ALL things reading, spelling and creative writing have been celebrated in style at King’s Ely.

The school’s annual Reading Festival is organised to tie in with World Book Day and sees King’s Ely Senior and King’s Ely Junior students enjoying a week-long extravaganza of literary orientated events and activities.

This year, the festival kicked off with a celebration evening to announce the winners of the ever-popular King’s Ely Writing Competition. Students in Years 5 through to 10 put pen to paper and the winners from each year group read out their winning pieces to fellow pupils, teachers, staff and families. Author Jane Wilson-Howarth attended the ceremony to talk about her life as a writer and congratulate the students on their efforts. The Year 5 winner was Harriet Petherick, Year 6 winner was Lola Phillips and Cleo Olsson won the Year 7 category. Eleanor McGillivray won the Year 8 category, Year 9 winner was David Harris and Arthur Plews won the Year 10 category.

The Reading Festival itself was jam-packed with activities for King’s Ely Senior and King’s Ely Junior pupils, including author visits, tutor group competitions, book swaps and pop-up book stalls. One of the highlights of the week was Drop Everything and Read, which was held on World Book Day itself, and saw students reading ‘Hacker’, a story written especially for King’s Ely by author and King’s Ely Junior parent, Mark Johnson. A new chapter was revealed at the beginning of each lesson and pupils made predictions for the story as the day went on, with storytelling being incorporated into lessons across the curriculum.

There was also a special focus on spelling when King’s Ely hosted the International Spelling Bee. More than 60 keen spellers from Years 6 to 11 came together for the spelling bee with students from five other schools; Framingham College, Royal Hospital School, Ipswich School, Gresham’s and Felsted School. A fun-filled day was had by all, which concluded with the nail-biting spelling heats and finals. King’s Ely students won four out of the nine prizes, including the joint first advanced prize. The advanced final was particularly tense, resulting in a ‘spell off’. The winners were Arshdeep Hayer (advanced joint first prize), Johanna Kreuter (advanced third prize), John Lau (elementary second prize) and Kate Patlati (elementary).


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