Tuesday, October 27, 2009

In the process of moving!

I've decided it's time for a change with the blog and have started the process of moving over to wordpress, the change will be happening in the next few weeks.

It's day 2 of In-Service here in Highland. Right now in Dingwall 1000 teachers from accross highland are taking part in the Curriculum for Excellence Showcase or as it is also known the Highland Learning Festival (HLF09).

I will be attending this tomorrow so here's hoping for a good day to travel (This time last year I had to get to Dingwall for an Internet Safety course and went of the road in the snow!).

In other news I"ve started putting together a teachmeet for computing teachers, No venue yet but the date is to be Friday June 11th 2010 and chances are it will be in Edinburgh (There is a reason for this to be explained later)

I was recently asked about a mobile phone quiz I created and thought it'd be a good idea to put up a link to the website that showed me how to do these, It's a blog ran by Joe Dale but here is a link direct to the mobile quiz post: http://bit.ly/G6ehd

My plan for today is to finally sort out my classroom and get materials ready for the next term, 1 day to go...

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

1 Year Gone

This is a quick blog post in an effort to get me blogging again.

I'm starting a project with the S1 pupils to do some video editing and so they've chosen some songs they'd like to make videos from and it's quite interesting what they've chosen.

For those of you with Spotify you can check out the list here:

On a side note today marks the 1 year anniversary of me starting in the school, oh how time flies when you're busy.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


I attended my first Teachmeet (in person) on Friday night and I also gave a 2 minute nano presentation looking at my classroom cool wall which seems to have been well recieved.

I really enjoyed the night and feel it was well worth travelling 600 odd mile round trip to attend. One thing about working so far away from the city and in a one man department I've found is that it's important to get out and network with other professionals whenever possible.

While working down in East Lothian the computing teachers would meet up regularly (and in the pub no less) for a networking session. So far this has not happened in Highland that I'm aware of but hopefully other events will come up.

However back to the point of the blog, there were lots of great ideas put forward on Friday night, wikis, Scratch and it's many uses, Animoto, iRiddles (I still want to see more of this David - next time perhaps, some computing examples would be great as well).  Lots of great ideas that I'd love to try out in the classroom. I fear for the time being these will need to be added to the list of ideas to try in the future.

I'm now trying to figure out what to send the rest of my department budget on, Scratch boards are an option as well as Flip Minos. Anyone got any advice???

Finally a big thank you to Stuart Meldrum for organising the event and the conversation after during thr teacheat (Carpe Signum - I hope I've got that right)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Teachmeet Borders

In preperation for tomorrow night's teachmeet I've made a Splashr presentation of the Cool Wall.

You can check it out here:


Thursday, January 29, 2009

ICT Cool Wall

I thought I would post a picture of the Cool Wall as it stands, I will post a list of all items that are on the wall soon.

Unfortunately I've been off sick most of this week, got quite a few websites to play about with next week.

At the start of the year I let the S1 play with vokies however some of the pupils were too young to set up an account with them. The other problem was with Safari not loading the pages properly so I'm turning to Firefox to help me out with that.

Hopefully this one will work Faceyourmanga.

Monday, January 19, 2009

ICT in my classroom

I started this weekend in a strange way, I didn't bolt down the A9, didn't turn on the TV or games console but instead I participated in the flash meet and watched Teachmeet09 @BETT and since then my head has been spinning.

I enjoy working with computers, I spend lots of my time in front of them, talking about them and even fixing them but all these great new technologies I haven't really embraced in my classroom. I've never really seen how I could use them either.

I would now like to try and fix this. In the morning I am going to set up my class twitter account, I will then have the pupils in my senior classes do the same.

I am where possible going to use this to enable my pupils to work and discuss topics that have come up during lessons in and out of the classroom.

The idea of having a back channel up while teaching doesn't really scare me, I know in other schools it could be an issue but with the pupils I am working with this will not be a problem.

The other thing I am going to try is to issue a quick mobile phone quiz for the pupils. I got this idea from Joe Dale's blog and came up with a few (11) questions in order to test this out.

