Tag Archives: SRRS

Story Writing

A few weeks back, I visited Heerengracht Primary School in Eldorado (South Johannesburg). The headmistress, Mrs Daniels, has an infectious enthusiasm which sweeps you up as you enter her school and I ended up volunteering to run a story writing competition for her grade 6’s.

I always love visiting schools, the energy is just contagious, however, little did I realise to run a competition properly I would need to put in a lot of work. I first set up a rubric to mark to, then I started to read and assign marks for each section I had created eg. front cover, illustrations, credits, story length, did the story engage me, overall impression etc. It was a process that took several hours, though was, I must say thoroughly enjoyable. Isn’t it just amazing the stories kids come up with, I definitely feel there are some budding authors that will emerge from this school in the future.

So, when I returned to award prizes of my book to the winner, I explained how the pupils how the competition had worked and why we need a start, middle and end, to our writing as well as the other criteria I had used.

The competition was amazingly close between the top four stories, but one, in particular, engaged me a little more than the others, that of The Little Rabbit by Veandre. It had everything a short story needs, was the right length and left me wanting to read more by this young author. Congratulations, Veandre for producing a wonderful piece of work and to Heerengracht Primary School on the quality of stories, your teachers should be very proud of you.

The runners-up were Jordan T, Bailey and Lebohang.

#PollysPiralympics

Edutech, Here We Come…

“Do you fancy coming to the Edutech exhibition with me?” I asked Evadeen, a fellow author a few weeks back.

“What is it?” she asked.

“I’m not too sure, but I think we should go,” I replied.

And so we did. It was actually all about technology in education – ‘COOL,’ I thought, ‘OK,’ thought Evadeen. But actually it was really cool, and what was so awesome was going with a friend. We had very different interests and that was ok too, she went to some of the stalls and I went to others.

I especially liked the idea of schools having their own tv channel – think of the possibilities when a parent can’t make a school play because they have a meeting, or Mpho makes the XI Rugby team and a parent is overseas on business. This was they can just tune in as it is live streames or catch up later as a podcast – HOW COOL REALLY IS THAT? The robotics were brilliant too, though I still like lego, maybe a throwback to when I was a kid, though in those days the pieces were all red and white and the trees flat, I think they had a motorised chassis by the time my brother started to get interested in it. NOW! Well, now you can programme the stuff – WOW!

We also attended a seminar by Dr Deon Oersen from St Benedict’s College before having a coffee to compare notes. As always Evadeen kept me on track and had visited stalls to find out about adding our books to their virtual libraries, as well as looking for potential sponsors for our Schools Reading Road Show – an initiative I started in January where I take authors with me into schools to read, meet and interact with the kids, AND to prove authors really do write books ha, ha, ha.

All in all, we had a really enjoyable and worthwhile day.