Words of Wisdom

Youth is wasted on the young.

Friday, 25 July 2008

The End of a Long Week

Well thanks for the maths ideas folks and keep 'em coming. I'm still considering a prize for an idea I end up using and whilst I have a few ideas for the ladies, I am a little more stuck if any of you scientific type gentlemen come up with a winning project. I don't suppose you fancy a stylish knitted cushion cover do you? Naaaah. But don't despair! I will come up with something!!

I am happy to report that we have made it through the first week and my new classroom is almost feeling like home now. As is to be expected, the usual suspects of a 'room move' have gone missing: my set of scissors, a DVD, my set of glue sticks. Do you realise that glue sticks are like currency in the school setting? I had a boss in the UK who used to bribe us with glue sticks. I'm not kidding.
"Anyone who volunteers for this extra duty gets a free gluestick!" (hands fly up all over the room)

There have been no major meltdowns amongst the kids unless you count the VIQ (Vocational interest Questionnaire) which was an adventure in itself. Basically the kids have to fill in an online questionnaire which endeavours, through tricky questionnaire-type techniques like asking you the same thing twice, to determine which career interests you. Now this exercise sounds relatively simple but is, in reality, fraught with skill levels to challenge even a native english speaker of tender years. For example, how would your 15 year old self respond to the idea of

"consulting, analysing, planning and implementing strategy for the introduction and marketing of innovative products with production clients and prospective retailers."
Very appealing/ Like/Indifferent or Dislike?

Where was the button for 'Fail to Comprehend'?

There were many traps for young players, especially those with english as a second language and limited comprehension at the best of times. Consider for example, this question:

"Maintain and care for laboratory animals in a research facility."

Now most of the kids immediately saw the word 'animals', thought "I like animals" and hit the Very Appealing button. Another example was

"Organise finance and administration for sports and the arts."

You guessed it. Every prospective football or soccer player saw 'sports' and hit the Very Appealing button. As a result of this I spent a double lesson going through the quiz, question by question, trying to explain what each item was really about. There were 140 questions.

Any of you who are familiar with my Year 10s and their inability to follow directions will understand how harrowing a task this was. Firstly, some of them resented the suggestion that they didn't understand the questions so they were resistant to the whole exercise. Then came the inevitable chorus of 'where are we up to?' and 'I LIKE that one/That's ME /NO WAY that job SUCKS' which followed every explanation and which required precious seconds to settle before we continued on. Of course from time to time I would look across to one of the girls to see that she had replaced her questionnaire screen with MSN or a picture gallery of some rapper.....but apparently that was alright because she was 'ahead of us'. *sigh*

By the end of the lesson I was hoarse from explaining financial management and engineering 40 times and customer service and the printing industry 35 times. Hopefully, there is enough relevant detail in their answers to help the careers counsellor point them towards the right subjects next year. That's what the whole thing is actually about.

To celebrate surviving the first week back, Himself and I attended the Roosters' Gala Ball on Friday night where we had this rather nice (I think) picture taken. My husband actually brushes up ok in a suit I think!

(warning: girl's paragraph)
Unfortunately I am forced to report that I no longer fit into my ball gown. Well, I do fit but it is not a good look. As a result I wore the black baby doll we bought at Harbour Town Mum but because I am self conscious about my footballer's shoulders I also wore a jacket. Himself convinced me to take it off while we were dancing (yes, I actually got him onto the dance floor) and of course told me I was 'the most beautiful girl there' which was kind on one count and a downright lie on the other and I will leave you to figure out which is which! :-D

Finally, because we have been a bit short on pictures of the Baby Angel lately, here she is with both cats, yes, you read right, BOTH cats in the same room. And although Morticia seems relatively calm and ready for a cuddle here, I can assure you that she has once again simply taken the highest ground and is eye-ing Pippin off, awaiting her opportunity to attack.

Hasn't she grown though?

image credit


HipMomma said...

I can think of a ton of professions that involve "consulting, analysing, planning and implementing strategy for the introduction and marketing of innovative products with production clients and prospective retailers" and I think they were all unappealing when you describe them like that. Although, I do remember doing something very similar to that when I was in high school.

And VERY lovely picture of you two. I don't remember the last time I got to dress up all fancy and drink fancy drinks from a fancy glass.

Brittany said...

Look at you sexy people out to dinner!! ;)

Love that shot of BA, too! She is getting taller. My word. How big is she now?

Arizaphale said...

brittany she is 5cm taller than me!!

A Free Man said...

I just finished my first lecture (3 hours) so will begin to empathize with you about teaching. I have no good ideas about how to inspire your mathematically challenged children - I'm struggling to keep mine awake.

Looks like a good time at the Rooster Ball!

carrie said...

VERY nice pic of the two of you! And Himself is so very sweet - exactly what a man should say to his lovely, lovely wife!

I love the pic of BA with the kitties, and the fact that Morticia is definitely making her authority known!

Andi said...

Back from the beach to say that I am so glad you are settling in nicely in your new classroom home! I had no ideas for you for math, but I MOST CERTAINLY will ask around when I return back to work myself in a SHORT two days from now. I will let you know if I hear of anything spectacular and useful.
What a LOVELY photo of the two of you...and what nice compliments from Himself...I love that you two danced your evening away- my husband is usually a musician at events like that, so I rarely get to dance with him. What a special evening...oh, I did check out his Roosters site- how nifty that the players' heads move when you move the mouse around.
LOVE the shot of BA with your two kitties...My Horatio sits like that on my back every time I lie down on my tummy. Sweet!

Dawn said...

I love that picture of you & Himself!! Lovely!

Anonymous said...

What a handsome couple, I'm sure I have seen them somewhere
before, oh yes, just before the clock struck twelve. ONCE UPON A TIME!! G

ssg said...

lovely pic and good luck with the maths! its so easy to fall asleep at work and so hard to sleep at home!

ssg said...

Q: What is the difference between a Ph.D. in mathematics and a large pizza?

A: A large pizza can feed a family of four...

Two mathematicians are studying a convergent series. The first one says: "Do you realize that the series converges even when all the terms are made positive?" The second one asks: "Are you sure?" "Absolutely!"

Math problems? Call 1-800-[(10x)(13i)2]-[sin(xy)/2.362x].

Q: What is the first derivative of a cow?

A: Prime Rib!

The number you have dialed is imaginary. Please, rotate your phone by 90 degrees and try again..."

Q: Do you already know the latest stats joke?

A: Probably...