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swidgers in cuba zoom talk
male teacher in cuba holding swidgers book
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THE SWIDGERS is now being read in Havana, Cuba!

Miya of The International School of Havana: "The teachers and students all thought your talk was fabulous and enjoyed the whole event a lot! Students were eager to come to the library to borrow The Time That Never Was after the talk."

For details of in-person school visits or online talks, please download Story Craft for Teachers Key Stage 3 in the PDF file below.

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Story Craft for Teachers Key Stage 3

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Story Craft for Teachers Key Stage 3 offers understanding and insight into the art and practice of story, plot and character, looking at why we tell and need stories, plus the nuts-and-bolts of creating a story and day-to-day writing techniques and literary devices. Story Craft for Teachers Key Stage 3 includes details of the 21 Story Steps, plus worksheets and suggestions of class assignments and activities.

Specific questions and topics covered:
How do you define a plot?
What's the difference between plot and story?
What is the purpose of telling stories?
How do you make up a story?
What are the essential building blocks of a plot?
What are the ‘Story Steps' of A Christmas Carol?
What are the different ways in which a story can be presented?
How do you choose the appropriate form to tell a story?
What is exposition?
What is meant by genre?
What is a mystery story?


PDF Resources

plot and character

Plot and Character workbook covers the structural nature of Story, the essential elements of a plot (the 21 Story Steps), plus the tools needed to build and create characters.

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thinking story

Thinking Story workbook considers the intentions and purposes of Story, plus why human beings are drawn to narrative and fiction.

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writing skills

Writing Skills workbook looks specifically at expositional techniques, the creation of dialogue and sub-text, plus the importance of vocabulary and metaphor.

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narrative design

Narrative Design workbook examines how a tale is told, who is narrating it and why they're telling it that mode. NARRATIVE DESIGN also offers a detailed look at narrative setting in terms of both time and place.

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These PowerPoints have been designed for teachers to take and adapt and from them create their own individual lesson plans and class activities.

the 21 story steps powerpoint
the story steps of a christmas carol powerpoint
the story steps of the time that never was powerpoint
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Annotated Opening Chapters of
The Time That Never Was PDF files

The fully annotated opening scene of The Time That Never Was – with detailed Story Craft colour coding – has been separated into three individual PDF documents:

1 Exposition of Character and Place

2 Task Action, Mystery and Day of Change

3 Narrative Technique

There is also a Text Only PDF for pupils to read and make notes on if required.

orphans mentors

William Arthur in SWIDGERS is, as with Harry Potter and Luke Skywalker, an orphan boy. ORPHANS AND THEIR MENTORS offers then an in depth insight into the tradition of the orphan in folklore, classical literature and popular culture. There is also a section on the importance of Mentor figures in children’s literature and films.