Jacqueline Wilson + ICT = fantastic pupil presentations

St Paul's RC Academy in Dundee was one of four outstanding schools currently taking part in Scottish Book Trust's Flagship Schools initiative during 2011. In January 2011 they used Authors Live with Jacqueline Wilson as the inspiration for a literature-focused ICT project with S1 pupils, aimed at developing presentation skills. S1 teacher Claire Cuthill tells us more. 

When I heard that St. Paul’s RC Academy had been selected as a Flagship School for Scottish Book Trust I wanted to get involved. I believed that finding some way to promote literacy throughout the school and to the feeder primary schools was important. I decided to create a Scottish Book Trust Glow page focusing on the authors that have done Authors Live events. When I was browsing the webpage I discovered that in a couple of weeks Authors Live with Jacqueline Wilson was taking place. 

There was a specialist in each group that had read the novel, ensuring everyone in the group knew what the novel was about

When the day arrived my first year class sat and watched the broadcast. They thoroughly enjoyed it and they managed to write down plenty of information about the author.

Once we had watched the broadcast I chose five random Jacqueline Wilson novels to promote. They were Love Lessons, Kiss, The Suitcase Kid, Diamond Girls, and The Story of Tracy Beaker. I split the class into five groups and gave them each a novel. There was a specialist in each group that had read the novel, ensuring everyone in the group knew what the novel was about and they had a sound knowledge of the plot. This also gave the class an opportunity to recognise which parts of the novels would appeal to enthusiastic readers.

I realised that involving ICT was a must for this project; therefore, I chose to use PowerPoint. Each group made a PowerPoint presentation of five slides and roles were assigned to each group member:

1. Supervisor

2. Decision maker

3. Illustrator

4. ICT organiser

5. Researcher

This is what the pupils thought of the task:

Love Lessons Group

The past few weeks we have been working hard to create a PowerPoint presentation about the Jacqueline Wilson book Love Lessons. Over this time we have been creating personalized slides that link in with the title of the book. The slides include an introduction, an opinion page, and a “Thank you for reading page.” At this present moment our ICT person is creating slides (as best she can, we are still designing the first slide).

Kiss Group

We are doing this project because we think that reading helps to expand your vocabulary and it can make your writing more interesting. We think this is a fun way to do this. We think that group work is fun because we like hearing other people’s opinions and it is better than working on our own.

The Story of Tracy Beaker Group

We are doing this project to encourage young children to read and for us to learn how to use our group skills, such as, listening, effort, understanding, and teamwork. By using these skills to work together we created a PowerPoint presentation on The Story of Tracy Beaker. We enjoyed working together in our group because we got to know each other better. The boys did not enjoy it as much because the books are quite girly.

The Suitcase Kid Group

We are doing this project because reading books will help you understand words easier and make you more intelligent. I kind of enjoyed the group task because I enjoyed working with the people in my group. I didn’t enjoy the book because it is not my kind of book.

The Diamond Girls Group

We started by watching Authors Live with Jacqueline Wilson. She did this to promote her new book Lily Alone and to encourage the younger generation to read books and use their imaginations. After the broadcast we got put into groups of five and got given one of Jacqueline’s books. They were Diamond GirlsThe Suitcase KidLove LessonsKiss and The Story of Tracy Beaker. Every group had to make a PowerPoint to promote the books. The slideshows are getting put up on a Glow Group called Scottish Book Trust which Miss Cuthill made. It is going to be shown to our feeder primaries and the rest of first year.

You can watch and download the full video of Authors Live with Jacqueline Wilson.

Teacher resources accompanying the event are also available.