Posted by: Poems For Fun | January 17, 2019

Funding for workshops

School budgets are tighter than ever now, and finding money for a visiting writer can be tricky – unless there’s funding to be had.

It’s surprising how many funding sources you can find for schools in the UK, once you start searching. It’s also worth noting what a range of funds a poetry workshop could potentially be eligible for.

For instance, my workshops have themes, some of which are relevant to some of the project funds on offer. My nature-themed topics, for instance, might be eligible for a green-living-linked grant that your school might be engaged with. There’s also a fund available for schools in my region – Wales, and you may know of other funds or grants that could apply, perhaps in support of literacy, healthy living, community links or underprivileged children, for instance.

If your school is in Wales, you can apply here for funding from Literature Wales, through their “Writers on Tour” scheme:

http://www.literaturewales.org/funding-for-events/application-process-deadlines/

Many schools have received funding from them for my visits.

If your school is outside Wales, there may be funding available for your region, county or town, too.

Topics – for potential funding elegibility:

Here are my poetry workshop topics for this term and next. Perhaps one or another might link in with a fund available to you – with some adapting, as necessary.

Spring Term: 
Spring Animals – could be done outside, in keeping with a nature-themed fund.
Creepy-Crawlies –  as above.
Space
Dragons
Castles

Summer Term:
Sea
Jungle/Rain forest

Year-round:
Wild Woods and their Creatures

Healthy living grants – all my workshops involve acting out, usually in a large, open space and, when feasible, outside. This aspect can be extended to fit any healthy living fund remit. Children are often quite puffed out by the end of one of my poetry sessions!

If you wish to discuss any funding possibilities you’re aware of, please get in touch. Poetic adventures are versatile!

Kate
Email: katewilliams.poetry@gmail.com

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Posted by: Poems For Fun | January 10, 2019

Workshops for Spring

Hello, there’s a buzz of spring around already, isn’t there?  And a buzz of New Year poetry!

My workshop topics this term are:

Spring Animals, Castles, Dragons, Mini-beasts, and Space

I offer one topic per day, adapting it to suit the different age and ability levels from Nursery to Yr 8. They’re all open-ended, with limitless scope for ideas, imagery and creative writing approaches – not to mention acting out, setting  to music, and more!

World Book Day week (1st week of March) is now filled up in my diary, I’m afraid, except for the Monday, but literature deserves celebrating every day, of course, and new poems can be created and enjoyed any or every day of the year!

Spring brings new energy, new ideas, new creations and new achievements, and I’m looking forward to seeing what gems the children come up with this term!

Happy New Year!
Kate

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Posted by: Poems For Fun | December 11, 2018

Spring Term Poetry

ball on blue

Hello schools!

Just to let you know my poetry workshops will be available as usual next term, and my topic choices per day will be:

Castles ~ Spring Animals ~ Mini-Beasts ~ Dragons ~ Wild Woods ~ Space

Most of these are now permanent fixtures, being popular year-round. 

Best wishes for Christmas and the New Year to all visitors to my site, and thanks for looking in! Now back to the glitter, glue and show rehearsals!

Have fun!

Kate
Email: katewilliams.poetry@gmail.com

 

Posted by: Poems For Fun | November 9, 2018

Pre-Christmas Poetry Fun

Workshop, Y4

Christmas Lights and Colours are on offer for my end-of-term workshops, with just a few dates still available. Other topics available are Fireworks, Space, Wild Woods, and Dragons. 

Brighten up a murky winter’s day with lively workshops for all your classes! With pictures, fun props, acting out, songs and rhymes, your children will be inspired to write quality poems within their hour’s session. I fit 4-5 sessions into a day, depending on your timetable and requirements. See Workshops page for details.

Based in S. Wales, I visit schools up and down England too, and across to London and beyond, with competitive rates that help schools on tight budgets while also allowing for preparation and travel.

Next term’s topic choices will include: Castles, Mini-Beasts, Spring, and the ever-popular Dragons and Space.

Happy Pre-Christmas!

Kate
Email: katewilliams.poetry@gmail.com

Workshop - leaves in wind                                                 Photo: leaves flying in the wind.

Posted by: Poems For Fun | October 16, 2018

Workshops for Winter

Workshop - leaves

Picture: Yr 2 exploring autumn leaves before writing about them.

Late autumn is a wonderfully eloquent time of year – ideal for poetry-writing. I’m taking bookings now for after half term, with exciting topics to choose from (see below). Here’s a quick summary of what’s been happening in my poetry sessions so far this term, in various primary schools in England and Wales.

