Tuition madness: are schools useless?

Posted by Graeme in Education,parenting at 11:09 am on Saturday, 24 February 2024

I got a spam phone call from a tuition seller, but it is a worrying symptom of the rise of tuition in the UK. He asked whether I had children at school, to which I truthfully, albeit misleadingly, answered “no” because I do not choose to send my daughter to school. (more…)

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Schools are failing, and flexible education is the answer

Posted by Graeme in Education,parenting at 11:40 am on Thursday, 3 August 2023

Schools have been deteriorating for many years, and lockdown hastened the crisis this caused – but the deterioration dates back many years, and the underlying cause is the stubborn focus on a Victorian model of education and the addiction to metrics. The solution lies in empowering pupils and parents. (more…)

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Homeopathy is magic

Posted by Graeme in Health at 1:36 pm on Tuesday, 2 July 2013

When I say that homoeopathy is magic I do not mean it as a metaphor or analogy, I mean that its principles are a variation of those of sympathetic magic.  The term sympathetic magic was first, as far as I know, coined by Sir James George Frazer in The Golden Bough. He wrote: (more…)

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How to eat healthily in one blog post

Posted by Graeme in Health at 8:37 am on Friday, 29 June 2012

There is a whole industry telling people what to eat, and frequently selling the dubious benefits (from diet books, to health food). It seems to me that most of it boils down to some simple rules that are easy to follow, and some points of controversy (on which it may not be possible to decide what is best). I follow a simple rules that work very well. (more…)

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Twitter the productivity killer

Posted by Graeme in Internet,Life at 9:49 am on Friday, 11 May 2012

Nothing can destroy my productivity the way Twitter can. There are a lot of potential distractions, especially the multitude available over the internet, but Twitter’s nature makes it far more distracting than web browsing, email or even other social networks. (more…)

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Alcohol deaths public health and fuzzy thinking

Posted by Graeme in Health,Politics,Wrong at 11:38 am on Wednesday, 22 February 2012

This article arguing (yet again) for the government to introduce minimum prices and other strict controls on alcohol consumption. As usual, it contains fallacies, fails to provide important information, and is generally rather vague.


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Risk and rationality, investment and life

Posted by Graeme in Business & Investment,Life at 12:09 pm on Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Its fairly obvious that people are not, except for a few analytical souls, rational about risk: they worry obsessively about small risks and ignore ones that matter, and they are often no more rational about investing. (more…)

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Educating Lucy: Maths

Posted by Graeme in parenting at 9:05 am on Saturday, 14 November 2009

As I have said before, I do not like the way in which schools teach maths, so what do I do instead? Do stuff that is fun, that encourages the underlying skills rather than focusing on arithmetic. (more…)

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Why teach toddlers to read?

Posted by Graeme in parenting at 3:34 pm on Tuesday, 10 November 2009

As promised in my post on how we taught my daughter to read, here is why I think children should be taught to read as young as possible. There are three good reasons, and the first one is more than enough. (more…)

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Educating Lucy: learning to read

Posted by Graeme in parenting at 10:40 am on Sunday, 8 November 2009

I strongly believe in teaching children to read young, and our experience with Lucy so far has been confirmed that belief. We largely used the methods my mother used, because I knew they had worked for me and my sisters. (more…)

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