Virtual Teacher Newsletter  No. 101  4th December 2004 ­ MUMšS THE WORD




1. Welcome

2. Mind Candy


4. New Printables -  DATA LOGGERS

5. Technical Stuff ­ EVIL THINGS

6. Web Site Focus ­ BBC PYRAMIDS


8. Great Sites

9.  Readers' Requests/Comments

10 Next Issue

11. Code of 'Netizens'

12. Tips


1. WELCOME EVERYONE. Last one of the year.  

Thanks for all the Birthday wishes for my 100th edition, I

decided to publish just one. Great Stuff  from the ITSC

Conference this year ­ well done Apple, if you missed it,

you missed a knock out conference.  Read a bit about

it below. Also take control of you computers with Ad-ware and

spybot and OUT all those computer nasties. There are so many

exciting things waiting in the wings, just about to happen, in the

world of education, I just canšt wait to get back into it next year,

that is, after a well earned break, sleep-in, holiday, chill out, for

the next few weeks.

Hope you all have a fantastic break.



"The critical challenge for the adaptable and impressionable

young human brain is to develop and mature under the particular

stimulation and constraints of the environment in which it is going

to have to survive, whether it is one of jungles or computers.

Unlike chimpanzees our brains have an extraordinary capacity

to adapt to the environment in which we are placed. "

pp 109 'the human brain' Susan Greenfield 1997


"only those exposed to he music of Mozart, for example, will

ever have the chance to say that they have a preference for

Mozart.  Experiences we have never had can play no part in

framing our personality"

pp 122 'the human brain' Susan Greenfield 1997


For all the world mother is most beautiful ... but father from

the thought

By Catherine Keenan

November 26, 2004

Mums take heart. The most beautiful word in English is mother.

But father doesn't even make the top 70.


To celebrate its 70th anniversary, the British Council

compiled a list of the 70 most beautiful words in a survey of

more than 42,000 people from 102 non-English speaking

countries. About 7000 English students in the council's

schools were quizzed directly; the rest responded to an

on-line poll.


Filling out the top 10 were, in order: passion, smile, love,

eternity, fantastic, destiny, freedom, liberty and tranquillity.

Down the list were peace at 11, serendipity (24), pumpkin (40),

lollipop (42), bumblebee (44), peekaboo (48), kangaroo (50),

whoops (56), oi (61), hodgepodge (64), fuselage (67) and

hen-night (70)ŠŠŠŠŠŠ.



Aiming to connect people to the future so that they can create it,

Betterhumans is an editorial production company that's dedicated

to having the best information, analysis and opinion on the impact

of advancing science and technology.

Extinct Creature's Genome Reconstructed

Technique uses computers and DNA comparison to travel back in time

This is a commercial magazine site.


4. NEW PRINTABLES ­ Data Loggers

More on Data Loggers ­ You Really Need to look into these

Herešs a great site to look at:- download it Print it out and

hand it around.

Email Ed ­ get just one temperature

Data Logger(includes the software) and play with it over Christmas. 

Then tell me who has HOT HOT Xmas.



Is your computer slowing down, are your eating up band width,

are your ISP bills skyrocketing, are there strange pop-ups when

 you browse, is your homepage changed, does your email take

a long time to download/upload?? then you probably have an

internet nasty, or quite a few of them LURKING in the back

rooms of your PC.  Macs currently donšt get this stuff.


Strictly defined, spyware is computer software that gathers and

reports information about a computer user without the user's

knowledge or consent. More broadly, the term spyware can refer

to a wide range of related malware products which fall outside the

strict definition of spyware. These products perform many

different functions, including the delivery of unrequested

advertising (pop-up ads in particular), harvesting private

information, re-routing page requests to illegally claim

commercial site referral fees, and installing stealth phone


n the context of computer software, a Trojan horse or Trojan

is a malicious program that is disguised as legitimate software.

The term is derived from the classical myth of the Trojan horse.

