Tag Archives: school visits

Joy’s Schools Tour

Joy Lawrence has been delivering as schools ambassador for the Wadadli Pen 2014 Challenge season. It is the folk historian and poet’s first year with the programme and she has jumped in with both feet, visiting a number of schools to promote the literary arts in general and Wadadli Pen in particular.

“I had such wonderful times at the schools,” she’s informed me, noting that even schools she visited unofficially were happy to see her. I and other Wadadli Pen volunteers have visited many schools over our 10 years and have had finalists (i.e. top writers and artists) from 16 schools* and entries from more, but as Joy is discovering programme awareness could still be a lot better…a lot better. So, it’s good to have someone dedicated to the task, especially someone who is as available and enthusiastic as Joy has proven to be. “I can’t tell you how I would be happy to have something like this offered when I was going to school as well as when I was a young teacher,” she said. Hope her enthusiasm is catching.

Here are images from her visits to Kids Unlimited, St. Michael’s and Trinity Academy.

Joy with students from Trinity Secondary School.

Joy with students from Trinity Secondary School.

Joy with students at St. Michael's Primary.

Joy with students at St. Michael’s Primary.

Kids Unlimited students listen to a presentation by Lawrence.

Kids Unlimited students listen to a presentation by Lawrence.

For the Wadadli Pen Challenge of 2014, our 10th year, we will be inviting submissions from writers and artists 12 and younger, 13 to 17, and 18 to 35, as well as teachers of any age; we’ll also reward the school with the greatest number of submissions.

Go here for Guidelines, here for Terms, and subscribe or listen out for the launch of the 2014 season. Spoiler alert: it’ll be in January 2014.

*School performance on Wadadli Pen 2004 to 2013 – i.e. how many finalists have there been from how many schools again? – N.B. the number in brackets represents one person but that person may have been a repeat finalist which means the school may have shown up more than the number actually suggests.
Antigua Girls High (7)
Antigua State College (9)
Antigua Wesleyan Junior Academy (3)
Buckleys (1)
Christ the King High (2)
Clare Hall Secondary (1)
Foundation Mixed School (1)
Golden Grove Primary (1)
Irene B. Williams (1)
Island Academy (1)
Minoah Magnet (1)
Ottos Comprehensive (1)
Princess Margaret (1)
St. Andrew’s (1)
St. Nicholas (1)
Sunnyside (1)

As with all content (words, images, other) on wadadlipen.wordpress.com, except otherwise noted, this is written by Joanne C. Hillhouse (author of The Boy from Willow Bend, Dancing Nude in the Moonlight, and Oh Gad!). All Rights Reserved. If you enjoyed it, check out my page on Amazon, WordPress, and/or Facebook, and help spread the word about Wadadli Pen and my books. You can also subscribe to the site to keep up with future updates. Thanks. And remember while linking and sharing the links, referencing and excerpting, are okay, lifting content (words, images, other) from the site without asking is not cool. Respect copyright.

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Wadadli Pen 2014 update – laying the groundwork

Something I’ve tried to do over the years to promote Wadadli Pen is liaise with the schools: visiting schools, emailing and phoning and talking in person with teachers; sending letters through the Ministry of Education; delivering letters directly to the schools and following up; doing workshops with young people in and out of schools; posting flyers on noticeboards. It can be a time consuming task (and challenging because of it given work and personal obligations) but it can create greater awareness among the schools and more importantly the young people who are the target of our annual Challenge. I have never been able to plan a full on schools awareness campaign the way I’d like but I’ve been to schools and other members of the Wadadli Pen team (past winner Devra Thomas who did some work in this regard a couple of years ago comes to mind). This year, Antiguan writer and folk historian Joy Lawrence decided to take up this ball and run with it, and, boy, is she running. Her latest correspondence informs me that she has already made contact with the schools and has “some enthusiastic invitations which I’ll confirm soon”.

She’s (so far) confirmed for

  • Kids Unlimited, Scotts Hill on 28th October 2013
  • Glanvilles Secondary on 29th October 2013*
  • Trinity Academy, Christian Valley on 8th November 2013
  • and St. Michaels, private primary, on 6th November 2013

*(Incidentally, this and my invitation to speak at St. John’s Catholic Primary on 29th October 2013 are Independence related but still an opportunity to put forward our message and promote expression among the young people)

I know Joy was a little overwhelmed when she realized the scope of this role but she’s leaping into it and (having done this myself for many years I appreciate how overwhelming it can be and as such appreciate her taking the bull by the horns).  She won’t be able to visit all the schools or even all the classes of the schools she does visit, but where she does touch down I believe it will make a difference. I thank her for stepping up and getting the ball rolling on this.

Check out others who are helping to make Wadadli Pen 2014 possible.


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