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    Adding Sparkle to the Cambridge Literacy Festival

    While we’ve been busy flicking through photographs and film clips, getting our new website together, it’s been humbling to reflect on some of the incredible people we’ve met, who have helped us, and thousands of children, as we all continue to grow our BookWings. One of my favourites has to be when I took to the stage at the Cambridge Literacy Festival, back in 2016.

    I was asked to present the impact StoryTime Phonics was having on the children within the county of Cambridgeshire. To celebrate the culmination of years of hard work getting the programme launched, I asked a number of teachers from a diverse range of schools to share their own journeys and experiences.  The teachers talked passionately about how they loved the ethos of the programme and that the lessons being centred around quality picture books made reading fun and memorable. We also had Phonics Screening Tests to compare, the results of which were just astounding.

    We were joined by primary school teachers, leaders and Local authority educational advisors, all resided over by the ridiculously talented author and illustrator, Nick Sharratt. Nick and I have been friends for years having met when I included several of his books in Story Time Phonics. He’s a genuinely lovely man who goes above and beyond expectations and it’s been a pleasure to include his funny, engaging books within the programme.

    One of the standout moments for me had to be watching Nick get teary eyed listening to how a special needs school were using his books to help non-verbal children – seeing the joy on their little smiling faces as they put their ‘finger in the jelly’ was sheer magic.  The footage was shared by the Castle school, who I’ve supported for years as an English advisor. The team of exceptional staff fully embrace StoryTime Phonics dressing up as the characters from the books, pushing boundaries and taking the multisensory aspect of the programme to a whole new level.

    The energy from the whole day was incredible. A celebration of educational staff joining together, and collectively deciding to bring the joy back to Phonics lessons.  Seeing them learn new skills to engage children from all corners of the classroom, was a pleasure to behold and something I won’t forget for many years to come.

    Thank you one to everyone who came along. Seeing the ripple effect of the work we do under the BookWings banner, is what drives us to keep pushing the boundaries and creating resources you’ll love.

    Enjoy watching the highlights from the day.

    With Fairy Wishes,

    Michelle x

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