It’s back to the Redearth Training Centre after a brilliant month exploring East Africa!
Everyone was in high spirits yesterday when I returned, and it was great to see the Redearth team. In the morning, we had a fantastic training session led by fellow Redearth volunteer Lisa; a lesson on reading comprehension based around the children’s book “Peace at Last.” Even though Lydia and I had confused the story with another childhood favourite, “5 Minutes Peace,” it was a wonderful story which everyone loved.
Lisa read to us in her best “Jackanory” style, and excellently demonstrated the importance of “looking silly” as a way to engage your learners. After hearing the story, we used a story board, story mountain or story map to plan our own version of “Peace at Last.” It was interesting to see how different our plans were; some people used lots of words, some used pictures only, and others used a mixture of both. But Lisa emphasised that we should use any method that came naturally to us. Her only condition was that we use the repeating phrase, “Oh NO!” said Mr. Bear, “I can’t stand THIS!”
With a firm plan in place, we all set about writing our story, and I think it’s fair to say I’ve never seen such concentration. You could hear a pin drop! After our 30 minute time limit, we had a really lovely opportunity to share our stories and illustrations. Again, it was fascinating to see how many imaginative stories were created from the same stimulus. We had hipppos, monkeys and even humans going on some wonderful adventures. Some members of the team shared that this was the first time they had written a story and we all feel inspired to keep writing!