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In Brief

The Globe Theatre in London is to use laser discs accessed with a barcode reader in its workshops for children and adults. The discs enable the user to move quickly between different parts of the play, showing sequences on a screen. With the reader they scan shop-style barcodes on a corresponding textbook and the chosen sequence is played.

"It allows us to teach Shakespeare in the way it has always been intended as a performance, not a text," says Alastair Tallon of the Globe's education department.

Later this year the system will be used in two of the Globe's Shakespeare INSET days, which are sponsored by The Times Educational Supplement. Romeo and Juliet will be the theme for Saturday September 13 and A Midsummer Night's Dream for Saturday November 11.

The Laser Barcode system costs Pounds 899 which includes a choice of one title from Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth and A Midsummer Night's Dream.

Projects resulting from partnerships between a group of West Midland schools and local manufacturing companies will be on display at a special Primary Schools Technology Day at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham on June 22. The organisers of the scheme, the Machine Tool Technologies Association and the Central Warwickshire Education and Business Partnership, decided to expand the project to the West Midlands, following a pilot project involving six partnerships in Warwickshire .

Children aged 8-10 visited companies and then explored manufacturing through cross-curricular activities. School technology kits were provided. For further information about the project and technology day contact Richard Griffiths at the Machine Tool Technologies Association on 0171 402 6671.

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