Tuesday, 30 September 2008
I'm busy looking for good resources to do with the weather too. So if anyone has any idea where I can get a CD with weather sounds or where to download good sounds from the internet then let me know.
Monday, 29 September 2008
The weather's pretty poor - cold, wet and windy - so the children were inside the whole time today. You notice the difference as the noise level picks up through the session when they don't get the chance to go out and run around. They're a fun bunch to work with though, generally interested in everything and mostly very good at sharing and playing without arguments. It's still very tiring though!!
Sunday, 28 September 2008
I expected to look on all the canoe test parts of it as a necessary evil which had to be got out of the way so I can hopefully in the future progress on to 3 star and maybe beyond (they are sea specific, whereas 1 and 2 star are generic). In the end though, I really enjoyed all the canoe parts too and would quite like to have a go in a canoe again - and would maybe even consider a canoeing holiday sometime.
Now I'm off for a well earned hot bath to soak away the aching shoulders, followed by a whisky mac :-)
Saturday, 27 September 2008
Friday, 26 September 2008
I've now read lots of books to individuals and small groups, the challenge of keeping the attention of the whole class comes next week. We've spent a lot of time outside running around (mostly pretending to be horses) and playing throwing and catching with balls and hoops. I've also done fingerpainting on 2 different days which has been great fun, if messy. I learned a lot the first day and the second day nobody (including me) got quite as messy as I had 'distraction strategies' in place!
Roll on next week, I'm really looking forward to it.
There was a 'local authority village' area and when I spotted Shetland there I quickly went round trying to find the Orkney stall as I thought there would be a good chance I'd know whoever was manning it - but there was no Orkney stall. They seemed to be the only authority not represented, although I did meet & chat to David Drever from KGS - but he was there in his position with the EIS, who he's currently on secondment to.
The show was definitely worth the visit as a student teacher to see what's available in the way of resources for additional support needs in particular, but I don't know that it would be worth the journey for me in the future if I had far to travel to it. Any anyway - it's held on 2 weekdays and not in the evenings so once I'm teaching I'll not be able to attend it anyway!
Thursday, 25 September 2008
It was very dark by the time we got back - sunset is now around the same time as it is in Orkney.
I'm really missing having somewhere to get clothes dried properly too. The washing machine isn't wonderful and clothes come out pretty wet as it doesn't spin well at all. So I'm finding clothes are generally on the clothes horse for about 4 days before they think about drying - which doesn't leave anywhere for my kayaking stuff to dry. I was going to buy another clothes horse - but the cheapest I could find was £20. £20!!!!! I'm a skint student - so I went for the alternative option. I bought a clothes line for 74p and I string it up across the lounger between the handles on the window and the kitchen door handle. The biggest flaw with this is that it stops me getting into the kitchen, but it works well for hanging up my kayaking kit overnight and then again through the day while I'm out.
Tuesday, 23 September 2008
There's 20 preschoolers in the morning and 15 preschool and 3 ante-preschool in the afternoon - with a nursery teacher and a nursery nurse. So many names to learn.....
We went outside to play in both sessions, and there was lots of play with sand, water, playdough, drawing, role play in the home corner, etc. Interesting getting a look round the whole school too.
There's a strike tomorrow so there will only be staff in, no pupils. That might give me the chance to do a little more reading of policies, etc as well as a really good opportunity to go through all the available resources and familiarise myself with them.
Monday, 22 September 2008
This first placement is the nursery one - 3 & 4 year olds. I've been preparing not just with the course reading, etc but also by listening to CDs of nursery rhymes and singing games and by reading lots of great kids books - The Gruffalo, Bear Hunt, Katie Morag ... great fun :-)
Sunday, 21 September 2008
Saturday, 20 September 2008
This was a lovely morning last week, when I set off early and dawdled my way up the river, enjoying all the wildlife and the sun.
Looking back down from the New Bridge towards the harbour mouth (my flat is round the corner from here, out of sight).
Wednesday, 17 September 2008
The walk to uni was lovely too as it was such a nice morning - a definite autumnal feel though, with a hint of a mist which soon burnt off.
Monday, 15 September 2008
I managed to catch a rare view as Holy Isle started to appear one evening...
And an even rarer view of the sleeping warrior.
Sunday, 14 September 2008
Some of our finds:
I'm getting quite excited about the nursery placement now. We're in the middle of 2 weeks where everything we do is specifically for Early Years. We've had visiting speakers, lectures and workshops. The only bit I'm struggling a little with is all the theory of child devleopment, etc - I think my brain just switches off when it hears the words psychology or sociology. And not being able to use my previous learning method of writing things over and over again is making it more challening to try to learn about all the different theories about learning and child development - Piaget, Vygotsky ......
