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My last bet was stupid – Win or lose – politicalbetting.com

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  • noneoftheabovenoneoftheabove Posts: 11,993
    DavidL said:

    List of things people turning 18 should have learnt more about:

    Health & Exercise, Cooking & Nutrition, Relationships, Money, Mind & Body, "How to use tech to enhance life as opposed to let it become life" (Can't think of a word for this at the moment but it is important in an age where tech companies increasingly exploit and control us).

    Anyone coming up with Latin is doing this for nostalgia only, fortunately it will fail as will resonate only with Tory public school oldies, and be laughed out by the crucial Tory red wall oldies.

    I did Latin at school. It taught me grammar, some interesting history, some superb culture (the Aeneid is just brilliant), improved my memory skills and helped develop analytical skills. It also helped with law a little bit.

    I am not saying that there are not more useful subjects but there have been studies in the US where it was found that those who studied Latin did better in other subjects although I always wondered about the correlative effects there.

    The question of where to find the Latin teachers is definitely pertinent. When I left school over 40 years ago all of my classics teachers were older than I am now.
    Its nostalgia. It helped you but life has changed. Kids nowadays often grow up in families where no-one cooks, others in families with dysfunctional family dynamics, and even the well educated professional class don't understand how to manage their money and investments.

    Let's tackle the real challenges kids face, not try to re create the past.
  • kjhkjh Posts: 4,450
    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    Gavin Williamson has evidence? I thought he just made shit up as he went along.

    I can see how Latin might help with Science given how many scientific names derive from Latin and give an idea of their purpose as a result. But I would have thought if any classical language was useful for maths and by extension ICT it would be Greek, not Latin.
    As a mathematician I fail to see how Latin or any language helps one iota. The fact that a notation is derived from another language eg iota, is completely irrelevant. If a minister thinks this they clearly have no understanding whatsoever
    I’d have stopped there, tbh.

    My knowledge of maths extends to trolling the maths teachers at my school by putting up 2+2=5 on the whiteboards before maths lessons. I couldn’t personally see a link but I thought there might be one for Greek. If I’m wrong, I’m wrong.
    My comment wasn't aimed at you @ydoethur but our friend Gavin. Thought your post reasonable.

    PS I can make that 2+ 2 = 5 work for you with a bit of thought.
    Nice to know it was reasonable, even if it was wrong.

    My 2+2=5 is as follows:

    2.49+2.49=4.98

    Round all of them to the nearest whole number.

    Amuses the children no end.

    If there’s a proper way of doing it I’d be interested to hear it.
    Not even wrong, just my opinion and of course I agreed with the thrust of your opinion..

    Like your sum.

    I would have to think about getting that exact sum but if you change the base you might be able to do it. The fact we use 10 as a base is just chance. Base 2, 8 and 16 are used commonly. I am aware of an ancient number system that used base 60 (mind boggling).

    Obviously in base 2 : 1 + 1 = 10 Can do loads of stuff like that.

    I can also show 1 = 2 by making an error, but which is very difficult to spot. I posted it here before and will do so again when on a laptop and not my phone.
  • CharlesCharles Posts: 34,932
    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    Gavin Williamson has evidence? I thought he just made shit up as he went along.

    I can see how Latin might help with Science given how many scientific names derive from Latin and give an idea of their purpose as a result. But I would have thought if any classical language was useful for maths and by extension ICT it would be Greek, not Latin.
    As a mathematician I fail to see how Latin or any language helps one iota. The fact that a notation is derived from another language eg iota, is completely irrelevant. If a minister thinks this they clearly have no understanding whatsoever of what is involved in doing maths
    The benefit of Latin in the romantic languages is clear. It is also helpful with English grammar (I think). Maths, etc benefit because it teaches a very logical way of thinking.

    But something teaching people just to expand their mind is a good thing
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 40,280

    DavidL said:

    List of things people turning 18 should have learnt more about:

    Health & Exercise, Cooking & Nutrition, Relationships, Money, Mind & Body, "How to use tech to enhance life as opposed to let it become life" (Can't think of a word for this at the moment but it is important in an age where tech companies increasingly exploit and control us).

    Anyone coming up with Latin is doing this for nostalgia only, fortunately it will fail as will resonate only with Tory public school oldies, and be laughed out by the crucial Tory red wall oldies.

    I did Latin at school. It taught me grammar, some interesting history, some superb culture (the Aeneid is just brilliant), improved my memory skills and helped develop analytical skills. It also helped with law a little bit.

    I am not saying that there are not more useful subjects but there have been studies in the US where it was found that those who studied Latin did better in other subjects although I always wondered about the correlative effects there.

    The question of where to find the Latin teachers is definitely pertinent. When I left school over 40 years ago all of my classics teachers were older than I am now.
    Its nostalgia. It helped you but life has changed. Kids nowadays often grow up in families where no-one cooks, others in families with dysfunctional family dynamics, and even the well educated professional class don't understand how to manage their money and investments.

    Let's tackle the real challenges kids face, not try to re create the past.
    Is it the job of education to teach you how to live or to make you employable? Do you have any evidence that teachers have any real skills in the former that they can usefully pass on? I am not sure loading up an already overcrowded school curriculum with life skills classes is desirable or even possible. Of course the same applies to Latin.

    It seems to me that you want to dump the social problems of modern life on schools. I think they should stick to the day job. If kids come out of school with the skills that allow them to progress to further study where they have that ability, a good grounding in basic maths, the ability to read and write in a coherent way and with some smattering of languages, history or science according to taste I think that they have done their job.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 43,216
    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    List of things people turning 18 should have learnt more about:

    Health & Exercise, Cooking & Nutrition, Relationships, Money, Mind & Body, "How to use tech to enhance life as opposed to let it become life" (Can't think of a word for this at the moment but it is important in an age where tech companies increasingly exploit and control us).

    Anyone coming up with Latin is doing this for nostalgia only, fortunately it will fail as will resonate only with Tory public school oldies, and be laughed out by the crucial Tory red wall oldies.

    I did Latin at school. It taught me grammar, some interesting history, some superb culture (the Aeneid is just brilliant), improved my memory skills and helped develop analytical skills. It also helped with law a little bit.

    I am not saying that there are not more useful subjects but there have been studies in the US where it was found that those who studied Latin did better in other subjects although I always wondered about the correlative effects there.

    The question of where to find the Latin teachers is definitely pertinent. When I left school over 40 years ago all of my classics teachers were older than I am now.
    Its nostalgia. It helped you but life has changed. Kids nowadays often grow up in families where no-one cooks, others in families with dysfunctional family dynamics, and even the well educated professional class don't understand how to manage their money and investments.

    Let's tackle the real challenges kids face, not try to re create the past.
    Is it the job of education to teach you how to live or to make you employable? Do you have any evidence that teachers have any real skills in the former that they can usefully pass on? I am not sure loading up an already overcrowded school curriculum with life skills classes is desirable or even possible. Of course the same applies to Latin.

    It seems to me that you want to dump the social problems of modern life on schools. I think they should stick to the day job. If kids come out of school with the skills that allow them to progress to further study where they have that ability, a good grounding in basic maths, the ability to read and write in a coherent way and with some smattering of languages, history or science according to taste I think that they have done their job.
    Hate to break it to you, but in the state sector that ship sailed 40 years ago.
  • CharlesCharles Posts: 34,932
    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    Gavin Williamson has evidence? I thought he just made shit up as he went along.

    I can see how Latin might help with Science given how many scientific names derive from Latin and give an idea of their purpose as a result. But I would have thought if any classical language was useful for maths and by extension ICT it would be Greek, not Latin.
    As a mathematician I fail to see how Latin or any language helps one iota. The fact that a notation is derived from another language eg iota, is completely irrelevant. If a minister thinks this they clearly have no understanding whatsoever
    I’d have stopped there, tbh.

    My knowledge of maths extends to trolling the maths teachers at my school by putting up 2+2=5 on the whiteboards before maths lessons. I couldn’t personally see a link but I thought there might be one for Greek. If I’m wrong, I’m wrong.
    My comment wasn't aimed at you @ydoethur but our friend Gavin. Thought your post reasonable.

    PS I can make that 2+ 2 = 5 work for you with a bit of thought.
    Nice to know it was reasonable, even if it was wrong.

    My 2+2=5 is as follows:

    2.49+2.49=4.98

    Round all of them to the nearest whole number.

    Amuses the children no end.

