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The life and times of james Hart: his family, his music, life in Luton and his occasional escapes onto the internet.

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Monday, 30 March 2009

Royal Institution lecture, class assembly and clock change...

It's been another busy week! Christopher and I took a trip into London on Monday (sanctioned by his school) to attend a lecture at the Royal Institution of Great Britain - an amazing place, which is steeped in modern history.

We sat in the same lecture theatre as Michael Faraday, who was a student of Humphrey Davy, and were treated to an amazing demonstration of chemistry, from colour changing liquids, through the wonders of liquid nitrogen, to some rather loud explosions! The lecturer was Andrew Szydlo, and he had all the children spell-bound with his engaging, exuberant approach to presentation.

Doctor Andrew Szydlo during his excellent lecture
Doctor Andrew Szydlo during his excellent lecture

Afterwards, we took a look around the RI's museum, and I have to say it kept Christopher's interest really well. Giving a credit card as a deposit, we were each given a little PDA and earpiece; pointing the PDA at particular targets started an interactive animated explanation of the associated exhibit. The style of these animations had just the right combination of modern idiom, humour, whimsy and - of course - scientific content to make them compelling, and we did a full tour of the building before it was time to leave. Considering it's only a short walk from Piccadilly Circus, and free, I would certainly recommend it for part of a tour of London, especially with older children.

We took a walk to Knightsbridge to have a quick look at the Science Museum before it closed for the day, then caught the tube (during rush hour - a first time experience for Chris!) and train home - all in, a very economical and enjoyable day out.

Eleanor had a class assembly on Friday; the theme was "languages" and she represented Spain, in a traditional Spanish dress. It was fortunate that I could take the day off to be able to enjoy it, especially since she did such a fine job of saying "buenos di�s" and counting to nine. Below is a photo of her in her costume. Unfortunately, Eleanor's not been particularly well over the past couple of days, but she has a blood test booked for tomorrow morning, so hopefully we'll have a better idea of what's up (if anything!) She's in good spirits, though,

Eleanor in her Spanish outfit
Eleanor in her Spanish outfit

It was a bit of a rush to finish work on Thursday, though, since - once again - I had to make preparations for the clocks changing over the weekend. This took much of the day, and still managed to present some surprises. I'm hoping next year - or even by October - we'll all know what should be done! I met up with a friend after work, and we went to a recording of The Now Show - something I would definitely recommend if you get the chance, since Radio 4 recordings are always an amenable, entertaining way to spend an evening.

And so another weekend comes to an end; I took the children into town on Saturday to buy Beth's birthday presents, and we visited Dave and Debi on Sunday - spring is definitely here, and with the daffodils and sunshine, it's been very pleasant both indoors and out.

Posted by james at March 30, 2009 2:30 PM

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