Some members of staff may have found a little surprise in their dookits today. Yesterday the nation celebrated National Poetry Day and today our very own poetry fairy could be seen delivering the poetry day postcards to staff and pupil desks in the school library. I missed the little fairy, it was far too quick for me, but I was very happy to note that she had left me a copy of one of my favourite poems, I Opened a Book. There are some extra poetry day postcards in the school library for pupils to take home and/or post to friends. Lets all share a poem this week. A huge thank you to the Scottish Poetry Library for the postcards this year. Miss Owens.
I Opened A Book
I opened a book and in I strode
Now nobody can find me.
I’ve left my chair, my house, my road,
My town and my world behind me.
I’m wearing the cloak,
I’ve slipped on the ring,
I’ve swallowed the magic potion.
I’ve fought with a dragon,
dined with a king
And dived in a bottomless ocean.
I opened a book and made some friends.
I shared their tears and laughter
And followed their road with its bumps and bends
To the happily ever after.
I finished my book and out I came.
The cloak can no longer hide me.
My chair and my house are just the same,
But I have a book inside me.
Julia DonaldsonFrom Crazy Mayonnaisy Mum, first published 2004 by Macmillan Children’s Books, an imprint of Macmillan Publishers International Limited. Text copyright © Julia Donaldson 2004
Scottish Book Trust has launched a search for Scottish teens who want to develop their talents in creative writing or illustration, and help to build the teen literary scene in Scotland.
Now in its third year, What’s Your Story? is seeking seven young people aged between 14 and 17 years old, with enthusiasm for developing as writers or illustrators. This can include prose, poetry, storytelling, illustration, graphic novel writing, song-writing, writing for TV and film, journalism, blogging and writing for video games and more.
Applicants whose work is not in English are also encouraged to apply and one Gaelic-language place, funded by The Gaelic Books Council, is part of this year’s group.
What’s Your Story? was originally funded by Time to Shine, Creative Scotland’s national youth arts strategy and is the first nationwide programme of its kind in Scotland. This year it is supported by the Big Lottery Fund’s Young Start programme, which celebrates and nurtures the talent and ambition of young writers and illustrators of all backgrounds, connecting them with others across the country and helping them shape the future of writing in Scotland. The seven chosen teenagers will act as ambassadors for What’s Your Story? while they develop their skills and knowledge in their chosen creative form. For 2017, the programme includes a residency in the National Library of Scotland, professional mentoring, a creative retreat, programming the teens creative writing conference StoryCon, and a feature showcase event. What’s Your Story? is free to apply for and take part in, and interested 14 to 17 year olds from all over Scotland are encouraged to apply. Travel expenses will be covered for all participants.
StoryCon, Scotland’s biggest creative writing and illustration conference for 13 to 19 year olds, has been attended by over 300 people since its inception. The conference is designed and organised by the teenage ambassadors from the What’s Your Story? programme, ensuring the event is run for teenagers, by teenagers.
StoryCon workshops run last year included those by Marc Pye, a BAFTA-winning author and screenwriter; Kate Leiper, an artist and illustrator who has worked for the Scottish Storytelling Centre and Royal Lyceum Theatre; Nadine Aisha Jassat, a poet, performer and first ever writer in residence for YWCA Scotland; and Keith Gray, an award-winning author of children’s and Young Adult fiction.
Any young writers or illustrators who are interested in taking part in the What’s Your Story? programme should visit www.thestoryis.co.uk for more details. The closing date for applications is Monday 16 October 2017.
Marc Lambert, CEO of Scottish Book Trust, said:
“What’s Your Story? is a unique development programme for teenage writers and illustrators, which is tailored to their creativity and open to a very wide range of disciplines. We are not expecting experienced and established creatives, we are looking for young people with a keen interest and lots of enthusiasm.
“Taking part is a great opportunity as it not only nurtures creative talent but also builds confidence and networks among young people, and empowers them to organise and be enterprising. It’s a wonderful chance for them to grow their talent and bond with like-minded young people.”
