My last visit to Ho Yu Primary School was exactly two years ago and it was wonderful to go back and meet the same children again. This time of course they were teenagers. Initially there was not much enthusiasm when I asked them if they liked to read and what books and series where their favourites. Then I mentioned Diary of the Wimpy Kid and their eyes lit up and conversation erupted in the auditorium.
They told me that for book week they had dressed up as Inside Out. If only I had seen their costumes.
We talked about the importance of reading and how an avid reader made a creative writer. Then we talked about writing skills and how to use tools to help you write a good story.
I asked the children which language they like to read in. I have set them the challenge to read The Boat Race first in Chinese and then in English and tell me which one they prefer when I visit again.
They saw my inspiration videos for The Boat Race (set in Africa) and The Secret of the Golden Dragon (set in Hong Kong).
The last part of the presentation was the most fun. This is when we created a story looking at a picture. When I asked them what genre they wanted, they said ‘horror.’ I was not in the least bit surprised. As we progressed each sentence got more gruesome resulting in interaction and laughter.
Mrs Lee the Principal of the school came to present me with a gift which I shall treasure.
This time I had two new books to show them.
The Ho Yu Primary School already has a copy of the Chinese version of The Boat Race (or The Kenyan Adventure) in their library and I have taken orders for The Secret of the Golden Dragon.
Thank you Madhu and Ms Lee for inviting me back to your school.