Clyde Street

Learning, Teaching, Performing

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Jeffrey Wright


I am on the lookout for stories about teachers and coaches.

In February I start the Sport Coaching Pedagogy unit at the University of Canberra and am keen to exemplify what I think an expert pedagogue to be.

Today, John Kessel led me to Jeffrey Wright.

The New York Times has an 11m 54s video about Jeffrey. You can find it here. (It had 50,000 views whilst I was writing this post taking it to 648,083 views in total.)

I am delighted that Jeffrey uses explosions and extols the virtues of love. I think both are vital components of expert pedagogy.

Amongst the many stories about Jeffrey, I liked:

Tara Parker-Hope’s New York Time article

The Insider Louisville

If you were looking for a story to start 2013 I think Jeffrey is a perfect choice.

Picture Credit

Frame grab Wright’s Law (1m 26s)


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England v Wales Rugby Union Matches 1987-1992


Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, I used real-time hand notation to record performance in international rugby union games. In the 1980s I used live BBC television broadcasts, in the 1990s I had the good fortune to attend many of the games as a notational analyst.

One of my interests in that period (after playing rugby at Loughborough College, London Welsh and Rosslyn Park) was to provide some evidence about game content and game time, particularly ball in play time, in order to support the coaching of expansive rugby. I was interested specifically in kicking, passing, set piece play and stoppages for injury as indicators of the flow of activity in games.

The most comprehensive set of data I have from that period is the competition between England and Wales 1987 to 1992 inclusive.

Game Content

In these games, the totals for the activities I was monitoring were:






Pens/FKs Conceded

Stoppages for Injury











































The odd year games were played in Cardiff and the even year games at Twickenham. Wales won the games in 1987, 1988 and 1989. England won in 1990, 1991 and 1992. Three of the games were affected by rain (1987, 1989, 1992) and there were strong winds in the 1990 game.

Ball in Play Time

For the ball in play time I started my stopwatch at the kick off and stopped it on the referree’s whistle or when the ball had clearly left the field of play. I recorded time in minutes (m) and seconds (s).

Year First Half Second Half Game Total


7m 32s

9m 24s

16m 57s


13m 43s

12m 28s

26m 11s


11m 08s

11m 25s

22m 33s


10m 38s

14m 11s

24m 49s


11m 36s

10m 59s

22m 35s


11m 14s

14m 51s

26m 05s

These total ball in play times as a percentage of total game time were:


Ball in Play (BiP)

Elapsed Time (ET)

Percentage of Game BiP


16m 57s

83m 45s



26m 11s

88m 35s



22m 33s

85m 40s



24m 49s

82m 29s



22m 35s

83m 30s



26m 05s

89m 12s


Activity Cycles

In the 1992 game at Twickenham there were 120 activity cycles (defined as play between the referee’s whistles or the start of action without a whistle when the ball was introduced into play, for example, a scrum). Their durations of these cycles were:

Duration of Cycle in Seconds

First Half Activity Cycles

Second Half Activity Cycles

Game Total Activity Cycles

As a Percentage of all Activity Cycles in the Game (n=120)









































My hand notations for the 1992 game are:


A PDF copy of this hand notation Actions

and Activity Cycles:


A Pdf copy of the notation ACEW.

Methodological Note

3423912577_378c200b4a_oThe data presented here are from real-time hand notation. I had been doing hand notation in rugby union since 1980 and by the mid-1980s had established a stable set of game events to notate on a single sheet of landscape A4 paper.I used one sheet per half of the game. The example shared here from 1992 is a transcription of two halves onto one summary sheet. I made a separate record of activity cycles and they are transcribed onto a single sheet here too. In all games I had two stop watches running, one for total game time and the second for ball in play.

During this period I was keen to profile teams in terms of two ratios:

  • kicks: passes
  • lineouts: scrums

I was very keen to identify those teams that played rugby handball more than rugby football.

I was mindful of the literature on systematic observation in educational studies and physical education and sport. I was a trained observer and was confident that my observations were valid and reliable. My aim was to provide real-time information to coaches if required.