    If there’s a proper way of doing it I’d be interested to hear it.
    Except you are making an error by prematurely rounding the constituent parts?
  • noneoftheabovenoneoftheabove Posts: 11,993
    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    List of things people turning 18 should have learnt more about:

    Health & Exercise, Cooking & Nutrition, Relationships, Money, Mind & Body, "How to use tech to enhance life as opposed to let it become life" (Can't think of a word for this at the moment but it is important in an age where tech companies increasingly exploit and control us).

    Anyone coming up with Latin is doing this for nostalgia only, fortunately it will fail as will resonate only with Tory public school oldies, and be laughed out by the crucial Tory red wall oldies.

    I did Latin at school. It taught me grammar, some interesting history, some superb culture (the Aeneid is just brilliant), improved my memory skills and helped develop analytical skills. It also helped with law a little bit.

    I am not saying that there are not more useful subjects but there have been studies in the US where it was found that those who studied Latin did better in other subjects although I always wondered about the correlative effects there.

    The question of where to find the Latin teachers is definitely pertinent. When I left school over 40 years ago all of my classics teachers were older than I am now.
    Its nostalgia. It helped you but life has changed. Kids nowadays often grow up in families where no-one cooks, others in families with dysfunctional family dynamics, and even the well educated professional class don't understand how to manage their money and investments.

    Let's tackle the real challenges kids face, not try to re create the past.
    Is it the job of education to teach you how to live or to make you employable? Do you have any evidence that teachers have any real skills in the former that they can usefully pass on? I am not sure loading up an already overcrowded school curriculum with life skills classes is desirable or even possible. Of course the same applies to Latin.

    It seems to me that you want to dump the social problems of modern life on schools. I think they should stick to the day job. If kids come out of school with the skills that allow them to progress to further study where they have that ability, a good grounding in basic maths, the ability to read and write in a coherent way and with some smattering of languages, history or science according to taste I think that they have done their job.
    Absolutely schools should, and already do, teach people how to live. It is done alongside parents and the wider community but schools are an essential part of it.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 40,280
    ydoethur said:

    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    List of things people turning 18 should have learnt more about:

    Health & Exercise, Cooking & Nutrition, Relationships, Money, Mind & Body, "How to use tech to enhance life as opposed to let it become life" (Can't think of a word for this at the moment but it is important in an age where tech companies increasingly exploit and control us).

    Anyone coming up with Latin is doing this for nostalgia only, fortunately it will fail as will resonate only with Tory public school oldies, and be laughed out by the crucial Tory red wall oldies.

    I did Latin at school. It taught me grammar, some interesting history, some superb culture (the Aeneid is just brilliant), improved my memory skills and helped develop analytical skills. It also helped with law a little bit.

    I am not saying that there are not more useful subjects but there have been studies in the US where it was found that those who studied Latin did better in other subjects although I always wondered about the correlative effects there.

    The question of where to find the Latin teachers is definitely pertinent. When I left school over 40 years ago all of my classics teachers were older than I am now.
    Its nostalgia. It helped you but life has changed. Kids nowadays often grow up in families where no-one cooks, others in families with dysfunctional family dynamics, and even the well educated professional class don't understand how to manage their money and investments.

    Let's tackle the real challenges kids face, not try to re create the past.
    Is it the job of education to teach you how to live or to make you employable? Do you have any evidence that teachers have any real skills in the former that they can usefully pass on? I am not sure loading up an already overcrowded school curriculum with life skills classes is desirable or even possible. Of course the same applies to Latin.

    It seems to me that you want to dump the social problems of modern life on schools. I think they should stick to the day job. If kids come out of school with the skills that allow them to progress to further study where they have that ability, a good grounding in basic maths, the ability to read and write in a coherent way and with some smattering of languages, history or science according to taste I think that they have done their job.
    Hate to break it to you, but in the state sector that ship sailed 40 years ago.
    Oh I know, but as I didn't study geography beyond second year I still believe if that ship goes too far it will fall off the edge!
  • IshmaelZIshmaelZ Posts: 9,801
    ydoethur said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    Gavin Williamson has evidence? I thought he just made shit up as he went along.

    I can see how Latin might help with Science given how many scientific names derive from Latin and give an idea of their purpose as a result. But I would have thought if any classical language was useful for maths and by extension ICT it would be Greek, not Latin.
    Greek is just too fucking difficult. I can't make head or tail of it, and I started learning it at 8 and am meant to have a doctorate in it. Plus your best chance of understanding it is to have a really good grounding in Latin.

    What's embarrassing is this: the only language I have studied which is more difficult is Swahili. Everybody in East Africa speaks it perfectly, nobody I have ever met speaks it as a first language, they all speak perfect English as well and they went to schools whose entire budget was probably less that the average UK schools budget per pupil.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 43,216
    DavidL said:

    ydoethur said:

    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    List of things people turning 18 should have learnt more about:

    Health & Exercise, Cooking & Nutrition, Relationships, Money, Mind & Body, "How to use tech to enhance life as opposed to let it become life" (Can't think of a word for this at the moment but it is important in an age where tech companies increasingly exploit and control us).

    Anyone coming up with Latin is doing this for nostalgia only, fortunately it will fail as will resonate only with Tory public school oldies, and be laughed out by the crucial Tory red wall oldies.

    I did Latin at school. It taught me grammar, some interesting history, some superb culture (the Aeneid is just brilliant), improved my memory skills and helped develop analytical skills. It also helped with law a little bit.

    I am not saying that there are not more useful subjects but there have been studies in the US where it was found that those who studied Latin did better in other subjects although I always wondered about the correlative effects there.

    The question of where to find the Latin teachers is definitely pertinent. When I left school over 40 years ago all of my classics teachers were older than I am now.
    Its nostalgia. It helped you but life has changed. Kids nowadays often grow up in families where no-one cooks, others in families with dysfunctional family dynamics, and even the well educated professional class don't understand how to manage their money and investments.

    Let's tackle the real challenges kids face, not try to re create the past.
    Is it the job of education to teach you how to live or to make you employable? Do you have any evidence that teachers have any real skills in the former that they can usefully pass on? I am not sure loading up an already overcrowded school curriculum with life skills classes is desirable or even possible. Of course the same applies to Latin.

    It seems to me that you want to dump the social problems of modern life on schools. I think they should stick to the day job. If kids come out of school with the skills that allow them to progress to further study where they have that ability, a good grounding in basic maths, the ability to read and write in a coherent way and with some smattering of languages, history or science according to taste I think that they have done their job.
    Hate to break it to you, but in the state sector that ship sailed 40 years ago.
    Oh I know, but as I didn't study geography beyond second year I still believe if that ship goes too far it will fall off the edge!
    Flat Earth? That’s a phenomenon of nineteenth century theology. Not geography.
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921
    I'm all for teaching kids in state schools Latin and Greek.

    I learned both at school and it was great.

    My advice is to the teachers is to get them hooked straight away, and start with Catullus 16.

    Heck I might make a career change and become a Latin teacher.

    Semper ubi, sub ubi.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 40,280
    ydoethur said:

    DavidL said:

    ydoethur said:

    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    List of things people turning 18 should have learnt more about:

    Health & Exercise, Cooking & Nutrition, Relationships, Money, Mind & Body, "How to use tech to enhance life as opposed to let it become life" (Can't think of a word for this at the moment but it is important in an age where tech companies increasingly exploit and control us).

    Anyone coming up with Latin is doing this for nostalgia only, fortunately it will fail as will resonate only with Tory public school oldies, and be laughed out by the crucial Tory red wall oldies.

    I did Latin at school. It taught me grammar, some interesting history, some superb culture (the Aeneid is just brilliant), improved my memory skills and helped develop analytical skills. It also helped with law a little bit.

    I am not saying that there are not more useful subjects but there have been studies in the US where it was found that those who studied Latin did better in other subjects although I always wondered about the correlative effects there.

    The question of where to find the Latin teachers is definitely pertinent. When I left school over 40 years ago all of my classics teachers were older than I am now.
    Its nostalgia. It helped you but life has changed. Kids nowadays often grow up in families where no-one cooks, others in families with dysfunctional family dynamics, and even the well educated professional class don't understand how to manage their money and investments.

    Let's tackle the real challenges kids face, not try to re create the past.
    Is it the job of education to teach you how to live or to make you employable? Do you have any evidence that teachers have any real skills in the former that they can usefully pass on? I am not sure loading up an already overcrowded school curriculum with life skills classes is desirable or even possible. Of course the same applies to Latin.

