I have around 125 books published and I love writing! I am a bit of a serial series writer with series such as 'School Friends', 'Ballerina Dreams', Families in a Step-Chain... I have also written stand-alone books, such as 'Billie and the Parent Plan', and, more recently, 'Code Breaker.' And I have written picture books such as Peter and the Timber Wolf and The Dragon's Tale.
When Mr Clark, the Year 6 teacher, announces that this term every student will be writing a Daily Status report about their life and hobbies, Joe panics. What can he write about? His life is boring and he has zero hobbies. But Mr Clark sees to have the idea that Joe likes making and breaking codes. Result! Joe can run with that. Before he knows it, he's finding out about the Enigma machine, that was famously used by the British to crack German secret codes during WW2.The trouble is, it's still not enough to fill up a daily status for forty whole days, so pretty soon, Joe is making things up. The fantasy world that Joe creates in each Daily Status is followed by the hilarious and, at times, poignant truth of what is actually happening in his real life, which includes his obsession with the 'new' girl, Berry Smith. Joe thinks the best way to get her attention is by being cool, whereas it's actually Joe's genuine nature that Berry likes. Subsequently, the cooler he tries to be, the more he alienates her until he finally gets the message and starts being himself. This alignment brings Joe personal happiness.
My latest picture books are Peter and the Timber Wolf and Great Granny, which is a chapter book. Peter and the Timber Wolf is a comic re-telling in contemporary verse of Prokofiev's famous story, which I have narrated nearly fifty times in concerts with orchestras playing the famous music! My popular series 'Introducing Classical Music Through Stories' comprises titles such as 'The Dragon's Tale', William the Crack-Shot Kid and 'The Crazy Alien Ball.' I have twice been Patron of Reading holding 3-year tenures. In November 2022 I spoke at the Gibraltar Literary Festival. In February 2023 I did a key note speech at the Music and Drama Expo in Islington as part of the launch of my music course which includes many stories with classical music. In March 2023, I gained a Certificate in Counselling Sills for Children using the Arts. I am currently working on a prospective series for 7-11s as well as developing an idea for kids' TV with ALT Animation.
SCHOOL AUTHOR VISITS (timetabled to suit the school)
Fully comprehensive information about my school author visits appears on this page of my website:
I offer two different packages.
1. Presentation/Workshop based day
RECEPTION: Bringing stories to life through music and drama (40 mins)
YEARS 1 AND 2: Based around Peter and the Timber Wolf (1 hour)
YEARS 3 AND 4: Including fun plotting and pacing (1 hour)
YEARS 5 AND 6: Including an interactive story and codes and readings from my book 'Code Breaker' (75 mins)
WHOLE SCHOOL ASSEMBLY ON POETRY WITH MUSIC (optional) (20 mins)
SIGNING SESSION (optional) dedicating books to individual children as a memento of the day. (I will send you posters to advertise this, and a book list for pre-orders)
I like to work in a hall with a piano/keyboard and audio facility. There is a strong music and drama element in the presentations and they are all interactive and fun but with literacy initiatives that can be implemented immediately in the classroom. I also show how a book evolves, and talk about how an author works, as well as reading from some of my books.My presentations are all age appropriate. Here's what some teachers have said...
"Thank you so much for the absolutely fantastic day on Tuesday. The children got so much out of the day and were absolutely captured by your workshops. You targeted every year group perfectly. Your energy kept every child focused - even the very smallest - and I honestly don't think a single child left the room without having learned something. I also really appreciated your positive attitude and warmth throughout the day. It was a pleasure working with you."
Shelley Vavrecka, Geneva English School March 2023
"The best author I have seen in a school!"
"That was absolutely fabulous. To have children so young so engaged for an hour is amazing."
Natalie, Literary Coordinator March 2023
"She's the best author ever!"
Jax Yr 2 March 2023
WOW! Thank you for surrounding us with enthusiasm, creativity and positive energy. Definitely the best visiting author we had at IAA."
Zaina Kamal, Grade Two Leader 2020
"Our Pre-K children were absolutely enthralled! Thank you for your brilliance!"
Liz Smoake, Pre-K Grade Leader 2020
"For our students here at IAA your visit will surely be the highlight of their year"
Medeline Hooter, Grade 1 teacher 2020
"What an amazing performance you gave to the children and to us teachers also. You were absolutely magical.’" Lina Primary Art Teacher 2020
'I have been responsible for booking 8 authors over the years and Ann is definitely my number 1!'
