Tag Archives: School & Library Visits

The problem with boys

Boys start school far too young

Boys are made to sit still and do boring stuff when they’d much rather be running around.

Boys are shown a bit of the story and told to analyse it. They never get told the whole story. Stories are the one thing boys will settle down and listen to. Boys learn through stories – this is hard-wired. Boys don’t get the stories that they need at school. They rely on TV and video games to give them what they need and TV is more than happy to fill that gap.

Boys will learn under threat of punishment. That threat has disappeared from education.

Boys will learn if it is fun. Fun usually means risk and risk has been eradicated from education. (Blame the lawyers!)

Boys learn from men, but boys have very little contact with men. (Blame the lawyers again – and the wages.)

At the age when boys begin to knuckle down naturally, they’ve been written off as failures by the system that does not understand or cater for them.

Boys are taught and looked after by women. Women prefer to tame boys. Boys do not like to be tamed!

Hobletts infants – drawing sessions

I did some fabulous drawing sessions with the children at Hobletts Infant School on Monday. As I walked in one of the year two classes, I saw they were doing crocodiles and instantly decided to read them the Just So story of how the elephant got it’s trunk – The Elephant’s Child. Then I remembered that it’s really difficult showing how to draw the elephant and that it never comes out as I would hope. But I was committed to the story.

Then, because they were focussing on the crocodile, I decided to do a different drawing – of the scene where the crocodile grabs the elephant’s trunk. It’s probably a much harder drawing, but far easier to explain, step by step. And it’s far more satisfying – all that violence!

Here are some of their drawings. Guess which one is mine? (the least enthusiastic one!)

Hobletts Infant School – Hemel Hempstead

I had a great time at Hobletts Infant School this Monday. It was a bit chaotic, as they were having a new library installed, so books were piles up around the Staff Room, being sorted and thinned out. One of the thinning was a club book from the Tufty Club, which must have been lurking untouched on the old library shelves for years!

I was very impressed by a painting of penguins and puffins on the wall of the dining hall. The school is probably 1950’s, made in a cheap, throw’em up, pre-fab style. It still has it’s original metal, crittal windows, because the whole place would collapse if they were replaced! But there is this fabulous mural – I couldn’t see a signature, because part of it was hidden behind cupboards and things. ( I should be more nosey!) It must have been done very soon after the school was built. It has that wonderful Festival of Britain style about it. I hope it is logged somewhere . It should probably have a preservation order on it. It could do with a bit of restoration!

Any way, Thanks for a great day everyone. Fabulous drawing – all of you – teachers too!