The Verbal Arts Centre is gearing up for an absolutely jam-packed programme of educational activities to celebrate World Book Day this week with children from schools in the city.
There will be three days of fun events to mark the annual celebration with the bulk of the activity taking place on World Book Day itself on Thursday, March 5, when school children are encouraged to dress up as their favourite story book characters.
The Verbal Arts Centre’s Reading Rooms project has teamed up with Eason’s and Foyleside to promote a love of books and reading, and three fun characters will be making special guest appearances to share in the excitement.
Oaksie, Amelia and Professor Magee will be in attendance at Pennyburn Play Group, Galliagh Nursery and the Verbal Arts Centre itself on Thursday, while children from the Belmont Nursery will mark the event on Friday.
One of the biggest highlights of World Book Day will see 70 pupils from three local Irish language schools visit the Verbal Arts Centre for the Little Festival of Books on Thursday.
The pupils from Bunscoil Cholmcille, Gaelscoil Eadain Mhoir and Gaelscoil Na Daroige will be taking up temporary residence in the Blue Coat Room and recording studio for activity sessions which will include illustration work, recording and sound effects to animate a book they have chosen for the event.
The exciting educational initiative is being organised for World Book Day in partnership between the Verbal Arts Centre, Cultúrlann Uí Chanáin and Derry City Council.
Speaking in advance of the event, Pól Ó Frighil, Irish Language Officer with Derry City Council said: “Derry City Council is delighted to be working in partnership with the Verbal Arts Centre and Cultúrlann Uí Chanáin on a special Irish language event to celebrate World Book Day 2015.
“The event, which is called ‘What does this book sound like?’ will comprise a day-long interactive workshop for local Irish medium primary school children who will animate a short story in Irish by performing and recording voices and sounds which bring the story to life.
“This project is a fine example of how the synergy between two of our leading arts organisations can create something unique and special to celebrate landmark events like World Book Day which happens every year during Irish Language Week (1st – 17th March).
“The project is both educational and fun and represents an unmissable opportunity for local children learning through the medium of Irish to experience the magic and excitement of bringing a story to life in the recording studio with their very own voices and sounds.”
Andrea Doran, Director of Programming and Learning at the Verbal Arts Centre, said it was also delighted to be working with all of the schools and organisations participating this year.
She said: “World Book Day provides the perfect opportunity to foster a love of books and reading from an early age which we hope the children will carry with them into their teenage years and on into adulthood.
“We are really looking forward to celebrating this annual event with all of the children and their teachers on Thursday and Friday.”
On Wednesday, March 4, students from the Verbal School of Journalism will be interviewing Derry author Sinead Cox at St Cecilia’s College about her debut novel, ‘Children of the Oak’.
Saturday, March 7, will also see the launch of the Little Legends Club, a Verbal Arts Centre Reading Rooms project for children aged 4-8 years which will be delivered at Eason’s in Foyleside at 11am-12 noon each Saturday for 12 weeks by trained volunteers. Be sure to bring your ‘Little Legends’ along to this free event!