Timaru was already getting ready for Christmas...
... and just down the road from the lovely old Grosvenor Hotel where we were staying is a building that is now offices, but was once the Werry Temperance Hotel.
Beaconsfield School, in the country a few kilometres outside Timaru, was an absolute delight. The big news of the day was that the wooden merry-go-round in the school playground was fixed. When their teacher announced the exciting news, all heads swivelled around to look out the back window. The kids were so thrilled to be able to play on it again!
I told them that I had wanted to be an author when I was 8 years old, and asked if they knew what they wanted to be when they grew up. Hands shot up straightaway and there was a huge range of answers. Vet, Silver Fern, builder, truck driver x3, pig hunter, doctor, scientist, All Black x 2, NFL player, ballerina, horse rider x 4, teacher, fossil hunter, paleontologist and aquarium keeper, among others. It turned out that they had recently laid down a time capsule and had all been thinking about what they might do or be in the future.
I also asked them at one stage to close their eyes and think about an animal they might like to write a story about, then open their eyes again and tell the person sitting next to them what their animal was. They had nearly all thought of a different animal! They had such great imaginations.
|Getting ready to leave Timaru. Such a great tour!|
Thank again to Storylines, and to my lovely travelling companions, and if you are a teacher or school librarian, keep an eye out for a Storylines tour coming to you in the next year or two! Here's where they will be going in 2020.
I was so impressed with all these lovely schools and their close and supportive communities.
One last comment from the kids themselves. I often ask them what they think are the best and worst things about being a writer. Shall we start with the good things, or the bad things, I ask. It can go either way! They come up with some great ideas (you get to be creative! you don't have to go out of the house and talk to people - I guess for some people, that would be a bad thing), but I especially liked this one:
Best thing about being a writer?
You can be proud of yourself!