My aim is to test these out over the next week and see how I get on. If it proves successful I'll continue it, if not I'll revise it and try again.

I also have another tool to play about with – an IR pen. This along with a Wiimote will hopefully give me an interactive Wiiboard for my computer. Should this work their will be pictures.

Also – Must remember to follow up on the Cool Wall post from before with a picture of it.

To finish off I really enjoyed the Teachmeet on Friday, so much so I'm now looking forward to attending my first one in person in February down in the borders.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Digital Games Design

We've been back at school now for almost 3 days and I've shocked myself, I've not set up the department Wii yet. Even more shocking, I've not played Guitar Hero on it this year.

I'm starting to think carefully about the digital gaming course I am running with 2 classes and have been inspired again by reading some of the consolarium blogs.

One of the activities in the course is to create a level for a computer game, my first thought for this came from the compednet forums for computing teachers and that was to use Super Smash Bros Brawl for the Wii to do this but now there are other ideas coming into my head. The pupils could create their own song for Guitar Hero for others to complete, create a whole world in Little Big Planet (Thanks to Derek for that idea).

I almost shelled out for a PS3 to see if this would be a good idea, I also quite fancied playing the new call of duty but eventually came to my senses and saved my money - until I found a camera I liked but thats another story.

Can anyone think of any other games about to create levels?

My other purchase over the holidays was a Nintendo DS, Which has given me other ideas. I'm going to poll the S4 games class and try to get them to bring it in next week for a competition.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

End of term fun

Well it's nearing the end of another year and term, August doesn't seem so long ago.

On Friday I was given a suggestion to have a charity guitar hero event which was a nice way to spend the morning. The pupils were given a choice of 5 songs to practice on and then a final song which could earn them house points. The most popular choice for the junior school was "Livin' on a prayer"

First thing in the morning The Wii and projector was set up in the school's main hall for the first session before moving up to the HE room.

We had 48 pupils take part during the course of the day but the best response came from the first and second years.

The winning house for S1 and 2 was Maree and the winers in S3 and 4 were Kerry.

Friday, December 05, 2008

The Cool Wall

Today I'm starting an experiment, On the back wall of my classroom I've set up a technology cool wall and I challenged my senior and first year pupils to bring in some new gadgets/technology to put up on it and so far the pupils seem exited about it.

I've used the same headings as in the Top Gear Coolwall - Seriously Uncool, Uncool, Cool Sub Zero and the DB9 Fridge. We've now had the first 4 entries onto the wall and we now have one in all but the DB9 Fridge (Cooler than Sub Zero).

The S1 will be doing this later on today (Some of them seem really excited about their gadgets) as well so I plan to put up a list of entries to the wall as soon as I can.

The hope for the wall is that it gets the pupils curious and interested in new technology.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

The future of assessments

I spent today at a cpd session from the SQA at Dingwall Academy. This gave me my first opportunity to see another school in the highlands and give my throat a day off (there's quite a bad throat bug going around here).

The course was split into two sections the first on E-assessment (SOLAR) and the second was on E-portfolios and skills for life. Now both of these look like very good systems but from a computing standpoint I was more impressed with the SOLAR system (couldn't resist).

The tutorial we had today gave me a chance to look at the assessment for the Intermediate 2 Internet Safety topic which is the first course to only be tested using SOLAR. The interface was very clear and it gives the teacher control over the test and best of all... No Printing Required!

Pupils are given a unique code which they need to enter and it will give them access to the but the test will not be accessible until the teacher/tutor enters their pin to start the assessment.

The drawbacks to the program - to access the system computers must have the latest flash installed and it's not known if and how it would work on the MACs, I'll need to test that in the morning. The other slight flaw was that it doesn't automatically link to the SQA to generate qualifications, these still need to be done manually by centres.

I'd like to see this being implemented for NABs in the future, this would work well for all computing courses.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Internet Searches

One of the things I plan to do with My S1 pupils is smart internet searches and in keeping with the theme of bands and music I'm looking for any questions people can suggest.

Leave a comment below if you can think of any for them to do

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Software Development

It's coursework time of year again, I sat in last night, watched the football and took a look at the new intermediate 2 software development coursework.

