Popcorn-eating Squirrels of the World Unite! (KS2)
Popcorn-eating Squirrels go mad on Everest (publ. September 2019)
Going with the 'out of your comfort zone' theme we asked author, film director and explorer Matt Dickinson to visit us and spend the day with our year 7s.
Matt has successfully climbed to the summit of Mount Everest and made his way across Antarctica to be part of the first group to ever achieve the same on Mt. William. Matt was very laid back and totally unpretentious and was a pleasure to work with.
He gave a fantastic presentation throughout the day to all year 7s and we should be proud of them! They asked some fantastic questions, were so engaged that when a member of staff came in to the LRC, she said you could have heard a pin drop!
We were tasked with creating a follow up activity and the students were asked to research the various people involved in such expeditions, plan and present a writing task in the format of a diary, newspaper article etc.
We took Matt around each classroom where students were still clamouring to ask questions! They were totally focused and the work in progress was extremely impressive. Once we have all the work returned we will award 3 students with a signed copy of his book, Everest files.
As librarians our primary focus is to engage children to read (and write) for pleasure. If we can achieve that then the rest follows. A reluctant reader is a reluctant learner.
Ormiston Ilkeston Academy
What a fantastic event! Even our ‘cool’ Third Year pupils were thoroughly engrossed within the first few minutes. Matt even greeted our Spanish exchange students in their native tongue to make them feel welcome.
Few authors can make Toffee Crisps this exciting.
You could have heard a pin drop (in a hall full of 150+ pupils) when Matt played the footage of Hinkes’ finally reaching Everest’s summit, at the end of his talk. And teachers spontaneously commented the next day that students were still buzzing about it 24 hours later. Even better, they were enthusing about Matt’s talk unprompted.
For the first time I sold out of books and had to order more. Real life action man + gripping storytelling + stunning photography = hit author event.
Kingston Grammar School
Matt Dickinson visited Caterham in November and I wanted to let you know how pleased we were with his visit. His talk to over a hundred Year 8 pupils was engaging, informative and very enjoyable. His personal account of climbing Everest provoked much discussion and pupils have been queuing to read his book The Everest Files' ever since.
Listening to Matt Dickinson’s story about his journey to reach the summit of Mount Everest was truly fascinating. It was a great idea to have him come into the school so he could tell us his story. You could only imagine the difficulties he faced and the sense of accomplishment he felt as he reached the summit.’ Karolina Year 9
Marlborough Science Academy
Tanglin Trust School has just had UK-based author/film-maker/mountaineer Matt Dickinson visiting recently. Matt has written books for adults and children. His books for adults include both fiction (thrillers) and non-fiction (biographical) books. He has just started to write for children and his new series Mortal Chaos has been an outstanding success.
• inspired Year 5 through talking about his climb up the North Face of Mt Everest which he filmed for National Geographic and showed film clips from the journey;
• worked with Year 5 classes to analyse the role victims play in a story and to build imaginative stories involving victims;
• talked to Year 6 about his experiences as a film-maker and shown them the extreme environments in which he has worked;
• linked to Year 7’s topic Inhospitable Environments and talked about the hazardous places in which he has worked around the world – for example showing photographs of a climber he was filming who was scaling an iceberg in the Antarctic;
• met with Tanglin 6th Form students who were about to set off on a trek to Everest’s
Base Camp and showed them photos of the journey they were about to undertake, advising them on how to prepare for the trip and what to expect.
This group were also interested to see film clips from Matt’s documentary about his ascent of the North Face of Mt Everest.
The children and staff found his presentations to be truly inspirational. I highly recommend him!