    It seems to me that you want to dump the social problems of modern life on schools. I think they should stick to the day job. If kids come out of school with the skills that allow them to progress to further study where they have that ability, a good grounding in basic maths, the ability to read and write in a coherent way and with some smattering of languages, history or science according to taste I think that they have done their job.
    Hate to break it to you, but in the state sector that ship sailed 40 years ago.
    Oh I know, but as I didn't study geography beyond second year I still believe if that ship goes too far it will fall off the edge!
    Flat Earth? That’s a phenomenon of nineteenth century theology. Not geography.
    Terry Pratchett famously described geography as physics with a few trees stuck in it but I am pretty sure that the fact that the world is round would have come up at some point. My vague memory is that it helped me map read. Not much else.
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921
    edited July 31
    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).
  • JosiasJessopJosiasJessop Posts: 26,220
    Off-topic:

    Just completed this morning's run and I've managed to run 302 miles in July - by far my highest mileage of any month ever.

    I have done at least one run every day of this year so far, and am at 1,538 miles for the year so far.

    I'm feeling quite pleased about that. And I'm also feeling utterly knackered ...
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 57,370
    Mr. Eagles, you're being naughty and you know it.
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921
    This is quite a concept.

    Excellent article with England's world cup winning coach.

    ‘I wanted us to lift Peter Crouch up at a corner like a second row in rugby’ – Clive Woodward at Southampton

    https://theathletic.com/2725048/2021/07/31/i-wanted-us-to-lift-peter-crouch-up-at-a-corner-like-a-second-row-in-rugby-clive-woodward-at-southampton/
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921

    Mr. Eagles, you're being naughty and you know it.

    No, honestly reading Catullus 16 will get teenagers hooked on Latin.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 43,216

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    That would be good.

    But if he really wants to improve education, the most cost effective way of doing so would be to give himself, Gibb, Spielman, and every official of the DfE, Ofsted and OFQUAL a one-way ticket to Alpha Centauri.
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 57,370
    Mr. Eagles, it'll make the rest of his stuff mostly seem boring, though.
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921
    edited July 31

    Mr. Eagles, it'll make the rest of his stuff mostly seem boring, though.

    Nah, as a scholar of both history and Latin I know what I speak of.

    I guess as a fluent speaker of seven languages I like showing off my skills.

    (Although I sound like Officer Crabtree these days when I try and speak French.)
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 40,280

    Mr. Eagles, you're being naughty and you know it.

    No, honestly reading Catullus 16 will get teenagers hooked on Latin.
    I do think that if we had been taught to decline irrumare rather than amare it may have got our attention somewhat.
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921
    DavidL said:

    Mr. Eagles, you're being naughty and you know it.

    No, honestly reading Catullus 16 will get teenagers hooked on Latin.
    I do think that if we had been taught to decline irrumare rather than amare it may have got our attention somewhat.
    Exactly.
  • NigelbNigelb Posts: 34,062
    MaxPB said:

    Report from London's night life.

    It's back. It's almost as if the last 18 months never happened. Genuinely think that nothing can break us. London will always prevail where other places won't.

    It's legitimately everything I remember from two years ago with the same sad haters who believe no one ever really wants to leave their house after 9pm. I think there's a pretty big correlation between those saddos and the people who think permanent remote working is how we'll all live forever.

    Each to their own, Max.
    Some of us introverts are quite happy with it.
    As an aside, why are there no decent breakfast places open in parts of London before 9am ?
    That is sad.
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 57,370
    Mr. B, aye. Working from home doesn't work for everyone, though, but it can be better for many than office working. A mixed approach may be the way forward.
  • felixfelix Posts: 13,721
    edited July 31
    RobD said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    It's similar to the romance languages. I'm not sure if it's similar to Welsh.
    It is hugely similar to Spanish - which helped me to learn it quite well even with my rather slow and aged brain. Despite only learning Latin up to O level some 54 years ago!
  • NigelbNigelb Posts: 34,062

    ydoethur said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    Modern foreign languages such as Chinese?

    Every so often, as I recall, there's some sort of justification for the teaching of Latin. Last time it was because it developed skills which were useful in computer programming.

    And Good Morning one and all. Trust all goes well for Big G's festivities today.
    Have just given my son a cup of coffee, having stayed overnight with us for the first time in over 20 years in his old bedroom

    And thank you for your kind comments

    And at least the forecast here is for a dry day after yesterday deluge
    I see the BBC forecast for Llandudno is cloudy but dry. I remember my wedding day, almost 60 years ago; cloudy in the morning, and while the photo's were being taken, but as we set off on honeymoon the sun came out and it was a beautiful late afternoon and evening.

    All the best to you and your family, Mr BG!
    Hear hear!
    Hear hear.

    My honeymoon to my late wife was in July 1980. We honeymooned in Cornwall based at Lostwithiel. It was Wimbledon finals the 5th to be precise and we set off full of hope in bright sunshine in her lovely little MGB GT. We arrived in Cornwall and it started to rain. The windscreen wipers failed. We had to go to Bodmin to get it fixed. It rained almost ceaselessly for two weeks... wonderful company, shame about the weather!
    We went to Cornwall as well; toured in a borrowed (my mothers) Ford Anglia. However for us the weather was quite good.
    We honeymooned just in time for Hurricane Hugo.
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 57,370
    Mr. B, sounds like a whirlwind romance.
  • felixfelix Posts: 13,721

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    Its just not something thats so easy to do..... :smiley:
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 57,370
    F1: hmm, don't normally bet on practice unless it's wet and an outsider might credibly win it, but Mercedes are 2.1 to top the session. May be value.
  • kjhkjh Posts: 4,450

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
  • state_go_awaystate_go_away Posts: 3,683
    The thread starter is very serious .It makes it sound like confessing to an affair or admitting nicking the Christmas Fund. The main reason to bet is to have a bit of fun , its not the end of the world if you bet on something without being an expert on it!
  • kjhkjh Posts: 4,450
    edited July 31
    Charles said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    Gavin Williamson has evidence? I thought he just made shit up as he went along.

    I can see how Latin might help with Science given how many scientific names derive from Latin and give an idea of their purpose as a result. But I would have thought if any classical language was useful for maths and by extension ICT it would be Greek, not Latin.
    As a mathematician I fail to see how Latin or any language helps one iota. The fact that a notation is derived from another language eg iota, is completely irrelevant. If a minister thinks this they clearly have no understanding whatsoever of what is involved in doing maths
    The benefit of Latin in the romantic languages is clear. It is also helpful with English grammar (I think). Maths, etc benefit because it teaches a very logical way of thinking.

    But something teaching people just to expand their mind is a good thing
    I do not disagree that teaching Latin may be good for language skills and expanding one's mind. I never argued otherwise. From personal experience I agree with you. That may also show a fail on the argument that it also helps a logical way of thinking as that was not my argument whatsoever.

    It has no place in logic. As with all languages, although often structured, they always have logical flaws as they evolved.

    I studied logic as a specialist subject and we would often dismantle text into logical or otherwise equations.
  • Sean_FSean_F Posts: 30,219

    Mr. Eagles, you're being naughty and you know it.

    No, honestly reading Catullus 16 will get teenagers hooked on Latin.
    Or Martial 11.104.

    I certainly got my classmates' attention when I told them about Tiberius' "minnows."
  • IshmaelZIshmaelZ Posts: 9,801
    Fun fact about the utility of Latin: David Packard (of Hewlett Packard)'s very first foray into computing was a program to count the different grammatical constructions in Lucretius book 1 while he was a postgrad at Cambridge. JK Rowling also profited from doing classics at Exeter.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 40,280

    Mr. Eagles, it'll make the rest of his stuff mostly seem boring, though.

    Nah, as a scholar of both history and Latin I know what I speak of.

    I guess as a fluent speaker of seven languages I like showing off my skills.

    (Although I sound like Officer Crabtree these days when I try and speak French.)
    Surely everyone does that just to annoy them?
  • IshmaelZIshmaelZ Posts: 9,801

    Mr. B, sounds like a whirlwind romance.

    There's a lot of weather queueing up out West over the next week or so on windy.com.
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921
    kjh said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
    It would annoy me as well.
  • Daveyboy1961Daveyboy1961 Posts: 1,534
    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    Gavin Williamson has evidence? I thought he just made shit up as he went along.

    I can see how Latin might help with Science given how many scientific names derive from Latin and give an idea of their purpose as a result. But I would have thought if any classical language was useful for maths and by extension ICT it would be Greek, not Latin.
    As a mathematician I fail to see how Latin or any language helps one iota. The fact that a notation is derived from another language eg iota, is completely irrelevant. If a minister thinks this they clearly have no understanding whatsoever
    I’d have stopped there, tbh.

