A busy Monday 7th Sept

Today was much more variable! Lab work, computer work and a Brilliant Club tutorial kept me busy 🙂 .

I arrived at 8:30am and went straight to the lab. I set up the samples I finished processing over the weekend and left them in the freezer ready for collection (and fingers crossed running today). After they were safely in the freezer I checked on a growth curve that I set up on Saturday to run for 48hours, this was a test run of something but I had the results I needed so this week I can get going with a new experiment perfect 🙂 .

I was at my computer by 9:30am and it was time to get going with my slides for the SGM competition next week. I’m practicing my talk in our lab meeting tomorrow so I need to get the slides ready before then (although it’s never a easy as it seems). I opened up my outline and started putting together my intro slides, for something like this I feel like the intro is really important to effectively communicate my work. If I don’t explain the basics well how can I expect anyone to follow to results. While I was working away emails were flying about going to collect a new batch of samples from a collaborator, how about 9:30am tomorrow? No thanks, I have a presentation to give at 10am. This isn’t what I needed, I needed to be getting on with my presentation (and also make a poster for a conference next week – printing deadline tomorrow morning!). In all honesty I think these samples can wait but the boss is going away again and wants to see the outcome. Luckily one of the post-docs in our lab agreed to go and collect the samples for me, so a huge thank you to her! It isn’t the collecting the samples that takes time, it’s that the samples need a minimal level of processing before they can go in the freezer. I also had to leave at 12pm for my Brilliant Club tutorial. This morning went so quickly! I grabbed a snack at about 11am and plodded away with the presentation until I had to leave to catch the bus at 12pm. 

I spent 1-3pm delivering my feedback tutorial to my Brilliant Club scholars, they produced some really exceptional work so this was by far the best feedback tutorial I’ve done. I did hold out on giving them their actual marks for as long as possible as you tend to lose your audience as soon as they have their mark. I had them do a few different activities looking at examples of good work and practicing using the markscheme to mark it themselves, then I gave them their assignments (without marks) so they could read the comments, and FINALLY I let them have their feedback sheets with their marks on. Everyone got a mark that says they were at least working to an excellent level at their current key stage which is great. It can be difficult doing group work when one or two students haven’t done as well as others so to have everyone pass and pass well was fantastic. I finished the session with a Uni discussion where the kids could ask anything they wanted about university – courses, accommodation, fees. I think it’s really important to get kids talking about uni at an early age, that way it becomes a normal thing to discuss and much more attainable in their minds.

I finished up teaching just after 3pm and caught the bus back to campus where I was back at my computer by 4pm. Just in time for my data to arrive on the server, perfect I spent an hour processing it and then between 5-7pm I put together a poster for a conference next week. I should’ve stayed as my presentation is no where near finished but I flew out of the door to the train station as I figured my boyfriend was probably beginning to get a little hungry (he was so I made a good call on that one). Tomorrow will be an early start as despite having it open for hours I really didn’t get this presentation to a point where I’m happy with it yet/anywhere near finished. I do at least have a finished poster ready to send off for printing first thing.

Right now I’m watching the US open (Murray match) and doing some blog admin but will have to tear myself away soon as I plan to have an early start. Until tomorrow everyone and thank you, as always, for reading.


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