What a mammoth week! I hit a brick wall of tiredness last night but I'm feeling refreshed this morning after such a good night's sleep.
So here's the post about book week. The highs and the lows.
Robert Crowther, Pop-Up Book Artist, worked with years 3 & 4. He talked about his transport series which are great non-fiction books for boys aged 7 - 9. He explained how he learnt to make pop-ups and showed us the different stages in the design process. We then all had a go at making our own. I made one of a Pac-Man eating an alien. Lots of fun and his books are works of art. If you're looking for an unusal gift for a boy who is fascinated by Cars, Trains, Ships or Planes, then I highly recommend buying one of Robert's books. All the children were amazed! After school we ran a book fair and the children all dragged their parents into the library to beg them to buy books. Fun!
I admit that I could barely contain myself on the way to work Tuesday morning. It was an absolute pleasure to ask Keren to visit my school and talk to Year 7 & 8. I learnt so much more about how When I Was Joe came into being. I was awestruck. You all know how much I fell in love with this book. If you missed my epiphany with this novel, check out my review. I wish I could remember everything that Keren said but I think the rest of the week ruined those brain cells. These are the things I can remember:
- Keren began by explaining that someone in the room could be lying about everything: their name, their past, maybe they can't even remember what the truth is anymore. It was a very dramatic way to being a talk about writing on the theme of witness protection.
- She explained that although she had been a journalist and a reporter, she had no idea about how to write a book. On the advice of a friend she went to an evening class and this was what gave her the structure she needed to write a book. Deadlines are a great motivational tool! I couldn't agree more.
After the sessions were over Keren and I went for lunch to a little Greek restaurant. It was so funny because I have no idea where any shops or restaurants are near to my work. I just drive there and back. I had to Google somewhere for lunch. Anyway, Keren was so wonderful to talk to and I confessed all about my NaNo book and how I'm stuck in a rut with it. She gave me some very helpful advice which I cannot thank her enough for and now I feel like a must not give up on my idea but just thinking, rewriting, editing etc. I think I might do an evening class too because I need routine for just about everything and this would certainly help. Keren was so desperate to tell me about Almost True but I wanted to wait to read it in August so we talked about home, writing in general and family stuff instead. Thanks for a great day Keren! Some of the kids have nearly finished Joe and it hasn't been a week yet. A complete success!
Sadly, my work day ended with a teacher being rude to me. I was really upset and had a bit of a cry when I got home. This is the low of which I spoke at the beginning. Managing a week as busy as this is very stressful so when a member of staff treats you like a slave, it kind of pushes you over the edge. Needless to say I told my boss and let her deal with it. I got a semi-apology on Thursday.
My day off and so I left my Assistant and my Boss to manage the book fair and the Year 6 book group. They call themselves The Book Worms.
World Book Day saw staff and students dress up as a book character. Here I am as Sophia the Snow Swan Fairy. A huge thank you to my sister for making my costume. I wish I could wear wings more often!
The final day and we had Pete Johnson come into school to speak to Years 5 & 6. Year 5 have a tendency to be a little rowdy but they were all so engrossed. It was more of a performance than a talk because he also wanted to be an actor and I think he put that into his presentation. He spoke about 7 of his books but there are so many more. The book that I sold most copies of was Phantom Fear but his most popular book around the world is How To Train Your Parents. Apparently, there are four techniques you can use to train your parents but he wouldn't tell us what they are. We need to read the book to find out. One student told me he tried it when he was in Year 3 and got into lots of trouble. I'm wondering if I might have a parental backlash on my hands LOL.
I also had the Senior School Book Quiz on Friday lunch time. I styled it on a pub quiz. There were 6 groups of 5 students taking part and it was pretty crazy but lots of fun. I gave sweets and badges to everyone who took part but the winners got to choose a book and I'm going to order it for them. I also had to go to assembly to announce the winners.
Finally, we had the staff book group in the library. I was so tired I don't really think my thoughts contributed much but we did choose the next book. It is The Brief Wondrous Life of Ocsar Wao by Junot Diaz. Anyone read it?
So I do have a contest to celebrate my book week but I'm going to give it a separate post because this is already way too long. I will also write the promised how to plan a book week post for those people who were interested.