    My knowledge of maths extends to trolling the maths teachers at my school by putting up 2+2=5 on the whiteboards before maths lessons. I couldn’t personally see a link but I thought there might be one for Greek. If I’m wrong, I’m wrong.
    My comment wasn't aimed at you @ydoethur but our friend Gavin. Thought your post reasonable.

    PS I can make that 2+ 2 = 5 work for you with a bit of thought.
    Nice to know it was reasonable, even if it was wrong.

    My 2+2=5 is as follows:

    2.49+2.49=4.98

    Round all of them to the nearest whole number.

    Amuses the children no end.

    If there’s a proper way of doing it I’d be interested to hear it.
    Not even wrong, just my opinion and of course I agreed with the thrust of your opinion..

    Like your sum.

    I would have to think about getting that exact sum but if you change the base you might be able to do it. The fact we use 10 as a base is just chance. Base 2, 8 and 16 are used commonly. I am aware of an ancient number system that used base 60 (mind boggling).

    Obviously in base 2 : 1 + 1 = 10 Can do loads of stuff like that.

    I can also show 1 = 2 by making an error, but which is very difficult to spot. I posted it here before and will do so again when on a laptop and not my phone.
    Is that the division by zero error?
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 12,737

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    My use of the apostrophe is generally very good. However when using my Chinese phone, auto correct adds apostrophes to pretty well anything ending in an s, or where there is a double l present. Without fail "ill" becomes "I'll". Infact I have just had to recorrect "I'll" back to "ill". (twice).
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 25,231

    The thread starter is very serious .It makes it sound like confessing to an affair or admitting nicking the Christmas Fund. The main reason to bet is to have a bit of fun , its not the end of the world if you bet on something without being an expert on it!

    Isn't that the purpose of this site; to give thoughtful punters on politics a head start on those who bet 'because they hope the LD's will win' or similar. And why several posters have complained that the bookies won't allow them to bet as heavily as they would wish. They've acquired knowledge which means that they aren't betting purely on instinct; they know what they're doing, expect to win and generally do.

    We had a good example of a 'fun' bet in 2016 when Dr Foxy reported having, at the start of the season, putting £10 on Leicester City to win the League, as, I think he posted, he often did.
    Contrast this with Mr Dancer who carefully analyses F1 prospects, and shared that analysis.
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921
    DavidL said:

    Mr. Eagles, it'll make the rest of his stuff mostly seem boring, though.

    Nah, as a scholar of both history and Latin I know what I speak of.

    I guess as a fluent speaker of seven languages I like showing off my skills.

    (Although I sound like Officer Crabtree these days when I try and speak French.)
    Surely everyone does that just to annoy them?
    Okay, confession time, and if anyone ever mentions it again, I'll deny it/say my account was hacked.

    There was a time between the ages of 12 through to 25 when I spoke French fluently, French people actually thought I was a Frenchman, because only people born and bred in France spoke like that.

  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 25,231
    edited July 31

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    Gavin Williamson has evidence? I thought he just made shit up as he went along.

    I can see how Latin might help with Science given how many scientific names derive from Latin and give an idea of their purpose as a result. But I would have thought if any classical language was useful for maths and by extension ICT it would be Greek, not Latin.
    As a mathematician I fail to see how Latin or any language helps one iota. The fact that a notation is derived from another language eg iota, is completely irrelevant. If a minister thinks this they clearly have no understanding whatsoever
    I’d have stopped there, tbh.

    My knowledge of maths extends to trolling the maths teachers at my school by putting up 2+2=5 on the whiteboards before maths lessons. I couldn’t personally see a link but I thought there might be one for Greek. If I’m wrong, I’m wrong.
    My comment wasn't aimed at you @ydoethur but our friend Gavin. Thought your post reasonable.

    PS I can make that 2+ 2 = 5 work for you with a bit of thought.
    Nice to know it was reasonable, even if it was wrong.

    My 2+2=5 is as follows:

    2.49+2.49=4.98

    Round all of them to the nearest whole number.

    Amuses the children no end.

    If there’s a proper way of doing it I’d be interested to hear it.
    Not even wrong, just my opinion and of course I agreed with the thrust of your opinion..

    Like your sum.

    I would have to think about getting that exact sum but if you change the base you might be able to do it. The fact we use 10 as a base is just chance. Base 2, 8 and 16 are used commonly. I am aware of an ancient number system that used base 60 (mind boggling).

    Obviously in base 2 : 1 + 1 = 10 Can do loads of stuff like that.

    I can also show 1 = 2 by making an error, but which is very difficult to spot. I posted it here before and will do so again when on a laptop and not my phone.
    Is that the division by zero error?
    So I looked up who used base 60, and as I had suspected, it was the Sumerians. However what I didn't realise was that the system has survived to this day in the measurement of angles. A circle is 360 deg, etc.
    And, of course time. 60 minutes in an hour etc.
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 57,370
    Mr. Eagles/Mr. kjh, back when I was writing creatively I had some beta readers who offered very useful feedback. One time I accidentally sent a document that had my own notes still in it, including something along the lines of "apostrophe not needed for 'its'. Correct, then cut your hands off".
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    My use of the apostrophe is generally very good. However when using my Chinese phone, auto correct adds apostrophes to pretty well anything ending in an s, or where there is a double l present. Without fail "ill" becomes "I'll". Infact I have just had to recorrect "I'll" back to "ill". (twice).
    That's all phones. Autocorrect/predictive text is the bane* of my existence.

    *Because I have dealings with a firm called Bain and I also have a friend with the surname Bain, autocorrect often changes bane to Bain.
  • YoungTurkYoungTurk Posts: 158
    rcs1000 said:

    YoungTurk said:

    YoungTurk said:

    The vaccine passport law in France is set to go before the Constitutional Council, which reviews every law passed by Parliament, on Thursday. If it receives the OK then it will come into force four days later. Last Saturday, protestors throughout the country numbered 160000. There'll be more than that tomorrow. "The Local" (news site for expats) must be joking when they write that "(m)ore than 10,000 people are expected to join the four protests in the capital." Friends in Paris tell me you can multiply that by at least 20, possibly 50. It's obvious that tomorrow is a Big Day for opponents of the proposed law, as the last Saturday prior to the CC decision.

    A number of hospitals are already on strike against mandatory vaccination for healthworkers and the pass sanitaire, and there are calls for a general strike.

    Watch this space. There is a clear focus. This is rising, not falling.
    Surely what will happen is that there will be a lot of vaccinations in France, and then it will be quietly dropped.

    Last week, France went from 70% of adults with at least one jab to 74%. A couple more weeks of that and they’ll be comfortably in the 80s.
    Quietly dropping the pass sanitaire by September would be Macron's path to staying in the Elysée, but what if it's like the poll tax? No way could Thatcher have U-turned quietly, and if she'd U-turned at all she wouldn't have won the 1992 election. Parisian friends tell me the official police figure of 160000 for protestors last Saturday across the country was an underestimate that was exceeded in Paris alone. Macron seems to be unifying everyone who is against the government. Laying him at 1.95 is value.
  • geoffwgeoffw Posts: 5,650
    Is Latin useful? A colleague once told me he met a group of Polish monks visiting Rome who had their money stolen. Not speaking Italian they sought help from passers by, saying in Latin "non habemos pecuniam". This was met by blank expressions until they met my colleague linguist with his Irish-Catholic background and sure-footed knowledge of Latin.
  • pigeonpigeon Posts: 903
    IanB2 said:

    pigeon said:

    IanB2 said:

    pigeon said:

    Answer my own question....No British man has won an Olympic middle-distance medal for more than 30 years.

    For all the money pumped into athletics that is very poor.

