Saturday, December 09, 2006

End of the Story (or is it?)

We concluded the project this Thursday with a celebratory premiere of the final chapter to the whole school, parents, etc. We had a proof copy of the whole story in our hands and each of us came (suitably bloodied and ragged) as a favourite character from the story. Despite creating the impression of a school disaster, it was good to see the degree of pride and familiarity that each pupil felt for a particular character. They were able to speak about the qualities, foibles, and even what was in the character's pockets.

I've been involved in teaching this same topic in a secondary Modern Studies classroom before. In that case, the pupils had to learn about the mechanics of the British political system. I am convinced that a project like this more effectively engages children with the concepts of democracy and community, than a more knowedge-based variety. The proof of the quality of the final story will be in other children's interest in reading it, but the process is what counts to me. It was a great deal of fun, with serious discussions, disagreements and changes of mind along the way. Its experimental nature sometimes made it a bit of a hairy ride. We never quite knew where it was going next!

Now the school will consider what to do next with their story - to publish it, or present it on the CREATE website. The pupils were most insistent that it should end on a cliffhanger. So watch this space for further instalments!


Post a Comment

<< Home