I'm the author of 14 books for that range from primary to lower secondary level. My titles include the Spartapuss series (ancient Roman cats) and Roobarb and Custard for Reception and Y1. I also created the graphic novel series London Deep (a Recommended Read for World Book day 2011 in the 9-12 year category).
I love to visit schools for assemblies and workshops where I perform extracts from my books and talk about reading, writing and history.
There are lots of great writers on this site but I'm fascinated by getting children to write. So much so that I've founded a website called Creative Writing Club that uses Apps to get kids writing.
I have boiled down everything I've learned about getting children writing into a free A4 pdf for teachers. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the word 'Tips' in the subject line and I will send you my 7 Tips For Story Writing.
I can work with any writing topic of your choice.
Cross Curricular Events
There are some neat tie-ins between my books and the curriculum.
What are your events like?
Teachers tell me that previous author events went a bit flat once the visiting author started talking about their wonderful life in literature. My approach is child-centred - pupils make up their own stories and poems on the spot and share them. My assemblies are fun and interactive and can tie in with your history topics. I'm mad about music and so there is an element of songs, live looping, rap poems in the show.
What experience do you have?
Since 2006, I've done over 250 sessions in schools, libraries and festivals around the UK.
What levels do you work with?
I've written books for all ages from Reception to Y9. So you can put together a day (or days) of assemblies and workshops that cater for all age groups.
For Y2 to Y8 - my assemblies link history with writing. Stone age, Romans, Vikings, Celts, Anglo Saxons, Greeks, Egyptians, Mayans, Tudors, Victorians and Shakespeare are all favourite topics for assemblies, followed by workshops.
For Y4 to Y9 - I've found that graphic novels are a great hook, (via my WBD recommended title London Deep, set in the future in a flooded world).
Reception and Y1 - I've developed a fun assembly (and workshops) based on Roobarb & Custard and Count Milkula. (Roobarb was invented in the 1970's by Grange Calvery, but I edited the TV scripts into a series of fun picture books for Mogzilla publishing).
Can you mix and match different assemblies/workshops in one day?
Yes. For example I could do Castles with Reception/Y1, and then do a Roman assembly + 1 Roman workshop - followed by graphic novel workshops in the afternoon.
Do you cater for reluctant writers?
Some children are not as 'in love' with writing as we are. However, games, soaps, cartoons, Apps, films and manga all need to be imagined and written by someone. Pupils will have fun and produce some strong written work.
Do you run special gifted and talented/Able writers workshops?
How many sessions can you do in one day?
Typically I can fit 4 or 5 hour long sessions into one day. It depends on how long your class periods are and how close I am to your school.
How far can you travel?
I've been all over the UK and I've given workshops in Cyprus, Khazakstan, Oman, China, Thailand, Malawi, Kuwait, Germany, Quatar, Jordan, Egypt and Bangladesh.
How many pupils per workshop? What about two or three form entry schools?
Large groups (up to 90 students per workshop) is possible with thought and planning. Please get in touch.
Do you work with secondary schools?
Yes. My graphic novel series London Deep works well for Y7-Y9.
Do you have an up to date DBS?
Yes. I get it renewed every 2 years.
Graphic novel/ manga/ science fiction writing workshops
These workshops tie in with my graphic novella/ sci-fi adventure London Deep (set in the future in a flooded London). The book was chosen as an official Recommended Read for World Book Day 2011 and in April 2011 it featured on ITV1's 'Cool Stuff Collective' where it was awarded 4 stars out of 5 by the 10 year old reviewer.
London Deep is packed with of cool artwork from Paul McGrory and Rebecca Davy. Their amazing manga-influenced drawings are very on-trend and can help to make writing more engaging for 10-14 year olds. Sometimes I run a joint workshop with the artists, or I can come along with examples of the art on Powerpoint, and concentrate on the story-development side.
London Deep explores themes about the environment and the relationships between kids and grown ups, which your pupils can develop further in their own stories. Alternatively they might like to write full on sci-fi epics featuring aliens, vampires, ghosts or weird creatures from their imaginations.
In 2012 I was commissioned by the Shakespeare's Birthplace Trust to get students writing poetry and prose inspired by Shakespeare's plays.
This exciting series of 18 workshops culminated in a performance in Stratford-Upon-Avon. I am hence able to offer some exciting workshops for Y3-Y9 based on a number of popular Shakespeare texts. The students write their own stories and poems based on characters from the plays. I introduce a language focus using Shakespearian words and phrases from Shakespearian source texts including Montaigne, Halls Chronicles, and Hollinshed. This might sound difficult but I always tailor the workshop to the age and ability of each class. Even Y3's can write using iambic pentameter!
You can download information on each workshop here.
Do your work with SEN schools?
