Something I have wanted to do since beginning my role as co-ordinator of an integrated English/Humanities course this year, was to offer opportunities to extend students’ learning beyond the classroom. My pet project has been to create opportunities for enthusiastic writers to develop their craft with the support of their peers and staff. Our first group was quiet and intellectual – perhaps the result of asking staff to identify their “Top 10%”? We followed The Age newspaper’s Ultimate Story competition and students were able to submit their own final chapter for judging. Unbelievably, one of our students was successful; her story was recognised as one of the top 20!
This term, the approach as been slightly different. Keen to extend the reach of the group, this time students have been targeted for their passion for writing and not just their academic prowess. We meet weekly on a Thursday lunchtime in a computer lab and some girls have even approached me asking to “join” the group. The difference in the dynamic of the group has been remarkable. Inspired by Henrietta Miller’s idea of the Blogger’s Café we have created our own lunchtime meetings where we eat, write and share with each other. However, in doing so, I have realised that I have been neglecting my own writing. Each week as I read the girls’ reflections, I have a slight feeling of guilt that I have not been working on my own writer’s craft as much as they have. So with holidays only a few weeks away, I am resolved to get writing when I have the luxury of time on my hands… can someone please hold me to that?
Why note visit our page if you have a moment and leave some comments for the girls in the meantime?