Posts Tagged ‘lifestyle’

Today’s Lesson

Posted 13 May 2010 — by cheersphilip
Category diary

Well, this is a first.

Can you see what I'm doing wrong?

Looks like I’m using my blog to help me deliver a lesson in a ‘foreign’ school! This lesson will take place in Norwich, which I’ll have to get to by starting out at seven in the morning and travelling until eleven.

After that, I’ll be in interview mode. For a teacher this means doing a sample lesson, sort of like try before you buy. Its a funny old situation, as you have no idea about who the students are, where they’ve come from, what their day might have been like, or anything.

For the lesson I’ll be using eggtimer (thanks to @chrisleach78 for finding it).

The school gives you a topic in advance, and some basic information about the students i.e. how many there might be, and you have to come up with a lesson to fit the slot you’ve been given. In this case twenty minutes.

My worst fear is that another teacher, given the same broad topic (exam preparation), has chosen the exact same detail to focus on. Of course you don’t find out until afterwards, so i guess you can’t worry about it too much.

The reason I’m typing this up in the blog is simple. Going to a new school, with various different IT solutions is a tricky business. Will your powerpoint work? Will their computers recognise the file type? Its all a bit of a nightmare, so I thought ‘why not put it all on the internet?’ I know they have this, and have asked the head of department if they can see my blog, which they can, so all good.

The lesson is simple – the topic is exam preparation and the learning objective is to gain an understanding of what makes for an effective study environment.

  • Show the first picture (me in my untidy spare room) and ask for comments about what I’m doing wrong vis-a-vis study
  • then get students to write or draw in detail what their own study areas are like (with the timer),
  • share with a partner (timer again)
  • note down some comments for improvement that their partner suggests
  • round it up with some examples fromt he various people
  • finish off with the second picture, showing me putting into practise what it is that I’m preaching.

What have I changed?


Hope you enjoyed the lesson. Wish me luck!




Status Update

Posted 16 Feb 2010 — by cheersphilip
Category diary

Hi there blog,

There’s a lot going on at the moment, so I thought I’d get it all out of my head and put in the compost bin to stew.

Projects-wise, we have the following:

  • The DVD project – I’m in the middle of making a DVD for GCSE Design & Technology. This is probably the most fun and interesting thing that I’m doing now, and has some real long-term potential. The script is at the second draft stage, and just needs to be gone over with a fine comb to ensure it is free of nits, with a glossy coat.
  • Tying up the ends of a website I’m doing for North Farm Cottages, I’m just waiting for better pictures of the cottages, then I can hand it over. Please – no-one make a booking, as it all comes to me at the moment!
  • The Barbican’s Ron Arad exhibition opens on Wednesday, so the wife and I will be going to the private view. The first workshop that I’m doing isn’t for a month yet, so I have a few days to finish off the deliverables for that.
  • The back support that I’m working on with a client has stalled a bot, so we need to get that ‘back’ on the go. [That was horrible, sorry]. Next step, I reckon, is to go speak to a lawyer about securing some IP. That’s a long road, but we need to get started.
  • Tutoring is ticking along nicely, no problems there.
  • Supply teaching has stalled completely – obviously, as its half term! Still waiting for a couple of CRB checks before I can start working for more than one agency, but they should come through soon, and then this’ll pick up a great deal.
  • I really fancy making a set of bookends and putting them on Etsy. I don’t put a lot of time into this area, but perhaps I should… One of those things, I guess.
  • I also want to continue updating the website, especially thinking about the ‘about me’ page. I just did this quickly when I first put this site up, and, also, I think that I was a bot ‘ooh, it’s a bit egoistic to write about yourself’, but my mind has changed on that one. It’s okay to just tell people who you are.
  • A mate of mine spectacularly crashed his scooter last week, breaking three bones in his right hand, so I’m going to go and pick that up for him at some point. Probably not today, though. It’s pissing it down.
  • And we need some shopping.
  • And I just got a new computer (very nice) and it came with a load of software that i don’t know how to use. I should probably leave them alone, as it will just waste time, but I can’t help feeling that if I just spent time learning to use them, they could be really useful and save me time in the future… I don’t know!
  • Oh, and I need to do the filing.

So what to do first? Well, I think this morning could productively be spent making some phone calls – lawyers, clients, collaborators. I’ll then have a coffee and proceed to stare at the script for the DVDs [should that be DVD's or DVDs?] to see what falls out. A spot of lunch (we’ll be having pancakes later!), and I might have a look at that page on my website. Or maybe I’ll go to the shed and make some bookends. Or maybe i’ll go to to learn how to use all that software. We’ll see!

Hope everyone has a good day, despite the rain!




The Unnanointed Brother

Posted 09 Feb 2010 — by cheersphilip
Category diary, Typewriter Bubble

Click the image for a closer look


Commuter Impersonator

Posted 11 Jan 2010 — by cheersphilip
Category diary

This morning I was ready to jump out of bed and rush to whatever school needed me.

As a home worker, my routine usually runs to sitting in bed drinking coffee until 9, (don’t tell me you wouldn’t do the same!). But not this morning, oh no. this morning I would be the dynamic, assertive go-getting supply teacher that you don’t see in the movies [note to self: could be a new project in that?]

Sadly, the call did not come. Never mind. I was dressed, watered and ready to go. Thing was, the only place I had to go to was my spare room/office.

This was not good enough! Where was the dynamism? Where was the cold air on my face? Where was the struggle of humanity between the opposing forces of financial security on the one hand and the primeveal drive to stay in bed on a flippin cold morning like this?!?

Where was my commute?!?

My course of action was clear – I was going to have that commute whether it got me anywhere or not!

Togged up, I set off amongst the other commuters, winding their way towards the station. What bliss! What solidarity! We were here, we were cold, and we wished we were in bed! Again I felt as part of a group, part of the industrial work ethic, part of trekking through the bleeding frost to get to somewhere you’d rather not be!

But my enjoyment was short lived. After a street or two, I realised that, yes, actually, it is quite cold and that no, really, I did not have any idea what I was doing or where I was going.

My house lies equidistant between two train stations. I considered walking to one and catching the train to the other. This may legitimise my pointless wanderings, or so I thought.

Then the whole pathos of the thing struck me. What was i doing?!I was mocking these people, turning their daily run to the office into some sort of sadistic little smug-fest of my own.

Pausing at the corner, I turned to make my way home. I imagined my follow commuters glancing at me, jeering. “Home-worker” they would say. But it would be true.


Calendar Series #5

Posted 20 Dec 2009 — by cheersphilip
Category diary, Ideas, Rant, Stories, thought, Typewriter Bubble

Fifth in the Calendar Series. Refer to Calendar #1 to see what this is about.

Click on the image to see it more clearly