22 January 2015 In Blog Science

As teachers we are always looking for resources to make our teaching experience memorable for our students. A chicken’s egg is a resource that is easily available and can be used in a number of different ways.

1. The raw chicken egg can be used to demonstrate carbon dioxide (CO2 ) gas formation in the class.  I asked my class to think about how to remove the egg shell without touching it? One of the students came up with the idea of putting it in vinegar. As we know, the egg shell is made of Calcium Carbonate (CaCO3 ) so when an egg is allowed to sit in the beaker of vinegar (acetic acid, CH3COOH), bubbles of CO2

22 January 2015 In Language Blog

All languages have words. Language emerges first as words, both historically, and in terms of the way each of us learned our first and any subsequent languages. The coining of new words never stops nor does the acquisition of words. Even, in our first language we are continually learning new words, and learning new meanings for old words. Without grammar very little can be conveyed, without vocabulary nothing can be conveyed. If you spend most of your time studying grammar, your English will not improve very much. You will see most improvement if you learn more words and expressions. You can say very little with grammar, but you can say almost anything with words! 

22 January 2015 In Blog Studies

As a teacher, I believe that we have some professional obligations.  As a beginner teacher in your first years of teaching, you will be in a unique position. As a professional, you have an obligation to provide the best educational services to your students that you know, but on the other hand as a beginning teacher, the experiential basis for your actions is limited compared to those with twelve or fifteen years of experience and

22 January 2015 In Blog Mathematics

What is the purpose of maths education? 

I think about this question quite frequently and my thoughts swing between two themes; maths education as a means to develop inquisitive humans, aware of the world, or maths education as a means to support the rigours of day-to-day living.

21 January 2015 In Language Blog

Reading Clubs provide students with a platform to spend time together in order to share and enjoy what they have read. Such groups motivate students to read. Availing these opportunities gives them exposure to a variety of reading texts. At the same time, reading in groups helps them to improve their listening, speaking and writing.

To explain the impact of reading on an individual, I would like to quote an extract from the famous novel ‘Ink Spell’ (Funke, 2005):

“Isn’t it odd how much fatter a book gets when you have read it several times? As if something were left between the pages every time you read it. Feelings, thoughts, sounds, smells… and then, when you look at the book again many years later, you find yourself there, too, a slightly younger self, slightly different, as if the book had preserved you like a pressed flower… both strange and familiar.’’ 

15 January 2015 In Blog Mathematics

Undoubtedly one’s understanding of language is hugely enhanced by knowledge of basic grammar. Apart from that, it is an exciting phenomenon that human’s learn to speak different languages especially without being aware of grammar. Children and adults can easily make sense of ungrammatical sentences!

The case is exactly the same with the language of mathematics. Up to a certain level, one can do and speak mathematics without knowing how to classify the different sorts of words one is using. Daily conversation or human involvement in daily life activities sensitises the brain to understand patterns and structure, called the grammar of mathematics.