As part of our warm up to World Book Day (2 March) we were very pleased to welcome author and CBeebies star Joseph Elliott.
It was an enjoyable start to the half term for our Year 7s who had a presentation from Joseph in the main hall. He’s a familiar face to our youngest students, many of whom remember him from his TV fame. Joseph told them about his career as an actor and writer and then talked to them about the characters in his debut novel, The Good Hawk, book one in the Shadow Skye series. One of the main protagonists in his critically acclaimed Shadow Skye trilogy books has Down’s Syndrome. Joseph explained the importance of seeing people with diverse characteristics in books and how it helps to build understanding and empathy.
Before becoming a full-time writer and actor, Joseph worked worked at a recreational centre for children with learning disabilities and as a teaching assistant at Westminster Special Schools. He told the students how the heroine in the Shadow Skye trilogy, was inspired by the many incredible children he has worked with, especially those with Down’s Syndrome.
Following the presentation, students got to have their books personally signed by Joseph.
Some students took part in workshops where Joseph got them to try out helpful creative writing techniques to help them:
- get started
- develop mythical creatures, and
- embed their imaginative characters into a story scene.
We were very grateful to Joseph who also took time to present our Word Millionaires with their certificates of achievement. Word Millionaires are those students who have read more than a million words through our Accelerated Reader scheme. Well done to the following students:
- Martha J, Year 9 – over 4 million words (not pictured)
- Beth D, Year 7 – 2.6 million words
- Tirion R, Year 7 – 2 million words
- Niamh F, Year 8 – 1.9 million words.
This special event is part of Dallam’s programme of literacy enrichment. Click here to find out more about our literacy programme here.