    GB Athletics - Olympic medal performance since 2000

    Sydney (2,2,2):


    Gold:
    Denise Lewis, Heptathlon
    Jonathan Edwards, Triple Jump
    Silver:
    Darren Campbell, 200m
    Steve Backley, Javelin
    Bronze:
    Katharine Merry, 400m
    Kelly Holmes, 800m

    Athens (3,0,1):

    Gold:
    Kelly Holmes, 800m & 1500m
    Men's 4x100m relay
    Silver:
    None
    Bronze:
    Kelly Sotherton, Heptathlon

    Beijing (1,2,5):

    Gold:
    Christine Ohuruogu, 400m
    Silver:
    Phillips Idowu, Triple Jump
    Germaine Mason, High Jump
    Bronze:
    Men's 4x400m relay
    Women's 4x400m relay
    Tasha Danvers, 400m hurdles
    Goldie Sayers, Javelin
    Kelly Sotherton, Heptathlon

    London (3,1,1):

    Gold:
    Mo Farah, 5,000m & 10,000m
    Greg Rutherford, Long Jump
    Jessica Ennis, Heptathlon
    Silver:
    Christine Ohuruogu, 400m
    Bronze:
    Robbie Grabarz, High Jump

    Rio de Janeiro (2,1,4):

    Gold:
    Mo Farah, 5,000m & 10,000m
    Silver:
    Jessica Ennis-Hill, Heptathlon
    Bronze:
    Women's 4x100m relay
    Women's 4x400m relay
    Greg Rutherford, Long Jump
    Sophie Hitchon, Hammer

    In short, there have been only two British medallists at any distance over 400m this century, even if they so happened to be exceptional ones.
    London is therefore 4G?
    Ooops! Typos happen.
    Interesting that we all remember London as a stunning success, whereas the athletics medal total is unexceptional.
    That is because, in the round, it was indeed very successful. And the schedule gifted the athletics team three of its four gold medals within the space on an hour.

    Anyway, on the state of British Men's track athletics, did you know that:

    * All of the individual sprint distance records (100m, 200m, 400m, 110m hurdles and 400m hurdles) date back to the 1990s. The 800m record still belongs to Sebastian Coe and was set in 1981.

    * Records for the longer Olympic track distances, barring the 3000m steeplechase which dates back to 1988, are all held by Mo Farah (who also holds the British marathon record.)

    * Mo Farah is also the only individual men's champion in any track event since Linford Christie won the 100m in Barcelona in 1992 (the men's 4x100m relay squad won gold in Athens.)

    In field events, only two British men have become Olympic champions so far this century: Jonathan Edwards in Sydney, and Greg Rutherford in London.
  • isamisam Posts: 38,534

    This is quite a concept.

    Excellent article with England's world cup winning coach.

    ‘I wanted us to lift Peter Crouch up at a corner like a second row in rugby’ – Clive Woodward at Southampton

    https://theathletic.com/2725048/2021/07/31/i-wanted-us-to-lift-peter-crouch-up-at-a-corner-like-a-second-row-in-rugby-clive-woodward-at-southampton/

    I have long wondered if it would be possible to do that at set pieces, but never tried it. Interesting article, Sir Clive was ahead of his time
  • Daveyboy1961Daveyboy1961 Posts: 1,534
    edited July 31

    kjh said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
    It would annoy me as well.
    I went to a grammar school in the 70s and studied compulsory Latin for 2 years. The first term consisted entirely of English grammar, which I think the teacher thought would help with Latin grammar. It did, but it as infinitely more valuable in my English lessons. I did find Latin very interesting and enjoyable, I only dropped it during the options time as I was a scientist at school.
  • SouthamObserverSouthamObserver Posts: 35,924

    kjh said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
    It would annoy me as well.
    I went to a grammar school in the 70s and studied compulsory Latin for 2 years. The first term consisted entirely of English grammar, which I think the teacher thought would help with Latin grammar. It did, but it as infinitely more valuable in my English lessons. I did find Latin very interesting and enjoyable, I only dropped it during the options time as I was a scientist at school.

    I went to a grammar school in the 1970s, too. We learned French, Spanish and Latin grammar. We were never taught English grammar! If it was taught routinely I think that, as a country, we'd be far better at foreign languages. Once you understand how your own one works, you are in a much better position to learn others.

  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 57,370
    I learnt almost nothing in English. Far more useful info on language structure etc was learnt from French and German lessons. The English lessons I had could've been entirely replaced at no detriment to my education.
  • SandyRentoolSandyRentool Posts: 15,347
    I noticed down thread that the mixed gender triathlon includes Transition.

    Take about extreme sports!
  • pigeonpigeon Posts: 903
    One other Olympic factoid, prompted by discussion of the series of unfortunate events in the rowing: husband informs me that Great Britain holds the all-time record for fourth place finishes in Olympic competition.
  • MaxPBMaxPB Posts: 31,861
    Nigelb said:

    MaxPB said:

    Report from London's night life.

    It's back. It's almost as if the last 18 months never happened. Genuinely think that nothing can break us. London will always prevail where other places won't.

    It's legitimately everything I remember from two years ago with the same sad haters who believe no one ever really wants to leave their house after 9pm. I think there's a pretty big correlation between those saddos and the people who think permanent remote working is how we'll all live forever.

    Each to their own, Max.
    Some of us introverts are quite happy with it.
    As an aside, why are there no decent breakfast places open in parts of London before 9am ?
    That is sad.
    Depends on where you are I guess. I've got quite a few places open at 7am on my walk to the tube station (East Finchley).
  • Sean_FSean_F Posts: 30,219

    kjh said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
    It would annoy me as well.
    I went to a grammar school in the 70s and studied compulsory Latin for 2 years. The first term consisted entirely of English grammar, which I think the teacher thought would help with Latin grammar. It did, but it as infinitely more valuable in my English lessons. I did find Latin very interesting and enjoyable, I only dropped it during the options time as I was a scientist at school.

    I went to a grammar school in the 1970s, too. We learned French, Spanish and Latin grammar. We were never taught English grammar! If it was taught routinely I think that, as a country, we'd be far better at foreign languages. Once you understand how your own one works, you are in a much better position to learn others.

    I didn't even know that English had a grammar until I started learning Latin. All the focus in English was creative writing (which is certainly a good skill) vocabulary and spelling (certainly useful, but less useful than grammar).
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 69,759
    edited July 31

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    What a snivelling suck up.

    (Not against Latin, I found it interesting doing just a very little of it at Uni, and as Sean F says I'd not really been taught grammar before that, but come on)
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 25,231
    geoffw said:

    Is Latin useful? A colleague once told me he met a group of Polish monks visiting Rome who had their money stolen. Not speaking Italian they sought help from passers by, saying in Latin "non habemos pecuniam". This was met by blank expressions until they met my colleague linguist with his Irish-Catholic background and sure-footed knowledge of Latin.

    Back in the 80's I went on a trip to what was then Czechoslovakia and as part of the trip visited a elderly lady pharmacy academic in Bratislava. She complained that she was now expected to teach, as well as Czech and Slovak students, North Vietnamese, as part of some support scheme, and that she and they had no common language.
    'Not even Latin' she sniffed, and said something about all students learn that, surely.
  • kjhkjh Posts: 4,450
    @ydoethur here is the 1 = 2 problem. A secondary school child should understand it, but only a very bright one will know what the flaw is that createws a wrong answer. When I showed it on PB most people could spot the error.

    This generally doesn't crop up in school as problems are set to avoid it, but obviously it can do easily if the child goes down an interesting route. With complex equations it is very easy to fall into the trap of making this mistake and not being aware of it. Often you only notice several pages later when you get a nonsense result and can't see any error. I have done it many times sadly with very big equations

    Define a = b
    Therefore a.a = a.b
    Therefore a.a - b.b = a.b - b.b
    Therefore (a + b)(a - b) = b(a - b)
    Therefore a + b = b
    Therefore (as a = b) 2b = b
    Therefore 2 = 1

    The above would look better if the square sign was used in lines 2 and 3 but I couldn't be arsed to find out how to do it.

    There is nothing wrong with each mathematical process from each line to the next. The flaw is in moving from line 4 to line 5. To do so I have divided each side by (a - b). Normally there would be nothing wrong with this, but because I have defined a = b and because therefore each side of the equation is in effect 0 = 0 then I have 0 divided by 0 going from line 4 to line 5.

    As a consequence I am able to prove (incorrectly) that any damn number equals anything I want it to!
  • MaxPBMaxPB Posts: 31,861

    kjh said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
    It would annoy me as well.
    I went to a grammar school in the 70s and studied compulsory Latin for 2 years. The first term consisted entirely of English grammar, which I think the teacher thought would help with Latin grammar. It did, but it as infinitely more valuable in my English lessons. I did find Latin very interesting and enjoyable, I only dropped it during the options time as I was a scientist at school.
    Similar to my experience of a grammar school. Latin until 3rd form and then dropped it for science at GCSE.
  • kjhkjh Posts: 4,450

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    Gavin Williamson has evidence? I thought he just made shit up as he went along.

