Monday, 26 October 2009

Things I Learned From My Students #1: Autumn 2009

  1. It's really uncool and old-fashioned to call it a "pen-drive" rather than a "USB".
  2. No one born after 1991 has ever heard of "2001: A Space Odyssey".
  3. Arsene Wenger speaks nine different languages.
  4. There's a lot of really complicated stuff going on in "Eastenders" at the moment.
  5. Deep questions like "How do snails have sex?" are really fascinating.
  6. Everyone likes to look at bones and formaldehyde specimens, and even the dullest class can be rescued with "Who wants to play with a skeleton?".
  7. The word "dinosaurs" can be spelt in a gazillion different ways, none of which are the correct ones: dinosours, danosouer, dinisours, dinosauras, dinosuars, dinosaurus, dinasours, dinosauris, dinosourse.
  8. Charles Darwin looks an awful lot like Santa Claus.
  9. The CSI Effect should never be underestimated.
  10. A student who says they can get hold of some human hearts for next term's dissection class should be given a wide berth after dark.
  11. Robert Pattinson is apparently a hunk.
  12. A lack of forward planning on the students' part ALWAYS constitutes an emergency on my part.
  13. Something will happen every day to surprise you. Sometimes it will be a good surprise. Sometimes it won't...
  14. Every teenager has a Hotmail address that they're really going to regret when they go to university.
  15. The age of 29 is considered positively Jurassic (or at least it would be if any of them knew what Jurassic meant).
  16. You will learn more about your student at parents' evening than you will ever find out from them in class.

Friday, 23 October 2009

Hello Internet

Well. It's been a while, hasn't it? I have just survived my first half term in what I suspect is one of the hardest, yet most rewarding professions in existence. There must be harder jobs, but I bet there aren't too many tough jobs that are as much bloody fun as teaching.

An advantage of living pretty much next door to the college is that within 10 minutes of leaving the office, this is what I was looking at:

To my father, sister-in-law, mother-in-law, cousin, and the numerous friends I have who teach and lecture, that bad-boy margarita is for you. Cheers!

You'll have noticed that internet activity from me has been patchy to say the least. The odd strangled scream via Facebook or Twitter, the occasional e-mail to say "I'm really busy right now". And you can forget about forum, mailing list or chatroom presence. It's half-term now, which means I can relax a little. And for the first time in a while, I've felt energised to blog. I'm sorry if I've ignored your comments - if you're hoping for a response, please comment on the thread you initially posted on, and that'll bump it up for me to reply.

I think my blogging will be more sporadic now. This teaching thing is handing my arse to me on a plate, along with teacher training and my PhD (busy much??). But what has been touching is to see that my blog still gets a pretty good number of visitors each day. I'm glad it serves a purpose even with the older material.

But for now, La Senorita Margarita calls. And if any of my students are reading this, why aren't you doing your homework? Didn't I give you enough for the whole week?
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