Autumn leaves have come alive in our workshops this autumn, and I’ll be presenting some samples of the amazing poetry produced soon. Boys and girls off all ages have embraced the intriguing concept of fragile, flying leaves and their kaleidoscopic colours, the mysteries of where they all end up, and the wonders of how such flimsy little things can light up the darkening days with such dazzling, fiery arrays. There have been giggles, too, when leaves have landed on our heads – or friends’ heads, and squelches and crunches underfoot when we’ve trampled on them – all these observations and experiences pouring into the poems produced and highlighted by mind-stretching images.

Pictures: being leaves blowing off trees, then Halloween trees, with Yr 2, St Mary’s Primary, Newport:

Workshops, flying leaves

Workshop, Halloween trees

Forests, too, have sprung to life in many of our workshops, with all sorts from slithering slugs to prancing deer making their way through the sparkly or spooky scene. In some sessions, we’ve provided recipes, or Halloween potions, for these wild and wonderful woods; in others, we’ve thought up weird landmark names – Tree of Trouble, Den of Dynamite, Gate of Ghouls – to help lost ramblers find their way out. 

Picture below: Reception class being hedgehogs, Rhos-y-Fedwen Primary School:

Workshop, being hedgehogs
Firework verses ripped the air at one school recently, and more are due to take off and explode into fantasies at other schools soon. 

I’m offering extra topics from now until Christmas, so here’s the full list to choose from (one per day, please):

FIREWORKS, WILD WOODS & THEIR CREATURES, AUTUMN LEAVES, CHRISTMAS LIGHTS & COLOURS, SPACE and DRAGONS.

I’ll be offering new topics for the spring term, with Space and Dragons now available year-round.

Kate Williams
Email: katewilliams.poetry@gmail.com
More details on my Workshops page

Posted by: Poems For Fun | September 1, 2018

Autumn Term Poetry Days

Rhos-y-Fed detail

This is just a quick update to say I’m taking bookings now for the new term and new academic year, with dates going fast, so it’s advisable to check availability soon if interested.

My topic choices from now to Christmas are:

Autumn Leaves
Wild Woods (& their creatures)
Migrating Birds
Fireworks
Winter Colours

I adapt them all to suit the different age groups from Nursery to Year 8. One topic only per day please. This is for logistical reasons, with all the materials involved in each; also because getting my head round more than one topic in the day can be too much of a challenge – with all my prepared content for each, from songs and action-rhymes to poetic techniques and how to incorporate them, and per year group too. For these reasons, I can’t link my sessions to your class topics, I’m afraid, unless there happens to be a link anyway. Enthusing and empowering children in imaginative, expressive, creative, poetic writing are my aims.

For a sense of my general approach and workshop content, please see my previous post, or contact me for more details. My detailed Workshops page and the Children’s Poetry pages will also help build the picture of what my sessions involve. 

Kate
Email: katewilliams.poetry@gmail.com

Picture: ‘Autumn Leaves’ poetry workshop at Rhos-y-Fedwen Primary School, Ebbw Vale, September ’18. (Picture: courtesy of the school.)

Posted by: Poems For Fun | July 3, 2018

Poetry days for next term

Children abandon their anxieties about writing when they’re whisked up in a whirl of exciting ideas, especially when there’s an irresistible poetry frame at their fingertips and a buzz of topical words in the air – and so it is in my workshops. I remind children that I’m not a teacher and won’t be marking their work; also that the writing is not a spelling or handwriting test, and that I don’t expect (or even want) them to use a dictionary or thesaurus this time – that I just want them just to relax and enjoy themselves, and that helps too. 

I base my workshops on familiar, open-ended themes, which children can quickly get their teeth into with pictures, props and acting-out to spur them on. Building ideas, words, imagery and more as we go, children are half-way to writing their poems before they’ve even started, and with the wealth of possibilities to choose from, they are compelled to think critically as they make their selections, and creatively, to express their own, personal concepts. 

At reading-out time, I think the children and I tend to be equally amazed at the powerful lines that ring out. Sometimes, after some singing input with my ukulele, some offerings take on a tune; other times, word wit, dry humour, drama, philosophy or some other bonus will be revealed. Certain words and images from the input may also catch hold, with different treatments adopted around the room. Some poems will be in rhyme – adventurous, apt and slick, even when I didn’t encourage any rhyme at all; others will be presented in a format all of their own.

While a few children are shy to read out, I find they’re always glad when they’ve managed it, with support as needed; others, meanwhile, will be rearing for their moment in the limelight, sometimes producing wonderfully expressive renditions, or adding in mime or sound embellishments. I never know quite what’s coming, even when I’ve been all round the tables for sneak looks and the odd spur at the writing stage.

I offer one  topic per day (just the one, for logistic reasons), adaptable from Nursery to Yr 8. My topics for next term (i.e. Autumn-Winter ’18) are: 

Autumn Leaves, Wild Woods (and their creatures), Migrating Birds, Fireworks and Winter Colours.

