Creating Literate, Literary Kids in the Digital Age with ALEA Nth Sydney

August 27, 2015 at 8:00 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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This afternoon I had the huge privilege of talking to ALEA Nth Sydney about how to create literate, literary kids in the digital age. Those who know me will know how passionate I am about this subject, and how concerned I am about the over-exposure of children to digital toys and devices, as well as the increasing use of digital technology to deliver education in primary schools. We talked all about the latest studies from around the world indicating the vital importance of children being regularly immersed in the deep reading of print books, as well as troubling data coming out of studies in Europe and the States about reading on screens. It’s a fascinating subject, and one that needs careful study by educators everywhere. Special thanks to my hosts Alix McKittrick, Virginia Outram and Robyn (pictured above to my left). And many thanks to the 50+ teachers and librarians who attended for your feedback and participation.  Thanks also to Wendy Rapee of Room to Read who told the ALEA members more about Room to Read‘s essential work in promoting and building literacy in third world countries.

Helloooo to the Bellevue Hill Public School Grade Ones from Pin Yin Panda!

August 27, 2015 at 7:47 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Cheeky panda

Well that was fun! Courtesy of my lovely friend Anna Bragg, I made a brief drop-in visit today to the scrumptious Grade Ones of Bellevue Hill Public School today to introduce them to my vain but loveable Pin Yin Panda! And it just so happened that they’d been learning all about the Chinese Zodiac animals and Lord Buddha’s Race yesterday! It was perfect timing! It was lovely to meet you all – I hope to see you again next year!

A Rhyming Testimonial from Rose Bay Public School!

August 25, 2015 at 2:28 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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I’ve just received the cleverest testimonial in rhyme from Sarah Skelton at Rose Bay Public School and couldn’t resist sharing it with you all right away! Here it is…I think that Sarah is a great poet, don’t you?

Sarah Brennan an author of Chinese Tales arrived
Presenting fascinating stories she devised.
The Rose Bay students, all 600 were enthralled by her presentation
All the K-6 teachers we would recommend her without hesitation.
She has inspired some future writers amongst all our stages
Already our students are reading and writing pages.
Many of our students will be sending you emails
Thank you for visiting and teaching us about the Chinese Tales.
Sarah Skelton (Rose Bay Public School Librarian)

Rodney Ram meets the fabulous Kincoppal kids!

August 25, 2015 at 1:42 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments
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What a fun day I just had with the keen readers and writers of Grades 3 to 6 at Kincoppal Rose Bay in Sydney! We started with a fun reading of my latest book, The Tale of Rodney Ram, then had three fabulous workshops where we talked about How to Write a Riveting Story. After the sessions, some of the classes immediately got started on story plans for my Clever Competition – and I can’t wait to read the results! Warm thanks to librarian Helen Webster (above) for being such a kind and supportive host.

My Chinese Zodiac beasties and I visit Rose Bay Public School in Sydney!

August 24, 2015 at 2:36 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments
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SAM_7036Rose Bay Public School photo

Helloooo to all my friends at Rose Bay Public School! I had such a fun day today visiting the school, with story readings galore for the whole school! The Kindies met my hungry dragon Chester Choi and found out why some dragons have four toes and others have five, the Grade 1s and 2s met Pin Yin Panda and learned all about the Legend of Lord Buddha’s Race and panda diplomacy, the Grade 3s and 4s met Rodney Ram and learned how rice came to China, and the Grade 5s and 6s heard the mysterious Tale of Sybil Snake, and found out about China’s only female Emperor, Wu Zetian! We had a lot of fun! Many thanks to lovely librarian Sarah Skelton (above), who was my wonderful host for the day. And a reminder to all you budding writers out there to enter my Clever Competition – see all the rules on the Clever Competitions tab above!

Three fabulous days in Tassie!

August 24, 2015 at 2:23 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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Here I am in beautiful Hobart, with Mount Wellington in the distance behind me, and standing just outside the school I attended for most of my school days, The Friends’ School! I spent a wonderful long weekend in Hobart from Thursday to Sunday morning, seeing my lovely relatives, catching up with old friends, dropping into some fabulous schools to meet the librarians, and, of course, having a very happy trip down Memory Lane! I look forward to returning next year with my Chinese Calendar Tales!

A Riveting Writing Workshop with the budding authors of Buckley House, Ivanhoe Grammar!

August 19, 2015 at 5:28 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Warm thanks to Grace Molinaro and Anna Willett from Buckley House, Ivanhoe Grammar, for inviting me again today, with a two hour writing workshop with the talented Grade 6s! First we talked about How to Write a Riveting Story, then the students wrote Story Plans to a stopwatch, before writing their very own riveting stories. I can’t wait to read the finished products! Thank you also to Tim and Annie, the dedicated Grade 6 teachers who were my fabulous hosts for the morning. Photos to come!

My Aussie Book Week tour started at Loreto Mandeville Hall!

August 17, 2015 at 3:38 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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Hello again to all my friends! I’m in Australia this next fortnight for Book Week, and kick-started my tour with a visit to the gorgeous young ladies of Loreto Mandeville Hall in Toorak, Melbourne! I met the whole of primary school, from the Preps right through to the Grade 6s, and we had a lot of fun with a story reading for the younger girls and some Poetry and Writing Workshops for the older girls. Here I am above with some of the gorgeous Prep to Grade 2s, and with the lovely Miss Erin Moodie. Thanks for a fabulous day, and make sure you enter my Clever Writing Competition – see the tab above!

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