Gabba Gabba Hey!

A colleague came into my classroom to speak to me the other day. This particular member of staff dresses quite casually, and on the day in question was wearing a multi coloured t-shirt with a Ramones logo on the front.


The following conversation transpired:

Student – I like that t-shirt, I’ve got one the same.

Colleague – We must have got them from the same shop.

Me –  I always wished that I had seen them.

Student – I’m surprised you didn’t, they were right by the door.

It transpired that not only was the student unaware that Johnny, Dee Dee, Joey and Tommy were in a band, but that the colleague was also blissfully unaware.


For the record, and in case anyone is still not sure, they looked like this:

ramone-2--z made a noise to end all noises and are all now sadly deceased.

I have taken steps to fill the void in both my students and my colleagues knowledge bases with some emergency Rock n roll high school.


It’s a fair cop.


When your nursery is near stables you can expect to be able to arrange occasional visits from friendly horses from time to time. The one we were near happened to be the Metropolitan Police stables, so the horses that came to visit were friendly – and very, very big indeed.

On one meet and greet I had a group gathered around oohing and aahing at the horses and shouting a range of questions to the policemen towering up high above them;

“What do you do when they poo?”

“Where do they sleep?”

“What are their names?”

“What things do they eat?”

“When do you get their milk?”



“When do you get their milk?”

“You don’t get milk from horses.”

“Yes you do!”

“No, I think you are thinking of cows. You get milk from cows, not horses.”

By now the conversation between a small boy and a big policeman was starting to get a little heated, I tried to calm things down by offering to go and get the Farm Animals book from the bookshelf. Small boy was having none of it;


And having won his argument convincingly, using empirical evidence, small boy turned and headed back to play on the bikes and trikes.

FYI – Rosie and Jim is/was a children’s TV show starring 2 rag doll puppets who travelled everywhere by barge.

Now I write this is sounds even more unlikely and surreal than I remember it.


Walk right into it!

Last week I was interrogating some children to find out what exciting things they had done in their holiday week. Sometimes it is hard trying to get anything more than a listless shrug and a grunt, followed by the claim that they “Didn’t do nuffink.” This is rendered even more painful by the students who watched TV/played Xbox but cannot recall a single other detail about the week of freedom and fun.

The day was saved by the boy who happily volunteered the information that he had ‘rided his bike.’

“Rode” I gently corrected him.

“Oh no” boy answered straight back, “I’m not allowed on the road!”

Taking the p*ss too….


This is a sequel to a previous post called ‘taking the p*ss’

As explained in that post we were regularly mopping out the nursery toilets due to the carelessness, inexperience and sheer  exuberance of the children we worked with. After the previous incident we were rightly suspicious of all the boys and tried to monitor their comings and goings to identify the mysterious floor wetter.

We had no luck for several weeks, in spite of our detailed surveillance operation, and were fed up with having to swab the decks at regular intervals. It gradually dawned on us that, unlikely as it may seem, it might be the girls!

A new observation regime was implemented that involved checking every child in and out of the loo (without impeding their dignity, self-respect or human rights obviously.)

The result, when it came was most unexpected. My nursery nurse tracked three girls, all bestest of best friends, into the toilet cubicles. Once in they all piled into the same cubicle and tried to use the same toilet simultaneously. The result was as wet and messy as you would expect.

Mystery solved, now we just had to figure out how to stop them doing it without upsetting the delicate balance of their friendship.

What did you and your best friend used to get up to – and is it repeatable?

The mouths of babes.

Whilst writing my previous post I was reminded of another incident from the long ago time when inspectors were people you knew.

This time it was not my class, it was my wife’s class of 5 and 6 year olds who were being visited by our local Early Years inspector. These inspections were always kind of a big deal as the inspector was a nationally recognised authority on Early Years education and nobody wanted to meet her disapproval.

However, the visit went well, the children were engaged meaningfully, the session went smoothly and the staff all knew what they were supposed to be doing – so far so good. Then it was time for the chat with the teacher after the premises and people had been examined.

Had I mentioned that the inspector was quite a large lady? What we in Nursery circles call a Mrs Comfylap.

My wife asked one of the children if they could bring over a chair for the inspector to sit on please.

The child looked at the inspector, raised an eyebrow, looked back and announced in a loud clear voice;

“I think she’ll need two miss!”


Mind the step


A long time ago, standing talking with a group of friends at the bottom of a flight of stairs, I witnessed what I still consider to be one of the coolest/funniest incidents I have ever seen. I can’t remember the discussion we were having at the time – probably small talk; I can’t even remember who I was talking with, but I clearly remember the following:


The conversation was suddenly interrupted by an enormous amount of banging, crashing clattering and all the other onomatopoeias you would associate with a young man falling down an entire set of stairs from top to bottom.


He landed in a crumpled heap at the feet of one of the young ladies I was talking with. We looked at him in stunned silence until she held her hand out to him to help him to his feet. As he unfolded himself and got slowly up she asked, in a concerned voice;


“Did you miss a step?”


“No” he replied, “I think I hit every f***ing one!”


And he strode off, his dignity emphatically reclaimed.