Welcome to Year 4!
Zdravstvuyte from Year 4, who spent European Languages Day looking at the Russian language and peoples, composing a diamond poem on Russian topics such as the wintery steppe, symbolic brown bear, towering onion domes of St Basil's Cathedral and graceful ballet dancers as well as performing Russian folk dances and performing waltzes to Russian composer Dmitri Shoshtakovich's music.
Like all classes at Northern Year 4 has their own class novel, ours at the moment is Just Call Me Spaghetti Hoop Boy by Lara Williamson. While we were reading we thought up questions we might like to ask the author then, on a wing and a prayer, sent them to the author and were incredibly grateful to receive answers to all of our questions. It's not every day you get to interview an award winning children's author!
Thank you so much for your lovely email and I’m thrilled your class have chosen Just Call Me Spaghetti-Hoop Boy as their class novel and they’re enjoying it so far. Yay! That’s great news! And thank you for the questions that they’d like to ask me. Here goes some answers:
Q: Which of your books that you've written is your favourite?
Lara: Ah, choosing my favourite book is like choosing between buns, cakes and sweets. I love them all. They’re all a bit different to each other but equally delightful. Although, between you and me, I do have a soft spot for my second book, The Boy Who Sailed the Ocean in an Armchair. I think it’s because I love the snail in the book.
Q: Who is your favourite character in Just Call Me Spaghetti Hoop boy and why?
Lara: Ooh, tricky question. I like different characters for different reasons. I like Tiny Eric a lot and Sausage Roll too. Who doesn’t love an invisible dog? Maybe Sausage Roll needs his own book.
Q: What made you think of calling your book Spaghetti Hoop Boy?
Lara: I’m a fan of spaghetti-hoops. And it felt like the right name for this story as Adam needed a superhero name that was also a little bit of fun.
Q: Why is there Boy in all of your book titles?
Lara: All three books feel like a set and so I’ve used the word ‘boy’ in all three to connect them. And I like to imagine that my characters might have passed each other in the street or have been friends.
Q: How did you think up Tiny Eric?
Lara: Sometimes characters just come to you and you have to write them as you imagine them. I knew Tiny Eric would be tall but called Tiny. And I knew he’d be a good friend to Adam.
Q: What made you interested in becoming an author?
Lara: I’ve always written little stories, even from a very young age. I can’t remember a time where I didn’t write so it felt natural to write a book. I didn’t know if I’d manage to get it published though and when it happened I was over-the-moon. It was a huge dream come true.
Q: What is your favourite part of Spaghetti Hoop Boy?
Lara: I don’t really have a favourite part of a book because I see the book more as a whole story. Sometimes I think being an author is like weaving little magical threads together to make something special at the end. If you do it right everything works perfectly but if you make mistakes little holes appear and you need to sort them out.
Q: What did you do before you became an author?
Lara: Before I was an author I worked for a teen magazine where I styled photo shoots with models and wrote about beauty products. It was an amazing job and I loved it.
Q: Were you good at writing stories when you were in primary school?
Lara: I think I was quite good at English in school and I was also good at Art. Unfortunately, I was not so good at Maths. I’m a creative person who loves to draw and make things and paint and design.
Q: When did you start to like writing?
Lara: I’ve always loved writing, even when I was younger. When I was about ten I’d meet up with my friends and we would split into two groups, write plays and then act them out in front of each other. Then we’d choose the winning group with the best story. Thinking back, it was good experience for writing a book.
Q: What's your next book going to be about?
Lara: Ah, much as I’d love to spill the beans I have to keep the beans firmly inside the tin. That’s what my editor says anyway. Joking aside, I wouldn’t want to spoil the story for you but keep your eyes peeled as it’ll be out in the spring. Yay!
Year 4 have been looking at the Winter Olympics in South Korea testing their reading comprehension skills on a story based on this years games, as well as looking at the individual events and interviews with athletes. We thought about the international spirit of the games and welcoming all backgrounds and countries. We also acted out in role as an athlete facing a challenge and a motivational coach inspiring them to overcome it, and posed in a scene from our favourite event - can you guess which ones we picked?
Safer internet day
For Safer internet day Year 4 looked at how technology should be used responsibly and in accordance with our agreed class charter on safe use of the computer. We composed acrostic poems based around key words about the importance of never sharing personal information, telling an adult straight away if someone wants to meet you and if you see something which makes you upset or uncomfortable.