this put everything in perspective.

This is a horrible day for New Zealand. Five months since the first big quake hit Christchurch. It has made me think of life and people. The cancellation of my train was nothing. I had the blessing of going home to my wonderful wife and 5 kids.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the people of Christchurch in the tragic time. New Zealand is behind you as is a lot of people and countries around the world.

Why should I get my kids to blog?

February 11, 2011 at 6:28 pm | Posted in Education | 6 Comments
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This article in the NZ Herald talks about a school in Britain who has 11 year old boys engaged in writing blogs. Some of them are writing 5000 word stories in their blogs. It all started during a period of heavy snowfall where the school was continually closed. The principal decided that students would still get taught during this time – online. And it’s exploded from there. Read the article for the full story.

I think this is a fantastic story about the possibilities of technology. Not only did the students continue to be taught, but their writing scores were increasing also. Many have clearly become engaged, and passionate about writing.

As a secondary science teacher, I’m certainly not an expert in writing stats and facts but I believe that here in New Zealand many boys are not engaged in writing and really have no interest in it. Perhaps they need something like this to get them started. Start them off with a small activity they can do (the British school got the students to blog about the amount of snow outside their house) and try to build it from there. What if you can increase engagement and achievement from this simple idea?

I might actually get my own children to start blogging, and see what happens. They love using the computer, and this might build an interest/passion in writing.

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