♦ Performances/Workshops for Early Years Foundation and Key Stages 1 and 2
♦ interactive fun events; from large assemblies to select small groups
♦ 16 years’ experience visiting schools in the UK and internationally
♦ motivating children to read, write, be creative and read for pleasure
’I have had lots of positive feedback from teachers and parents. David has a lovely, warm manner with the children and is very approachable.’
Literacy Coordinator, Orchard CE Primary, Leicestershire
David is located in Norfolk, England. He travels across the UK and internationally.
FEES - for a full day in school - are,
UK - £500 plus travel and accommodation expenses
Norfolk Discount - £450 plus travel expenses if your school is in David’s home county.
(Fees quoted are complete; VAT and unforseen expenses will not be added.)
International Schools and other events - please get in touch.
Making a Booking
Send David a quick email (here) to enquire about availability. Please include the school location.
A Sample Timetable for a UK Primary School
David starts work at 9.30 and is happy for the school to arrange as many sessions as can be fitted into the usual school timetable.
Below is an idea of how it might look in a primary school where David talks to all of the children, in both assembly and classes.
9.30 - 10am Whole school assembly with introductions, performance and dance! (175 children)
10.00 - 10.30 Reception/Yr1 (36 children)
11.00 - 12.00 Yrs 3/4 (52 children)
1pm - 1.30 Yr 2 (27 children)
1.45 - 2.45pm Yrs 5/6 (60 children)
3pm Book Sale and Signing.
And by contrast here is a timetable for a junior school David is visiting soon:
9.30 - 10.30 Whole School Assembly (526 pupils)
Book Sale and Signing
11 - 12 and 1 - 3pm Writing Booster Workshop with a group of 15 Year 5s
Assemblies: CD player with good sound; laptop/projector; microphone for very large venues
Class Workshops: whiteboard or flipchart and coloured pens.
Class talks: a suitably sized chair (that is - not an infant’s one please!)
School Visits - The Details
Whether it’s a whole day of events in school, a half day, or a single assembly, David’s main priority is to deliver fun, interactive experiences that bring books to life, and motivate children to read, write, and be creative.
Talks include such topics as How a Book is Made, How To Become and Author, How to Have Ideas, and answers to children’s questions. (This can end up with a discussion of what an author can earn... which David is happy to reveal because it can be quite a motivation to write!)
Workshops give children and staff the chance to develop their imaginations and learn up-to-the-minute writing skills from a professional author.
All talks and workshops can often be tailored to themes and topics, even at the last minute!
A short and engaging introduction to polar bears using soft toy characters Big Bear and Little Bear, then a reading of David’s best-selling picture book, Big Bear Little Bear.
Or, open the flaps of Who’s Laughing? and find out who laughs with a roar and a hiss!
Reception and Yr1/2
A more expansive picture book talk about David’s latest publication. Right now this would be the already popular Roo the Roaring Dinosaur. Find out about how the book came about, and what happens when little Roo gives up his most cherished baby blanket to help his new friend.
Or, everyone gets practical and makes their own Knock Knock flap book in a fast and furious workshop suitable for all abilities.
Years 3 and 4
The ’imaginative powerhouses’ of the school get to join in with an expansive picture book reading (as described above) and come up with ideas for their own re-telling.
In a workshop, they develop their very own ideas to make a story, presented as the cover of a picture book.
Or, as often happens, they can stretch themselves and do the Year 5/6 workshops!
Years 5 and 6
Talks are more detailed and often question-led, about how David became and author, and how he made his books.
Yr 5/6 Workshops (an hour minimum; up to a whole school day)
(1) the ’design a machine character’ workshop, inspired by The Football Machine series. For all ages, this workshop encourages imaginitive thinking. A design drawing with descriptive notes leads on to a piece of imaginitive narrative writing. All abilities learn that they have something interesting to say.
’My Year 4 class thoroughly enjoyed working alongside David in his ’machine’ workshop. Having the opportunity to use their imaginations and write about something personal helped all my pupils produce exceptional pieces of creative writing. I will certainly carry on using this approach in my day-to-day teaching.’
Sarah Pugh, Wicklewood Primary School, Norfolk
(2) the ’Story Improv’ workshop involves all of the students and uses solely their own ideas to construct a (usually hilarious) story. Then, in groups, they make up their own story according to the method shown, reading or performing them, with useful comments from David to finish. This workshop teaches story structure, and shows how an author keeps a story on track, from an exciting start, through a well structured middle, and to a satisfying conclusion.
David’s talks and workshops are designed not just for children, but for adults too. By involvement in school workshops, or in teacher-training sessions, teachers gain a useful insight into how authors write - which, they can be surprised to learn, is often quite different to the way story writing is taught in schools. David’s sessions include a discussion of how the approach authors take to writing can be used in the classroom.
Teachers are often also interested in writing for themselves, and so David is happy to include plenty of advice and teach story writing techniques.
Books Sales and Signing
’To George, the football genius! Happy reading, from .......... ’
A book sale is an integral part of an author visit, and is often the highlight. David will send files for book price lists and posters that can be printed and displayed.
’One boy in my school who is a reluctant reader, but very keen on football, has now enjoyed all your football books and has become hooked on reading, which is great!’
Heather Delf, Headteacher, Ludham Primary, Norfolk