Virtual Teacher Newsletter No. 126 May 20th 2006 – SOMETHING THEY LOVE
1. Welcome
2. Mind Candy
4. New Printables - INSTANT POEM FORMS
5. Technical Stuff – IS A MAC IS STILL A MAC?
6. Web Site Focus - LIMERICKS
8. Great Sites
9. Readers' Requests/Comments
10 Next Issue
11. Code of 'Netizens'
12. Tips
1. WELCOME EVERYONE. Give them something they love.
The digital video acquisition is going great guns.
The students love it, the teachers love it, a new experience.
Seeing themselves on the TV caused much animated,
discussion, commenting, enthusiastic future planning and great
writing. Give them something they love,
and they’ll love to come to school, more mundane activities
will be swept along with the tide, spirits will rise, motivation will
not be an issue. Introduce students to literary critiques through
the lively reviews at rotten tomatoes. Write to Apple and see
if we can get a true DUO CORE machine. Most importantly
have some fun, write a limerick, do something you love. Have
a great fortnight.
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it
was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness. . . .
“Tale of Two Cities” Charles Dickens
“A Tale of 2 Operating Systems” Apple Computers
There was an Old Derry down Derry,
who loved to see little folks merry;
So he made them a book,
and with laughter they shook
at the fun of that Derry down Derry. Lear
There was an Old Man with a beard,
Who said, 'It is just as I feared! —
Two Owls and a Hen,
Four Larks and a Wren
Have all built their nests in my beard!
Fiction writing is great, you can make up almost anything."
- Ivana Trump
This is just to say
I have eaten
the plums that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably saving
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold
William Carlos Williams
Movie Reviews aplenty
On “The Da Vinci Code”
“A jumbled, joyless affair that neither entertains nor enlightens."
Alliteration for emphasis.
"Too measured to be lively, too skittish to be provocative, too dramatically

slack to be more than a ploddingly literal book-on-film."
Repetition for impact.
This site is great for movie reviews from everywhere. Discover the literary techniques
reviewers use, the great use of metaphor, irony, alliteration
Four Word Movie Reviews
Your opinion in 4 words.
Choose your poetry form from the list of links on the left.
Then just add words to make the poem your own.
MAC Is it still a Mac? In a world where iMacs can run Windows XP, what makes a Mac a Mac?

The answer is the same as it’s always been:
“Apple’s combination of great hardware design and great
software. Your Mac is still a Mac. That it can also be a PC—
that it’s the only computer that can run Windows XP and
Mac OS X—just shows how versatile it really is.”
The all new MacBook Duo core
Edward Lear's Nonsense Work
Edward Lear's "A Book of Nonsense", first published in 1846,
is a collection of 112 limericks for children. This fan site,
created by an Italian high school teacher (he actually teaches
English, but he does it in Italy) includes all of Lear's limericks
as well as biographical notes and commentary.

ETTC: Instant Poetry Forms
The Educational Technology Training Centre of New Jersey
presents oodles of fill-in-the-blank interactive poetry forms,
including one for limericks. What's an interactive poetry form?
Think MadLibs, and you'll get the idea. To find the limerick
maker, scroll down the alphabetic left-hand menu.

Giggle Poetry: How to Write a Limerick
Bruce Lansky, author of numerous poetry collections including
"The Dog Ate My Homework" and "If Pigs Could Fly," explains
the rhyme and rhythm pattern of limericks. There are lots of pages
to explore, such as tongue-twisters, fill-in-the-blank poems,
and a partially true autobiography (
"See if you can spot the fourteen fibs.")

The Mathematics of the Limerick
Create Your own Limerick online
7. CATHY'S FORUM – We Need a Stable Platform, Maintenance Free, Dual Platform –

Almost but not quite.

The New Apple MacBook was launched on Tuesday, I was excited, so I phoned Apple

Education to enquire about it and to find out how it all worked.
If I can change everyone over to Macs, finally, as you know, I will be delighted. So if

this duo-core thing is as good as it sounds, and one machine can be used for both
platforms, Macs being better machines, with more stable unix based operating systems
(as apposed to Windows – which is based on an antiquated DOS based system) – well there’s
no contest, everyone will want a Mac. And this pesky little programs largely coming from
DET that only run on PCs can be accommodated as well.
Four days latter I finally receive a return call from Apple.
I want new duo core desktops and laptops aplenty, I’m so excited, how soon can I have them???
1. The desktops don’t come preloaded with windows. You need to download ‘bootcamp’ (free)
Current machines do not come loaded with it. They don’t come loaded with Office for PC either.
2. MacBook has currently no DET image and it will take about 2 months for this to be finalised.

