Pupils from Stafford’s Rowley Park Academy recently experienced a hot air balloon ride as a way to help them find inspiration for creative writing.
A local ballooning firm provided the craft for the event. It landed on the school playing field and each child was given the chance to enjoy a tethered ride, with the balloon ascending to a height of four meters.
This was high enough to give children the opportunity to experience the feeling of floating on air, as well as to see familiar surroundings from a new perspective. The idea was to inspire the children to write by giving them new experiences.
From the sounds of things, the event achieved that goal. Sarah Biddulph, who is the deputy head teacher at Rowley Park, told a reporter from the Staffordshire Newsletter:
“All the children had an amazing day and the quality of writing produced from this first-hand experience had been phenomenal.”
The children chose the balloon trip as one of the fifty things they wanted to experience before leaving the school, as part of the institution’s Parker 50’s project.
Staff decided to give pupils a hot air balloon ride as a catalyst for a school-wide creative writing project, which was incorporated into the 'Everybody Writes Day' initiative. Under this scheme, the Book Trust provides materials to help schools to run events that encourage children to express themselves in writing.
The pupils that took part in the Stafford event were then encouraged to write about their ballooning experience in different ways throughout the week.