Tag Archives: ks1

The art of the quote

A good quote can be so many things. When I was younger it could mean the difference between a grade in an English literacy test, a better percentage in my sociology course work and, most important of all, it could really make my friends laugh. I may not write coursework or do tests anymore but the art of the quote still lives on.
She's your queen to be
This weeks blog is inspired by a friend of mine who placed a quote from Coming to America on Facebook. The response was huge and I partook with a big smile on my face. “I was Joan of Arc in a former life.” This may not be the most famous quote from the film but those who know the film well (I used to watch it once every other day over one summer while my friend and I stole his parents Cointreau and filled up the bottle with squash, hoping they wouldn’t notice) know it. I still reckon I could say about half the lines before the Mr Murphy and Mr Hall.
mam name him clay, i'm a call him clay
Facebook though has changed the rules a bit. No longer do you have to rely on your brain for a quote, you can research it. Here’s my mini guide for quoting Facebook style.
1) Try and remember the quote and respond quickly. If it has a small flaw in the repeating of the line then it seems more organic.
2) If you do have to research it then add a small mistake. See second line of number 1.
3) Make sure the quote you use is from the same film. Nothing worse than being ridiculed in cyberspace.
4) Don’t include the character name at the start. If the quote is good then people should know.
5) Not too big. If the quote is too long then it is a dead giveaway. You may as well leave the hyperlinks in.
i assumed you had sex with your bathers
Quotes don’t need to be famous though. A friend of mine was exceeding drunk at a party. He decided to run for the door, presumably to throw up, whilst shouting, “abandon ship.” The quote was used more than once. Private quotes can be great fun but can also exclude many. If I were to write, “swinging from a tree!” Then it would mean a great deal to few people and nothing to most. The private club can be great fun but needs a have to be there pass.
I have never tried to pass a quite off as my own knowingly. I will always state my source (csi quote there) so people don’t think I’m smarter than I am. The problem I have is that there are times when I don’t even realise I’m quoting, times when I’ve said what I’m saying so many times that the origin of it is lost somewhere. This can be highly embarrassing when you get called on it. I do however have some favourite quotes. Some are funny, some witty and some odd. Here’s my top five.
Live forever or die in the attempt.
1) “Live forever or die in the attempt.”
-Yossarian – Catch 22 by Joseph Heller.
I feel sorry for people who don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day
2) “I feel sorry for people who don’t drink. When they wake up in the morning, that’s as good as they’re going to feel all day.”
-Frank Sinatra
Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much.
3) “Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much.”
-Oscar Wilde
My father made him an offer he couldn't refuse.
4) “My father made him an offer he couldn’t refuse. Luca Brasi held a gun to his head, and my father assured him that either his brains or his signature would be on the contract.”
-Michael Corleone – The Godfather
every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain.
5)”How is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain. Remember when I took that home winemaking course, and I forgot how to drive?”
-Homer – The Simpsons
There are so many that I could have done a top 50. I would love to hear any you think I have overlooked.
squidge andrew thomas
I hope that one day, when I am a famous author, I might find my own words quoted somewhere. Maybe.
Enjoy your weekend.
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Diamond Jubilee Quiz answers

20120604-072756.jpg

Hope you enjoyed the flotilla thingy, even though it was wet and cold. Her Royal Queenyness seemed pleased.

As promised, here are the answers.

1.What is the Queen’s full name? ​Elizabeth Alexandra Mary WINDSOR
2. Who is the Queen’s husband? ​​Prince Phillip, duke of Edinburgh
3. How old is Queen? ​​​​86
4. Who are the Queen’s parents? ​​King George VI , Elizabeth
5. What is the name of the Queen’s Sister? Princess Margaret
6. What year did Queen Elizabeth get married? 1947
7. How many children does Queen Elizabeth have? ​4
8. How many Grandchildren does the Queen have?​8
9. What are the names of the Queen’s children? Charles, Anne, Andrew & Edward
10. Can you order the Queen’s children starting with eldest to the oldest?
Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew & Prince Edward
11. What breed of pet dogs is the Queen known for? ​Corgi’s
12. What year did Princess Elizabeth become queen? 6th February 1952
13. Who is the heir to the throne? ​​Prince Charles
14. Can you name any four of the queen’s Grandchildren?
Peter, Zara, William, Harry, Beatrice, Eugenie, Louise, James
15. What is the Diamond Jubilee a celebration of? 60 years reign?
16. What is the Queen’s well known residence? Buckingham Palace
17. What film did the Queen appear in? None
18. What is the first line of the National Anthem?
God save our gracious Queen
19. What does HRH mean? Her Royal Highness
20. 20. What material represents 60 years?
A Diamond

I would love to know how you got on. Enjoy the rest of your extra long weekend.

