Pupils write newspaper reports after skiing

The Bolton News: From left, Katie Chadwick, Feryal Mirza and Harry Lynn practising for their reporting assignment at the Chill Factore From left, Katie Chadwick, Feryal Mirza and Harry Lynn practising for their reporting assignment at the Chill Factore

THEY say the best writers draw on their own experience.

So that’s exactly what schoolchildren are going to do as they take part in an exciting adventure of their own.

Gifted and talented primary school pupils from St Thomas’ CE Chequerbent, St Peter’s CE Smithills Dean and Our Lady of Lourdes in Farnworth have been chosen to take part in a project organised by Playing For Success — which enriches children’s learning in the classroom — to stretch their excellent writing skills further.

And over three days, they will be taking to the ski slopes at the Chill Factore, near the Trafford Centre, performing in the snow, before writing newspaper reports, the start to a novel, a picture strip and even using multi-media to convey their thoughts and experiences through a magazine show and through news reports.

Janet Rhodes, manager at Playing for Success, said: “To write really effectively, children need to immerse themselves in activities and write about an experience.

“It is difficult for children to write about something they have not taken part or know about.

“So they will climbing, skiing and performing to produce really good-quality writing.” She added: “The children will produce podcasts, do voxpops.

“There will be three sessions and the children can write about their experience in a way they choose to.

“For example a newspaper report, producing a glossy magazine or writing the opening of a novel or a photo cartoon-type strip.

“They will be using different writing techniques throughout the project, including writing headlines.”

She added: “They will also be blogging about the project and the children know that other children will be able to see it.”

The project also ties in with the Winter Olympics and Paralympics and children will also be taking part in creative writing sessions penning poems about snow.

The initiative is one of many run by Playing for Success to reinforce children’s learning of literacy — and other subjects — in a creative way.

They can put the skills they develop in the classroom into use in the “real world” in a safe environment, where they also find themselves working with other children from other schools.

Ms Rhodes said: “When children first come here they are a little nervous because they are with different children, but very soon they use their independent skills and starting using the multimedia technology.”

As well as improving their literacy further, the children are also developing life skills, using the latest in technology and being able to use their academic skills quickly and effectively in short periods of time.

The children say they have enjoyed making new friends and are looking forward to going to the Chill Factore, where they will be interviewing people.

Feryal Mirza, aged 10, from St Peter’s CE Primary, said: “I am really enjoying it. It is interesting writing about what people do.

“I will have to use what I have learned in literacy lessons to produce good writing.”

She added: “It is nice making new friends as well.”

Harry Glynn, aged nine, a pupil at St Thomas CE, added: “I am really looking forward to going to the Chill Factore and write a story about being a journalist.”

Katie Chadwick, aged 10, from Our Lady of Lourdes, said: “It is really exciting to have a chance to do something like this which is different.”

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