I love working with 'Special Needs' kids and I can adapt my workshops and talks for all sorts of learners.
Anne from Blackpool says:
'We had a great day when Robin visited our school which caters for children age 4 - 16 with a wide range of learning difficulties. The children loved his assembly which was informative yet full of humour and enjoyed creating their own stories during the workshops. Robin was great with the children and his own characters inspired them to be adventurous and imaginative in their own writing and drawing! We will definitely be calling on him again!'
Do you offer insets for teachers/parents?
Yes. Here is what Head teacher Peter Sloan from St Andrews in Malawi had to say about my inset:
'During his visit to St. Andrew’s, Robin joined the staff to share with us some super INSET to an audience that included primary and secondary teachers. Robin challenged us to think about the barriers to writing for children and to come up with effective ways we could break these barriers down. It was a super opportunity to work with colleagues in an enjoyable, fast moving and practical way that really made us think about how we can help our children to be more enthusiastic and more accomplished writers. An inspiring INSET with Robin Price!'
How much does it cost?
My sessions are affordable and I've been told that they represent good value and are in line with Society of Authors rates.
Please contact Yvonne Lang on 01535 656015 ext 9852 who handles my diary or email email@example.com
Do you run any workshops about your graphic novels in conjunction with an artist?
Yes. If you want to work on your pupils' artistic skills, please ask about my joint workshop with artist Rebecca Davy.
What do teachers/ librarians say about your visits?
Here's small selection of feedback:
"Robin's sessions not only gave children a structure for planning a story, but really excited and inspired them so that they couldn't wait to get writing!"
"Robin's "Spartapuss" assembly was a fantastic combination of Roman facts, story telling and knockabout comedy, that, whilst entertaining the whole school, also cunningly prepared the ground for their own Roman story writing. It's great to see that children have really been motivated to write for themselves and to read his books. " Richard Smith, Deputy Head Trafalgar Junior School (April, 2011)
'Robin has worked very hard giving us a lot of value for money on creating the workshops and on the behind the scenes thinking to bring the project to a head. Robin has been both creative and reliable and has thought through every step of the project. He is professional in all he does and works very well with children and adults alike.'
Dr Elizabeth Dollimore, Shakespeare's Birthplace Trust, Stratford-Upon-Avon.
'Robin, Thank you very much for your work with us this week. The staff and pupils had a fantastic time. I was amazed at how engaged our pupils were - you really caught their imagination and made the sessions enjoyable for them.'
Michele Holland,National Skills Curriculum Coordinator,
The Albany Business and Enterprise College
'Thanks so much for delivering two outstanding sessions at St Simon's and Linden Grove Primary Schools today. I enjoyed them just as much as the children - and they were having a fantastic time! I shall spread the word about your brilliant books and school visits and hope that you'll be able to enthuse and inspire more youngsters in and around Ashford very soon.
Sally, (coordinator ‘Boys into Books’), Kent Libraries.
"Hi Robin, thanks for the wonderful afternoon with the children on Thursday. they were really enthusiastic about writing their stories today and some children have produced some really good writing.' Nabilah, KS2 teacher, Leeds.
"Robin, thank you so much for visiting schools here in Bristol on Tuesday. The children and teachers all thought it was brilliant and I know they will have got a lot out of it."
Margaret Pemberton, Schools Library Service.
'Thank you very much for coming and doing such hard work for us! I think it was really successful and a good ending to the topic.'
SHEYENNE, REDLANDS PRIMARY, TOWER HAMLETS.
"Robin was a breath of fresh air, working with our members to write a collaborative story based in Roman Britain and giving them a unique chance to revisit a vibrant past, populated by characters of their own devising."
Nicky Milstead, YAC (the Young Archaeologists' Club)
'Spartapuss is a unique series that has really caught the imagination of the public here.'
Andrew Fairmaner, The British Museum
"Thank you for the fantastic day – the students and staff involved really enjoyed the sessions. It helped make a real success of our literacy week. The use of your book and the active workshops worked really well and the feedback you gave them was great, especially for our weaker students who lack confidence."
Ms Harrison, Medway School.
"The London Deep workshop was a great success with our year 7 students. They were all enthralled by the story and eager to explore their own creative ideas in the story telling exercise."
Jenny Bergren, Librarian at Mossbourne Community Academy.
If you'd like to discuss prices and availability please contact Yvonne Lang on 01535 656015 ext 9852 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Or email email@example.com with 'Tips' in the subject line and we will send you my free teachers' pdf: 7 Tips For Story Writing.
'London Deep', my sixth children's book, was chosen as a Recommended Read for World Book Day. This ' terrifically atmospheric page-turning adventure told via words and comic art' has also won an 'Exclusively Independent' Award'.