Talented schoolchildren publish their own book

The ethnic diversity of pupils at Sydenham Primary School is celebrated in a storybook they have created themselves.

Tuesday, 19th July 2016, 10:10 am
Updated Tuesday, 19th July 2016, 11:10 am
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The Unique Unicorn, available to buy via Amazon, involves input from each of the 310 children who attend the school, who between them speak 25 different languages.

The pupils created the book with the help of children’s author Lee Sterrey, who visited the school to discuss a reading of one of her stories earlier this year.

Associate headteacher Carol Glenny said: “As soon as Lee said she was self-published and she could help us create our own book, the options and possibilities for Sydenham Primary School were huge.”

The topic for the book was soon decided.

Amanda Millican, who teachers English as an additional language at the school, said: “Sydenham Primary is very proud of the 25 different languages currently spoken at the school. We have held a number of events this year to celebrate some of those languages and the different cultures in the school community.”

The school’s teachers really wanted to include every pupil, which Lee described as a “challenge”.

So she ran a number of creative workshops that included discussions with each year group, focused story-boarding and getting children to act out the story to help develop the plot.

She said: “We found a way to do it and I hope you agree that the results are a tribute and celebration of Sydenham’s achievements.”

The Unique Unicorn, which was developed with more than 430 pieces of artwork and photos, follows the journey of a unicorn who feels different from all of the other grey unicorns on Planet Rock. She meets Nine-eyes the alien, who takes her to Sydenham Primary School where she learns to celebrate her uniqueness.

The school hopes to translate the book into the different languages spoken in the school.

To purchase the book (£6.99), visit goo.gl/GNSWkn

To learn more about Lee Sterrey, who has written Doyley the Dormouse and The Buttercup Game, visit leesterrey.co.uk