My advanced higher pupil has told me that I'm much more focused on the documentation than the pupils were previously used to so I really took my time on that part. It made creating the final program so much easier

I started by creating the structure diagram and used an online tool called Gliffy to complete this. This is a great tool I've been using for a while now and I've found it to be a very powerful piece of kit.

Now I should say that the last time I really undertook programming properly was in 2006 during my probation year but I didn't go much above the credit level. What I've done with it this year is to get it out of the way as quickly as possible with the S3 pupils, the S4 have finished it now as well.

Now that I'm happy with the credit/int2 level it's time to turn my attention to the higher materials. I'm aiming to complete the higher coursework next week.

This is the one topic I've not been involved with at higher level and at the moment I am relying on the textbook and the LTS Scotland notes to get me through (Not the most dynamic lessons) but I would like to hear how other computing teachers deliver this topic to mixed level classes.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Back to School

Below you'll find the start of a post I was writing on Saturday but didn't get round to finish, With this now being tuesday a few things have changed.

Well I've enjoyed a good 2 week break this holiday and this week it's back to work. Monday will be a school in-service day with lots of activities however I'm really looking forward to Tuesday as I'll be taking part in Highland council's CEOP training course.

I was first introduced to CEOP last year while working at Musselburgh Grammar, I attended one of Ollie Bray's very successful internet safety talks as an "Expert" for parents to talk to during the break and was very impressed with the materials and believe it's a great course to deliver.

Due to unforeseen circumstances (Mainly the Snow, me skidding on it and putting my car into a ditch) meant I was unable to attend the training course so it's back to the drawing board.

I had plans for the pupils this week but am now a bit behind in what I wanted to prepare for them myself so the next post I put up will have more details about the new work the pupils are doing.

Until then I'm going to rest up.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Computing for Girls

I hadn't planned on making a post during the holidays but as it seems I'm having a quiet day in watching cartoons with my cousin (so far Over the Hedge, Cars and Ice Age 2) I've been able to do some reading from the BBC website. They've posted a news article called Girls geek out over dinner it got me thinking about an after-school program called CC4G.

It's not something I've seen in any of the schools I've worked in and regrettably not something I've implemented myself although I don't think I'd ever be the best person to talk about fashion and celebrities with them. I wonder if this is something for the universities in Scotland to be thinking about, during my time working in East Lothian I attended meetings where Strathclyde and Edinburgh Universities and they were looking for ways to get more pupils to take up computing so this could be a market for them.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

The Hero of Time is coming?

If you know me you'll know I'm a bit of a gaming fan, and if you ask anyone who knows me what my favourite game is the only answer you'd get would be Zelda.

Ever since I spent years working with a friend to complete a link to the past on the SNES (The save game somehow deleted one temple away from the last temple the first time round). I then got the N64 for one game only and that was the Ocarina of Time (This time it only took 2 weeks to complete so I was getting better). on a random visit to youtube to see the new Snow patrol video i saw a link to this on the front page.

Now I couldn't decide if it's a fake or if it's real, a quick google search shows it was the cruel april fools joke from IGN this year. It's not the only fake zelda trailer on you tube but it has got 3,379,628 people having viewed it on youtube alone.

It was because of games like Zelda that I pursued computing after high school, I always wanted to create games which has got me thinking about the Computer games course and if studying these would lead to a new generation of computer programmers / game designers. We know standard grade is on the way out as is the intermediate courses so what will become of these new courses? will the new courses include these or will we be stuck teaching Word Processing, Spreadsheets and databases for the rest of time?

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Back online!

It's so nice to be able to type this from the comfort of my own room. You see I've been without my own internet access for the last 4 months and so now courtesy of BT I have uber fast broadband, one of the benefits of being 0 miles from the exchange!

I spent this afternoon working with my S1 classes on sending emails, demonstrating CC and BCC and making it as clear as I could that any misuse of the highland wide email system would not be in their best interest.

I'm also spending tonight shopping for the department on ebay. Digital cameras are the only item on the list for now, I'm attempting to pick up 5 for a cheap as possible (and while typing this out missed the ending of one of the cameras...doh!).

