For Key Stages Three, Four and Post 16 I will do Author Talks and Creative Writing Workshops. These are very popular in High Schools and Community Colleges. Many students are so concerned about making mistakes that they are frightened of putting pen to paper so my early exercises are about writing without worrying about assessment. I also introduce students to the concept of first drafts and redrafting and editing. However, my main focus is on getting students to write creatively. These sessions can be very powerful and helpful for those who are consistently failing in school.
For many students in High Schools, getting started is the hardest part so I have lots of simple exercises to help students begin to write and to have confidence about their writing.
It's crucial for all growing writers to have a reflective time in their day - a time when they're not looking at screens or listening through headphones; a time for staring out of the window and doing nothing. It's in these quiet, undisturbed moments that our creative brain begins to operate. Try it - five minutes: no headphones; no screen; no radio; no movement. Listen, look, smell, taste, touch. Encourage your senses to be independent again.
Gambledad is also proving very popular with Years 7, 8 and 9 as a recent visit to New College Leicester proved.