The New Year promises to be even more exciting with the publication of our new book, Snail Movie. What’s more, a group of wonderful schoolchildren has offered to help with the book cover design – how cool is that? Watch this space for more details on that one. Otherwise it’s a new year and here we go again, always interested in exploring new ways to educate schoolchildren about African land snails, about story writing and about all that goes into getting a book on a bookshelf whether in a library or a bookshop.
Our programme begins in January with a visit to Binsted Primary School. It’s my first visit to Binsted school so I’m really excited about introducing the children to Bob and Gary the snails and telling them all about how we as a family began to write.
Another very exciting development is the opportunity madaboutsnailbooks has been given to work with the staff at Intech near Winchester to put on some workshops over the 2010 Easter break. Children will be able to bring their parents along to hear a talk on African Land Snails and to observe one or two fine specimens. This is a new departure for us and a very interesting one because it gives us the chance to educate youngsters about the science of molluscs and how sensitive they are to their environment.
THE SECRET SCROLL
The children from Newspaper Club are back in action on 14th January at Selborne CofE Primary School. It will be time for the big appraisal and brainstorming on how we spend the £1,000.00 raised from sales of The Secret Scroll. Some of the children have already begun to talk about designing a board game of the book though there is much interest in opening up the Club to any child from the school who’d just like to have a go at drawing or writing for a purpose. This is an interesting and exciting development for the school, and it will be great to see how things progress.
We are currently awaiting an appraisal on The Secret Scroll from Anne Matthews at Hampshire County Council’s Children’s Library Service and I am sure there will be things we can learn from that experience.
In the meantime a big thank you to everyone who supported the book and who bought a copy. We were all thrilled by the response to it, to the resulting publicity and to what the children will go on to next.
THE AFRICAN LAND SNAILS
The snow’s gone but the cold weather is returning so the snails will be asleep for another few weeks I am sure. Sometimes they can sleep until Easter by which time we’ve already begun to think they may have died. Of course when they emerge from their shells they are very, very hungry and go on a food-fest for weeks on end. We can understand that, can’t we, even if our stomachs are full to bursting after the Christmas celebrations.
A Happy New Year to you all! If this is the year you decide you want to write your own book – whether as a school project, a family children’s story, or a school history, I’d love to hear from you.
Next blog: How to Start Writing That Story