    I can see how Latin might help with Science given how many scientific names derive from Latin and give an idea of their purpose as a result. But I would have thought if any classical language was useful for maths and by extension ICT it would be Greek, not Latin.
    As a mathematician I fail to see how Latin or any language helps one iota. The fact that a notation is derived from another language eg iota, is completely irrelevant. If a minister thinks this they clearly have no understanding whatsoever
    I’d have stopped there, tbh.

    My knowledge of maths extends to trolling the maths teachers at my school by putting up 2+2=5 on the whiteboards before maths lessons. I couldn’t personally see a link but I thought there might be one for Greek. If I’m wrong, I’m wrong.
    My comment wasn't aimed at you @ydoethur but our friend Gavin. Thought your post reasonable.

    PS I can make that 2+ 2 = 5 work for you with a bit of thought.
    Nice to know it was reasonable, even if it was wrong.

    My 2+2=5 is as follows:

    2.49+2.49=4.98

    Round all of them to the nearest whole number.

    Amuses the children no end.

    If there’s a proper way of doing it I’d be interested to hear it.
    Not even wrong, just my opinion and of course I agreed with the thrust of your opinion..

    Like your sum.

    I would have to think about getting that exact sum but if you change the base you might be able to do it. The fact we use 10 as a base is just chance. Base 2, 8 and 16 are used commonly. I am aware of an ancient number system that used base 60 (mind boggling).

    Obviously in base 2 : 1 + 1 = 10 Can do loads of stuff like that.

    I can also show 1 = 2 by making an error, but which is very difficult to spot. I posted it here before and will do so again when on a laptop and not my phone.
    Is that the division by zero error?
    Yes. I just posted it. Very good memory.
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 69,759

    I learnt almost nothing in English. Far more useful info on language structure etc was learnt from French and German lessons. The English lessons I had could've been entirely replaced at no detriment to my education.

    I cannot actually recall now what I did in English language GCSE as opposed to the English literature one.

    I presume i learned something, but it's one of those areas I feel being an avid reader as a child helped more than anything else.
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 69,759

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    My use of the apostrophe is generally very good. However when using my Chinese phone, auto correct adds apostrophes to pretty well anything ending in an s, or where there is a double l present. Without fail "ill" becomes "I'll". Infact I have just had to recorrect "I'll" back to "ill". (twice).
    That's all phones. Autocorrect/predictive text is the bane* of my existence.

    *Because I have dealings with a firm called Bain and I also have a friend with the surname Bain, autocorrect often changes bane to Bain.
    Isnt that the company Mitt Romney worked for?
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 57,370
    Mr. kle4, yeah, I was into books from a very early age and that helped a lot.
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921
    kle4 said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    My use of the apostrophe is generally very good. However when using my Chinese phone, auto correct adds apostrophes to pretty well anything ending in an s, or where there is a double l present. Without fail "ill" becomes "I'll". Infact I have just had to recorrect "I'll" back to "ill". (twice).
    That's all phones. Autocorrect/predictive text is the bane* of my existence.

    *Because I have dealings with a firm called Bain and I also have a friend with the surname Bain, autocorrect often changes bane to Bain.
    Isnt that the company Mitt Romney worked for?
    Not only worked for but founded.
  • pigeonpigeon Posts: 903
    pigeon said:

    One other Olympic factoid, prompted by discussion of the series of unfortunate events in the rowing: husband informs me that Great Britain holds the all-time record for fourth place finishes in Olympic competition.

    On which topic, in addition to contriving to finish 4th in, IIRC, no less than six of the fourteen rowing competitions, Team GB have now come fourth in both the men's and women's rugby sevens.

    Time for the British Olympic Association to start campaigning for the institution of the Pewter Medal. We'd have a sack full of the blessed things.
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 34,484
    kjh said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
    However it matters not a jot as no-one but a few weirdos care nowadays and if you really need to you stick it on the computer and get it done for you.
  • YoungTurkYoungTurk Posts: 158
    edited July 31

    kjh said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
    It would annoy me as well.
    I went to a grammar school in the 70s and studied compulsory Latin for 2 years. The first term consisted entirely of English grammar, which I think the teacher thought would help with Latin grammar. It did, but it as infinitely more valuable in my English lessons. I did find Latin very interesting and enjoyable, I only dropped it during the options time as I was a scientist at school.

    I went to a grammar school in the 1970s, too. We learned French, Spanish and Latin grammar. We were never taught English grammar! If it was taught routinely I think that, as a country, we'd be far better at foreign languages. Once you understand how your own one works, you are in a much better position to learn others.

    More than that, the grammar of your native language should be taught with a view to your learning the grammar of other languages. An example is that it's important to teach noun cases. Even though nouns in English take a single form across cases, they should still be viewed as being in this or that case. Not only does this help with many other languages but it also helps bring home the difference between form and function. Function is precisely what the parts of speech and the articulation of clauses are about. Another example is that the perfect and progressive forms of a verb can be taught as a matter of aspect rather than tense. You don't have to make a big thing about it: you can just point it out. It helps with Slavic languages.
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 69,759

    Mr. kle4, yeah, I was into books from a very early age and that helped a lot.

    Makes me try to reflect on the first book I ever read and I'm drawing a blank. I vividly remember Matilda and other Dahl books as favourites, but I must have read things before going straight to that.
  • kjhkjh Posts: 4,450

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    Gavin Williamson has evidence? I thought he just made shit up as he went along.

    I can see how Latin might help with Science given how many scientific names derive from Latin and give an idea of their purpose as a result. But I would have thought if any classical language was useful for maths and by extension ICT it would be Greek, not Latin.
    As a mathematician I fail to see how Latin or any language helps one iota. The fact that a notation is derived from another language eg iota, is completely irrelevant. If a minister thinks this they clearly have no understanding whatsoever
    I’d have stopped there, tbh.

    My knowledge of maths extends to trolling the maths teachers at my school by putting up 2+2=5 on the whiteboards before maths lessons. I couldn’t personally see a link but I thought there might be one for Greek. If I’m wrong, I’m wrong.
    My comment wasn't aimed at you @ydoethur but our friend Gavin. Thought your post reasonable.

    PS I can make that 2+ 2 = 5 work for you with a bit of thought.
    Nice to know it was reasonable, even if it was wrong.

    My 2+2=5 is as follows:

    2.49+2.49=4.98

    Round all of them to the nearest whole number.

    Amuses the children no end.

    If there’s a proper way of doing it I’d be interested to hear it.
    Not even wrong, just my opinion and of course I agreed with the thrust of your opinion..

    Like your sum.

    I would have to think about getting that exact sum but if you change the base you might be able to do it. The fact we use 10 as a base is just chance. Base 2, 8 and 16 are used commonly. I am aware of an ancient number system that used base 60 (mind boggling).

    Obviously in base 2 : 1 + 1 = 10 Can do loads of stuff like that.

    I can also show 1 = 2 by making an error, but which is very difficult to spot. I posted it here before and will do so again when on a laptop and not my phone.
    Is that the division by zero error?
    So I looked up who used base 60, and as I had suspected, it was the Sumerians. However what I didn't realise was that the system has survived to this day in the measurement of angles. A circle is 360 deg, etc.
    And, of course time. 60 minutes in an hour etc.
    Sadly my brain contains a lot of crap information. Don't know why I remembered the base 60 stuff. Might be because I can't comprehend how you can hold that number of symbols in your head.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 25,231
    MaxPB said:

    kjh said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
    It would annoy me as well.
    I went to a grammar school in the 70s and studied compulsory Latin for 2 years. The first term consisted entirely of English grammar, which I think the teacher thought would help with Latin grammar. It did, but it as infinitely more valuable in my English lessons. I did find Latin very interesting and enjoyable, I only dropped it during the options time as I was a scientist at school.
    Similar to my experience of a grammar school. Latin until 3rd form and then dropped it for science at GCSE.
    And mine in the 50's. We did English Language and English Literature as separate GCE subjects as well, and I have a vague memory of at least two English lessons per week, one, in retrospect, Language, the other Literature.
  • CharlesCharles Posts: 34,932

    Mr. Eagles, you're being naughty and you know it.

