A Celebration

On the 20th of March, I was invited to the main campus of the University for an awards ceremony as I had been nominated and shortlisted by the students for a teaching award in the category of Most Innovative Teacher. It was certainly a surprise to have been nominated and more of a surprise to be shortlisted!

It was a good celebration of all the hard work many people do at the university, even more so as the nominations came from the students.

For once, I was speechless as my name was read out as the winner for my category.

Thank you to those who nominated me. It is much appreciated.

List of winners, photos and video of the event

Graduation 2014

The graduation of our MA Primary Education students here at the Dumfries Campus of the University of Glasgow has just finished and all the students have gone their separate ways with their families and friends.

… and I’m back in my office feeling a bit melancholy.

You see, these graduates came to this campus at the same time I did. (I previously worked in the main campus in Glasgow.) So I have a special affinity towards this particular group of students. I’m so proud of them and all their hard work. They have been a great group and it really has been such a pleasure teaching them.

So off they go, starting the next chapter of their lives. Full of promise. Bursting with enthusiasm — but still willing to listen and learn. I feel like a parent, happy to see them grow but a bit sad to see them leave the nest.

Overall, though, I feel such an immense sense of pride — and you know what? I’m not going to feel melancholy anymore. I’m going to be happy that, in my own small way, I helped to shape these students into the new teachers they now are. Frightening thought, that! 🙂

Sometimes you just need a good hug

It’s an interesting day, today. I’ve got about a thousand things to do but they’re all little, trivial things which take about 5 minutes each. I have a training session I’m running for students in about 20 minutes and teaching a Child Development class at 3. Looking forward to that; I love teaching! So it’s hectic but worthwhile.

As I was moving around my office, I accidentally knocked one of my puppets onto the floor. (Hey, I train primary school teachers so I have an excuse to have puppets…not that I need an excuse). And as I picked him up, he was so squishy and cuddly that I surreptitiously gave him a hug.

And I realised that sometimes what we all really need is a good hug. Just because.

So here. Have a hug. On me.

Photo of teddy bear
Sometimes we all just need a hug.

Hunting for MO

I admit it. I’m feeling rather pleased with myself. I shouldn’t—but I am. Why? Because I got a new follower today. Someone who looks remarkably like Mark Wahlberg and who lives in a town in “MO”.

Now this intrigued me. MO? So in my head I started running through what it could be. Monaco? Nope. Mexico? Also no. Morocco. Nuh-uh.

At this point, I could have just thrown the name into Google maps but what’s the fun in that?

So the next step was to think about states in the USA. Well, MI is Michigan (and I know that after living in Ontario for 20 years. Ah, Michigan. I love Frankenmüth! 🙂

Okay, reminiscing over … MO. Okay, let’s think of the states beginning with M. Missouri, Mississippi, Minnesota, Massachusetts, Maine, Montana, Michigan and Maryland. Well, that doesn’t help. None of them end in O. It’s got to be Montana. It’s only logical.

Let’s check on Google.

Missouri? Seriously Missouri? How does that work? What?!?!

Oh well. At least now I know. And, hey, it could be helpful during a pub quiz; you never know …

(So hello to my latest follower. You kept me entertained for a good 15 minutes … and now I’m going to watch Boogy Nights …)

Shifting to Twitter & creating multiple Twitter accounts

ICT & Education

Last week my students suggested we should move away from TodaysMeet and try Twitter. Today was the 2nd week of using it and it’s interesting to compare the two programmes, particularly in light of observing and interacting with my students.

Personally, I quite like TodaysMeet. I’ve explained why in previous blogs (here and here) so I won’t bore you with the details again. Suffice to stay I wasn’t particularly keen on the move to Twitter as I felt we were in a good ‘groove’ with TodaysMeet. However, the students wanted to give it a go so fair enough.

The first issue was ensuring all students created a professional twitter account using their university email address. I needed to reiterate that this was linked with their professional persona and that comments needed to reflect this.

The students decided the easiest thing to do would be to follow me (and…

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