I did not undertake any intra- or inter observer reliability studies of the data presented here.  I was aware of Paul Croll’s (1986: 154) argument that:

Stability of observations depends primarily not on characteristics of the observer or observation system but on the naturally occurring patterns of whatever is being observed … It seems unsatisfactory that an observation procedure that provides a highly accurate description of classroom events should be described as unreliable. In some cases the extent to which a characteristic is a stable feature of individuals and the extent to which it varies for different people may be of interest to the researcher and is itself a focus of analysis rather than a constraint upon whether the data are sufficiently reliable. (Systematic Classroom Observation. Lewes: The Falmer Press.)

In 1987, the ball was in play for less than 21% of the total game time. Given the relatively small number of game events I was monitoring there was ample time to record events. I was very aware that using a temporal measure required close attention to accuracy in starting and stopping the stopwatch. I was aware of the potential of mathematical error of using stopwatches. I used new batteries for each game recorded and prior to all games compared the performance of watches.

Throughout my real-time notation I was conscious of observer drift. No game lasted longer than ninety minutes and no half of a game was longer than 48 minutes. I used breaks in play and half time to refocus my attention. Real-time hand notation does require concentration and as a trained observer I felt comfortable with the cognitive load of the activity. I had clear operational definitions for all items to be notated and had made a very conscious decision not to try to capture granular details in real-time. With improvements in video technology in the late 1980s and 1990s I was able to undertake detailed lapsed-time analysis of performance for research purposes.


This post presents some of the data I captured in real-time twenty years ago. My overall aim was to develop a notation system that might offer decision support to coaches within games and subsequent opportunities to reflect on performance. During the period discussed here I immersed myself in the literature on observation. I was fortunate that at that time I was researching and writing Using Video in Sport (1988. Huddersfield: National Coaching Foundation) and completing a PhD that used ethnographic methods to record observations.

There is a story within a story here. By coincidence the data presented chart the rise of the England rugby team. In 1987 Wales defeated England in the 3rd/4th play off game at the inaugural World Cup. In 1991, England won in Cardiff for the first time since 1963 (there had been a draw in 1983) and at the end of the year contested the World Cup final against Australia at Twickenham.

Photo Credit

The National Stadium Cardiff (Walt Jebsco, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)


Following and Learning

426740099_ac40fa20b8_oI have had a Twitter account since 2008. I used TweetDeck then as my aggregator.

My use of Twitter has been limited to peripheral participation for much of the time since 2009 although my WordPress blog has a default to Twitter as does my lIASIng feeds with a focus on high performance sport stories.

I have used Twitter #tags to tweet live from conferences and workshops.

I follow 475 Twitter accounts mainly in educational technology and sport. I am awe struck by the insights they share and the links they provide to other creative thinkers.

In the last year I have been using as my daily Twitter aggregator and have found it an outstanding resource. It has become an important start of the day read for me (along with Stephen Downes’ OLDaily).

Today’s brought me some great links including:

The latter two links were shared by Harold Jarche. He has been an important guide for me since my first days on Twitter. Harold’s latest post (30 December) is Tools and competencies for the social enterprise.

In preparing this post I have revisited TweetDeck, downloaded the 2.1.0 version for Mac and will start using it again in 2013.

In 2012 I have enjoyed a remarkable diversity of learning opportunities by following thought leaders and sharers on Twitter. With a change in my responsibilities at the University of Canberra in 2013, I am looking forward to following more of my Twitters leads.

Thanks to a tweet by Paul Wallbank I am mindful that I follow no residents of Jakarta and Tokyo. Both these cities led the tweets around the globe in June 2012. (Semiocast monitored 1.058 billion public tweets posted from 1st June to 30th June 2012.)

Photo Credit

Twitter Visualization (Ross Mayfield, CC BY-NC 2.0)

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Essence then Form?

2751494190_535dc366c4_oJust before Christmas I received several alerts to Erica Smith’s paper, The Digital Native Debate in Higher Education: A Comparative Analysis of Recent Literature, in the Canadian Journal of Learning and Technology.

Over the holiday period I have had an opportunity to read the paper.

Erica analyzes “key themes and issues emerging from contemporary research on the Net generation as digital natives”. She identifies eight characteristics of digital native behaviour present in the literature:

  • Possessing new ways of knowing and being.
  • Driving a digital revolution transforming society.
  • Innately or inherently tech-savvy.
  • Multi-taskers, team-oriented, and collaborative.
  • Native speakers of the language of technologies.
  • Embracing gaming, interaction, and simulation.
  • Demanding immediate gratification.
  • Reflecting and responding to the knowledge economy.