    No, honestly reading Catullus 16 will get teenagers hooked on Latin.
    Although Wikipedia’s parsing of the precise entomology of the words always makes me chuckle
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 57,370
    Mr. kle4, I remember reading a child's biology book at the age of 4 or so and discovering what sex was. I thought the pictures were so hilarious I ran downstairs to show my mother. She and the half dozen friends she was having tea with evidently agreed with me, because when I presented the book to them they also burst out laughing.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 25,231
    kjh said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    kjh said:

    ydoethur said:

    RobD said:

    MattW said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    He's probably right. It has huge underlying benefits for background knowledge / skills.
    That is the claim but evidence is patchy. If learning an additional language, like, say, Welsh, helps other languages, mathematics, or whatever, then why aren't pupils in, say, Wales, racing ahead?
    Is Welsh similar enough to other languages to be useful in that way?
    I've no idea because without seeing Gavin Williamson's evidence, it is hard to know. However, since it is also claimed that classics help with other subjects like maths, biology and computing, there must be more to it than its closeness to French or German.
    Gavin Williamson has evidence? I thought he just made shit up as he went along.

    I can see how Latin might help with Science given how many scientific names derive from Latin and give an idea of their purpose as a result. But I would have thought if any classical language was useful for maths and by extension ICT it would be Greek, not Latin.
    As a mathematician I fail to see how Latin or any language helps one iota. The fact that a notation is derived from another language eg iota, is completely irrelevant. If a minister thinks this they clearly have no understanding whatsoever
    I’d have stopped there, tbh.

    My knowledge of maths extends to trolling the maths teachers at my school by putting up 2+2=5 on the whiteboards before maths lessons. I couldn’t personally see a link but I thought there might be one for Greek. If I’m wrong, I’m wrong.
    My comment wasn't aimed at you @ydoethur but our friend Gavin. Thought your post reasonable.

    PS I can make that 2+ 2 = 5 work for you with a bit of thought.
    Nice to know it was reasonable, even if it was wrong.

    My 2+2=5 is as follows:

    2.49+2.49=4.98

    Round all of them to the nearest whole number.

    Amuses the children no end.

    If there’s a proper way of doing it I’d be interested to hear it.
    Not even wrong, just my opinion and of course I agreed with the thrust of your opinion..

    Like your sum.

    I would have to think about getting that exact sum but if you change the base you might be able to do it. The fact we use 10 as a base is just chance. Base 2, 8 and 16 are used commonly. I am aware of an ancient number system that used base 60 (mind boggling).

    Obviously in base 2 : 1 + 1 = 10 Can do loads of stuff like that.

    I can also show 1 = 2 by making an error, but which is very difficult to spot. I posted it here before and will do so again when on a laptop and not my phone.
    Is that the division by zero error?
    So I looked up who used base 60, and as I had suspected, it was the Sumerians. However what I didn't realise was that the system has survived to this day in the measurement of angles. A circle is 360 deg, etc.
    And, of course time. 60 minutes in an hour etc.
    Sadly my brain contains a lot of crap information. Don't know why I remembered the base 60 stuff. Might be because I can't comprehend how you can hold that number of symbols in your head.
    It's quite amazing what can be dragged out of ones memory from long, long ago. Even stuff for which you thought there was no use at the time.
  • pigeonpigeon Posts: 903
    kle4 said:

    I learnt almost nothing in English. Far more useful info on language structure etc was learnt from French and German lessons. The English lessons I had could've been entirely replaced at no detriment to my education.

    I cannot actually recall now what I did in English language GCSE as opposed to the English literature one.

    I presume i learned something, but it's one of those areas I feel being an avid reader as a child helped more than anything else.
    Now you mention it, I think my experience was exactly the same. Even though it was a very long time ago and I have an appalling memory, I can still just about recall one or two of the works I studied in English Lit - but I've not a clue what I did in English Lang or what point, if any, there was to it.
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 34,484

    malcolmg said:

    kjh said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
    However it matters not a jot as no-one but a few weirdos care nowadays and if you really need to you stick it on the computer and get it done for you.
    It is very important.

    It is the difference between knowing your shit and knowing you're shit.

    It also helps clarify things like helping your Uncle Jack off a horse and helping your uncle jack off a horse.
    Someone has a dodgy Uncle Jack comes to mind.
  • Fysics_TeacherFysics_Teacher Posts: 5,611
    pigeon said:

    Gavin Williamson thinks teaching Latin will improve maths and modern foreign language learning (and by coincidence, Boris is a keen classicist so that would be a reason to keep Williamson on).

    Latin will be taught in state schools to end its ‘elitist’ status
    Officials believe subject will help pupils learn modern foreign languages and could bring improvements in English and maths

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/30/latin-will-taught-state-schools-end-elitist-status/ (£££)

    Fascinating. I wonder where he plans on finding all these Latin teachers?
    We have a small classics department. Latin is reasonably popular in KS3, but few pick it for GCSE and even fewer for A-level.

    Latin teachers might be easier to find than you think: there are a surprising number of classics graduates teaching something else in schools: our first IT teacher was a classicist.

    As to how learning Latin and/or Greek would help with otter subjects: a significant number of scientific (and other technical) terms are derived from those two languages, so a basic knowledge of them can help understand what is going on a bit. Physics and (even more) maths also use a large chunk of the Greek alphabet as symbols so being able to recognise those symbols as letters is always useful. For this reason Latin (and possibly a bit of Greek) are more useful than you might think, given that nobody speaks Latin any more, and modern Greek is as closely related to Ancient Greek as the language I’m using here is to the one Chaucer used.
  • Sean_FSean_F Posts: 30,219

    malcolmg said:

    kjh said:

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    I took no notice of any of this stuff when at school. As a consequence my English was appalling. It annoys me intensely now.
    However it matters not a jot as no-one but a few weirdos care nowadays and if you really need to you stick it on the computer and get it done for you.
    It is very important.

    It is the difference between knowing your shit and knowing you're shit.

    It also helps clarify things like helping your Uncle Jack off a horse and helping your uncle jack off a horse.
    Or the difference between a person who eats shits, and leaves. And a person who eats, shits, and leaves.
  • TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 97,921
    edited July 31
    I'd also make English lessons teach the Oxford comma.

    I know I hide it well, but I love the Oxford comma.

    Apart from the A40/M40 towards Cambridge the Oxford Comma is the only decent thing to come out of Oxford.
  • JosiasJessopJosiasJessop Posts: 26,220

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    My use of the apostrophe is generally very good. However when using my Chinese phone, auto correct adds apostrophes to pretty well anything ending in an s, or where there is a double l present. Without fail "ill" becomes "I'll". Infact I have just had to recorrect "I'll" back to "ill". (twice).
    That's all phones. Autocorrect/predictive text is the bane* of my existence.

    *Because I have dealings with a firm called Bain and I also have a friend with the surname Bain, autocorrect often changes bane to Bain.
    Bah. That's nothing. When we were working together, it turned out my wife's name sounds a little like a company we did work for, and a place we had an office in China. We would have tongue-twisters like: "Can Sencan call Shenzhen about the suspended substrate stripline on Sangean's system."

    In fact, if you say 'Shenzhen' you're nearer the correct pronunciation of her name than if you do it phonetically ...
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 25,231
    pigeon said:

    kle4 said:

    I learnt almost nothing in English. Far more useful info on language structure etc was learnt from French and German lessons. The English lessons I had could've been entirely replaced at no detriment to my education.

    I cannot actually recall now what I did in English language GCSE as opposed to the English literature one.

    I presume i learned something, but it's one of those areas I feel being an avid reader as a child helped more than anything else.
    Now you mention it, I think my experience was exactly the same. Even though it was a very long time ago and I have an appalling memory, I can still just about recall one or two of the works I studied in English Lit - but I've not a clue what I did in English Lang or what point, if any, there was to it.
    I do recall having to précis. Quite useful in later life when having to pick out the significant parts of a report.
  • YoungTurkYoungTurk Posts: 158
    edited July 31
    kjh said:

    @ydoethur here is the 1 = 2 problem. A secondary school child should understand it, but only a very bright one will know what the flaw is that createws a wrong answer. When I showed it on PB most people could spot the error.

    This generally doesn't crop up in school as problems are set to avoid it, but obviously it can do easily if the child goes down an interesting route. With complex equations it is very easy to fall into the trap of making this mistake and not being aware of it. Often you only notice several pages later when you get a nonsense result and can't see any error. I have done it many times sadly with very big equations

    Define a = b
    Therefore a.a = a.b
    Therefore a.a - b.b = a.b - b.b
    Therefore (a + b)(a - b) = b(a - b)
    Therefore a + b = b
    Therefore (as a = b) 2b = b
    Therefore 2 = 1

    The above would look better if the square sign was used in lines 2 and 3 but I couldn't be arsed to find out how to do it.

    There is nothing wrong with each mathematical process from each line to the next. The flaw is in moving from line 4 to line 5. To do so I have divided each side by (a - b). Normally there would be nothing wrong with this, but because I have defined a = b and because therefore each side of the equation is in effect 0 = 0 then I have 0 divided by 0 going from line 4 to line 5.

