Friday, 28 February 2014

Phrases, Clauses and Sentences

You know you're in teacher training when... you spend Friday evenings trying to decide whether 'Sometimes it's hard to be a woman' is a Phrase, a Clause or a Sentence. The differences between them are minimal but vitally important when teaching a seven-year-old how to write.
     Other terms with similar qualities include: Subjects, Verbs and Objects (these help to define sentences (and clauses, but not phrases)); 'subordinating conjunctions', which are used in forming complex sentences, as opposed to 'coordinating conjunctions', which are found in compound sentences (but neither will appear in a phrase or a clause (as far as I'm aware)).
     Then there are the 'Active' and 'Passive' voices, which change depending on whether the subject is doing the verb, or the verb is being done to the subject, for example: 'A man was arrested' is in the passive voice, because the man has been arrested, he did not do the arresting, although trying to arrest a police officer must be challenge worth taking up at some point.
     For now though [Phrase], or after I've finished [Clause], I'll have something to eat [Sentence].

Sometimes it's hard to be Trainee Teacher. Have a happy weekend!

Sunday, 23 February 2014

Olympic Wrap-up

The Winter Olympics, the Cool Olympics, in which people don't just show off their strength or stamina or speed or skills, but do it on ice or the side of a mountain. My personal favourite events have to be the Snowboard and Ski Cross. Yeah, watching one person slide down a mountain is fun, but far better if there's 6 of them and with humps, jumps and banked corners thrown in for good measure.
     Also, new this time was the Parallel Slalom, which works on a similar principal, although there's only two people. I would like to see two people on a Moguls run at some point as well, and I won't be surprised if it's tried out in the not too distant future.
     Otherwise the Germans have been good a luging, GB bagged another gold in the skeleton and the Canadians are acting like they own the world again. (Well we have to let them, they only get the chance every 4 years). However they haven't managed to finish top of the medal table like last time, Russia took a long time to get going but finally came up trumps, which is fair enough seeing as it was in Sochi. Finishing with 13 Gold medals shows a big improvement too, four years ago they won just 3.
     Other countries that have done well include Norway, finishing second with 11 Golds (2 more than in Vancouver); the Netherlands, finishing 5th with 8 Golds (4 more than in Vancouver); and Belarus with 5 Golds out of 6 medals in total.
     It was not so good for others though, Italy failed to win any Golds; Sweden only claimed 2, down from 5 in Vancouver; and South Korea, the hosts in 2018, dropped from 6 Golds to 3, but maybe they're just saving themselves.
     So now we've watched the experts do it, I guess it's over to us. Perhaps I'll actually manage to strap on a pair of skis before the next Olympics, I'd like that. I mean come on... how hard can it be?

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Today I have been...

Today I have been,
The tunneller,
The figure skater,
The dog deceiver,
And the passer-by amuser.
Today I have been,
Overground and underground,
Uphill and downhill,
Forwards and backwards,
And round and round.
Today I have been,
The upright roller,
The gatepost leaner,
The sunset watcher,
And the silent contemplator.
Today I have been...

Friday, 14 February 2014

Broken hearts on Valentines

Never have I broken so many hearts on any day, let alone Valentines. This was my final day at my first placement school and there were more than a few tears come 3 o'clock.

It's been a crazy week as timetable was downed for a Science Focus week, which has involved science shows, competitions, mock-up labs, experiments, and a pop up planetarium. The rain, of course, has persisted, but little did I know that the kids were spending their wet plays preparing songs, dances, cards, pictures and many other things.

Many of them have been trying to find ways to keep me at the school and I've written up my favourites below:

"You could always tell your tutor that you are stuck in a marmalade jar and nobody can get you out because you have an electrical shield around you"

"If I told David Cameron that I was gonna give him £1million I can hold him ransom in a toilet cubicle until he lets you stay"

Being a teacher may be tough, but there are some moments to treasure. I've definitely had a few over the past few months and topped off this afternoon. There's no time to rest though, the work continues. Onward and upward... once my heart's back together.

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Museums, Mosques and Middle names

A class trip to Bristol yesterday brought me two new experiences. A wander around the Bristol City Museum and Art Gallery, a very impressive building with some pretty cool things in it. Amongst the kids opinion was split on the stuffed animals (cool or cruel), while the dinosaur bones were apparently the highlight.
     Before this, however, we visited a Mosque, the first time I have done so. This wasn't so exciting in some respects (we spent most of the time sat down and listening) but it was interesting, and while I don't know about the children, I definitely learnt a few things about Islam.

The rain continues to pour and alternates between 'heavy but sporadic' and 'bleakly consistent'. Today it was the latter, which meant to indoor playtimes. At lunch one of the TAs appeared with the game Sequence so I got a few kids playing it. They were more interested in guessing my middle name (again) though, so I made a list. I've promised to reveal the correct guess on my last day next week.
Here is what they came up with:
  1. Forsythe
  2. Francis
  3. Frederick
  4. Froggy
  5. Fred
  6. Frank
  7. Franked
  8. Franchester
  9. Frankie
  10. Foodie
  11. Finky-Inky
  12. F- (class name) is going to keep you forever
  13. Fish and chips
  14. Ferret
  15. Fairy
If you don't know it, I wouldn't bet too highly on Number 6... couldn't say about the others though.