This year saw the celebration of our 4th annual LitFest, with a wide-ranging host of events and activities.
Kicking off this year’s events was a brand new addition - our very own Ark audiobook, ‘Sherlock Holmes: a scandal in Bohemia’. Students heard extracts of the book throughout the day, and by the end of the day they had heard a hefty chunk of the novel. There was also a ‘guess the voice’ competition running alongside.
The library hosted ‘real people read’ for both primary and secondary students, where teachers shared their favourite books with students over lunch. Always a popular event, students were spellbound as they delved into the worlds of Malorie Blackman’s ‘Hacker’, Catherine Bruton’s ‘No ballet shoes in Syria’, and Elena Ferrante’s classic, ‘My brilliant friend’, to name but a few.
On Tuesday we were fortunate enough to have the incredible, award-wining performance poet, Harry Baker, visiting for the day. 5 classes took part in creative writing workshops, and a handful of aspiring poets had the privilege of attending an exclusive workshop where Harry shared tips and feedback on their own work, in preparation for our upcoming spoken word house competition.
Wednesday was a dramatic highlight for 50 students, who watched and discussed ‘Pattern up’, a theatre in education performance focusing on issues such as gang violence, knives and prejudice. Students thoroughly enjoyed this thought-provoking experience.
Thursday saw the return of the ever-popular spelling bee – who knew the hype that could surround dissecting the spellings of ‘horrigust’ and ‘soothsayer’? It was fabulous to see so many students taking part, in particular year 8s. At the time of writing the winner has yet to be announced – we look forward to hearing whether Miss Boyd has retained her crown for another year!
Friday saw a lunchtime anime screening in the library which was especially popular with boys – there was standing room only and students were even treated to popcorn!
In a year where National Literacy Trust research shows that, nationally, levels of engagement in books amongst young people are at an all-time low, we look forward to having this week to make a positive impact on the literary lives of our students here at Ark.