Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Workshop with Reluctant Writers

I did a session with nineteen year-sevens today in Port Talbot. They had been identified as reluctant writers, boys and girls. It was great fun.

Here's what we did, having put them in teams:

One: reading

I did a quiz with them about things you can read about football (newspapers, magazines, books), as well as encouraging them to talk about what they like to read. For each correct answer they were awarded a penalty. They took penalties. I kept score.

Two: creating characters

They chose a celebrity (footballer, reality TV person, singer) and created a profile of them, finding five nice things and five not-so-nice things about them. They used books, newspapers, magazines and the internet. The idea was to create a character they could use in a story later. They presented their profile and were awarded between one and five penalties. They took penalties. I kept score.

Three: what, who, when, where, how, who, why?

They planned something unpleasant for their character. Kidnap. Murder. Etc. Then they asked the above questions. What happened? Who did it? When? Where? Then why and how? This helped them create a story. They worked up the story then presented it. They were again awarded points, equalling penalties. Then they took penalties.

By now I had a final score. The winning team won a nice price. Cash.

The librarians said they'd really enjoyed it, had produced surprisingly good work and had behaved.

It was a great day and I thank Port Talbot Libraries, especially Paul Doyle.

There are more free ideas for school and library activities on my website at http://tompalmer.co.uk/index.php?page_id=33.

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