In case you were wondering how I spend my time when I'm not writing, knitting knots in my spreadsheets, or chasing round after my own children, quite a bit of that time is taken up with school workshops. When I counted up, I found I had made over 100 visits to schools since I published the first book in The Scar Gatherer series.

 

I've just reached the end of an amazingly busy spring season in which I ...

... visited 24 schools 

... taught 82 workshops
... sold 848 books
... drove 1813 miles
... and spoke to about 3400 children!

Yikes!

Here is a list of the main school visits and events I've done, not including the odds and ends like World Book Week bedtime stories, or the countless hours I've spent sitting behind tables at school fairs and book sales!

​2020

St. John's Primary School, Warminster – Patron of Reading visit 2

Garvestone Primary School

Loddon Junior School - repeat visit

Toftwood Junior School, Dereham - repeat visit

Alpington & Bergh Apton Primary School

Hillside Avenue Primary School, Norwich

Little Plumstead Primary School

Castle Primary School, Stoke sub Hamdon

Buckland St. Mary Primary School

St. John's Catholic Primary School, Tiverton

Webber's Primary School

Burlescombe Primary School

Hamp Academy

St. John's Primary School, Warminster - World Book Week

Monkton Combe School - World Book Week

Wilton Primary School - World Book Week

Minerva Primary School - World Book Week

Heacham Junior School

St. Martin at Shouldham Primary Academy

All Saints Academy, Kings Lynn

Valley Primary Academy, Norwich

Holly Meadows School, Norfolk

Wensum Junior School

Peterhouse Primary Academy

Nelson Academy

2019

St. John's Primary School, Warminster – Patron of Reading visit 1

Bemerton St. John Primary School, Salisbury – Patron of Reading visit 4 & 5

Broad Chalke Primary School – Patron of Reading visit 4 & 5

The English School, Gothenburg, Sweden – 3 days of workshops

Sarum Academy, Salisbury - repeat visit

Bemerton St. John Primary School, Salisbury – Patron of Reading visit 3

Broad Chalke Primary School – Patron of Reading visit 3

Taverham Junior School

Caister Junior School

Stradbroke Primary Academy, Great Yarmouth

Edward Worlledge Ormiston Academy, Great Yarmouth

Little Melton Primary School

Redcastle Family School, Thetford - repeat visit

Broad Chalke Primary School – Patron of Reading visit 2

Alderbury Primary School

Dulwich College

Bemerton St. John Primary School, Salisbury – Patron of Reading visit 2

​​2018

Winterslow Primary School - repeat visit

Bemerton St. John Primary School, Salisbury – Patron of Reading visit 1

Broad Chalke Primary School – Patron of Reading visit 1

St. Andrew's Primary School, Salisbury – Patron of Reading visit 5 & 6

Old Sarum Primary School, Salisbury - repeat visit

Wyvern College, Salisbury

Clarendon Junior School – 2 days of workshops for Y5 and Y6

Whiteparish All Saints Primary School

Sarum Academy, Salisbury – The Big Write competition judging and award presentation speech

Winterbourne Earls Primary School - repeat visit

Bemerton St. John Primary School, Salisbury

Sarum Academy, Salisbury - repeat visit

Downton Primary School

Clarendon Junior School – 2 days of workshops for Y3 and Y4

St. Andrew's Primary School, Salisbury – Patron of Reading visit 3 & 4

Loddon Primary School

Redcastle Family School, Thetford

Toftwood Primary School, Dereham

Rockland St. Mary's Primary School

Surlingham Primary School

North Denes Primary School, Great Yarmouth

St. Mary's Primary School, Beetley

St. Andrew's Primary School, Salisbury – Patron of Reading visit 2

2017

Bartley Junior School - repeat visit

St. Andrew's Primary School, Salisbury – Patron of Reading visit 1

Sarum Academy, Salisbury – The Big Write competition judging and award presentation speech

Wilton and Barford Primary School – Patron of Reading visits 3, 4 & 5

Sarum Academy, Salisbury

Wilton and Barford Primary School – Patron of Reading visits 1 & 2

2016

St. Martin's Cranbrook Primary School

Lydeard St. Lawrence Primary School

St. Andrew's Primary School, Salisbury - repeat visit

Waterstones book launch for The Demon in the Embers

Winterbourne Earls Primary School – Patron of Reading visits 4, 5, & 6

Sarum Academy, Salisbury – The Big Write competition judging and award presentation speech

Exeter House School, Salisbury

Winterbourne Earls Primary School – Patron of Reading visits 2 & 3

2015

Winterbourne Earls Primary School – Patron of Reading visit 1

Winterslow Primary School

Winterbourne Earls Primary School

St. Andrew's Primary School, Salisbury - repeat visit

Opening of Winterslow Primary School fete, and competition judging

2014

Christ Church Primary School, Bradford on Avon – book festival

St Andrew's Primary School, Salisbury

Old Sarum Primary School, Salisbury – under the scrutiny of Ofsted!

Bartley Junior School

St. Nicholas' School, Idmiston

Christ Church Primary School, Bradford on Avon

Corsham Regis Primary Academy

If you'd like more details about what I did for any of these visits or events, please drop me an email.

I am delighted to be spending the 2019/20 academic year working as Patron of Reading and Writing with St. John's Primary School in Warminster.  We had our first day together in November, getting to know each other, and I've got some really fun sessions planned for January, to shake off the post-Christmas blues!

As Patron of Reading and Writing, my job is to work with children in a school across an extended period, usually a school year, to inspire them in their reading, and along the way also teach them how to write better. We'll be doing story-telling workshops, workshops on how to create convincing characters and settings, workshops on dialogue, and detailed plot workshops to guide the children through the steps to constructing a successful story.

As part of the scheme, schools also have the opportunity to follow the progress of the latest book I'm writing, in real time, from the research notes and early scribblings through the writing and editing, and the head-scratching as I try to come up with a title!

Children at my previous Patron of Reading schools have enjoyed regular updates on the writing of the last four of the Scar Gatherer books, (including seeing the bits that ended up in the bin!), and they even got trial copies to read and give feedback on. Almost all of their comments were incorporated in the final edit of the book, so they have been a very real part of the process.

World Book Day 2019: me as Helena Calvina from The Leopard in the Golden Cage, holding my very Roman mobile phone.

To find out more about the Patron of Reading scheme in general, please click here.

scar gatherer series time travel children adventure fiction history shimmer glass slaves isabella demon embers falconer's quarry saving unicorn's horn leopard golden cage Julia Edwards

If you think you might like me to work with your school as Patron of Reading in the 2020/21 academic year, please contact me.

To watch a video about the writing of the fifth book, Slaves for the Isabella, click here.

 
I was thrilled to be invited to teach three days of workshops at the English School in Gothenburg in March 2019!

I had the most fantastic time meeting the children at ESG! They grilled me on  my books, my work habits, and diverse topics such as my favourite word, animal, and colour, and the names of my former pets! I also did some proper work with years 3 to 6 on dramatic tension (also known as the wolfing around workshop), character and plot development, and how to edit.

The majority of children at ESG speak English as a second, third, or even fourth language. Despite this, they've been reading The Scar Gatherer books with great enthusiasm and participated energetically in the workshops (especially the wolves!). Their work was a match for any UK school! Hugely impressive!

Thank  you for having me, ESG! I would love to come back again one day!

"Scars have the strange power to remind us that our past is real."

Cormac McCarthy

Last updated 22 October 2020  © Julia Edwards

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