For National Storytelling Week, 27th January – 4th February, the Library hosted a stimulating Monday lunchtime workshop, delivered by our Writer-in-Residence, Caroline Green, with the assistance of the school Librarian, Mr. Gallagher. During this workshop, 23 Year 8 students, inspired by enigmatic images from Van Allsburg’s The Mysteries of Harris Burdick, responded enthusiastically to the brief of writing some very original stories. This week also sees the latest novel release from our Writer-in-Residence, so it was a very exciting time in the Library!
Other events offered during National Storytelling Week included a chilling urban legends podcast and a session on writing your own urban legend:
Phantom Hitchhikers, Urban Dogmen, and Black-Eyed Children. Urban Legend Podcast
Listening to podcasts can benefit your brain! Not convinced? A 2016 study conducted at UC Berkeley (US) concluded that listening to narrative stories (much like podcasts) can stimulate multiple parts of your brain releasing adrenaline, endorphins, our pleasure hormones depending on the story genre.
In this after-school session students listened to to an award-winning podcast story about a terrifying Urban Legend and discussed why these forms of modern folklore are so persistent and effective in evoking our deepest fears and anxieties.
Writing your own Urban Legend
Developing in the 19th century, urban legends are a particular form of modern folktale, whose appeal has been supercharged by the internet. In this workshop, students explored the features of an effective urban legend and how to write one inspired by some notable examples.