01 September, 2006

'Poem In Your Pocket Day'

Congratulations Sam Grumont for success of the Third Annual POEM IN YOUR POCKET Day- an initiative that encourages everyone across the 13 school cluster to carry a poem and share readings throughout the day.

At Castlemaine Secondary College, morning staff briefing shared poetry, a whole school assembly saw principals, teachers and students share readings. My kids, from Castlemaine North Prmary School, had a visiting poet run workshops and came home overflowing with poetry.

At CHESS-SQUARED we thought we’d get into the spirit, and came up with the work of Lewis Carroll.

Carroll’s literary skills are legendary: he was a mathematician and chess player(sounds familiar). His work, Through The Looking Glass, follows the journey of Alice who takes on the guise of a pawn and works her way around the chess board.
A GOOGLE search of Lewis Carroll and chess returns 120,000 repsonses including the following:

In Through the Looking-Glass, brooks and hedges divide the countryside into one giant chessboard, Alice plays the part of a pawn. Much has been made of the implausibility of the game by chess masters, and questioned why Lewis Carroll, as a passable chess player, did not construct a more plausible game.
... the chess framework is full of absurdities and impossibilities, and it is unfortunate that Carroll did not display his usual dexterity by bringing the game, as a game, up to chess standard He allows the White side to make nine consecutive moves(!): he allows Alice (a white pawn) and Alice becoming a Queen, to be two separate moves: he allows the White King to be checked without either side taking any notice of the fact: he allows two Queens to castle (!): he allows the White Queen to fly from the Red Knight, when she should take it. Hardly a move has a sane purpose, from the point of view of chess.

One can almost feel the indignation at the liberties taken.

It’s also interesting to see the concept of ‘continuous development’ apply to both POEM IN YOUR POCKET, and CHESS-SQUARED. Both projects started small, have elements of individual passion, and continue to grow bigger each year.

Anyway, well done Sam. And everyone who participated.


Harry said...

Hi Everyone,
Congratulations to the Castlemaine Secondary College chess team for their tremendous performance at the Bendigo Chess Tournament on Friday 1st of September. We won eight medals and we have five students off to the state finals.
Mark Johanssen has worked tirelessly tutoring, running the school in house tournament, and helping build the Mt. Alexander Shool Cluster chess culture.On behalf of the Castlemaine Chess Club, the Community House, and your fellow tutors congratulations to you and the team- a really splendid outcome that really augurs well for the future.

Alisa said...

Hi Harry and Steve,

The competition ladder (Ross Allengame's model dungeon and dragon) has boosted the interest and enthusiasm in playing chess among kids in my classroom.

One piece of technology we are using with great success is the interactive whiteboard, where kids can drag their names from one column to another. It minimises interruptions and enables students to independently check who they will play next.

I've only just begun learning to play and want to get more into it. I have the first chess/numeracy lesson and am eagerly waiting for the next one.