Saturday, 28 February 2009
Friday, 27 February 2009
This I want...
Update: apparently a Samsung NC10 is quite good too...
Update 2: I think my hard drive has failed :(
Thursday, 26 February 2009
A video via a Twitter tipoff...
Shelter is a housing and homelessness charity.
A conference will be held on the 3rd of June at Queen Mary University of London. Delegate fee is just £30 per person.
10.30 Professor Miles Ogborn (QMUL) Globalisation and information
11.15 Dr Simon Carr (QMUL) Global climate change: information and disinformation
12.00 Richard Pole (Digital Worlds International) GIS software for Geography in Schools
12.30 Lunch (plus hands-on GIS)
13.15 Richard Pole hands on GIS
14.15 Dr Steve Cummins (QMUL) Visualising and mapping inequalities in health
15.15 Question and Answer Panel Current Issues in the curriculum and the teaching of Geography in schools
Alan Parkinson (GA and 2008 winner of Ordnance Survey Award for Excellence in Geography teaching in Secondary Education)
Steve Brace/Kate Amis (RGS-IBG)
Dr Simon Oakes (principal examiner EdExcel and chief examiner IB Geography)
chair Dr Beth Greenough (QMUL)
16.45 Feedback and close of conference
17.15 optional: wine nibbles etc, tours of department and campus
1830 optional: Professor Jon May inaugural lecture Geographies of homelessness, hopelessness ... and hope
Been following the recent visit by Angus Willson to Cape Town on his BLOG. He has now made a picture set of CAPE TOWN available on Flickr, and there are some pleasing images from a recent visit organised by TIDE.
Wednesday, 25 February 2009
Monday, 23 February 2009
Slumdog Millionaire is director Danny Boyle’s passionate love letter to the city of Mumbai. Danny and his cinematographer Anthony Dod Mantle perfectly capture the grime, grotesqueness and frayed glory of our maximum city.
It’s a horrifying, Dickensian space in which children are casually orphaned, mutilated and prostituted. But it’s also a space in which an improbable love story, which has its origins in a totally Hindi film-like childhood romance, finds a happy ending.
Working from the novel by Vikas Swarup, Danny and his writer Simon Beaufoy have essentially turned the Bollywood film on its head.
So, instead of realistic emotions tethered to an unrealistic landscape and plot, we have an unrealistic plot tethered to a hyper-realistic landscape. Mantle’s camera pores over Mumbai, from its over-arching high-rises to its filthiest slums. But the story that takes place here is pure fairy tale.
Saturday, 21 February 2009
The first from Nirpal Dhaliwal in the Guardian (from January)
The second from Hirsh Sawhney in today's Guardian
An Al-Jazeera news report too....
and an ITN report as well:
I have now created the first of these: each character your create needs a different e-mail account to log in and create. The idea is to build up a character profile over time before 'releasing them' on the students, who could then be asked to engage with the characters in a number of ways.
What ideas do you have for how the students might interact with the characters ?
Some initial thoughts:
a) go through previous tweets and collate information on the background to the characters
b) prepare questions to ask them
c) suggest the next few weeks activity that might happen
d) create some new interactions between the characters that have been mentioned so far
e) produce a resource that the character could have created for a particular audience and shared via a social web tool
f) write a letter to / from the character on a related issue
g) create a new character who interacts with the character that has been created: a neighbour / colleague / relative (depending on the nature of the original character)
Frank is a pensioner from Rotherham, who has just sold his house and is going to move to a new house on the East Yorkshire coast.
You can follow FRANK on his Twitter account - the idea is to build up a range of details on the characters' life, to allow for some interaction and data collection.
For example here is the website of the village where Frank is moving to: Aldbrough on the Holderness Coast.
I am going to try to flesh Frank and his family out over the next few months...
Here's a GOOGLE MAP of the house that Frank has 'bought' and will 'move in to' in about 2 weeks time.
View Larger Map
I also really liked this mock-up of a twitter page from the 1600s - think that has possibilities as well.
Here's an interesting document on the potential educational impact of Twitter...
Can we use Twitter for educational activities?
Friday, 20 February 2009
David Lambert from GTIP Think Piece
If you've been following this blog you'll know that you can follow me on TWITTER.
There are also updates of the latest GA NEWS also on TWITTER.
b) a storm-chaser tracking a Hurricane as it makes landfall in the USA and trying to make their way into the eye-wall (do this live in Hurricane season perhaps with an actual hurricane)
c) a resident of Dharavi in Mumbai
d) a pensioner living in a house by the Holderness coast keeping an eye on the progress of coastal erosion moving towards the house they thought they would spend the rest of their life in
e) a farmer documenting the changing agricultural landscape in the area around their farm on the rural-urban fringe
f) a resident of a large city in the North of England who is worried about the effects of the 'credit crunch' on various aspects of their life
g) an economic migrant to a European country documenting the change in their life, and the contradictions they face daily
h) a climate change scientist going through their daily routines on the Greenland ice cap coring ice and noticing changes
i) YOUR IDEAS HERE...
Each character could be developed using a series of 140 character tweets...
Students could be asked to research and provide the next tweet in the sequence...
Could also suggest some alternative roles and scenarios...
Extra bonus points for evidence of research and character developments....
Thursday, 19 February 2009
Another OSOCIO tip-off.
Got this from one of my 'social networks': a link to a BBC article...
