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Wakefield Girls’ High School

Christina Gabbitas inspires poetry writing

National Poetry Day, 2/10/2014, saw WGHS Junior School welcome special guest, children’s author and poet, Christina Gabbitas, whose visit was sure to inspire a love of writing poetry and reading.

A theme is always attached to National Poetry Day and this year that theme was ‘Remember’. Year 5 got their creative juices flowing all morning in engaging and stimulating poetry workshops with Christina, remembering all that makes them happy. This involved thinking of and writing down words and memories that evoke happiness in the girls and to then form a rhyming poem using those words and thoughts.

The purpose of Christina’s visit was in fact two fold as a number of poems written by our girls won a national competition which meant that they were entered in to one of her books.

The Upper Juniors wrote rhyming couplet poetry about their favourite food for the Mrs Sunderland Music and Poetry Writing Festival. The poems were entered into the National Poems and Pictures, Eight Line Rhyme Competition judged by Christina, with Ella Shaw in 5JC being placed second and sixteen Year 5 and 6 girls' poems chosen to be published in the national poetry book, volume 2, ‘An Invitation that Captured the Primary School Nation’.

Well done to the following girls whose work is in the book-Faith Budge, Elizabeth Bowen, Lucy Brook, Amber Dosanjh, Tori Hanson ,Charlotte Inkster, Tara Jayawardena, Isobel Maher, Louisa Moll, Abigail Neilson, Sarah Ng, Olivia Reid, Ella Shaw, Elizabeth Sykes, Rudy Van Dort and Heather Watson.

The book has now been published and these girls, some of whom are now in Year 7, posed for a picture on their lunch break for the Wakefield Express with Christina and a copy of the book.

In the afternoon Year 3 sat in a circle to listen to Christina read her highly popular ‘Felicity Fly’ books, where they sat captivated as she used numerous accents for the characters in her books, helping to demonstrate that people pronounce words differently. Christina is a big believer in writing in rhyme and reading in an animated way, using accents and tone, to encourage children to want to listen to books.