In the siege of Troy,




Ad-ware is designed to provide to provide advanced protection

from known Data-mining, aggressive advertising, parasites,

Scumware, selected traditional Trojans, Dialers, Malware,

Browser hijackers., and tracking components.


Spybot Search and Destroy

Spybot - Search & Destroy can detect and remove spyware

of different kinds from your computer. Spyware is a relatively

new kind of threat that common anti-virus applications

do not yet cover.


6. WEBSITE FOCUS BBC: History: The Pyramid

BBC has put together a fantastic collection of interactive

games (Building the Ultimate Tomb and The Mummy Maker),

multimedia galleries (Gods, Animals, and a tour of Khufu's

Pyramid Complex), and feature articles. Everything here is

excellent, but here are three of my favorite clicks: the illustrated

Egyptian timeline from 3100 BCE to 395 CE; The Short History

of Pyramidology, which reveals some pretty wacky theories

about who actually built the Pyramids; and hieroglyphic

postcards to send to friends and family.


British Museum: Pyramids

"The ancient Egyptians built pyramids as tombs for the

pharaohs and their queens. The pharaohs were buried

in pyramids of many different shapes and sizes from

before the beginning of the Old Kingdom to the end of

the Middle Kingdom." This British Museum exhibit for

upper-elementary and middle-school students is divided

into three sections: Story (about the building of the Great

Pyramid built for pharaoh Khufu) , Explore (a reconstruction

of the pyramid) and Challenge. The challenge is to find the

height, area and weight of the Great Pyramid. Here's a hint.

When estimating how many stacked buses would equal the

height of the pyramid, keep in mind that the English ride

double-decker buses!


Discovery Channel: Great Pyramid

Although the Mummy Maker game here is the same as

the one on the BBC History site, the rest of the site is

unique. Best feature is the slide show of Howard Carver's

1922 discovery of King Tut's Tomb. Carver was a watercolor

artist turned archeological explorer. To view the slide show,

choose your preferred player below Carver's photo. Other

worthwhile clicks include A Day in the Life of a Tomb Robber,

and a Great Pyramid screensaver for both Windows and Mac.


7. ITSC ­ 16th Innovative Technology in Schools Conference.

Once again a hugely successful conference organized by Apple. 

They are putting their investment right where it should be into

educators, and backing it up with great support and equipment. 

I would just love the Premier of NSW, to give Apple all the

allocated teacher inservice money for ITC over the next year

and let them handle the whole program. 

The conference was held at the beautiful Wollongong University,

the venues were well resourced and just fantastic.  It made

attendees feel professional, unlike the half baked inservices

that are generally run by the department , with second rate

speakers, which tend to make teachers feel like a bunch of

school kids.  Top notch educators, well prepared speakers,

well resourced presentations were the order of the day. 

Marco Torres worked with participants for 3 days on Œ

Transforming your Classroom into a Professional &

PRODUCTIVE Movie Studioš, what a knock out. 

The general feeling was that we were learning from the best

of the best.  Participants were given an apple computer for the

duration of the conference. ŒBirds of a Featherš sessions

allowed course participants to get together and discuss

common interests, the largely live-in aspect of the conference

allowed time for good networking to occur.

With the increased allocation for computer inservicing

currently allocated to schools ­ I suggest targeting the

next Apple Conference.





Video Game Revolution (PBS)

This is the story of how a whimsical invention of the 1960s helped spawn

the computer industry as we know it. Video games have influenced the way

children live and play, forever altered the entertainment industry, and

even affected the way wars are fought. See how it all began and find out

what it means for the future.  Major sections include History of Gaming,

Inside Games (how they are made), Impact (cultural influence) , Arcade

(quiz, game),  and About the Show (includes video interview).


Archimedes of Syracuse: The Father of Buoyancy

"People have been aware of objects floating on water (or sinking)

since before recorded history. But it was not until Archimedes of

Syracuse came along, that the theory of flotation and the buoyancy

principle were defined." Archimedes was a mathematician born in

287 BCE, in the city of Syracuse on the island of Sicily According

to this University of Utah site, Archimedes is best remembered

for a discovery involving the crown of King Hiero II. Learn why

Archimedes shouted "Eureka!" and how he proved that the king's

crown maker had defrauded him.


