The Ursuline Preparatory School in Brentwood has just published a new book!
Called Tales of Mystery & Magic, it contains a story from each of the school’s nine classes (ranging from pre-Reception to Year 6) about an adventure that travels through space or time. Whether the subject is training for the Olympics in Ancient Greece, acting as skivvies for the school’s Victorian owners, playing an X-box game that gets out of hand or taking a magic bicycle ride with a talking owl, the stories tell of the children’s imaginations and skill as well as their exciting adventures.
The project began when English Coordinator Sarah Macdonald tracked me down through internet searches after seeing the book I helped produce for Sunnymede School. You can read a bit about that project here or see the book by clicking here.
For Ursuline, I delivered a half-day workshop to each class to inspire pupils and staff and provide tips on how to coordinate the writing process for a whole-class story. This included writing by adding to a blog, voting on a subject and then all contributing to it, writing individual sections of the story in groups and using drama and role-play to create a tale. As well as their writing, I also suggested that pupils each contribute at least one illustration.
You can imagine my excitement when six weeks later a box containing the stories and artwork arrived on my doorstep! The book was edited and designed by Categorical Books following rough layouts supplied by each class and copies were printed in time for Book Week at the beginning of March. We even scored a whole page in the local newspaper – you can see pictures here.
The project was so successful that I am hoping to offer the process as an opportunity to other schools – watch this space or get in touch for details.
Vicky made the whole process from the writing workshop to the book launch not only exciting but stress free too. The children thoroughly enjoyed working collaboratively as well as seeing their work in print. A very worthwhile project which I would definitely recommend. Sarah Macdonald, English Co-ordinator, Ursuline Preparatory School
We thought the book was absolutely fantastic! What an amazing keepsake for the girls to treasure. Thank you so much. Parent, Ursuline Preparatory School