In March 2013 I visited several schools in central Scotland on a week-long tour organised by the excellent Scottish Book Trust and sponsored by Scottish Friendly and Macmillan Children’s Books. Each day I visited one school in the morning and another in the afternoon. In the mornings there was fun feline felony with my telling of Cats Ahoy!, followed by an activity session decorating masks of Alfonso the pirate cat. The afternoon schools were treated to the talented animal antics of Farmer Clegg’s Night Out and the children got to make jolly pom-pom Mariachi Pigs.
You can see my rendition of Cats Ahoy! at St Madoes Primary School, near Perth, here. As you can see, the children were brilliant at joining in with actions and noises as I told the story! I was impressed by the prep work that was put in before my visits – including drama, art and writing projects – and in the terrific enthusiasm I met with from both the staff and children. St Madoes, for example, even treated to me to their own dramatisation of my story The Shark in the Dark, which you can see here. The tale ended with all the class lying on the floor to make the shape of the “whale” that scares off the greedy shark.
Cowie School produced an excellent guide to preparing for my visit, which is available from the Scottish Booktrust website here. The site includes a wealth of other resources as well as teacher feedback on the tour. There are also more pictures from the tour on the tour blog.
Here are the schools I visited:
Kinloch Rannoch Primary School, Kinross & Perth
Kirkmichael Primary School, Kinross & Perth
St Madoes Primary School, Kinross & Perth
Robert Douglas Memorial Primary School, Scone, Kinross & Perth
Milnathort Primary School, Kinross & Perth
Forgandenny Primary School, Kinross & Perth
Cowie Primary School, Stirling
Riverside Primary School, Stirling
Doune Primary School, Stirling
Dunblane Primary School, Stirling