These may not seem linked together however in order for the pupils to use many of the resources on the internet such as comicbrush or to create their own voki.

S4 are out on work experience this week which affords some extra time to sort out the department. Since starting I've updated as many computers as possible from OS9.2 to OSX and with the help of Jim Henderson we're now up to 10 OSX computers and there's an 11th waiting to have it installed.

This setup has proved ok for most of the classes, however the largest classes I have are my S2 and an S4 class for 1 period a week can prove to be tricky but I've been able to use the band manager course to have the pupils working in groups

Friday, October 03, 2008

Time for a change!

Well I guess I should start this post by first thanking David for giving me some encouragement to get my blogging going again, it was quite a surreal moment seeing the title of my blog as a posting on his.

For the first time in a few years I started playing about with the blogger site, gave it a new look and seen some of the new features in it. When I set the blog up I had to manually edit some of the HTML in order to get links in, the old counter and visitors map but just spending a little time playing about with it has made it look so much better.

This has got me thinking, over the last 2 years having worked with an authority that created websites using blogs with the WordPress software which platform is better.

One of the things that always annoyed me about blogger was the lack of titles in the posts, I never realised that I had to turn the option on! I had made do by posting the heading in the post and editing the HTML so that it stood out. I'm not sure where I stand, I think I'll try and use both for a while and take it from there.

As part of the new S1 course I've arranged for the pupils to undertake a Digital photography day in November which is then going to lead nicely into the next weeks fashion show and I've thought of an addition to it in the form of comics. Ollie Bray posted yesterday about a website called

I played about with the site yesterday and this is what I came up with:

After showing my higher class this I think it's now official that I'm a geek!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Desks of the future

One of the biggest tasks I've had since I started in the new school was getting the computers in the department up to speed. At the moment I have a very big mix of Mac computers. From the old colourful iMacs (Tray loading and slot loading) to the newer eMacs and I have been slowly getting them upgarded to OSX but when I saw this article it got me thinking about what the future may mean for computing. You can see a demo video of these desks here.

These desks look very similar to the Microsoft Surface that's been around for a while now.

Have the days of 20 computers in a computer lab gone now, should we be looking to get in front of the technologies.

In the 2006/07 school year there was a pilot project being launched in and around Edinburgh to give pupils handheld devices to access the web to help them with their studies.

Even laptops are getting smaller, more powerful and "Lighter than air".

I can think of some fantastic uses for the computerised desk, programming could become very interactive especially programs such as scratch which I have seen get the pupils attention in a very positive way.

My worry is that these technologies will cost so much money they will stay out of reach to state secondary schools and be a great idea lost.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The new term!

Well it's proving to be a bit difficult to catch a breath up here, so many things going on and I'm still getting used to the new way of working but so far I'm really enjoying working in the school.

I'm slowly but surely getting the department all sorted out and am certainly enjoying working with the smaller classes at standard grade level.

I'm in the process of creating a brand new S1 course centred around the idea of the pupils being band managers. This idea came from an ex-colleague down in East Lothian. The idea is the pupils learn how to use ICT skills with a purpose as opposed to just copying out and completing exercises in a book. So far there's been some Word Processing and even a little bit of photo editing using iPhoto which has surprised me with how easy it is to use. I'm also trying to get other departments involved as much as possible so hopefully this is heading towards the curriculum for excellence that's waiting over the horizon.

So what's next? Computer Games of course.
I'm attempting to run the Int1 & 2 computer games courses and as such now have a TV and 2 games consoles in my room to help with the playing of the games. if anyone has any experience of teaching this course I'd love to hear from you.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

How much would I like to attend this learning conference in London and get a free Nintendo DS!!!

I like the idea of using video games in teaching (Vital problem soving skills) but for some reason I can't imagine starting off my classes by saying "OK take out your DS and play exercise ...."

Hopefully I will get to try out some games modules soon (The SNES, N64 and PS2 are on standby). I am starting in a new job (Permanent) in Gairloch High School and have some scope in my timetable to try out individual modules and introduce new initiatives and will post details here after they are complete.

