‘SUPERMEGA STORYTELLER!’ Jason, age 14
‘I think Cat is the best storyteller in the world’ Cameron, age 6
A full school day usually consists of 3 or 4 x 50 minute story sessions, though Cat can be flexible about this. Ideally the sessions are with one class at a time but she can work with year groups or key stages. Cat doesn’t read from a book and never sits down for long! She is a physical performer who combines language, characterisation, gestures and musical instruments in a seemingly effortless but wonderfully captivating way.
Cat will help you plan a busy but successful day. It is possible to mix and match sessions ie performance sessions for both juniors and infants, or a combination of performances + workshops
Cat loves infants and will work with children from 3 years old. She combines age-appropriate stories with action rhymes, music, singing, physical objects, dance and games to create highly interactive sessions for little listeners. They are imaginative, engaging, memorable, educational and great fun! She sometimes works with puppets too. Her BEAR TALES show has proved enormously popular.
Cat has a general repertoire of infant and nursery stories but she also offers themed days: ONCE UPON A RHYME (famous fairy tales with Cat dressed as a fairytale princess!) SHINE! (stories on the theme of light – perfect for autumn term because it complements Divali, Hanukah and Christmas) BEAR TALES (wonderfully entertaining bear stories from around the world, fascinating facts about bears and gorgeous bear and teddy bear hand puppets) and WORLD TALES (glorious stories from around the world. Great for exploring cultural diversity).
Juniors – Performance
Cat tells WORLD TALES in her junior sessions, choosing age-appropriate stories that will engage and challenge her audience. Years 3 and 4 love magic and humour, for example, but older children often feel they have outgrown such fanciful fare, so Cat will give them problem-solving stories, lateral thinking and word play.
For juniors, Cat can also offer MEET THE AUTHOR book sessions. Author events can be quite dry, but Cat includes all her characteristic flourishes – a high energy performance style, music, fairy lights and plenty of audience interaction – to create lively, entertaining programmes that really bring her books to life. All sessions include Q & A and inspirational talk about writing and being an author. One performance can accommodate up to 150 juniors, so a real ‘book buzz’ is generated – especially at the book signing!
NEW! PROMOTING NON FICTION READING THROUGH WHACKY SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS! A wonderfully entertaining 50 – 60 minute session in which Cat conducts amazing science experiments using household items. Crucially she brings along the books the experiments come from, so children can see the benefit of reading and exploring non fiction.
Parents love this session too – especially dads! Launch your next literacy drive with a BANG! After school sessions are available.
‘I can’t wait for the next visit – the wacky experiments were fantastic!’
‘I loved it all but the cola experiment was fizzingly good fun!’ Jamie
‘Hold your breathe because you never know what’s going to happen’
‘Is it a bird? Is it a ‘plane? No! It’s a flying teabag! How does she do it?’ Drew
‘I hope you can come again soon as I really enjoyed it. I love your books and the story telling too. I liked the pirate one best. I liked the experiments too – they were great for kids.’
‘The children thought your visit was fantastic and they have been further motivated to read. Meeting you has given the children that extra dimension to their reading. The whacky science was trully inspirational! Good books have just got better!’
Juniors – Workshops
SPARKY IDEAS WORKSHOPS A collection of story games to get brains fizzing and generate ideas of creative writing.
BOOK DESIGN WORKSHOP – A fascinating ‘behind the scenes’ look at the evolution of a book cover suitable for Years 5 and 6. Working in small groups, the children assess various Barkbelly cover designs, learn about marketing and the book business, and design a cover of their own.
With teens, Cat favours the ‘big’ themes of life and death, love and loyalty. She often looks at relationships – between lovers, friends or family members. Through her intimate, emotionally-charged stories, Cat shows that life is frequently confusing and love is rarely straightforward. But for all the brutality of our times, life can be beautiful too.
POETRY WORKSHOPS. Cat explores her belief that poetry should be an expression of emotion. Through guided imagery, students will identify the emotion they are feeling then express it through writing verse.