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2-8 FEBRUARY 2013


It's good to talk

A hundred polyglot teachers met in York for the annual get-together of the Independent Schools' Modern Languages Association, with everything from introducing Arabic to British Sign Language up for discussion.


How do you like them apples?

Most school libraries contain a few dusty encyclopaedias but pupils at Newcastle-under-Lyme School, Staffordshire, unearthed some 17th-century books by Sir Isaac Newton. It was a find of some gravity.


Name dropping

The National Association for Gifted Children changed its name to the somewhat more cryptic Potential Plus UK. "Our name change is a significant departure for the gifted and talented world," the organisation insisted.


To the letter

Can anyone spell "baguette"? The London rounds of the Girls' Day School Trust Foreign Language Spelling Bee took place in Pinner. Girls demonstrated their ability to spell such tricky words as anticonstitutionnellement.


From strength to strength

Eton College headmaster Tony Little addressed a "character and resilience summit" in London about how to make state-school children as mentally tough as private school ones.


Food group

Obesity is never off the menu these days: the Westminster Food and Nutrition Forum held a seminar on the subject, with Richard Cienciala, the government's deputy director of health and well-being, as guest speaker.


Twinkle, twinkle

The cosmic census begins. The Campaign to Protect Rural England and the British Astronomical Association's Star Count Week asks volunteers to count the number of stars they can see in the Orion constellation.


9-15 FEBRUARY 2013


Man with a plan

Plan B, the rapper who mentored East London schoolchildren and praised the education he received at a pupil referral unit, will appear in concert at the O2 Arena.


Snake, rattle and roll

It's out with the dragon and in with the snake. Chinese New Year will be celebrated around the world with music and dancing in the streets and joyous feasting. Time for a compulsory Mandarin lesson?


Seen and heard

The week-long Imagine children's literature festival begins today at the Southbank Centre in London. Expect poet John Hegley, Where's Wally and a smorgasbord of literary treats.


On the flip side

Impress the Ofsted inspectors with a batch of pancakes smothered in syrup. But don't forget how it fits in with your religious studies curriculum: Shrove Tuesday kicks off 40 days of fasting.


Positive feedback

The world is expected to go gaga today in celebration of World Radio Day, which highlights and promotes the role radio plays in helping poor and isolated communities to access information.


The joy of sex?

It's Valentine's Day and the patron saint of strippers, Peter Stringfellow, will be speaking at the Cambridge Union. The debate? "This House believes that sex has lost all meaning."


Combat fatigue

It's the tenth anniversary of the Iraq War protests, when millions took to the streets to wave placards and mock Tony Blair and George W. Bush. It didn't stop the fighting but it made people feel good at the time.

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