Even so it will not come loaded with XP or Microsoft Office for Windows.
3. The decision not to load XP and Windows Office 2003, has been made by Apple Head Office.
So my dreams are shattered. No wonderful, low maintenance machine for all, because of this

stupid oversight. PC users will change to Macs if they can use Macs as PCs. Maybe they’ll migrate
and never use PCs again, but, they will want to use them to start with. What is the use of a
universal duo core machine that doesn’t, well, DUO CORE, and load both platforms? I don’t know
many people who will put their hand-up to load in an operating system before they can use a
machine. CERTAINLY schools won’t want to fiddle about with it, especially when they may
have 10-20 machines to load at anyone time.
Come on Apple you’re got the inside run here, don’t blow it with an ‘own goal’
10 seconds from the final whistle!

What do you think? Does it Matter? It sure does.
Send you responses in as usual, but also let Apple know what you think as well.
No one commented on the password problem.
So here’s an interesting story from the trenches.
The Login instructions are stuck to the computer with tape,
with special instruction……
“latest password on back of door”.
I really enjoy your fortnightly newsletters. At my school here in N.S.W. We
have the option of paying off an apple lap top over three years through
salary sacrifice. We simply choose one of three types of lap tops on offer
at the local apple shop, fill in the relevant forms, inform our CEO office
and place an order on the desired laptop. Paying off the computer is
painless and hardly noticed and the computer is ours at the end of three
years. We actually have a bank of fifteen apple lap tops at my school on a
roster system but having your own lap top has saved the stress of 'where's
my work gone? And why isn't the computer allotted to me working this time? Or
where is my computer?' I have had my computer for just twelve months. My
only complaint is that I have spent so much time learning on and about my
computer resulting in a weight increase of almost two sizes (lack of
physical exercise not food excess).Have started to do something about this.
You will be pleased to hear that I feel so much more confident that I have
been able to help others at my school get their computer classroom to run

Favourite Poems site
Seussville – Dr Seuss
Cat in the Hat Mini Unit
Hi Cathy
Love it when Virtual Teacher hits my inbox. Interesting to read about Windows

on a Mac. I am a big tech fan and love doing things at school with computers,
but I'm always amazed by the support for Macs. I have experienced both PC and
Mac through school and find both systems far from perfect. When they work they
are great but they sure can chew up your free time. It amuses me how fervent and
staunch Mac supporters are, but how less like Macs Macs are becoming - Intel CPU's,
Windows.... makes me wonder why they bother having two different systems - just
creates a compatibility headache for me. Personally, I find Windows machines more
appealing because of: compatibility of produced software; accessibility - if a sound
card or network card goes wonky I can remove and replace - I have no idea how I would
even get into an E-Mac; price of peripherals (not all printers would work for Macs and
I baulked at paying $70-$80 for a mouse that I could buy for PC for $10) and community
use - why buy a machine in a school that 80-90% of kids don't use at home - isn't education
about linking with the real world. I do, however, find Windows complicated, cumbersome
and prone to viruses etc... these can be overcome but not without a significant investment of time.
Just had to promote some balance
Grays Point PS
Thanks for the balance, think I did a bit of balancing this newsletter too.
My Mac mouse cost - $7.00 – it’s a Microsoft 2 button mouse with a scroller
in the middle – works a treat. Most USB Printers now work with Macs or PCs–

the Canon IP4200 is a beauty – costs about $175 (from JB HiFi)– prints on CDs
as well as borderless printing – top quality. As you said most programs look the
same on PCs and Macs so buying the better more stable machine that doesn’t
attract viruses like bees to the pc honey pot is an obvious choice. As for industry
use, for simple tasks in offices PC is certainly king at the moment, for the huge
range of industries involved in professional Film, Graphic design, Printing etc
Mac is and has always been king.
Dear Cathy,
Our school along with many others are going through the
enormous task of implementing the new reporting to parents
which was enforced on all by the Commonwealth government.
I realise NSW state schools have 12 months to implement.
However, Catholic and private schools have to start this term.
Hence my email of HELP!

We are in the process of trying to organise criteria so students
can be graded E-A across the grade in each KLA. Do you
know of any schools that have already set up either the
descriptors or rubrics for this task?

If it would be possible for those schools to share on your
site that would make the job a lot easier and simpler for all.
Instead of each school across Australia reinventing the wheel.

There maybe good websites that you may be able to suggest.

St Bernadette's
In the Words of the Immortal Douglas Adams
I think there’ll be a lot of support for this from developers as well
as Education Department. No one should be reinventing the
wheel – here’s some sites for starters.
Does anyone else have any suggestions??
10. NEXT ISSUE – All about the Video project, how to do it,
how to have fun with it, how to learn lots. More on DET and
ASI computers next week. ciao Cathy
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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