    As a consequence I am able to prove (incorrectly) that any damn number equals anything I want it to!

    That's a classic. There's also this:

    (-1)/1 = -1 = 1/(-1)
    square root] sqrt(-1)/sqrt(1) = sqrt(1)/sqrt(-1)
    cross-multiply] sqrt(-1) * sqrt(-1) = sqrt(1) * sqrt(1)
    => -1 = 1
  • OnlyLivingBoyOnlyLivingBoy Posts: 6,471

    I'm all for teaching kids in state schools Latin and Greek.

    I learned both at school and it was great.

    My advice is to the teachers is to get them hooked straight away, and start with Catullus 16.

    Heck I might make a career change and become a Latin teacher.

    Semper ubi, sub ubi.

    I learned both Latin and ancient Greek at school, Greek up to Standard Grade and Latin to Higher. My school was probably one of the few Comprehensive schools in Scotland to offer both subjects. I wouldn't say it was a complete waste of time, and I enjoyed it and did well in both subjects, but with the benefit of hindsight I wish I had studied a modern language instead. For me the Classics were the easy option.
  • SandpitSandpit Posts: 34,989

    Memo to Gavin Williamson, can you please spend extra money to teach kids how to use apostrophes (correctly).

    My use of the apostrophe is generally very good. However when using my Chinese phone, auto correct adds apostrophes to pretty well anything ending in an s, or where there is a double l present. Without fail "ill" becomes "I'll". Infact I have just had to recorrect "I'll" back to "ill". (twice).
    That's all phones. Autocorrect/predictive text is the bane* of my existence.

    *Because I have dealings with a firm called Bain and I also have a friend with the surname Bain, autocorrect often changes bane to Bain.
    Thanks to PB, I still have to correct back every auto capitalisation of “May”.
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 44,618
    Steven Swinford
    @Steven_Swinford
    ·
    1h
    Exclusive:

    Cabinet revolt over vaccine passports intensifies

    Ministers warn that policy will deny people their basic freedoms

    'This is the kind of thing that Dominic Cummings would endorse. It’s not who we are'

  • kle4kle4 Posts: 69,759
    I do enjoy these mixed sex events, good spectacle, but it did make me wonder if they would be even more weighted to big, rich nations than other events, due to it being easier to find 4 pretty good participants to be involved, when individually anyone good enough might get through for their nation.
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 44,618
    Minister:

    'This policy [vaxports] will be in the hands of Keir Starmer and Nicola Sturgeon'




    Why does that fill me with woe?
  • Northern_AlNorthern_Al Posts: 2,999
    On Latin. The revival of Latin in state schools has often been debated. Indeed, the then Mayor of London had a similar proposal in 2010, which came to nothing:

    https://citywire.co.uk/funds-insider/news/is-boris-johnson-right-should-more-state-school-children-learn-latin/a388437

    The last sentence of the article linked to does presage the future:

    Or is Boris Johnson a barking mad posh idiot with little or no connection to the real world?

    Gavin's proposal is very modest, if one reads the (grammatically flawed) small print:

    ...the Latin Excellence Programme will be led by a centre of excellence, which will work with up to 40 schools to develop teacher training resources and lesson materials for 11-16 year-olds. Once developed, the programme will support schools over four years from 2022 to 2026, which will be evaluated for future years.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 25,231

    We learnt grammar at junior school. We had a blue book with a white cross on the front.

    I don't recall any grammar being taught in secondary school.

    Grammar makes English more like a science. Which makes it more interesting for those whose aptitude is in that direction.

    Having the ability to write in precise, unambiguous terms is essential for scientists and engineers. Correct use of grammar certainly facilitates this.

    At one time in my life I had to review applications by pharmacists to open pharmacies. Often my heart would sink when I saw the scruffy semi-literate documents which my colleagues thought would convince the adjudicating committees.
  • QuincelQuincel Posts: 3,791
    isam said:

    This is quite a concept.

    Excellent article with England's world cup winning coach.

    ‘I wanted us to lift Peter Crouch up at a corner like a second row in rugby’ – Clive Woodward at Southampton

    https://theathletic.com/2725048/2021/07/31/i-wanted-us-to-lift-peter-crouch-up-at-a-corner-like-a-second-row-in-rugby-clive-woodward-at-southampton/

    I have long wondered if it would be possible to do that at set pieces, but never tried it. Interesting article, Sir Clive was ahead of his time
    Apparently this is generally understood to be unsporting conduct, but I've also wondered. I think they should allow it.
  • Fysics_TeacherFysics_Teacher Posts: 5,611

    I'd also make English lessons teach the Oxford comma.

    I know I hide it well, but I love the Oxford comma.

    Apart from the A40/M40 towards Cambridge the Oxford Comma is the only decent thing to come out of Oxford.

    If you think either the A40 or the M40 go anywhere near Cambridge (or even in its direction) then your geographic knowledge is… what I would expect from someone who had to settle for Cambridge.
  • Sunil_PrasannanSunil_Prasannan Posts: 38,632
    kle4 said:

    I do enjoy these mixed sex events, good spectacle, but it did make me wonder if they would be even more weighted to big, rich nations than other events, due to it being easier to find 4 pretty good participants to be involved, when individually anyone good enough might get through for their nation.

    I like to think that the mixed events are a nice, big FU to the more - shall we say - "conservative" cultures around the world.
  • QuincelQuincel Posts: 3,791

    The thread starter is very serious .It makes it sound like confessing to an affair or admitting nicking the Christmas Fund. The main reason to bet is to have a bit of fun , its not the end of the world if you bet on something without being an expert on it!

    Isn't that the purpose of this site; to give thoughtful punters on politics a head start on those who bet 'because they hope the LD's will win' or similar. And why several posters have complained that the bookies won't allow them to bet as heavily as they would wish. They've acquired knowledge which means that they aren't betting purely on instinct; they know what they're doing, expect to win and generally do.

    We had a good example of a 'fun' bet in 2016 when Dr Foxy reported having, at the start of the season, putting £10 on Leicester City to win the League, as, I think he posted, he often did.
    Contrast this with Mr Dancer who carefully analyses F1 prospects, and shared that analysis.
    Obviously people can bet for whatever (healthy) reasons they want to, but as you say I am one of the PBers who has tried to make this more of a side-hustle and take it a bit seriously. And one of my goals with my articles is to promote my worldview of more analytic, serious, punting.
  • DecrepiterJohnLDecrepiterJohnL Posts: 10,743

    We learnt grammar at junior school. We had a blue book with a white cross on the front.

    I don't recall any grammar being taught in secondary school.

    Grammar makes English more like a science. Which makes it more interesting for those whose aptitude is in that direction.

    Having the ability to write in precise, unambiguous terms is essential for scientists and engineers. Correct use of grammar certainly facilitates this.

    I've been in the company of MFL (modern foreign languages) teachers lamenting the fact they had to teach the rudiments of English grammar because the English department had decided it was not needed or blocked creativity or came naturally or something.

    Though I can see how the grammar pendulum could swing too far the other way and the subject could be made far too complex merely so someone can set an exam in it. GCSE English should not be a BA in Linguistics. (I can't decide whether "be a BA" is clever or stupid.)

    But that is an argument for teaching basic English better, not for teaching Latin and hoping something transfers across from its quite different grammar.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 4,571
    Quincel said:

    isam said:

    This is quite a concept.

    Excellent article with England's world cup winning coach.

    ‘I wanted us to lift Peter Crouch up at a corner like a second row in rugby’ – Clive Woodward at Southampton

    https://theathletic.com/2725048/2021/07/31/i-wanted-us-to-lift-peter-crouch-up-at-a-corner-like-a-second-row-in-rugby-clive-woodward-at-southampton/

    I have long wondered if it would be possible to do that at set pieces, but never tried it. Interesting article, Sir Clive was ahead of his time
    Apparently this is generally understood to be unsporting conduct, but I've also wondered. I think they should allow it.
    Even if tried once it would be shut down very quick, like the flicked up free kick in the 1970s.
  • QuincelQuincel Posts: 3,791
    DavidL said:

    On topic, whilst I completely agree with @Quincel's central point I think his bets have a good chance of coming off. In the pool in particular the US have significantly underperformed their usual levels and I think that they are below par in the gymnastics too, if by less.

    I agree, which is why I was keen to publish this article before the results are known. Its gonna be close one way or another.
This discussion has been closed.