I really must get my act together. I've been into 6 schools in just over a week and do I have any photographs to share? Nope, not one! How useless am I?
The thing is that I'd love you to meet every single last child and teacher I've had the privilege of meeting because they have all been wonderful and enthusiastic and really made everything so much fun.
We had a Q&A session at the end of my time with Mrs Haig and Year 2 at Cliffe Hill School in Lightcliffe and I was asked 'What's it like being a writer?' and my honest answer was ,
Going into schools has really confirmed that to me. Virtually all the children contributed to the sessions and the teachers and support assistants were never anything but supportive, enthusiastic and appreciative. My admiration for them all is enduring.
BARKISLAND - When we were discussing Little Doogs' characteristics by looking at a pitcture of him, Ben said 'he's just himself...' Fantastic answer, could he explain what he meant a little more?
"Well, he's just himself. He's not pretending to be something he's not..."
General 'Ahhhhs' all round. Ben is 6!
SAVILE PARK - brilliant session, enthusiasm and eloquence in abundance and the one place I did get involved in the writing. And what amazing stories they created. I also came home with a poem which one girl had written 'because she couldn't sleep'! (And I'm going to check her name because it's important to get that just right!) Inspiring all round.
OLD EARTH PRIMARY SCHOOL - I'd planned sessions for all day but actually I was in two Year 1 classes and two Year 2 classes for 30 minutes each....cue lots of thinking on feet! Amazingly I did manage to cover most of the things I'd planned and everyone was enthusiastic.
Highlight - Mia putting up her hand to ask a question.
"Fiona.....you look SOOOOOOOO beautiful!"
NORTHOWRAM - Two Year 2 classes, two completely different vibes but again lots of really thoughtful contributions. I had a lot of positive feedback from the Class 4 teacher Mrs Michalowski(tricky name, lovely person!)which gave me a big boost. It's good to hear good stuff from teachers as well as from the children.
CLIFFE HILL - Last session in Yorkshire and one of the most rewarding. Everyone was really keen to find out more about the characters, they did a great job at describing their own characteristics and I felt that they really had got a lot out of it. Mrs Haig was a star too, taking lots of photographs and sitting with the children on the carpet to participate. (Hmmm must tap her for some of those photos to share!)
And last but not least...
SOUTHBOURNE INFANT SCHOOL
A journey to the coast yesterday and a whole school to talk to! I must admit that I was a little bit intimidated by 60 reception class children as they are a bit of an unknown quantity and in retrospect I would do things differently for them. HOWEVER as we had the main hall we acted out the characters and they were really splendid. In fact all the Year groups were. My timing is terrible and I had intended to do so much more with Years 1 and 2 as I had a little more time with them but we expanded on certain things and talked more about the characters' movement before doing 'the drama bit' and the time flew.
So a big thank you to you ALL for making me so welcome ....AND I HOPE TO SEE YOU ALL AGAIN SOON!