St Andrew's Cathedral School

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Fun, frogs and fiction at the Sydney Writer’s Festival


What an engaging way to encourage students to love reading than putting them in front of some of the best children’s authors on the block.

On Thursday 23 May, selected students from Years 3 to 6 attended the Sydney Writer’s Festival: Primary School Days program at Sydney Town Hall.

The festival featured presentations and workshops from exceptional authors and illustrators, including Kate and Jol Temple – the co-authors of the picture book series Bin Chicken and action-adventure graphic novels including Frog Squad), Nova Weetman (author of novels including Sick Bay and The Edge of Thirteen), Tasma Walton (author of the Nerra: Deep Time Traveller series) and Nathan Luff (author of The Nerd Herd and The Family Disasters series) in a celebration of storytelling across a range of genres.

Below you can see something of the excitement and fascination of students on the day in these reflections from students about each of the sessions.

it’s very much part of the St Andrew’s Cathedral School ethos to encourage a life-long love of learning among students.

Kate and Jol Temple

Kate and Jol Temple were really fun presenters. They dressed up us frogs and had a bin chicken race, where they threw inflatable birds around the room! I really like the book they wrote called ‘Frog Squad’. It is a great book for my age group and has interesting characters. Ethan Ratilal, Year 3

Nova Weetman

Nova Weetman is an amazing author with just the right amount of everything in her books. She used to be a writer for television, working on shows such as ‘H2O Just Add Water’. In her presentation, Nova introduced us to Octopus Charts, which help her make characters. She used one of these charts to create an extremely funny character with the help of the 1700 students during the festival! Sophia Theodosiou, Year 4

Tasma Walton

The author Tasma Walton is a well-known Indigenous representative. She has authored several books, one of which is ‘Nerra: Deep Time Traveller’, a story which shares the Dreaming of the Boonwurrung people of coastal Melbourne. My favourite part of Tasma’s presentation was when she introduced all the different stories of the Aboriginal Dreamtime. She is a model figure in the way she demonstrates the beauty of the Dreamtime. Winnie Hong, Year 5

Nathan Luff

Nathan Luff grew up with three other brothers on a farm in rural New South Wales. He had an awesome appearance at the Sydney Writer’s Festival, and he made many of us chuckle. He shared hilarious jokes, insane stories, and even told us how he thought of ideas for some of his biggest hits. Everybody laughed at his humour and how his three crazy siblings helped inspire many books! Aidan He, Year 6