Lovely jublee

20120604-072621.jpg

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Diamond Jubilee Quiz

20120602-200412.jpg

So what are you doing for the Queens Diamond Jubilee? Down the pub? BBQ? Street party? Nothing?

As a teacher of 10 year olds I learn more about current events and nationwide celebrations than I ever did as a civilian. Having fun with the kids while trying to trick them into learning is the key. So with that in mind ,here is my Diamond Jubilee quiz. It’s all about the Queen (of course) and her 6 decade rule of these fantastic shores.

How British are you feeling?

1. What is the Queen’s full name? ​
2. Who is the Queen’s husband? ​​
3. How old is Queen? ​​​​
4. Who are the Queen’s parents? ​​
5. What is the name of the Queen’s Sister?
6. What year did Queen Elizabeth get married?
7. How many children does Queen Elizabeth have? ​
8. How many Grandchildren does the Queen have?​
9. What are the names of the Queen’s children?
10. Can you order the Queen’s children starting with the eldest?
11. What breed of pet dogs is the Queen known for?
12. What year did Princess Elizabeth become queen?
13. Who is the heir to the throne? ​​
14. Can you name any four of the queen’s Grandchildren?
15. What is the Diamond Jubilee a celebration of?
16. What is the Queen’s well known residence?
17. What film did the Queen appear in?
18. What is the first line of the National Anthem?
19. What does HRH mean?
20. What material represents 60 years?

Struggle on some? So did I. Your punishment is to sing ‘God Save The Queen’ as loud as you can, in a public place, and encourage others to join in.

Answers in tomorrows blog. happy Jubilee.

Please feel free to share the quiz, just copy the bit across the top (the http bit), put it as your Facebook status and WordPress will do the rest.

Or you can copy and paste this one
http://andrewauthor.com/2012/06/02/diamond-jubilee-quiz/

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

School dinners

Being a teacher, I have the opportunity to have free meal on a daily basis. If I wish, I can go down to the dinner hall (the same one we use for assemblies and PE when it’s raining), sit with my lovely class (no sarcasm there, they are an odd bunch but very lovely) and have a free hot meal. I never do this. Why? Here comes a list…

1) I get loads, they don’t. I get given enough to stuff me. I reckon it’s about 3 times as much as the kids. I know that they can’t all have massive lunches but it does at times seem a bit like Oliver Twist. “Please mrs meal time supervisor, I want more”.

2) the waste drives me nuts. Having said about the tiny portions, there are children who just don’t eat. They sit and pick at the food until no one is watching the quickly run up and chuck it into the overflowing food bin. My mum would have told them about the starving children across the world and then made them eat.

3) it’s not very nice. Sorry, and no offence intended, but it’s mass catering made with ingredients from the lowest bidder. If your looking for quality then you have to pay for it and no parent would pay £5 a day for school dinners, at least not in the area I work.

4) the custard hug. This is the worst! Basically it’s a big hug from one of the younger kids who have just finished their pudding. Your jumper, shirt or cardigan is then covered in whatever is still on their face. At that age they miss their mouth many times a meal. The worst part is though that they are so cute you can’t tell them off.

5) they don’t do coffee. I am a teacher. I need coffee.

I do feel that the dinner staff do a good job with the products they get. I do also feel that it is much healthier than when I was a kid. Long gone are the days of thick chocolate cake and pink custard (imagine that on Masterchef) or of Jamie Oliver’s nemesis, the turkey twizzler. So it is better, it’s just not that great.

My favourite at school was the arctic role. Ice cream wrapped in soggy sponge, but maybe the memory of it is better than the actual thing itself. What was yours?

20111220-080835.jpg

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Here comes Santa claus?

We are off to see Santa today and I for one can’t wait. I have a shopping afternoon off work, we have booked in (yes, you need to book with santa’s PA for an appointment) and my son has no idea what is going on. It’s not a surprise, it’s just that he is not yet 2.

Last year was a disaster. We took the boy to a shopping centre, got there early, queued for ages and had to leave within seconds due to the screaming. Our expectations of a magical and festive experience were smashed to pieces by the piercing screams of our nearly one year old. To be fair to my son though what did we expect? There you go son, sit on this big fat mans lap in a strange place, try to ignore the massive beard and strange person (with big ears and a stripy outfit) taking your picture, just smile for the camera. New parents? You bet.