Finally, from next term, I’ll be including singing with ukulele with Juniors as well as Infants, in our word-building inputs. 

Any questions, or to make a booking, please email me at katewilliams.poetry@gmail.com

Kate

   

Posted by: Poems For Fun | January 3, 2018

Flying carpets

Greetings for 2018!

January may be cold and murky, but poetry is as fun and exciting as you make it – any time of the year. With this term’s Flying Carpet theme, we’ll be sweeping up and away to brighter, more colourful places in my workshops – unless anyone’s capsizes and lands on the school roof.

We’ll be shooting away even further in our Space workshops, with planets for Juniors to invent and stars for Infants to enact and describe, and possibly the odd alien to invite down to Earth. So the murky months of January and February will be anything but, with the children’s thrilling imagery, crazy couplets and mind-stretching personification lighting up the classroom.

As for Dragons – the ever-popular theme I offer every spring term – well, they could carry us off anywhere in the world, or beyond it, if they’re the wild sort, but fortunately, dragons are as varied in their characters as humans are, as children reveal in their fascinating interpretations – although they all have pretty weird diets, it seems.

Spring is a wide-open theme, with plenty of squelchy mud and sinking wellies as well as crisp new leaves and fresh, green grass. On our imaginary wanders through spring fields and woods, we encounter new life in all sorts of forms – wiggly caterpillars, hatching eggs, playful fox cubs, and excitable puppies being taken for a walk, perhaps.

I adapt each topic to suit the different age groups from Nursery to Year 6 and above, offering one topic per day, to save carting too many piles of pictures, artefacts and papers around. It’s also quite hard to tune in and out of the different themes, and my different plans for them all, in one day – hence just the one topic per day, please. It’s the poetry that really matters, and there’s wonderful, boundless scope for that in all four themes.

You’ll find details of the workshops, including price per day for your area, on my e.flyers, which I send out at the start of term, but please get in touch if you’ve not received one, or want to know more.

Kate
katewilliams.poetry@gmail.com

January 2018

Posted by: Poems For Fun | November 30, 2017

Spring Term Topics

Flying Carpets will feature in my spring term topic choices, along with Dragons, Space and Spring. Children can fly with any of these – not just the flying carpets, venturing wherever their ideas lead them. 

Dragons are forever popular, and on Wales’s St David’s Day (March 1st), you can almost feel the hot breath of the Welsh Dragon in the celebrations, making spring an ideal time for fiery and mysterious dragon poetry. 

It may be hard to believe that spring is round the corner, but by half term, there’ll be plenty of signs showing, which we can celebrate in lively, colourful poems. If it’s raining, no problem – the drizzle and mud can feature alongside hatching eggs and opening buds.

Space is wide open as a topic as well as an entity: we can shoot about wherever we like in the boundless void, discovering any sort of planets and creatures we happen to dream up, which makes for wonderfully imaginative poetry. With younger children, I focus in on stars and aliens, and you’d be amazed how much there is to say, sing and write about stars alone. 

As for flying carpets, they can go anywhere, of course – through any skies in any weather at any speed and in any style, with whatever fascinating view below that the individual writer sees in their mind’s eye. 

There’ll be scope for humour as well as atmosphere and action, and where time permits, we’ll be clapping and singing rhyming couplets, as we invent them – even in the top classes. Music and language have many meeting and merging points, which I like to bring out in my sessions, along with opportunities for drama and artwork. Children take what they want from the many different angles of a session, to express their ideas in their ways. I can’t wait to see what they come up with next term!

Kate
Email: katewilliams.poetry@gmail.com

Posted by: Poems For Fun | September 4, 2017

New Term, New Creations

Poetry workshops for autumn

I’m excited to be preparing for the fresh, new school year, and in particular, for this crisp, atmospheric season. Every term and season brings new inspiration for poetry writing, and you can’t beat autumn, with its fiery trees and fascinating leaves, its Halloween shadows and Guy Fawkes Night dazzles, with the buzz of activity after the summer lull ricocheting through. No wonder autumn was chosen as the season for National Poetry Day!  (28th September this year.)

I’m taking bookings for poetry days through this term and beyond, so if you’d like to arrange a day or ask any questions, please get in touch any time. (Email best for me in the first instance.) While based in S. Wales, I’m happy to  travel to London, Dorset, Birmingham, Manchester and counties in between. I’ll be sending out my usual update flyers within the next 2 weeks, but if your school doesn’t receive one and would like one, please let me know.

Wishing you all a happy term,

Kate
Email: Katewilliams.poetry@gmail.com

 

 

 

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