She draws upon a range of research that questions the homogeneity of digital native behaviour. She notes, for example, Sue Bennett, Karl Maton and Lisa Kervin‘s posit that  there is “as much variation within the digital native generation as between the generations”.  Erica identifies “an opportunity for new research that informs theory and practice by investigating whether and how undergraduate learners see value in emerging technologies within their own diverse learning contexts”.

My own take on the debate is that we have much to lose if we impute behaviour solely to chronological age. I have seen an enormous range of dispositions to digital behaviour across and within generations. I think it is imperative that we understand personal learning journeys and their contexts.

A TedX San Diego talk by Ken Blanchard about collaboration helped me clarify my thoughts about dispositions. His consideration of essence equates with  my use of dispositions (8 minutes 25 seconds into the video).

In his discussion about effective collaboration, Ken proposes that essence (heart-to-heart, values-to-values) conversations must precede form (how you are going to do it) conversations.

I am starting to think about the Sport Coaching Pedagogy unit I am teaching at the University of Canberra in February 2013. It has a significant digital demand on the participants (myself included) and I am hopeful that I can support participants’ different experiences of learning and technology within the unit by recognising the heterogeneity of their generation. I am particularly keen to learn how each of them has innovated in and adopted digital behaviour. In doing so I hope to learn about their learning and the values that have guided them.

This is Ken’s talk with three insights into collaboration:

Photo Credit

Innovation – 3 (Hyoin Min, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)


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Augmented Reality Links

A Diigo alert today took me back to Jodi Harrison’s post from September. In it Jodi links to an Online Universities post about augmented reality.

Of the twenty links shared in the Online Universities’ post, I was particularly interested in:

The School in the Park Project (San Diego) that “shifts the location of “school” from a traditional classroom setting in an inner-city school, to the resources and educational opportunities available at museums in Balboa Park”. The School in the Park Project works with Qualcomm, the developers of the Vuforia augmented reality platform.

Gwynneth Jones’ QR scavenger hunt post that contains a host of ideas to facilitate discovery. I like the potential of QR Voice.

Google’s Project Glass (with this recent video) and through a tangental link Throwable Ball Camera.

Comments on the two posts led me to:

FreshAir and Layar and the discussion of geolocation-based Augmented Reality and vision-based Augmented Reality.

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Clyde Street 2012

dscf7272I wrote 260 posts on Clyde Street this year. This has been my fifth year with WordPress.

I see this blog as a way of capturing and sharing items linked to learning, teaching, coaching and performing. It is a public portfolio of my interests and one that I access wherever I am in the world.

I was surprised to learn that Clyde Street had 70,000 visitors this year with the Olympic and Paralympic months being the busiest time of the year.

The pages that attracted most interest in 2012 were:


dscf6128The topics for my posts during the year were:

January (Olympics, Connecting and Sharing, Reading, Bruce Coe, Wikis, Communicating, QR Codes, Coaching, Megatrends.)

February (Open Learning, Women’s Football, Cycle Tourism, Performance, Rugby, Decision-Making, Mobility, Sport Coaching Pedagogy, Olympics, E-portfolios, Reading, Wikiversity, Canoe Slalom.)

March (Sport Coaching Pedagogy, Analysis of Performance, Wikipedia, Coaching, Presentation, Autism, Communication.)

April (Performance, Simulation, Autism, Open Learning, Crime and Sport, Olympics, Sport Coaching Pedagogy, Coaching.)

May (Olympics, Open Learning, Sport Coaching Pedagogy, Billy Cart Derby, Writing, Enterprise Computing, Space, E-portfolios, Coaching, Performance, Critical Care Nursing, Cycling Research, Educational Technology.)

June (Olympics, Writing, Transit of Venus, Euro 2012, Augmented Reality, Robin Poke, Procurate, Tennis, Charles Reep, Sport and Technology, Penalty Shoot Outs.)

July (Olympics, Euro 2012, Learning Design, Fandom, Cross Country Skiing, Pathbrite, Greg Blood Guest Post, Blogging, Goal-Line Technology, AFL, Tennis, Performance, 9.79, SOOC, Writing, Learning, Australian Art.)

