Sunday, June 22, 2008

Sophie and Elanor Ice Skating

Sophie and Elanor have spent a few days in Christchurch with Nana and Poppa.

They don't get to go ice skating very often (we don't often go down there in Winter), but it's always good fun.

It was their first time flying without a parent (and our first time sending an unaccompanied minor on the plane). Note to self: arrive early (there's paperwork) and make sure the person picking them up has photo ID.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Blocks Workshop

Well, I've been busy all day today.

It was the day of the Rainbow in my Head workshop day, which is run in Wellington every two years. Over 700 people turn up for a keynote speaker and a choice of about 75 workshop. (They get three choices over the day.)

I bet you'll never guess what the workshop I ran was on.

Oh yes, you're right - Block Play!

The workshop was in the after-lunch slot, and had 23 participants, which is many more than I would usually have, so a wee conceptual challenge. However, it turned out very well indeed.

I invited the participants to choose some blocks at the start (some of the smaller ones), and build as we were talking. Then, if they were tired and tuned out they would get something out of it anyway.

In the second part I got them in groups of 3 and they built large structures, inspired by photos of both commonplace and crazy architecture which I had got from various sources.

(I suppose you could say that something like the Beehive is both commonplace (around here, anyway) and crazy...)

At a couple of points I had them reflecting on the process, and all sorts of discussion about providing for children's learning in centres all through.

Anyway, it all went very well, and I sold a few books into the bargain.

I didn't get to any other workshops myself, because (you'll never believe this...) I was sell at the Publications stand!

Inspired to build - book cover

I've just found a .gif file of the cover of my book - so here it is!

(Can't upload the words - sorry.)

Friday, June 13, 2008

Book Launch

Man-oh-man it has been a busy month!

Blogging has been rather pushed to the side during the month of May. Two big essays (both handed in during the last week of May - yay!), and the final running backwards and forwards with the design of my book to keep track of.

But, here's the result (assuming you don't want to read the essays...!) - me signing copies after the book-launch at Playcentre Conference in Auckland on 30 May.

It was wonderful to finally get to the podium with my book before an appreciative crowd - and at least part of that had to do with being at the finish line of the "May Marathon."

The book was very well received, and the stall sold out of the 300 copies they had brought to the event. I signed copies for my life. We had blocks on every table at the conference during the launch, and people were encouraged to build a construction. Block building, by adults and the children present, became a quiet side-theme for the ensuing two days.