This evening sees the launch of Write Here, Write Now, an anthology written by Year Eight pupils at Ellis Guilford Schools and Sports College in Nottingham. I was one of four authors invited by the school to work with the pupils. The others were Jonny Zucker, who kicked it all off by getting the whole year enthused about writing, Emma Pass and Steve Bowkett.
I chose the theme of Heroes for my group, focusing in particular on Robin Hood and Katniss Everdeen. I met four times with the pupils, including one memorable day when we ventured out to Walesby Outdoor Adventure Centre for an archery lesson, followed by an afternoon in Sherwood Forest. I felt the archery lesson, in particular, was key to the writing. Describing an arrow’s flight is much better if you have actually experienced how it feels to pull back a bow and shoot at a target. It’s just a shame I couldn’t get hold of real longbows!
Here are a few photographs from that day:
The Y8s with ace librarians Katherine Davison and Claire Greasby
Daniel was delighted when he scored a bull’s eye
Rayan and Brandon listening to instructions
Firing, soaring, piercing
You fly through the air
Shot from my trusty the longbow
The glorious Major Oak in Sherwood Forest
Blossoming, growing, amazing
Spiralling with life and colour
And this by Ellie:
Leaning, stretching, withering
You sway gently in the wind
Tyra and Lakisha having a break from note-taking
I’m looking forward to seeing the pupils again tonight to celebrate their achievement in producing such a fine anthology. I hope it brings them pleasure for years to come. Huge congratualtions to the librarians at Ellis Guilford, Katherine Davison and Claire Greasby, for their dedication and enthusiasm in getting this off the ground. I wish more schools would invest in projects like this – it really would make a difference to children’s creativity.
Year 8 ‘Heroes’ Roll of Honour: