The Children's City of Literature is a joint programme between Norwich Lower School and the National Centre for Writing. This year the project involved pupils from Avenue Junior School, Catton Grove Primary School, Norwich Lower School, Sprowston Junior School and St William's Primary School.
Hosted at Norwich Lower School, the Children's City of Literature programme saw pupils being put into groups and assigned a creative writing mentor; to guide and offer advice. Each mentor was given the same story opener and then it was up to the children to plan their characters, setting and plot. Over ten weeks the pupils worked collaboratively to create their story, which is no easy task - working in a group, listening to each other's ideas and deciding what to write! The children were also taught about editing and proofreading and were given the opportunity to read their story to a new audience, to gain vital feedback.
On the 24th April, a celebration evening took place in the Blake Studio. Author, Mitch Johnson, who has recently been awarded winner of the Branford Boase Award and Waterstones bookseller for his book Kick was the speaker for the evening. Mitch's last piece of advice to the budding writers in the audience was to "Keep reading, keep writing, and keep adding to that infinity." His full speech can be found here.
After Mitch's speech, pupils were invited to read excerpts from their stories written over the 10 weeks. These stories were then presented to the pupils in the form of an anthology.
Mrs Brugger, Assistant Head (Teaching and Learning) at Norwich Lower School, said "Every pupil should be extremely proud of their contribution. I am so impressed by their dedication, creativity and ability to work with others. A truly talented group of individuals who have the potential to go forward and achieve anything they desire! I hope they have found the project both rewarding and inspirational. I would like to express my sincere thanks to parents and staff from all the schools involved for supporting the project, in particular, Catton Grove Primary staff who attended each session. Thank you to the fabulous writing mentors, Khal Botterill, Claire Reiderman, Jaime Lock and jade Cuttle, for giving up their time and being excellent with the children. Finally thank you to all staff at the National Centre for Writing, in particular, Victoria Maitland, for their continued support and assistance."