Once the school summer holidays were over, I was able to contact schools to see if any would like me to visit. One of the first ones I visited was just crazy and this will stay in my mind for a long time. I had been asked to read to two Year 2 classes, so the morning was split down the middle and I divided my time between the two. It was great actually as it gave both classes plenty of time to ask questions and nothing got rushed.
When I arrived I was even given my own parking space ( a sign with my name on ) in the staff carpark, so that made things a lot easier. The deputy headteacher came out to greet me and showed me exactly where I had to go to sign in. On the way to reception, we could see a little lad frantically waving at us. “They are so excited about your visit’ I was told.
When I walked into the classroom I was greeted by approx 30 excited youngsters all sitting to attention on the floor, waiting for me to read the story. I obviously introduced myself and explained how I would read the story first and then ask them questions after just to test their listening skills. I was able to show all the picture book images on the whiteboard so it did make it easier for all the kids to see. All the kids sat quietly as I read the story and when it came to asking questions they were all desperate for my attention so I could ask them if they knew the answers. Also when it was their turn to ask me questions they would all put their hands up desperately hoping that they would get their turn to answer. When it was the childrens turn to ask questions, they all did get to their turn, but it was so funny because they were so desperate to ask that they were not actually listening to everyone else’s questions, so often asked the same things. After all this I showed them my sketchbook with all the original pictures in it and explained exactly how a picture book is made from start to finish. They all loved it and the class even bought their own copy of the book and asked me to sign it. The book reading took up half the morning so I had plenty of time to go through it all again with the second class. Both classes were given one of my special ‘Billy’ stickers. Both classes were able to work on the activity sheets later that day.
Got to admit I really enjoyed my visit to this school. The children and staff were all great and very welcoming. I have never been anywhere before and been given what felt like celebrity status. Anyone would have thought some world famous author was visiting school 🙂