Only the second day of term, but OLHS staff and pupils are already out and about in search of literature at the Edinburgh International Book Festival – and we saw other NLC schools too (take a bow, Kilsyth Academy). Fifty 3rd years and five staff headed east, arriving only just in the nick of time, thanks to some lousy traffic.
On the plus side, it meant we didn’t wait about for our first talk with Lari Don, discussing her latest book, Mind Blind, and encouraging the audience to discuss the positives and negatives of having superpowers. This went down well with some of the OLHS crowd who appreciated the interaction, especially when one of our own was invited to share their thoughts, while others wanted to hear more about the book itself.
Staff and pupils wandered off to explore the festival site, check out the fabulous bookshops – enter with your credit card at your own risk – partake of light refreshments, and just enjoy the sunshine. There isn’t a decent bookshop in Motherwell, and a lot of pupils were seen wandering about inside just soaking up everything on offer, and some took advantage of the Festival’s £2 tokens to purchase a wee present for themselves.
Our second talk featured contributors to a new World War I anthology, Tony Bradman, Linda Newbery and Paul Dowswell. Many pupils commented on how much they learned about the war from the discussion between the three authors, while others felt World War I was being talked about too much.
Pupils’ comments afterwards revealed an even split between those who had enjoyed Lari Don, and those who preferred the World War I talk. For some this was a fiction/non-fiction issue, some were more concerned about the presentation, and others the ideas that had been discussed. Meanwhile, the loveliest 3rd years enjoyed both, with many appreciating the differences in the speakers’ styles.
And perhaps best of all, there was a huge amount of interest in who else was speaking and when they could return, which makes all of the work worthwhile 🙂