If anyone has any experience with these modules drop me a line and let me know!

The new job will be an amazing experience, it looks like a very supportive school and I'll have very different challenges to what I've experienced here in East Lothian and am looking forward to gaining experience in a new authority.

I'm aiming to make a new post by the end of June but please don't shoot me if I don't manage it!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

State of the Union

I felt it was about time for an update, well I finished up my probation year and after a weird summer holiday/unemployment managed to secure a maternity contract teaching business education until Christmas and so have been very busy learning not one but 2 new subjects (Administration and Business Management) and on the whole I'd have to say it's been a good experience so far.

I get to see school life from a different point of view and I have been lucky enough to still keep up with any developments in the computing field by attending the CPD sessions within the council.

So far in my current post I have applied many of the skills I brought to my computing classes last year and again work with varied success.

For admin I have been focusing on key skills involving Word Processors, Spreadsheets and will now shortly be looking at effective uses of the internet with the S3 pupils.

The S4 as I speak are revising for the final of their prelims and on their return will be heading towards their SQA practical projects of which I’m confident they will do well in.

In my NQT year I was well aware that I would have to leave the classes I’d worked with behind however I also knew I had a full year to work with them and to present them for their exams, this year I know I’m handing these classes over at Christmas and moving onto a new challenge and a new school starting in January and have mixed feelings about this on one hand I’m looking forward to teaching my subject again but at the same time never like leaving a job half done (Although in the case of doing dishes I’m more than happy to walk away from them!).

I’ll update again when I can think of something else to write.


Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Well it's the end of a very quick teaching year, I've seen 2 higher / Int 2 classes through to their exam and one 4th year class.

I now feel I understand the phrase "two term dash".

over the last few weeks I have been looking at graphics with the new S3 Standard Grade pupils and to do this I created a small investigation where they created a new school logo. to do this they used a drawing package and from here they transferred it into a paint package. The investigation then began incorporating computer systems by looking at file sizes and backing storage devices. This seems to have worked well however may have been a bit early to bring in bits and bytes.

Over the last few weeks we've been letting the pupils use Scratch, an excellent games programming language from MIT. Pupils from 3rd through to 6th year have been using it and seem to have taken to it well. It's definately more fun than visual basic.

I had been using a class blog with the higher and Int2 pupils which worked well, however I will set up an online drop box for pupils to send me their homework electronically when I make use of it in future classes.

S1 parents evening tonight so if you'll excuse me, I'm away to warm up my voice.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Well after years of resisting I've finally bought something from ebay, actually 3 things so far. 

It really is quite addictive and even if you don't win, those last few moments of an auction where you drive the price right up make loosing ok.

whoever won it isn't getting as much of a bargain as they thought they would and you've not lost any money.

Today is the final day of the holiday and so it's back to school tomorrow. This term it's time to finish the core units and set about the courseworks. This should be fun!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Guys this is going to be a big blog post so you have been warned.

So what’s the latest in my teaching?

Where do I start?

In my last post I mentioned creating a lesson using spreadsheets and packets of MnM’s. The lesson worked well apart from one pupil not being interested. The fact that they were getting to eat the chocolate after still didn’t help matters.

The class all created the spreadsheet no problem, some were leaps and bounds ahead of the rest but all got the basics for the topic which to me was good.

It has been a bit of a challenge to get motivated recently. Which when you’re trying to teach General Purpose Packages and are not motivated can prove difficult. However all seem to have grasped the basics of databases and so I am aiming to build on that when we start back.

The S4 have now been introduced to visual basic programming, with me only a few pages ahead of them. I’m really looking forward to getting into this software development side of teaching as it’s not a part of the course I have done before and will be a challenge.

From what I’ve seen so far it can be hit or miss for some of the kids but one pupil who hasn’t showed me much of a willingness to experiment while on the computers was able to complete an extension task I set for them which made my day (In actual fact my week as it was in the last week!).

Higher and Int 2 is still proving to be my biggest challenge and one I hope I’m working well on. I intend to apply some formative assessment techniques in the future as I fear I’ve been treating the classes too much like lectures. I experimented with this recently when starting computer software. This is the fifth and final topic of computer systems.

