Just Imagine sponsors Our Class Loves This Book: the UKLA John Downing Award

The winner of the 2016 Our Class Loves this Book Award is Alice Manning and her Starters (Y1) class, The Bylingual School, Sevilla. Their winning entry is for their work on The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Waterby Gemma Merino.

Chris Lockwood, chair of judges writes: This was a video submission in the form of a PowerPoint. Each slide was beautifully presented, with a background of selections from the picture book. The submission was very unusual in that it described a project with a group of children who were Spanish speakers; the book was presented and the project was carried out in English.The teacher tells us that she has "broken Spanish".
The teacher planned for innovative responses to the text, drawing out a wide range of themes, enabling the children to talk about themselves, their families, their emotions, their abilities and dreams and finally their differences. The outcomes were some very high quality work in a second language from a year 1 class.

From a number of strong submissions, the panel also highly commended three entries:

Antonia Howell, Marjorie McClure Special School, Chislehurst, Kent for her work with her class on The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffers:
The planning and preparation for the children's work with this text were hugely impressive and the way the staff had used technology to make the text accessible, and to find ways for the children to respond, were a triumph.The video submitted was very moving.
St. Peter's C of E Primary School, Bristol

Kirsty Miller and Faye O’Connell and Y4 Puffins and Penguins, St. Peter’s School Bristol, for their work based on Oliver and the Seawigs by Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre:
The submission was a beautifully produced album containing evidence of the planning for the use of this text in Book Week as well as photographs and examples of children's written work and art work. The written work is of an exceptionally high standard and we particularly enjoyed the children's cartoon strips.

Jess Griffiths and Hannah Weston and Y1 Doves and Kingfishers, St. Peter’s School Bristol, for their work based on Hermelin the Detective Mouse by Mini Grey:
A beautifully produced and presented album. We loved the way that members of staff throughout the school became engaged in the project, by posting mysteries they would like to be solved on the replica of the story's notice board outside the classroom.The project encouraged cooperative and collaborative work, including the use of technology, for example a FaceTime conversation with the headteacher whose "treat box" had gone missing.Staff put a great deal of thought into the letters the class received, giving the children wonderful opportunities for intertextuality.The work, and presentation, was of very high quality.

Alice Manning has been invited to share her work at a seminar at the UKLA International Conference in July. The award will be presented at the awards wine reception at the international Conference on 9 July.

Panel: Chris Lockwood (chair), Jane Bednell, Joy Court, Lynda Graham, Rebecca Hurst.

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