Thursday, 26 August 2010
This is our storage container that keeps safe all of the exciting materials that we use at our free crafts area at the back of the Children’s Bookshop, as well as all the paper, pens and sticky-glittery goodness that stocks our RBS Workshop Tent.
A few weeks ago – before our beautiful venues where established, before hundreds of authors graced us with their presence, and before thousands of visitors descended into Charlotte Square – this is what our children’s activity corner looked like. Not much activity going on there, and decidedly uncorner-like. We unpack the storage container at the start of every festival, and after much fetching, carrying and arranging, the activity corner is ready for: activities!
Unfortunately, ‘activities’ just doesn’t quite convey the masterpieces that emerge from behind the bookshelves. Every day our master-crafts-staff come up with an exciting project based around the themes and the events featured daily on the children’s programme. We’ve had under the sea creatures, where you can write a message and send it across the waves in a bottle, and we’ve had a day in the jungle with Elmer the elephant when you could make your own elephant ears and trunk or impressively regal lion mane. Or you might fancy colouring in one of the characters from your favourite book who you might have seen at the Book Festival, like the Mr Men or the Fat Controller. You can also write a line of our story on our story wall, made up by the hundreds of visitors who gave us so many great storylines that we had to create another page!
As you can see, we like to adorn the walls with the brilliant artwork created by our young visitors, who range in age from tiny tots still grappling with their first crayon to children up to the age of 11, who come along with fully fledged ideas about what masterpieces they would like to create.
The activities are co-ordinated by our resident artistic experts, Laura and Helen, as well as their crafty crew of Front of House helpers Tess, Larry, Jennifer and Hannah (and some other members of staff have been known to pop over to acquire some Maisy mouse ears or a rather fetching pirate eye patch). They bring loads of enthusiasm and a seemingly never ending supply of pritt stick for every child they work with, and have never once complained about getting glitter in their hair or a multitude of paper cuts from folding sugar paper.
If you’re at the Book Festival during the day, do stop by and say hello – we’d be more than happy to provide you with some glitter glue if you tell us what you have in mind, as we love to hear your ideas!
PS You might even get your face-painted too. But only if you've been good.