"When we are 'really' with people different things happen. It's probably an evolutionary mechanism that recognises the benefits of us being together geographically. Much of it isn't understood, but there does seem to be a difference between 'real presence' and the virtual variety."
Meanwhile, here is Noel Jenkins with the first of a planned series of videos looking at the impact in Portland, where the sailing events are going to be held.
Impact of the 2012 Olympics on a local business from Noel Jenkins on Vimeo.
A new purchase thanks to the work of Ian Cook, and his cultural explorations. Joe is a cultural historian, and this book tells the tale of everyday life, and the reasons why things are as they are. It's also full of 'living' geography !
Why do we drink beer in pints ? What about our obsession with the weather ?
One of the stories it includes is when Jeremy Paxman presented the weather (as edited from Have I Got News For You, via YouTube
It starts with something that fascinates me: the MASS OBSERVATIONS project, which ran from 1937 to the early 1950s.
I have a copy of a book called 'Austerity Britain' which contains a similar history / geography crossover looking at the years after WWII, and providing a real sense of place, and a lost England...
Wednesday, 18 February 2009
Managed a few cultural highlights.
First of these was Disney's BOLT, which was really great: a great pace to the film, nice "Incredible Journey" subtext in the middle with the road trip section: loved Rhino the hamster...
Trip over to Harrogate as well to meet up with Val V and listen to some live jazz in the Harrogate Brasserie.
Catching up on a few other things as well:
1. Nice BLDG BLOG post link to article on the suburbs: the 'new American slums'.
Monday, 16 February 2009
Saturday, 14 February 2009
Here's a WORDLE of the responses, and will post a few more of the personal geographies during the week...
Click the image to go a larger one: what's interesting is the fact that a lot of the memories are related to activities: particularly playing, going and holidays, and the significance of things being 'different'...
Some powerful personal geographies here: I hope they are shared with students.
Friday, 13 February 2009
The overall aim is to demonstrate what challenges and opportunities have emerged from debates and developments in this field to date, and to identify practical actions and interventions to be taken forwards.
We are looking to set up a network of educators interested in the project who would like to receive more information about our research.
Do you know of anyone who would be interested in becoming involved?
Anyone interested in becoming involved can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
E-mail Claire if you are interested in the potential of games to enhance education...
My mentor here is Ollie Bray, who has a range of resources already on his weblog, and a quote of his is apposite here, which he said when challenged about the fact that he was spending money buying computer games:
‘We are not investing in computer games..... We are investing in children’
Thursday, 12 February 2009
Wednesday, 11 February 2009
Mark Wallinger's White Horse (50m tall) has been selected.
Would you prefer this or a wind turbine ?
(Just found that the Guardian used the same headline already, and also used my next idea, which was "4 legs good ?" for their poll)
Some good comments on the poll... I like the phrase 'gigantomania' that was in one of them...
Local schools could well use this as a 'live issue' - will it be the 'mane' attraction in the area ?
(If you haven't read 'The Road' yet, you really need to)Got me thinking...
When you hear the phrase "God's own country" - where is that referring to ?
I know what I think it means: it's obvious isn't it ? The county of my birth and, well, "God's own country"....
Where do you think it means ?
Tuesday, 10 February 2009
More links with SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE style narratives...
Catch the BAFTA / OSCAR wave...
Slideshare presentation by Jonesy2008
The first was held in a very snowy Derbyshire, just 15 minutes down the M1 from the hotel I showed you yesterday. Having de-iced the car, it was onto the M1, and to sit in a queue for about 25 minutes and arrived at the venue 3 minutes before my session was about to start, abandoning my car in the snow packed car park... Delayed by geography...
Image by Alan Parkinson
The MAGNA centre is sited in a building where my dad used to work when he was a steelworker / engineer back in the 1960's/1970's before he moved to a different location. There's an excellent training venue called CENT. Did a quick 40 minutes or so on using Google Earth with a cross-curricular audience including maths, science, music and languages teachers. Impressed that the ICT suite already had Google Earth 5 on all the machines
Oh, and just ordered my latest GeographyPages pens: coming soon to an INSET session near you...
Monday, 9 February 2009
Sunday, 8 February 2009
Tomorrow I have 2 sessions: a brief input to a CfBT Regional Conference in Derbyshire, then a Google Earth training day at the Magna centre near Sheffield (in the old Templeborough works where my dad was a steelworker)
So I looked at the BBC forecast and it said snow would come through and then clear within a few hours. Decided to go for it, and drove up, and for the last hour or so it was a bit snowy to be fair... Tried to remember the last time I drove in heavy snow and it's been years ! Remember Pete R in his VW Beetle crossing the M62 with me in the back when it had been closed to traffic around 1983, and a journey back from a concert at the NEC in Birmingham...
Anyway, it was quite fun, and now here I am in my favourite Travelodge in north Nottinghamshire, just 20 minutes-away from the conference venue, and with a big Sainsburys just 2 minutes away for breakfast in the cafe.
And tomorrow we're set for the arrival of a winter storm.
Just following the GRAMMY's on TWITTER and Peter Gabriel has won for 'Define Dancing' from Wall-E soundtrack which is a sublime instrumental track... and also for 'Down to Earth' - the end credits song... superb....
Friday, 6 February 2009
The project is based around a picture book by Dr Seuss, which my son has a copy of.
It was Dr. Seuss's first book, and is called "And to think that I saw it on Mulberry Street"...
It explores the wonderful things that students could see if they looked at their surroundings in a different way.
How about a fieldtrip in Mulberry Street...