Jackie Cromarty, Manager of Web and Public Programmes at the National Library of Scotland, said:
“We’re thrilled to be involved once again in the What’s your Story? project. We’ve very much enjoyed opening up our collections to this year’s group of young writers and seeing the various directions in which they have taken our material in relation to their own work.
“It’s a real privilege to work with such a committed and enthusiastic group of young people, and we find that we are just as much inspired by them as they are by our collections. We are looking forward to welcoming a new group of writers to the Library and to seeing what they are able to create from all the wonderful material we have here.”
Maureen McGinn, Big Lottery Fund Scotland Chair, said:
“What’s Your Story? presents a unique opportunity for budding young writers to come together to explore and nurture their creative talent. This programme is a great example of the type of activity which Young Start funding makes possible. Working with a diverse range of young people, it will develop skills and confidence, as well as ensuring that their voices are heard.”
Rosemary Ward, Director of Gaelic Books Council, said:
“The Gaelic Books Council is delighted to be collaborating with Scottish Book Trust on this the third year of the What’s Your Story? programme. This exciting competition encourages imaginative young adults to express their creativity in any genre and in a media of their choosing and we are pleased to be sponsoring a place on the programme for a young Gaelic speaker.”
Scottish Book Trust
Scottish Book Trust is a national charity changing lives through reading and writing. We inspire and support the people of Scotland to read and write for pleasure through programmes and outreach work that include:
Young Start, Big Lottery Fund
Gaelic Books Council
The Gaelic Books Council is the lead organisation with responsibility for supporting Scottish Gaelic authors and publishers, and for raising the profile and reach of Scottish Gaelic Books in Scotland and internationally.
National Library of Scotland
The National Library of Scotland is a major European research library and one of the world’s leading centres for the study of Scotland and the Scots - an information treasure trove for Scotland’s knowledge, history and culture.
The Library’s collections are of world-class importance. Key areas include digital material, rare books, manuscripts, maps, music, moving images, official publications, business information, science and technology, and the modern and foreign collections. The Library holds more than 25 million items dating back over 1000 years. This includes over four million books, eight million manuscripts, two million maps and over 45,000 films and videos. Every week it collects around 4,000 new items. Around 80% of these are received free of charge in terms of Legal Deposit legislation. Further information is available at www.nls.uk
Our final celebration on World Book Day was the prize draw for our Blind Date with a Book challenge. Every pupil who took the risk and completed a cupids card got their name put into a hat and three names were drawn. The winners were Caley, Aefa and Emma. Well done girls. Cupids cards can be read in the library for the next few weeks, if anyone is looking for inspiration on their next read. Warning: They do range from 'best book ever' to 'if I owned this book, I'd burn it'
Throughout World Book Day, 2nd March, there were three scheduled English classes in the library. To celebrate stories and do something booky they each took over the official School twitter account and created their own stories. Each of the stories began with the same sentence: He opened the door, slowly. There it stood. Their task was to decide the next sentence ensuring it was no longer than the required 140 characters for a tweet. The pupils then passed their sentence on whilst tearing off the sentence they had been given and coming to type that one up. This way the storyteller only ever had the sentence before and not the whole story to work from. It was good fun and all three stories are below . Mr Ross, whose S1 class was not involved but who were in English at the same time had the twitter feed on display and the class really enjoyed watching the story unfold in real time.
Promoting reading, in all forms, is a huge part of the life of the library. This is done in various ways including whole school book events to celebrate World Book Day and Scottish Book Week. Senior students are welcome to use the library to study quietly throughout the day and all students can access the library facilities at lunchtime.
The School Library is staffed by a chartered librarian, Miss Catherine Owens.
The catalogue offers staff and pupils access to stock held across the whole of South Ayrshire, which they can borrow and return here at Marr College. To further enhance the library experience we have an app that can be downloaded for apple and android devices, where eBooks and audio books can be easily borrowed.