The pupils were asked to create PowerPoint slides giving information about one of the layers of the operating system. One higher pupil was paired with one Int 2 pupil and sent on their way.

Some of the pupils presented their own work to the others in the class, some I had to go over. I then made these all available to them on the network and set them some questions to complete individually.

If you’re still reading this I hope you have/had a Merry Christmas and enjoy the festivities over the New Year period.

All the best for 2007.


Saturday, October 21, 2006

I remember reading in another blog that it was their worst fear that the pupils find their blog, 
well that's exactly what happened to me. 

Not only did they locate this blog (Not very difficult to do right enough) and through this my personal E-mail address.They were also able to locate my MySpace account. so after a night of panic the email account is now dead and so is the myspace account however the blog is still alive and I've been in 2 minds about continuing with this one or starting a fresh version however there should be no problem with this since i'd never write anything down I didn't want people to read.

Finally moved into my flat, strange experience now living away from home but it had had to happen eventually.

Onto the important things...School.

1st and 2nd years are coming to an end of their business studies course and are coming into the computing section. I feel more comfortable knowing that this is going to be my subject now and not something I'm not trained in.

S3 are moving onto Spreadsheets this week and I think i'm going to borrow a technique from Bart and do the MnM's lesson. Will post once i've tried this although I do have one question, do I buy the small bags or the big bags of Mnm's

S4 are almost at their prelims so its theory for the next couple of weeks.

S5&6 I will be doing artificial intelligence when we start back I think, this may change though. Thankfully the scholar passwords are now with the pupils which takes some pressure off me, all we need now is the internet speed upgrade to be completed.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Well under way

A tried and trusted method of getting 15,16,17 and 18 year old kids to be quiet, Is something so simple that you will not believe me.

Quite simply all you need to do is ask them a question.

The higher group has been quite a daunting experience so far. I've been worried about the class for a while mainly because of the artificial intelligence module but now it just seems like they're not getting anything I'm talking about.

The computer systems topic is a very dry one and involves lots of written work and questions.

The two support teachers I am working with and share my higher groups with are doing different subjects, one is doing AI the other is doing Software Development.

The plus points to this method are that when it comes time for me to teach these subjects with the classes that haven't covered it already the materials are ready and waiting to be used.

The class is a mixed ability class as well as mixed level (Higher/Int2) which also worries me but the decision that has been made is that we will teach to the higher course which incorporates all of the Int 2 course just to a more demanding level. While this may be ok for now I'm worried that the pupils who are Int 2 level will struggle to pick out what they need to know.

Anyone got any advice on this???

Thursday, August 24, 2006

August 25th

First off i'd like to appologise for the lack of updates. The school has been in for just about a week now and it's already proving challenging, I'm now on about the 8th version of my timetable which i now have more S1 and S2 less standard grade and the same amount of higher work. A fairly even spread I think.

I've not been able to get a grip with the higher groups just yet. The 2 classes are mixed groups or higher and Int2 (The school does not run Int1). During the course of the student year I observed very different methods of teaching the higher but am finding it difficult to develop my own style. The classes are not only split in ability but split between teachers.

I got quite worked up about it the other day and on advice from some supporting staff I spoke to my mentor (This is also something that has not been finalised yet as to who is going to be my mentor due to in school staffing issues) and raised my concerns so this is now being looked at. (I have noted in my profile for entry that i needed more experience with the post 16 courses)

Both sets come to me 3 times a week and another teacher in the department takes them for the remaining 2 periods. So the decision has been made that I will teach the Computer Systems Unit and the optional AI :(

Hopefully by the end of next week I'll have a better grasp on where I am with the classes and how I'll take them forward.

I also now have a 4th year registration class who seem to be really annoyed by my persistance about their school uniform but again hopefully by Monday they'll not need to be told.

On the accomodation front I'm still technically homeless, fliting from a flat, to hoime and to another house, doesn't make my weekends any easier and an hour's travelling time to and from the school is taking it's toll but it should only be for another few weeks.