HyperPhysics: Buoyancy

For high-school and college physics students, HyperPhysics is

an illustrated, hyperlinked, mind map of hundreds of physics topics.

The material can be scrolled through from top to bottom or you

can jump around, following the links in each short article. Topics

related to buoyancy include density, mass, weight, fluid pressure,

submerged volume, buoyant force, Archimedes Principle, and

Pascal's Principle.

NASA: Buoyancy: Archimedes Principle

Helicopters and airplanes depend on thrust and forward speed

to fly. Hot air balloons and dirigibles rely on buoyancy

(or differences in air density) for lift. This NASA page for high

school students is part of a larger site on aeronautics. It offers

a short article on buoyancy, and concludes with five exercises

to test your understanding of the Archimedes Principle. At the

bottom of the page you'll find links to more aeronautics topics.



Dear Cathy,

I have just read your newsletter and love it. Please add me to the

subscription list.


Alison May


Thanks Alison. To subscribe, to unsubscribe, to unsubscribe and

resubscribe with new email addresses please use:



This saves me a great deal of time and gives me more time to

write the newsletter. If you unsubscribe all disused email address

I would also be most grateful.


I have subscribed to virtual teacher, but donšt seen to be

receiving the newsletters

Gayle Pinn


You are subscribed - the problem probably lies in your server

filtering software - VT maybe classed as spam by dragnet. 

You can write to them and let them know you want to receive

VT and it is not spam. or download the newsletter from -

I have attached the latest newsletter here.



Dear Cathy,

I am just waiting for the 4th of December for my final results as a

student teacher.  I would like to thank you for your great site, as

it has abundantly assisted the journey.  Soon I will be using your

site as a TEACHER!

Thanks to all for your great ideas.

Kay Panna (Melbourne).

Glad to hear it ­ goodluck.


Hi Cathy,

Many happy returns. Congratulations on a much loved and

respected effort.


Greg Alchin



Can you add this to your newsletter please?

The link is now

Sorry for the inconvenience, but the P.L. Duffy website is moving/has

moved. So if you have any links to it on your intranet or internet sites

please change ASAP (so I don't fall off the radar at Google).


Basically for most things you will be able to replace


there have been some changes/re-organisations especially with religious

education, information technology and hospitality.

If you prefer to find things with a site map go to

You can go to the new home page

and use the free find search on the right hand side to find a particular


(Don't use the Google one yet ...It still points to old site!)

If you can't find your favourite link, please e-mail me. If you find any

broken links (to pages on my site) please let me know.



Rosemary Horton

Teacher Librarian

P.L. Duffy Resource Centre

Trinity College

Trinity Avenue



10.  NEXT ISSUE -  this is the last issue of the year. Back again

early February 2005 ­ is it really that.  I will be looking into

digital cameras in the next issue.


11. Code of the 'Netizens'

This Newsletter is not free, despite the misleading advertising

above. The Fee is now due. Each week you must help one

colleague on the Internet who has less knowledge than you.

Help that person even if you have to visit their classroom or

do a little research and get back to them. Trust me, this will

help a lot of people get their computer classrooms running better.

OK I'm trusting you!!!


12. TIPS

1. Double click on highlighted URLS to open in browser.

2. Send in your Questions, Questions will be published with

Answers, send in your Answers, if you have expertise to share.

3. Nominate a brilliant site for review and inclusion in this


4. Nominate a fantastic school site for review and inclusion in

this newsletter.

5. Make contact with other schools using fantastic programs.

6. Prepare and innovative article for this newsletter.

7. Tell 2 colleagues about this newsletter.


The opinions expressed here are purely those of the editor,

Cathy Brown. All other small print clauses apply. Such as:

Use at your own risk. Nothing in life is guaranteed. If it doesn't

work for you send me an email.

Editor: cathy brown


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