Reading for pleasure – how can we encourage our boys?

My son is a typical boy. He has friends, enjoys playing sport and the xbox and is (most of the time) a normal eleven year old. Oh, and he never reads. I say never when really I mean he never reads for pleasure

boy-readingpinterest/mycutegraphics

I have never been able to get my head around this. I love reading. I’m a teacher and have taught children from 4 to 11 to read. My daughter (his twin sister) likes reading and will often sit down with a book. So what did I do wrong? Why does my son not read for pleasure?

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The cold virus – facts about the rhinovirus and ways to prevent catching it.

Did you know that the most common cause of the cold is the rhinovirus? 

Rhinovirus

The rhinovirus – Wellcome Trust

  1. The rhinovirus (unlike its name) is very small. It is 1000 times smaller than a human cell.
  2. 1350 billion rhinoviruses can sit on a 1 pound or 1 euro coin.
  3. A cold virus is not alive. It comes to life by occupying another host.
  4. A cold virus survives best in cold, dry weather.
  5. You can’t catch a cold virus by kissing but you can by shaking hands!
  6. Viruses love eyes and noses.The yellow mucus sometimes produced from your nose during a cold is actually white blood cells.
  7. Cold viruses don’t make us feel ill. Our immune system response makes us feel unwell.
  8. The velocity of a sneeze is the same as a professional baseball pitcher, 150 km per hour. That’s fast!
  9. More children than adults catch colds ( not surprising when you see what children do when they sneeze!)
  10. Your race, gender, education and shape of your body does not make a difference whether you are more likely to catch a cold or not.

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Should you get a flu shot and do you need one?

So Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton are both going for a shot at the title on November 8th but have they thought about whether they should go for a flu shot?

Clinton v Trump
Clinton v Trump (DaveManuel.com)

80 – 90 % of flu related deaths are in the ‘over 65’ category. So, Trump at 70 and Clinton at 68, are both in an ‘at risk category’ of flu this year. Trump and Clinton have not divulged whether they have had the shot or not. I know they must be busy right now but they should make time to consider the options.

Who should get a flu shot?

National flu campaigns have begun. Every country has them. And that’s for a good reason. In the US, 200,000 are hospitalised because of the flu. Although the biggest at risk category is the over 65’s who have certain medical conditions, other groups of people are also at risk of the flu virus. People with chronic diseases like heart, kidney or liver disease, people with asthma or respiratory problems, diabetics and people with weakened immune systems e.g. AIDS and HIV, cancer patients, pregnant women and very young children.

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The flu or just a cold? How do we know?

Unless you live in the Arctic, you will know it is that time of year again. The time when colds and flu sweep across the landscape and the nasty bugs propagate and smear themselves over every surface. Colds are annoying but they will eventually go after a few days.

Cold or flu? The misery of blowing one's nose.
Cold or flu?

But what if this is not a cold? What if it is flu? How do we know the difference?

According to the ‘Common Cold Centre‘ in Cardiff, there are 200 viruses that cause colds but only 3 that cause flu. Colds are associated with blocked noses, sore throats, sneezing and coughing. Flu has more severe symptoms including fever, fatigue and muscle ache. Cold symptoms develop over a couple of days and get better over the same period. Flu symptoms appear more quickly and usually last longer.

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