The workshops on the other hand have been brilliant. Each afternoon we get a 2 hour workshop which is much more practical and is full of ideas for things we could do with children in the Early Years. So far we've had Drama, Music, Art, Social Subjects and PE - and we actually do activities, we don't just talk about them. I've set myself some interesting homework this weekend to help with preparation for the Early Years placements - I'm listening to CDs of nursery rhymes, singing games, action rhymes, etc. It's years since I heard most of them, but they're coming back to me now. We need to know these things, you know! It's lucky that Mum bought Steven some CDs a while back and 5 Little Speckled Frogs was on one, otherwise we would have struggled a lot with one of the challenges in the Social Subjects workshop! And in one task on Friday out of 30 in our class only 2 knew the story of the Bear Hunt so they had to do that task for us.
Saturday, 13 September 2008
The rain came on much heavier on the way back - I was pretty wet and couldn't see much till I had dried my glasses, and it was almost dark by the time we got back, though it wasn't that late. It's very noticeable (and was from the first evening down here) the huge difference in the time it gets dark at night.
(The photo has been lightened on the computer as it was a lot darker than this)
Anyway, kayaking was great fun - about 12 folk were out (I think, I didn't count). I had a go of a greenland paddle which was great, I've wanted to have a go since I first saw them at the Perth show 2 years ago, so I grabbed the opportunity when Duncan offered me a go of his paddle. It's really nice to paddle with - the feel of wood in the hand is so much nicer than plastic, and it doesn't get as slippy when it gets wet (as it was unvarnished). I had bruises on a finger and thumb on my right hand the next day though - but my left was fine. I haven't worked out quite why yet.Considering how thin the greenland paddles are, it doesn't stop you being able to paddle fast at all. It's a different paddling position, and your wrists don't have to twist as much, so Duncan suggested it may actually be easier on my wrists to use a greenland paddle. Paddling with it was fine, once I got the hand of the differences - even down to the angle the blade does in the water. Sculling with it felt very strange though - especially having the paddle so deep in the water that my whole hand was under!
I was paddling a different boat too (lots of new experiences here) - an Avocet. Apart from the obvious benefit of a bigger cockpit than the Skerray, I didn't like it nearly as much. The Skerray just seemed to 'fit' better; in the Avocet I felt my legs were being twisted a bit to force them to stay braced, and it was quite hard work to keep them in the right position. Think I'll try for a Skerray again next time.
So I now have to play 'catch up' with the blog - so it'll probably be lost of short entries all appearing in a short time.
Monday, 8 September 2008
The final - against Roger Federer -is on at 10pm tonight so I'm not sure how much I'll manage to hear as I'm pretty exhausted with the course and also I have a cold so I don't feel very great. But if it gets very exciting I'm sure that'll keep me awake.
Off to walk to Uni now - this is the start of our 2 weeks of Early Years topics in the lead up to the 3 weeks nursery placement. Got a Drama workshop today which I'm a bit nervous about - and an Art workshop tomorrow which will be even worse, especially as we had to buy an A3 sketchbook so we are obviously expected to draw. Oh dear.
I went to the excellent craft & food fair too - and got some of the best dried fruit I've ever tasted. Then I headed off to Kip Marina where I sat in the car reading about Early Years education and the 3-5 curriculum for a few hours, before the Battle of Largs. More about this later.
Saturday, 6 September 2008
It was a lovely evening (a pleasant change from the rain we've been getting every single day....) and we enjoyed bobbing about at the far end of the loch watching the sunset.
This is her passing the end of the 'offshoot' of river which goes along in front of my flat.
Tuesday, 2 September 2008
I'm finding I'm printing lots of documents so I can read things offline and not be tempted to use the computer too much - I'm already on my 3rd ink cartridge for my printer!!! And talking of computers - don't you just love red tape too? To be allowed to use my ergonomic mouse in the computing labs at uni, I had to see enabling support, OT, another woman in Student Services (all extremely helpful and supportive) and now I have permission but - wait for it - I have to get an IT Technician to plug it in for me................. so I will avoid the computing labs whenever possible. And what happened to not forcing me to make it obvious to other students that I have "a disability"........... it's lucky that I'm more than happy for people to know, in the hope that I can give them some advice and prevent them from developing problems from too much computer work, etc.
Back to the reading - so many government policy documents are just so long, which adds to the panic when you see how much reading there is to do. Lots of different documents - and pages and pages and pages of them. One we were advised to read is 256 pages long - luckily the first 8 or 9 pages are a summary of the rest, so you can get the gist of it and then read in depth on the areas that particularly interest you. If you tried to read everything in such depth there's not a chance of you remembering it.
So far I've only had one subject session (maths, it was really good); the rest has been School & Professional Studies - topics such as Child Protection, Creativity, Psychology, etc and also introduction to our first placement which is pre-school and is in 2 1/2 weeks - eek! Over the next 2 weeks we'll be focusing heavily on early years education in preparation for the placement.
For the rest of this week the focus is more on subjects - Language, RME, Art, Social Subjects, Science & Technology. We're all wondering what the music and PE classes are going to be like - because they're not just lectures, they're practical classes.
That's it for now, but hopefully that will have given everyone a little more idea what I'm up to.
Monday, 1 September 2008
We passed below Culzean Castle - not that I got a good view of it, even when the rain stopped for a bit my glasses were so covered I still couldn't see much.
Definitely a paddle to do again sometime when the weather's brighter.