Now you see us… Now you don’t!

Prep Head of English and Drama, Mrs Suzanne Chinnock, writes a blog on Clayesmore’s Patron of Reading & Writing, Gillian Cross, working with Year 5 over the next weeks. Here’s what happened on her first visit:

You’re a quarter of an inch high and suddenly the world’s an entirely different place… Blades of grass morph into a dense and dizzying jungle. The inaudible beating of a butterfly’s wings is thunder in your ears. Your mother’s approaching footsteps signal an earthquake – a ten on the Richter Scale!

This is the world which Year 5 are going to explore – a curious journey of minuscule proportions but with epic outcomes.

Multi-award-winning author Gillian Cross arrived on Tuesday to share with Year 5 the first steps of this remarkable journey. Curiosity (one of our Attitudes to Learning) was at the centre of the first activity, where Gillian showed slides of magnified objects, asking the children to be inquisitive and look carefully and closely, so closely that they could spot the fabric of a teabag or the very centre of a kiwi fruit!  

Next, Gillian read extracts from her book ‘The Dark Ground’. Aeroplane passenger Robert peers into a mirror and sees a tiny version of himself reflected in his eye. There is a terrible crash and he wakes up in a forest. Here he is attacked by a huge bird and finds a simply enormous tree. It turns out though that the forest is the park and the tree is normal-sized – it is Robert who has shrunk…

Year Five collaborated, thinking about books and films which feature tiny people, or people who shrink. Extracts from these films and books followed – bring out ‘The Borrowers’, ‘Honey, I Shrunk the Kids’, ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’, and, of course, ‘Gulliver’s Travels’.   

Next week, Gillian will be back and Year 5 will be out in the grounds choosing a location. Working collaboratively in a small group or pair, they will re-imagine that location creatively and with curiosity, imagining themselves to be only a quarter of an inch high!

Check out next week’s Blog!

Suzanne Chinnock