Posts Tagged ‘Students in Classrooms’

Duck familyThis picture isn’t relevant to the post, but I like it, so you get to see it anyway. It’s a family of ducks I saw on Jubilee Campus on Friday – very very cute.

I had fun yesterday. Much more fun than #2 son, who was doing a Duke of Edinburgh practice expedition, yomping round Derbyshire in the rain with half a ton of stuff on his back. I was doing my training for the Students in Classrooms scheme. This is something that’s been going for many years now, it involves chucking a load of students at a load of schoolkids and seeing what happens.

Actually, it’s much more structured than that, and is a jolly good wheeze. They send you into a local school for 3 weeks to work alongside one or more teachers, and you can make what you like of the experience – if you want to take all or part of a lesson yourself they’ll let you try it, for instance. And they pay you. Not much, but it’s better than nothing.

I’m doing it to find out what working with kids is like, to see if doing workshops in schools is something I could do to earn money on an ongoing basis, and for fun. I’ll be working in the English department, I don’t know which school yet.

The training session was strange in many ways. For a start, I’m twice as old as most of the other trainees, and I think I’m probably older than the trainers too. Which made the exercise where we had to think about how our subject is taught differently today a bit difficult…

And I learned something about myself which I’m a bit uncomfortable with – I have a significant desire to please. One of the trainers was wandering round sticking stickers on people when they did something she thought was particularly good, and once I noticed this I was desperate to get one of those stickers. I tried really hard to do everything well, to be proactive and thoughtful, to speak out and make my opinions known…

I didn’t get a sticker. Which left me feeling quite let down at the end of the day. I deserved one, dammit. Or maybe I didn’t? Perhaps I’m just not as good as I think I am?

Enough of that. What really annoys me about it is I want to be a rebel. I don’t want to be desperate to conform and gain approval. Damn.

And here’s another couple of pictures to finish with. The new Nottingham Trent University building is amazing. A. Maz. Ing.


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So, Pip, why is it important?

I’m glad you asked me that. It’s my mother’s birthday. She’ll be partying with my brother and the sheep, I’ve no doubt. Hacking brambles in the field, or hedge-laying, or worming lambs, or some such fun and games…

Happy Birthday Mum!

You’re missing something, aren’t you?

…and then there’s the election thing. I’m a bit fed up with that. I live in a marginal constituency (Broxtowe) so the only way I can vote is Labour – Nick Palmer is a reasonably good MP and had a slim majority last time round. I’d like to vote Green, but can’t afford to let the awful tory woman get in. I posted my vote last Thursday, so the last seven days have been even more irrelevant to me. It was nice to realise this morning that the BBC avoids politics until the polls close on election day. The Today Programme was so much better for it…

I am looking forward to watching the Channel 4 election night coverage though, David Mitchell, Charlie Brooker and Jimmy Carr… should be great fun. Hopefully #1 son will stay up with me.

So, how’s life in the writing world, Pip?

The anthology is nearly done. The printed anthology, I should say. I’ll be battling red tape this afternoon to get all the bits and bobs finalised, then delivering the PDFs to the printer tomorrow lunchtime. I’m ridiculously nervous about the whole thing. I stayed up till 2am last night proof-reading, and only discovered one mistake (a misaligned page number) so I twiddled with the layout on a few pages just to make myself feel better.

I’m sitting in the library (oops, sorry, the Djanogly Learning Resource Centre) today, which is the Most Bizarre building – it’s an ascending spiral which expands as you go up – you can see a bit of it in this rather nice photo of a heron.
Heron by the DLRC
I thought it would be a good place to work but it’s full of whispering students, and there’s a woman below who’s feeding the ducks, which is fascinating. Three baby moorhens had a fight over a crust with an ENORMOUS fish. They won. Yay birds!

I’m actually trying to sort out a poetry collection for the Templar competition, but there are too many distractions. Damn you, ubiquitous internet and wonders of nature.

So, what else is new?

I heard yesterday I’ve been accepted onto a “Students in Classrooms” scheme. I will bravely venture into a local secondary school for three weeks in June/July, and attempt to help teach the little darlings English.

Can’t decide whether to feel sick or excited!

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