Alex and I visited two wonderful primary schools this week to run several (a magic 7) workshops as part of the South Ken Kids festival. As usual, the kids were fantastic and did all the best work (ah, sorry Alex - your quick-draw skills were as awesome as ever and had the kids in stitches!)
On Monday we went to Parson Green to visit Ecole Marie d'Orliac, in a grand old Victorian building full of sunshine (yes, it really was on Monday). It felt a little strange after of the events from the previous Friday in Paris, and they were hyper-alert. But the early years children, too young at 4 and 5 to be told what had happened, were full of beans and joy, as children are. Despite their age, it had been agreed that they would observe the 1 minute silence at 11am. The teachers had explained it as being part of anti-bullying week and that we were taking a moment to think of all the boys and girls that had been hurt by bullying or unkindness. And when the class teacher gently put up her hand to indicate it was time to be quiet, they all sat in absolute silence and stillness.
For various reasons, we've only got pictures from the second school. This is a rather wonderful state primary in Battersea that went bi-lingual three years ago. One of the teachers explained to me how well it was working; even if there's just one French-speaking child in the class, all the other pick it up - just like little sponges. You don't have to be French or speak French, just be supportive of your child learning the language. There are even adult French classes for parents. (How I wish there had been a school like this for my kids) Not only can these children speak beauitful French, but they were terrific drawers, too. Take a look at the Shaftsbury Park Primary Magic Buses...
Check out Sponge Bob Squarepants on this bus...along with a dinosaur in a garden, loads of friends (including 2 sets of twins)and a lion.
This bus has a hairy monster on the roof and a crocodile AND the London Eye in the top bit, as well as a ghost, tomato, carrot, several superheros, a skeleton and lots of friends!
This bus was dubbed the "Princess Express" because there were so many beautiful princesses on board. The pipe-smoking caterpillar was drawn by their most excellent teacher - and check out the sun, clouds and small floating person above the bus!
This was a super class - they were so clever - knew ALL the answers! They didn't have time to finish drawing in all the passengers during the session but did manage to include a trés chic dress and tall robot - and if you look carefully at the first top left row, there's a tiny, magic, everlasting ice-cream cone...
Thank you very much to our lovely schools this year - hope to visit you again soon with some new books!