Flying High English Hub TRG: an update from Carl Pattison

Reading the planet YLG Conference- September 2022

I was fortunate enough to win a place at the wonderful YLG Conference in Sheffield and I want to start this piece by thanking the Open University for this opportunity. I wasn’t able to attend the full event but I certainly made the most of the evening and morning sessions that I did attend!

To kick the weekend off, the wonderful YLG team welcomed everyone, and it soon became apparent that there were numerous librarians in the room with a wealth of knowledge about children’s literature. To compliment that, I was also surrounded by a range of publishers and authors – It was a TRG leader’s dream! It also identified what a key role librarians play in promoting a love of reading. As practitioners, we need to ensure that we share their wealth of knowledge about children’s literature and they become part of our challenge to tempt all children to read.

The evening session was a particular highlight for me: Michael Morpurgo took part in a discussion about War Horse as it is the 40th Anniversary of this wonderful story. Michael shared the stimulus for the story and the journey it went on- from the first 1000 copies to the Steven Spielberg hit movie. However, the highlight of the session, for me, was the question-and-answer section. Various people asked their questions and then a certain Dapo Adeola (artist for Look Up) stood up and thanked Michael for his time on the farm. Dapo revealed that he had visited the ‘Farms for City Children’ as a child! After Michael’s session, the two then caught up to share stories of the past. I wonder if a book collaboration will be hitting the bookshop shelves in the not too distant future?

I was fortunate enough to visit other sessions too: Authors like Naomi & James Jones, Caryl Hart and Nathan Bryon shared how their books help children understand their role in helping the planet. I was also introduced to debut authors Fiona Longmuir and Emily Kenny. Both shared their journeys, books and inspirations.

I certainly came away from the event inspired and more importantly more driven to help build the knowledge of children authors when I work with various colleagues in school.

Found out more about other events here:

Carl Pattison

Flying High English Hub Lead and TRG leader.