So today – The Story Adventure is slipping out into the world –
Somewhere further back through my blogs, you should find one about “Cement and the end user“. Unlikely as it seems that was the birth of the project now kicking off at Hot Key Towers.
In it, I pondered about the input that children had in the books they read. Very little, I decided – and yet they have such totally wonderful ideas.
Before I built that wall, and used the cement mixer – I used to help with something called The Write Team, which was an initiative from Bath Festivals Trust, all about bringing “invisible” children out into the discussion space, and getting them to express themselves through creative writing. We used ideas from poets and writers, including Helen Cross, Mandy Coe and Cliff Yates. Cliff suggested a very simple activity. On a long strip of paper a child writes an object on the left, and its function on the right. Then you tear the paper in half and mix up all the objects and all the functions:
We ended up with some classics –
A hamster is something you cook things in.
Katie Perry is something you spread with jam
A fridge is a time travelling machine.
(I stole the last idea) – It came from a boy who wasn’t interested in Katie Perry and ovens. A boy who liked to draw pictures as much as write, so when asked for an object and a function, he drew a picture of a box and then wrote next to it “- is a time travelling machine.”
It made the exercise take off – it made all the kids think of wilder and more wonderful things, and as a result they came up with the best stories ever.
This is what we hope the Story Adventure can do – give vent to those imaginations, let children come up with random ideas that they DON’T have to spell properly, give children some ownership, and give them something to read that they REALLY want.
It’s open to children everywhere, and they don’t have to pay to join in. The site is safe, and open.
Check it out now: