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Pupils at Nairn Primary School to work with writer and illustrator John Fardell on creative project led by Scottish Book Trust and funded by Walter Scott Giving Group


By Val Sweeney

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Millbank Primary School in Nairn.
Millbank Primary School in Nairn.

A Nairn primary school is among 10 schools in Scotland chosen to receive a fully-funded author residency to inspire a lifelong love of reading and writing.

Millbank Primary will work on a creative project this school year with writer and illustrator John Fardell.

The Live Literature School Residencies Programme, now in its sixth year, is funded by the Walter Scott Giving Group and delivered by Scottish Book Trust.

Millbank headteacher Maria McPherson said: "I’m sure our P7s will really benefit from this very special and positive learning experience, working with author John Fardell."

Writer John Fardell
Writer John Fardell

Mr Fardell said he was honoured to be involved in the project at the school.

" I’m greatly looking forward to meeting everyone there and to helping the pupils develop their imaginative, creative and visual ideas," he said.

The residencies give professional writers the opportunity to build relationships with the school and work together on a creative project.

Schools across the country were invited to apply to the programme which brings professional authors into the classroom to inspire and engage pupils.

Each school taking part in the programme will receive 12 fully-funded residency sessions.

Three ASN centres were also awarded fully-funded author residencies in the third year of the additional support needs strand of the programme, funded by the Mohn Westlake Foundation. They will receive 15 sessions.

Marc Lambert, chief executive of Scottish Book Trust, said: "The Live Literature School Residencies Programme is incredibly important, as it allows authors to build relationships with a school over time, working together with pupils on a dedicated project.

"Many of these projects will work with the local community and will also build on the school’s Covid-19 recovery plan, addressing issues such as pupil wellbeing; rebuilding reading and writing cultures and also lost transition time for P7/S1.

"We are grateful to our funders the Walter Scott Giving Group and the Mohn Westlake Foundation for making this programme available to all schools including ASN settings."

The residencies will run across the 2021-22 school year and finish by May 2022. As well as an author residency, schools will receive a resources grant of £500.

Each school’s project will be showcased at Scottish Book Trust alongside suggested learning resources and helpful tips to make the most of the residency sessions.

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