I was invited to Bristol to the wonderful Filton Avenue Primary School by their very creative and inspiring Headteacher Mr Dan Rodeck to take part in their States of Being Initiative Week.
The children, across all year groups, were encouraged to imagine themselves as different things or people throughout the week; putting themselves in different situations, imagining what it might be to be someone or something else, and rather than just writing about this they were set fun tasks to help them get the most out of it:
Monday: Researching and learning about that state of being through asking: Who are they? (including famous people) What do they see, hear and smell? What do they do? What have they done?
Children will experience that state of being for the day through “doing” e.g. taking part in science experiments, creating music etc.
Wednesday: Author visit – sharing his book “Today I Am…” proposing the question “Tomorrow you will be…?” Children can ask him about how he created the book, writing poetry, illustration etc. Author to then work with children to write poems about their state of being and to illustrate their poems. Could we have illustrations for each state of being from the author?? This would be amazing and we could then use this instead of the drawings given to us by Light Up Learning.
Thursday: Children edit, publish and rehearse their poetry.
Friday: Children perform and share their experiences to other classes and to parents.
So I spent a really fun day with 3 different mixed age groups of 18 children, from reception through to year 6 discussing my book and some of the themes, concepts and ideas within it.
As with all the workshops I have done so far, I got so much out of it, and I really think the children enjoyed working with me on some of their drawings and written ideas too. I was also asked to make a short video before I arrived to show to the rest of the school, and when I arrived, they really treated me (and my cat Ruby who appears in the video) like a visiting celebrity! Great fun.