Tag Archives: India

Self improvement: Where teachers fear to tread…

Self improvement? Moi? Ce n’est pas possible!*

But if you really think that I do have some slight scope for enhancement (and please, no spam emails about, er, that kind of enhancement) then I’d better start watching more short clips like this one.

It’s one of the many enlightening, inspirational and entertaining TED talks. This one is about how to improve teaching in places that good teachers don’t want to go – or in ways that teachers cannot do themselves. The speaker is Indian educationalist Sugata Mitra. It’s his “hole in the wall” experiment.

What do you think? Can teachers be replaced so easily?

Futurist Arthur C Clarke is reported to have said: “A teacher who can be replaced by a machine, should be.”

If you have any teaching experience, does the impact of this experiment ring true to you?

This self-improvement idea came in a roundabout way from Helen and Adventures of an Unfit Mother. She’s funny. You should read her stuff.  (This made me laugh.) That’s Continue reading

7 Comments

Filed under D - Loose Bloggers Consortium

Time to get serious

Time to get serious. And uplifting.

Japan - by Steve McCurry

The wonderful and striking photographs are by Steve McCurry, from his recent Finding The Sublime post. You should definitely click over there to see them all. Steve has popped up here before with his work in Afghanistan.

For an insight into London (or any?) gang culture, read gang intervention worker Emeka Egbuonu’s post – Are you willing to KILL? When asked that question by Emeka, the smallest member of the group answered:

We are in too deep. I have enemies who probably will not hesitate to kill me if they saw me slipping (caught off guard). That is why I am always prepared for whatever the occasion and if that means dropping a body in the process then so be it.

The good news is Continue reading

7 Comments

Filed under blogs

I’m now officially famous

I’m now officially famous.

And it’s thanks to Padmini – to whose odd request I responded.*

This is big. Possibly even as big as appearing on Good Morning Ulster in days gone by.**

Even bigger.

I’m now an internationally famous megastar as featured in The Hindu newspaper in India – the country’s most prestigious publication.***

What you may find ironic, bizarre, hilarious or some other word – is the reason that I’m in The Hindu.

Best just have a look for yourself Continue reading

29 Comments

Filed under media

Give that man a hand…

This is fantastic.

Given the not entirely positive reaction to Póló’s Continue reading

8 Comments

Filed under art

The Day I Met… Indira Gandhi

She even has her face on stamps

This week’s entry in The Day I Met… Competition takes place in sunny Mauritius in the Indian Ocean. It used to be famous as the only home of the Dodo. Since then a more reilient resident has been roosting there – guest blogger Padmini Natarajan in Chennai, India. The dodo is extinct, but Padmini and her blog This & That, There & Here is still going strong. She and I met a few months ago at the Royal Academy. (Click for her photo.)

According to Padmini – actress, writer and cultural ambassador to the world – she and her husband have met many celebs over the years. But the one who sticks in her mind is a very formidable woman – an international figure – controversial, some would say notorious. We’re talking about bestriding the world stage here, not some reality show Z-lister (though stories about encounters with them are also welcome).

You know – Indira Gandhi Continue reading

16 Comments

Filed under Guest Posts, The Day I Met... Competition

And the Word was made flesh (and charming with it)…

On the internet, nobody knows you’re a dog. Wasn’t there a cartoon to that effect? (Oh yes. There it is.)

Same with internet dating. That six foot blond Viking type you met online may have been literally telling the truth. You only get to see that he’s also six feet wide when you meet face to face. Which is when you also notice that he smells like a Viking who hasn’t washed since they used to rule England. (True, happened to a mate of mate.)

Speaking of smelly Vikings – did you know they used week-old horse wee to kill bugs in their hair? Couldn’t afford combs. It was the amonia in the aged equine urine that turned their hair blonde. Does that make you feel differently about ABBA?

But the main point is this – how can you be sure that anything or anyone on the net is who they say they are?

Or if they even exist at all?

Well, I can now officially confirm that Padmum does exist.

Remember I asked if anyone wanted to come to the Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy with me. Padmum – or Padmini as I now call her – immediately put her hand up.

And she came. All the way from Chennai in India. Chennai! In India! With her daughter Nitila. That’s them in the picture. In the flesh Continue reading

25 Comments

Filed under blogs, friends, life

Bo Selecta

Boa Sr. Andaman Islander and the world's last speaker of Bo. RIP

So that’s that then. You’ll not be hearing any more Bo. In fact, you won’t have heard it spoken for a while, because Boa Sr (pictured left) was the only one left who could speak the language.

However, you can hear her sing in Bo. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under life