But what makes a truly great Santa? Here it comes…

1) real fatness. Santa must actually be fat. It’s no good shoving pillows up a skinny mans top as it makes him look like the voodoo head Shrinkers have got to him. Scary.

2) a good beard. It needs to be like goldilocks hair, white of course, but not straggly. The last thing you need is your Santa looking like Dan Ackroyd when he goes nuts in trading places. It also needs to look real, not stuck on, otherwise pulling of the beard will occur. De bearding Santa? A dream crusher.

3) the grotto. It needs to be cosy, warm and welcoming. The one last year looked like an evil Micky mouse lair. No wonder my son went nuts.

4) Santa needs to be old. A young Santa is just weird. Crows feet yes, deep, gruff voice yes. Youthful exuberance no.

I hope today goes well. To be honest I just hope it’s not a scream fest. Above all else though, I hope the picture is good. It’s a long time to wait for the next one.

20111213-080506.jpg

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The best and worst Trilogy

What makes a good trilogy? Is it a good idea? is it something that gets better as you watch or read each one? Is it something that is well thought through? I am unsure what makes this magical thing of 3 great things, I can however tell you what makes a bad trilogy. Here are my top 3 bad trilogies.

1) The Godfather. This may surprise some, especially those that know me, but the Godfather trilogy is guilty of committing a terrible, terrible crime. The first Godfather film was amazing, made even more so by the fact I hadn’t seen it until the age of 25. I loved the interwoven story line, the effortless violence and completeness of it all. I loved it. Then came number 2. It was even better than the first and added another great Italian actor into the mix. The dual story lines went extremely well together and the whole ‘how times of changed’ angle was great. Number 3 was s**t. End of story. From such high expectations came a less than mediocre film. Why oh why!

2) Back to the Future (although the illustrator of the Squidge series disagrees). The first 2 films were interwoven so well that you couldn’t just stop at the first, although it dies stand alone very well. The ideas behind it, the great acting, and the fact that it makes you feel smarter than you are by being able to follow it. It hits all the right notes. Number 3 though, oh dear. It is all the things a western shouldn’t be and it really feels tacked on to the end as a money spinner. A flying steam-powered train? Really?

3) The Matrix. What a concept. seriously, what a concept. The real world isn’t the real world, the real world is a desolate waste land. Only one (the one) can save man kind. WOW. I walked out of the matrix thinking ‘how will they ever follow that up?’ The answer? Badly. I think that the idea of Zion was a very bad one, as did many other people. So much so that you can watch the Matrix de-zionised. check out U-tube. 

So then, to the best 3. Trilogies that I love.

1) Star Wars. It’s Star Wars, what else do you need? And yes, I am ignoring the prequels. Mr Lucas was given the green light on one film, even though he had 6 (or 9 if you believe certain quarters) he chose to start at number 4. He basically went for the best one for commercial viability. It gets better with both Empire and Jedi.

2) Lord of the Rings. Either the books or the films, I’m not fussy which. All films and books are wonderful, clever, linked and, as with all great stories, a tale of good versus evil. Now some people think they are a bit long and others liked them enough to buy the extended version. Guess which one I was! I would quite happily spend an entire day of my life watching back to back extended films. I have already done it with the 7 star wars films (I included the clone wars animated film).

3) Squidge: Little elf, Little bear. Ok, Ok, I admit it may not be the greatest of trilogies but it is close to my heart. It’s the story of an elf, a bear, some lemmings and a wolf pack. It was really fun to write, lets hope it is as fun to read.

Squidge: little elf, little bear.

That’s it from me. Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Merry blogging Christmas

It is the school Christmas fare today. Am really quite excited. The only downside is that it will be my job to supervise the kids. Let’s hope the sugar they ingest doesn’t kick in until they get home!

As its a Christmasy day I thought my new festive jumper would be in order. It has all the right elements for a wonderful Christmas garment. List time…

1) it is knitted. It may not be hand knitted or made by my Granny, but it is knitted none the less.

2) it is immediately identifiable. It is in no way subtle, it screams Christmas at the top of its woolly lungs. Here I am, be festive or leave my presence.

3) it is a once a year deal. I could not get away with it in either November or January. It will be nearly packed away on December 26th 2011 and I will be in anticipation of its return in from November 2012.

