Stromness Academy Library

Books, reading and life in a school library

Postcards, Paintings, Picnic, Competition & Light


Thursday 8th October, yep! – that is next week and the second last day of term.  “Yipee!”, I hear you say.  So, next Thursday sees us returning to our annual celebration of poetry with the return to the tried and tested Poetry Picnic format.  It will be held in the school library at lunchtime (12:25 – 1:30pm).  Snacks, tea and coffee will be available (for small donation towards costs) as well as general banter about poetry on this year’s theme of ‘Light‘ (and maybe just general banter) in celebration of National Poetry Day.

What can you look forward to?

Sharing Poetry – Poetry postcard deliveries will take place during periods 1 – 3 next Thursday 8th October.  Where teachers will ‘drop everything and read’ poems from this year’s (or previous years poetry postcards) if convenient, otherwise the poem will be read out at the end of the lesson.  We will require some S6 volunteers to help deliver these cards.

Poetry Competition – Write a poem on the theme of ‘Light’.  Poem can be based on your own thoughts, feelings, etc. on ‘light’ or use one of the paintings on display in the library and write a poetic response to it.  Staff and pupils can enter.


Poetry & Plagiarism – As part of the introduction to the poetry competition, S2 pupils have been given a chance in English Library / Literacy periods to start to consider writing a poem about ‘Light’.  Pupils respond to a painting which has clever use of light or has a title with ‘light’ in it.  They write 5-6 lines of poetry. 

They are then asked to swap their work with someone else.  The pupils then writes their name on the piece of work they got.  Pupils head off to do 10-15 minutes of personal reading whilst the teacher and librarian go round and look at the poetry giving out up to 3 stamps each for work which shows promise or is looking good… based on initial impressions.  Those with the most stamps get a peedie prize (sweetie). 

The outcry is tangible as pupils are getting ‘rewards’ for something they didn’t write.  We then have a short discussion on what was wrong with this and why, including how it makes people feel.  Thus, they get a feeling about exactly what plagiarism is and why we insist on pupils using their own words and ensuring they reference their sources of information.  Thank you to the ever useful School Librarians’ Network forum for the idea.

Poetry Picnic – Come along to the poetry picnic held over the whole of lunch. Pop in for a short while are stay the full 40 minutes of your lunch.  We might even bring back the popular ‘tongue twister’ competition. 

Pupil helpers – There will be a requirement for some pupil volunteers to help with the poetry picnic and to tidy up afterwards so anyone interested should get in touch with Mrs Sinclair. (NB. We have three already so one or two more would be helpful.)

Playing with Light – We are also hoping to enlist the help of the science department so that a small display or quick experiments in light can be done during the poetry picnic.  Watch this space!

Display with poetry competition images and poems from the poetry postcards.

Display with poetry competition images and poems from the poetry postcards.

So, a lot is planned and without you, the pupils and staff, this event wouldn’t work so well.  Let’s see if this can be our best yet.  See you next Thursday!

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