August (Coaching, Olympics, Writing, Strategic Losing, Performing, Super 15 Rugby, Open Education, Chaos, Learning, Paralympics, Place and Space.)

September (Paralympics, Open Access, Coaching, R U OK, Environments.)

October (Grand Final Weekend, SOOC, Flipping and Connecting, Challenge Conference, Vocaroo, St George’s Park, Data, Conservators, Integrity, Honours’ Presentations.)

November (Australian Sport Technology Conference, Attention, OAPS101, South Africa 1995, Coaching, Performing, Notational Analysis, Einstein’s Office, Narrative, Winning Edge.)

December (QR Codes, Game Changing, Ecological Perspectives on Sport, Aggregating and Curating, Searching, Connecting, Drupal, Coaching, Goal-Line Technology, Data Analysis, John Stevenson, SOOC, Open Learning, Cowbird, Sport and Technology.)

I am looking forward to blogging in 2013. Thank you to everyone who found my blog this year.


Photo Credits

Year of Reading in Mongarlowe

Rain in Mongarlowe


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QR Code Update: December 2012

I have written a number of posts about Quick Response (QR) Codes in the last two years. One of the posts has been one of the most popular posts on Clyde Street.

I have a QR Code for Clyde Street on the front page of the blog.

grabRecently, I have been interested in Vocaroo’s use of a QR Code to link audio recordings. Earlier this year I used Daqri QR Codes to share augmented information with students.

Perhaps it is my fascination with orienteering that has led me to think QR Codes have real potential to enrich personal learning journeys. I just like the idea that resources can be shared in a minimally intrusive way.  (There was a lot of publicity about this example from a building roof top.)

This morning, I was delighted that a Diigo Teacher-Librarian alert took me to Andrew Wilson’s recent paper, QR codes in the library: Are they worth the effort? Analysis of a QR code pilot project.

Andrew notes in the Abstract:

The literature is filled with potential uses for Quick Response (QR) codes in the library setting, but few library QR code projects have publicized usage statistics. A pilot project carried out in the Eda Kuhn Loeb Music Library of the Harvard College Library sought to determine whether library patrons actually understand and use QR codes.

ucniss-qrAndrew reports that:

There is no way to describe the usage statistics as anything but extremely disappointing. None of the three on-line resources were viewed via QR codes more than five times each over the course of the entire semester, and the actual utility of those page views was minimal, at best. Of the three sites, only the “Finding Concert Reviews in Periodicals” appears to have been accessed for use, as the other two research guides had only single page-views, and no recorded time on the sites themselves. Legacy and current usage statistics indicate that the sites are being used, with anywhere from 31 to 53 site visits over each of the past two academic semesters, but once the data is examined at the platform level, mobile usage was negligible in comparison to conventional on-line access.

 Notwithstanding these results I like Andrew’s evaluation of the potential of QR Codes.  He observes:
Despite their ubiquity in the public space, a significant portion of the population appear not to know exactly what they are, or even what the term “QR Code” means. Further, while polls of Harvard’s student population, particularly undergraduates, indicate a high percentage of smartphone usage, there is still a disconnect between the smartphone hardware/software and how they apply to QR Codes.
7913818456_7a4588999a_bAndrew concludes:
Much of the argument in favor of QR Codes in the library (or virtually any other setting) comes down to a simple cost/benefit analysis. And in this case, as long as a few simple rules are followed, the cost of employing QR Codes is so low that any benefit derived from them outweighs the minimal effort involved. There is a reason that QR Codes have become so ubiquitous in print advertising, points-of-sale, and other venues: they are so easy to use, and cost so little in terms of resources, time, and money,that despite low acceptance by the public, it is a technology simply too easy to ignore.
I think QR technology is important and I am delighted that Andrew’s paper provides some usage data in the context of a detailed literature review.
Many years ago when I lived in Devon in the United Kingdom I wanted to explore the delights of letterboxing on Dartmoor. I see QR codes as contemporary letterboxes and ideally suited to treasure hunts. Augmented reality opportunities make these codes very powerful.
Photo Credit
Observation Posts and Datums 1 (Polhigey, CC BY_NC_SA 2.0)