Helen Clarke, Librarian, St Teresa's, Effingham
'We were entranced, enthralled and mesmerised!"
Sally Simm, Literacy Coordinator and Yr 5 Teacher, Beechwood Sacred Heart School
The children were absolutely enthralled. There were so many initiatives, stories and tips about engaging with the children to help with reading and writing.'
Danielle Neville, Yr 3 Teacher, Vauvert School, Guernsey.
'I cannot begin to tell you, Ann, how many teachers and staff have come to me since your visit and told me what a totally inspirational day they had.'
Carol Burman, Librarian, Welholme Academy, Grimsby
'Ann has no idea just how much she has done for these children. There is such a buzz right now.'
Sarah Sammut Librarian and Learnng Support, John Wallis C of E Academy, Kingsnorth
'Ann Bryant's visit was great! She had the children captivated from the word go. Despite having a few 'characters' in both Yrs 5 and 6, there was no problem with behaviour as they were all engaged with Ann. She also inspired my teaching! '
Sian Wilson, St Francis Catholic Primary School
'We have been lucky enough to have had many authors over the years, but Ann is the most dynamic author I have had the privelege to listen to. She is an inspiration to all of us!'
Alison Beauchamp-Ward, Frith Manor Primary School
'Not only were the children completely under Ann's spell as she read and talked about her books, but they learnt so much about books at the same time. The visit far exceeded our expectations and has also acted as a source of inspiration for children who are not keen readers.'
'Ann's visit was one of the highlights of our year. The Year Four children and staff were enraptured by her storytelling and didn't want the session to end. The CD books (Introducing Classical Music Through Stories) were a revelation, the children being completely spellbound by the mixture of music with fabulous words and pictures'
Jackie Mizon Sherrardswood School
'To keep the whole of Yr 6, who were sitting on a hard floor, engaged and inspired for over an hour, was quite something!'
Steve Elliott (Head Teacher)
2. Bring a book to life through drama - A Play in a Day!
I take two classes (Yr 5 or 6) and spend an hour and a quarter with each, then work with both classes together for an hour and a quarter. We explore drama techniques such as chant, rap, song, dance-action, improvisation, percussion, to convey the theme bullying. When the production is 'ready', the rest of the school are invited to watch. (approx 25 mins)
'Ann, got more out of our Yr 5 and 6s than I think myself or my colleagues have ever got!'
Dallas Courtenay-Warren, Notre Dame School, Guernsey
'The benefits were countless but I'll try to cover some of the key ones. It was a fantastic opportunity for our learners to develop their confidence and explore a social story that for them was very relevant. They all did a wonderful job but it was extra special to hear the loud, clear voice of one of my very shy girls, and to see my trickiest boy making positive choices and really standing out for all the right reasons. The children were able to work as a team and develop the skills needed to work under pressure. They needed to be principled, listen actively and show real focus, supporting each other to ensure the performance worked. They enjoyed the opportunity to learn new songs and choreography, and to put a bit of themselves into the performance. It covered many of the elements of learning in our new curriculum - creativity, resilience, teamwork, and an opportunity to reflect on the day and the show. They were able to perform for an audience and be seen by the rest of the school in a very positive light. I'm very thankful to Ann for her amazing magical work with the kids. They are still buzzing today!
Year 5 Teacher, Guernsey (May 2018)
'A massive thank you for a brilliant day. I know all the teachers were very impressed with the work you got out of the children in such a short space of time and I know all the children loved it! It was incredibly powerful.'
Paul Cox, Head Teacher, Dallington Primary School
JUDGING POETRY READING COMPETITIONS
I have a great deal of experience of this kind of work and like to provide very positive feedback.
I offer inset/CPD for teachers of all the year groups in the Primary age range, as follows:
'FROM STORY TO STAGE'
This is designed to give confidence and tips to teachers of 1) Early Years and/KS1 2) KS2, so they can easily and effectively adapt a story into a short drama for e.g. an assembly. This is a 'think outside the box' session which will make life so much easier!
I offer a talk for parents of primary school aged children on THE IMPORTANCE OF READING FOR PLEASURE
I am based in Kent but travel all over the UK. Contact me through my website or my email address for more info including fees.
I also do talks for creative writing workshops, groups such as the WI, and sixth form colleges, as well as after-dinner and after-lunch speaking. I am experienced at speaking at festivals and doing radio interviews.