Last term we were delighted to welcome Ben Davis author of The Private Life of Joe Cowley, What’s that in Dog Years? Make Me Awesome, My Embarrassing Dad’s Gone Viral and Danny Dread.
All students in years 7 and 8 enjoyed a presentation which included creating a character called Bob Bobson who had a Granddaughter called Vanessa. He was embarrassing in many ways including wearing a red bikini and having a Mohican hairstyle.
The theme of the day was embarrassment and Ben spoke about how he was inspired by true events and people’s actions which he then exaggerated or developed for comedic effect.
In workshops throughout the day year 8 students used the inspiration of an embarrassing event to write an entertaining story using creative vocabulary and imagery which they shared at the end showcasing some extremely talented writing. The students said they particularly like the way Ben involved his audience and gave them ideas for writing.
Ben summed up his visit saying he was “really impressed with how the pupils engaged with workshops and their enthusiasm. Everyone produced good work and behaved brilliantly.”
"We had a visit from an author called Ben Davis. I mostly enjoyed writing about embarrassing incident that have happened. He told us about how he writes his books and his inspirations for stories"
"He held a very engaging assembly where we created our own character together. Next, we learnt new writing techniques and adapted them into our own short, funny stories, His visit was very interesting and we learnt many new things!"
"It was fun and helped me with my writing."
"I really enjoyed when the author came in because it really inspired me to write a story."
"I thoroughly enjoyed the visit as I learnt many story writing techniques. His books were very funny and engaging. I liked the activity in the library where we got to show our creative side whilst writing stories."
"I definitely recommend his books!"
The Library has been very busy since the start of term and many of our students are making use of the range of facilities. It is open at break and lunch every day and after school until 4.30 for homework club Monday to Thursday. Every student is an automatic member of Ernulf’s Library and they can borrow up to three books for three weeks. We have a wide choice of fiction, non-fiction, graphics novels and poetry and we have 200 new books on the shelves waiting to be discovered.
All students in years 7 and 8 are enrolled on the Accelerated Reader programme which expects them to read for at least 15 minutes every day. Once they have finished a book they take a short quiz on the computer to check how much they have understood and this rewards them with point towards a target. They can also add up how many words they have read and several students are well on their way to being word millionaires already since September.
We have found that this can motivate students to read more which has a positive impact on all their subjects and is a valuable life skill.