Travelling in Japan: Books & Bookshops

“As in China, the Japanese literati were an unstable combination of two opposites – Confucian scholar and free-minded Taoist – so they tended to lean to one side or the other. Beian and Bosai represent the two poles. Beian was a strict moralist who refused to teach dubious people like geisha or Kabuki actors, and […]

Travelling in Japan: Tokyo

“Tokyo offers a lot of spectacle and confusion. This is just a facade. Behind the neon glare lies a steady rhythmic and miraculous everyday world that can be yours if you want it to be.”  Tokyo Totem We walked Tokyo for a week in an attempt to make it “ours”. The weather was good, around […]

Travelling in Japan: Kinosaki Onsen

We only had three weeks of our month in Japan planned with accommodation booked. This gave us the freedom to use our JR Passes flexibly in where we went. The idea was to chat with Japanese people about where we might like to explore and see what emerged that we may not have found back […]

Travelling in Japan: Ibusuki and Kagoshima

The longhaul train trip to Ibusuki, south of Kagoshima, was relaxing and offered great scenery with the opportunity to read for long stretches uninterrupted. We had no real reason for travelling to this small seaside town other than it was about as far south as we could go and there were potentially interesting onsen experiences. […]

Travelling in Japan: Osaka & Himeji

“Welcome to Osaka. Few major cities of the developed world could match Osaka for the overall unattractiveness of its cityscape, which consists mostly of a jumble of cube-like buildings and a web of expressways and cement-walled canals. There are few skyscrapers, even fewer museums and, other than Osaka Castle, almost no historical sites. Yet Osaka […]

Travelling in Japan: Hirosaki

Hirosaki is singularly the most Japanese city I know. Will Ferguson We stayed in Hirosaki not because I can’t read Japanese train timetables at all well but because sometimes Hyperdia is wrong (said the JR ticket office assistant). However, it proved to be a most serendipitous visit. The heavy snow that had descended on us at Hakodate […]

Travelling in Japan: Hokkaido

Japan is not a small country; no matter what the Japanese themselves may think. The main island of Honshu alone is larger than Great Britain. Were Japan in Europe, it would dominate the continent. Japan is larger than Italy, larger than Norway, larger than Germany…on a map Japan looks small because it is surrounded by […]

December 2015: My Reading

“There are two motives for reading a book: One, that you enjoy it; the other, that you can boast about it.” Bertrand Russell I had the goal of writing a blog post each month this year and feel quietly pleased at keeping up the pace. I have made notes and lists, in all kinds of […]

7th Annual Optimism and Resilience Conference

Staff Development Days provide great opportunities to reinvigorate professional enthusiasms as well as to reflect on learning and life at school. For the last six years Dapto High has spent the final day of the academic year off-site at the Nan Tien Temple in Wollongong. The idea is that staff can best help students learn […]

Building Australia Through Citizen Science*

What place does citizen science have in our schools? I pinched the title of this article from a paper published this year by the Office of the Chief Scientist. Professor Ian Chubb, Australia’s Chief Scientist** alerted the delegates at the inaugural Australian Citizen Science Association conference held in Canberra this year – Maximising the Capacity […]

A Baker’s Dozen: Most Enjoyable Reads of 2015

Reviewing the books I read or re-read in 2015, I decided to choose the thirteen I had derived the most pleasure as a reader. In other words, I reflected on how much satisfaction was felt sitting with the book – and why. If you have the patience, the following slideshow will countdown to the book […]

#BYOD Tool: WordsEye

“WordsEye is cutting-edge technology that works by parsing text input into a semantic representation which is then rendered as a 3D scene. This process relies on a large database of linguistic and world knowledge about objects, their parts, and their properties. A set of 2D image filters can be applied to any scene to add […]

November 2015: My Reading

  This month I have made a conscious effort to finish a number of half-read books and finally investigate some that have been on my “to read” lists for years. Fiction Shaun Tan is another Western Australian who produces highly original, inspired words and images. Several of his books are truly wonderful. I have spent […]

#BYOD Tool: Google’s “About Me”

Google has launched a new service which purports to allow users to control their online information. Their new About me page lists information such as work history, contact details, educational background, web presence, places you have lived, gender and birthday. The page allows users to edit and delete information that they don’t want people to be able […]

#BYOD Tool: TextGrabber

This is the first in a planned series of posts that each focus on a tool that will be useful to both students and teachers in a BYOD context. The plan is that each posts explores an application or accessory that will really be useful and easy to use. This first one looks at an Optical […]

Where do you get your books?

I haven’t analysed how much money I spend proportionally on hardcover, paperback, audio or ebooks each year but know it is not as predicted several years back. The truth is, I spend almost as much money on traditionally bound books as the other two combined rather than my expenditure slowing to a trickle, as expected. […]

September-October 2015: My Reading

But only literature can put you in touch with another human spirit, as a whole, with all its weaknesses and grandeurs, its limitations, its pettinesses, its obsessions, its beliefs; with whatever it finds moving, interesting, exciting or repugnant. Only literature can give you access to a spirit from beyond the grave – a more direct, […]

Coming to America

My study tour focuses on how the latest learning about new and emerging technologies, such as non-medical DNA analysis, can be shared effectively and ethically by teachers across the curriculum and state, using Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in an effort to genuinely personalise learning for students. Personalising Learning in the Age of Knowledge My […]

The Solitary Traveller IV: The South Downs Way

The name ‘Sussex’ derives from the Kingdom of Sussex, according to legend it was founded by Ælle of Sussex in 477 AD, then in 825 it was absorbed into the kingdom of Wessex and the later kingdom of England. The region’s roots go back further to the location of some of Europe’s earliest hominid finds at […]

The Solitary Traveller III: York and Durham

York is a ‘Scandy‘ town but not Durham. York & Durham Arriving in a very old city is a strange and wonderful experience. Often one may have relatively little knowledge of the geography, history or people but on arrival, there’s always a gut feeling one has about the place or at least a response as […]

The Solitary Traveller II: Isle of Man

I have read many times, in brochures, books and websites that the Isle of Man is a microcosm of Britain. Mostly, this is said in reference to the natural environment but it applies to history, architecture and many other features of life on the island. My trip to Mannin, voyaging aboard the BEN-MY-CHREE, was about walking […]

1 4 5 6 26