World Book Day in Henley

Children and teachers at schools in Henley celebrated World Book Day yesterday by dressing up in book characters and spent the day listening, reading and writing stories as well special art activities.

Rupert House upper school children also visited the Regal Picturehouse in Henley to watch the “Biggest Book Show on Earth” which was a film about authors and illustrators talking about their books.  They also had the chance to choose a World Book Day special book which were provided by Bell Book shop.

At Valley Road School, headteacher Tim Coulson joined in the fun by dressing up as Cruella de Vil with the rest of the teachers being dalmatians.

Each Badgemore School class were given a book, genre or author to dress up as.  Badger class were given fairy tale characters, Maple, Roald Dahl characters and Cedar the authors Jacqueline Wilson and Michael Murpurgo. They also held a special assembly in the afternoon.

At Gillotts School teachers, staff and children dressed up in many different characters including the hungry catapillar, the Mad Hatter and the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland and Wally from Where’s Wally which proved to be the most popular national costume yesterday. Alison Beer, Head of English said, “”World Book Day is the perfect opportunity to promote a love of literature across the school and get students to talk about their favourite characters and discover new ones. Dressing up is all part of the fun and creates a real buzz amongst staff and students alike. Students are already planning who they will be next year – it’s been a real success!”

Peppard School won a national World Book Day art competition for James Mayhew, the author of the Katie series of books, for him to come and spend a day at their school. The books are recognised as a classic series for introducing children to the wonders of Western Art. Greys class (Years 1 and 2) entry was a film they made about Katie and the Picture Show book  The whole class got involved in the production including writing, costume, filming and props.

The Katie series of books are one of the class teacher Antonia Rolph’s favourites.  She told us that when her boys were little, she used to take them into the art galleries in London to see if they could try and find the paintings from the books. James was originally an illustrator and yesterday he showed the children his first draft book which he did 25 years ago with all his initial drawings and words in.  He then went on to create a large picture with two of the scenes from his books which the children choose.  They then helped with colouring the picture in with pastels. When we asked James why Greys Class won he said, “Their film entry was so original, they were clear winners and it was so great that it involved the whole class.”

When we asked some of the children which were their favourite books and why they replied… Bethan chose Katie and the Spanish Princess and said “I like the bit when the magpie steels the shiny jewel off the dress.” Eden liked James’ first book Katie and the Picture Show and she particularly liked the bit where the children were playing with a hoop and it bounced into the next picture.  Headteacher Nick Steele said afterwards, “It was a really creative idea and the children planned it all themselves and I am very proud of them.”

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