4) it is worn with a sense of irony. It’s cheesy as hell and I know it! I believe, or hope, that at 32 I am still young enough to say ‘check out how cool I am, I have a Christmas jumper’. I am sure that in the next few years I will have to revert to ‘look at me, I’m trying to be cool but I just look like an old man in a christmas jumper’. In a way though, I look forward to that day.

5) I can spill anything down it and no one will know. Kinda explains itself that one.

Any way, take a look. Is it awfully cheesy, or is it in fact cheesily awful?
I am sure the kids in my class will have an opinion. 20111209-073603.jpg

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

School trippin

Going on a school trip is a lot like childbirth. Bear with me here and I will explain. The school trip, like having a child, involves planning, anticipation, worry, lots of information, a risk assessment,  but above all else, the ability to forget the pain.

If you speak to a woman just after child birth they can’t even think about doing it again. And yet, we don’t have a nation of single child families. After a couple of weeks the pain subsides, the memory fades, and you are left with a wonderful feeling.

With the school trip, you ask a teacher who has just returned how it went and they will tell you that the are exhausted, that they didn’t get a break, and that they will never take that bunch of little terrors out again. A couple of weeks pass and the kids talk about the trip with fond memories, remembering facts and information that you have forgotten. It’s one of those ‘why I became a teacher’ moments. The making a difference in society kind of thing. So you start to think about the next trip and the cycle starts again.

Now I’m not silly enough to believe a link much past my silliness, but the thought tickled me.

So, our class trip was a huge success. The kids loved the interactive elements as well as the reading and thinking parts. I would have to say that it was one of the best I have been on. Here is why (bring on the list) …

1) the journey was pretty short and on the  DLR (docklands light railway). This was fantastic as they had plenty to look at.

2) no parents(we took student teachers). I have been in classes where the parents come along and they might as well bring a massive bag of cotton wool to wrap the kids in. “it’s raining, he might get sick”, “such and such called my daughter a name”. They also spend a fortune on their child in the gift shop, even though the other kids have been told to bring a maximum of £2.00.  Which brings me onto…

3) we avoided the gift shop. Children spending half an hour trying to decide if they want to buy an overpriced pencil, eraser or badge. All being followed around by a security guard, ready to pounce on any dangerous 10 year old pen thieves.

4) we had lunch early. This meant that no child had the chance to ask when lunch was or moan constantly about being starving. Something about having a pack lunch on your person seems to do this.

So, a good school trip with a large class, 4 trained staff members and a fun time had by all.

We even managed to ‘deliver’ all the children back to school safely. The mums will be happy!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Elf poems

As promised, here is the poem for my first book. It’s available on IBooks and amazon. Just type in squidge and look for the little elf on the front cover.

I also included the first paragraph so it all makes sense.

 

There once was a time, long, long ago,
When toys were simple, and making them slow,
The elves would carve and chop and sew,
But that was a long, long, long, time ago.
And now, every year, as we get the first snow,
Santa opens his letters, but he does not know
What the children have asked for. He says: ‘Ho, ho, ho!
‘Such new fangled things, with screens all aglow!’
And so our story starts: ready, steady …

 
‘Go and fetch me the laptop!’ shouted an elf. Santa’s workshop had changed a lot. So much so that Santa was still trying to catch up with all these new-fangled hoojamaflips and wotsits. The workshop was still run by the elves,
but instead of toy soldiers and dolls, children now wanted all manner of things. Santa had tried to get most of the stuff made abroad and delivered to his workshop (like MP3 players, Plasma TVs and handheld games consoles) but
he still had lots of things that he made right there in Lapland. Santa still remembered the days when his workshop was full of elves hammering and sewing, but now they all worked on big machines and it looked more like a factory than a tidy little workshop. Santa had moved with the times and updated, but that didn’t mean he had to like it.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

More Street Music

Here is my attempt to capture the sounds of East London. Mainly used as an example for the kids in my class (year5 – 9 and 10 year olds). They seemed to like it. Inspired by Arnold Adoff.

Street Music

My city:

the always shouting

screaming

noise of the park at night.

The bad boy racers

V   r   o   o   m    v   r   o    o   m   v    r    o    o    m

Ding

goes the

bell of the nearly run over cyclist.

Shake

rattle

rattle trains

screeching down the track with their

chugga                                                  chugga                                                 wheels

The low planes in all

V             o             c              a              b             u             l               a              r              i               e             s

of rumble

whoosh

noise.

My city: the never ending barking of wanna be gangsters dogs and jingle of their leads.

Bark                       bark                                      bark.

Shhhhhhh.

And finally sleep.

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
%d bloggers like this: