As I have yet to master the art of cloning myself, my World Book Day school visits generally spread out over the course of a week. This year that week became 2 weeks as the ‘Beast from the East’ did its best to scupper my attempts to reach the schools in question.
In the end, though, all three World Book Day schools were visited! They were three very different schools – one a village C of E primary school (Elvington Primary), one an independent school in a large city (The Grammar School at Leeds), and one a junior school in an academy chain on the edge of a town (Oatlands Junior). Different types of schools – but all with equally enthusiastic pupils!
In the workshops I put on during my three visits, pupils wrote haikus, rhyming couplets and cinquains. They created brand new creatures and also buried treasure – all in poems. (I devised this last workshop to tie in with one of the schools’ Buried Treasure/Ancient Egyptians topic.) They were inspired by minibeasts and by birds. And they developed their empathy skills, delved into their imaginations and practised/got the hang of rhythm and rhyme and syllables.
The results were fabulous. Here is an example of a buried treasure poem. Can you find the treasure?
Thank you to all three schools that invited me to be part of their World Book Day celebrations this year. And to Clare at Book Events for Schools who organised my visit to Oatlands – and got more than she bargained for when first of all the school was closed because of the snow and then, once we rescheduled, she found herself volunteering for floor-drying duties before we could get started with my opening assembly!
I hope my World Book Day visits have inspired children to value and enjoy books all the more, and also to aspire to write a book or two themselves one day.
Meanwhile, here’s some feedback from these three visits:
‘Thank you for a wonderful day of poetry … There was lots of great feedback … and the Y6s from my class who worked with you were full of enthusiasm.’
Mrs Wilkinson, Year 6 Leader & English Leader, Oatlands Junior School
‘Brilliant. I wish I could have spent the whole day with you.’
Year 6 Teacher, Oatlands Junior School
‘The children have produced some thoughtful poetry so thank you so much.’
Literacy Co-ordinator, Elvington Primary School
‘WOW – What a fantastic day’
Year 4 teachers, The Grammar School at Leeds