Geoff Tennant - Promoting access to mathematics for all
My Blog

Tanzania 2014

31/12/14: we need to know the Bible

I now find it difficult to believe that I visited schools for 12 years as an initial teacher trainer with the use of a sat nav only for the last 3.  Particularly, there was one school I liked very much, Winstanley Community College in Leicestershire, which I visited once a year for 4 years.  Whilst the buildings are clearly visible from the outer ring road, the main entrance is tucked away in a housing estate.  I never succeeded in getting there without at least one U turn, normally much more than that.

21/12/14: how do I find the time to work?

Greetings from cold, wet, dark, overcast Witney, Oxfordshire.  Arrived here last Saturday.  Starting to acclimatise, so able to cope wearing just the one coat rather than needing two as last Sunday.  Been pottering around, really: swimming a bit, practising Organ for a couple of fixtures while I'm here, meeting up with old school friends which has been fantastic.

But the big question in my mind right now is: how do I manage, in the normal course of things, to find the time to work?

6/12/14: changing behaviour - or trying to

When I was a PhD student I came across a great word, new to me at the time - 'atavistic'.  I don't ever recall it being used in the middle of a sentence by a speaker expecting people to know what it means.  Indeed, I'm not entirely sure how the word is supposed to be pronounced.

So, what does 'atavistic' mean?  Reverting to a supposedly rejected set of beliefs.  An example of an atavistic attitude is as follows.  Picture a child born into a Christian family, being encouraged to pray, attending Sunday School, showing all the signs of having a living faith of their own.

30/11/14: Jeremiah and Hananiah, a case study in conflict resolution

My thanks to the Christian Fellowship for asking me to speak last week.  It's the preparation particularly I find valuable, in putting my own thoughts in order to be able to speak about them.  I trust the participants found the talk helpful in their Christian walks.  I give, more or less, a transcript of what I said below, you might find it helpful to read Jeremiah 28 before proceeding.

Jeremiah's ministry was approximately 600 years before Christ, and about 400 years after King David.

23/11/14: my walk to work

After my non-blog post last week, I seem to remember somebody (can't remember who, sorry!) suggesting it might be interesting to show you my walk to work.  Well here it is!  Hope you enjoy it!

First of all, courtesy of Google maps, a map of the immediate area:

So Crystal Towers you can see towards the top right:

and work is not marked here but is next to the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (coming back to this shortly).  At the bottom of Crystal Towers are four shops:

16/11/14: sorry, no blog post this week

I'm currently reading John Cleese's autobiography, "So, anyway...".  In it he recounts how, when at school, he was set an essay to write entitled, 'Time'.  The approach he took was to detail all the ways he was spending time at that stage in his life, finishing off with an apology that he had not had the time to write the essay.

So, inspired by John Cleese, I apologise for not writing a blog entry this week.  Nothing - nothing - interesting seems to have happened recently.

9/11/14: do I want an iWatch?

My previous watch stopped working when I was in Jamaica in February 2012.  Whilst this was a bit of a pain, it had one very definite upside.  At the time my favourite question to throw out to unsuspecting mathematics teachers was, "At 9am. the hour hand and minute hand on a traditional clockface are at exactly 90 degrees to each other.  When is the next time at which this will happen?"  And to be able to lend out a non-working watch, the hands which could be turned manually, was great, I don't think I'd have been happy if the watch had still been working.

2/11/14: can't have it every which way

As faithful readers will know I've been to North West Uganda on two separate occasions, and I have to say I just love it there.  People are fantastic, warm and welcoming, the classes I ran went down very well, attending church was just amazing.

Particularly, I'm aware that the way I live my life and the way the people I meet live theirs are poles apart.  So my lifestyle prioritises my job - I have a clear track record to demonstrate that I am prepared to move wherever the job I want takes me.

19/10/14: dancing while waiting

'Two worlds colliding' is an expression I find myself using from time to time.  On the one hand I'm an ex-pat worker, expected to operate to the highest international standards of efficiency, with deadlines to meet, deadlines to chase, people to see, meetings to attend, etc. etc., all with due deference to the clock in much the same way as I did in the UK when working there.  On the other hand, I can find myself suddenly, and sometimes without warning, stepping into a parallel world where time has a much more elastic quality, where the stated starting time for something is understood (but not by me, and this is never explicitly explained) to be the time at which you might start thinking about leaving home, with the actually starting time when everybody is ready.

12/10/14: what is 'home'?

As an academic educationalist, it is well worn territory to me that we use words - potential, underachievement, intelligence, ability, attainment, and many others - which in one sense have a clear meaning but, once put under the microscope, prove highly problematic to pin down.  So, for example, a teacher might consider that a child is attaining below their potential, is underachieving.  But on what basis is that judgement made? What is it that makes us think that a particular child could be attaining more than they are at the moment?
RSS Follow Become a Fan

Delivered by FeedBurner

Recent Posts

10/05/20: my lockdown resolution
22/2/20: I thought we'd stopped being a colonial power?
29/12/19: I really like being an Anglican!
21/12/19: should we entice professionals to the UK?
10/12/19: praying for our country at this time


Jamaica trip 2012
Return to the UK 2017
Tanzania 2013
Tanzania 2014
Tanzania 2015
Tanzania 2016
Tanzania 2017
Transition to Tanzania
UK 2018
UK 2019
UK 2020
powered by

Website Builder provided by  Vistaprint