I had pretty much decided to go for a mac laptop, got the money in place but am now pondering spending less money and either upgrading my computer or building a new one from scratch. Since my computer is not only used for my work it is also used as an entertainment hub for music, TV and movies maybe thats the best way to go.

I realise that I'm possibly sounding negative at the moment and giving a bad impression of the school and so i'd like to make a positive ending. I'm very happy with the school, The support I am receiving from my department is fantastic. Everyone is approchable and happy to help (So much so that I feel like i'm taking advantage at times). The pupils all seem good and generally are well behaved.

Thats all for now folks.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Summer 2006

I'm not less than 2 weeks away from starting through in East Lothian and so far my attempts at finding a place to live have not been very successful. I've been to see the council who have said I wouldn't qualify for priority housing with them but would help me find somewhere privately,

I've been to see some flatshares in Edinburgh and nothing's really got my interest that much. So the plan is to stay with family up ubtil the september weekend and just come back home at weekends so we'll see how well that works.

In light of the fact that i'll practically be homeless i've been considering the merits of buying a laptop so that I have my own workstations wherever I am the question is which one should I go for, On the one hand there's windows based machines, all seem to be decent but none have really caught my eye and on the other hand there's the shiny all singing and dancing macbook. I've never owned a mac but have been impressed by them over the last year even in the face of chris shouting "Click the right mouse button" when anything went wrong in a presentation.

The only issue was the price however by the time I personalised the windows laptops they were about the same price and the processor wasn't as strong so anyone got any advice???

Not much else to say right now, i'll have more educational thoughts the week I start back, until then I'm gonna enjoy this holiday.

Monday, July 03, 2006

The latest

Well I've visited my school for the probation year, it's seems very nice, it's about 2 years old, the current crop of probationers have enjoyed it and done very well there so there's a lot to live up to.

The computing department is kitted out with Dell Computers and the rooms are pretty spacious.

Onto the timetable, as it stands i'm going to be taking:
2 S5/6 Higher/Int2
3 S4 classes - Standard Grade
3 S3 classes - Standard Grade
1 S1 - general ICT

The computing department is part of a faculty with business studies

The one bit of news i didn't want to hear is that the higher course is doing the AI optional module, this has always been a very weak area for me and so will be a big challenge.

So aside from the school i'm now focusing on flat hunting in edinburgh and it's amazing how much RSS can help with that it just downloads adverts for me it's "Stunningly Useful".

I think i've bored you all enough now so i think leave it at that tonight.


Tuesday, May 30, 2006

East Lothian here I come!

Well about 6 months ago i ticked a little box on a form that said i'd go anywhere for money (Yes I’m greedy so sue me). The votes have been cast, the results counted and verified. I've been assigned to East Lothian. I'm still awaiting word on what school exactly but it's gonna be one of six so watch this space...

That's the APD assignment complete (Part 2 is ready to be handed in now) the C&P classes have pretty much wrapped up and everything else is a distant memory so to quote another blogger it does seem as if the "The guns ... they've stopped!"

It's been an insanely fast ride since august, and next year’s not gonna get any slower.

After speaking with the C&P tutors David Muir informed me that my new LEA are going to be giving every student in the area a blog so it looks like I’ve landed myself in a very ICT friendly authority.

Well when I have more information I’ll put it up here.

Until next time folks!

Sunday, May 21, 2006

3 Days left!

Well thats the last of the tutor visits complete and the school report is already in so all thats left is to get assignment 3 completed.

In the hope that he reads this David when was it you quoted the phrase "Stunningly useful" originally? I've heard it many times through the year and would like to use it for this assignment and just want to make sure i get my reference right for the essay.

i've been looking at the internet with my S2 classes this time round, specifically Malicious software which I've quite enjoyed.

S3 have been going through a small section of Commercial Data Processing so that I could do a research project but they are now starting to work through the fan letter project on publisher.

It's time to start the last week of placements and it doesn't seem that long ago we were getting ready to start placement 1! i'm gonna be sad to leave the school once again but i'm really excited to find out where i'll be going next year.

To anyone that is still to have their visit, what you doing reading this? (Only kidding) good luck.

The end is in sight!