Feedback from illustration and writing workshops from Scottish author illustrator Moira Munro


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Feedback from visits and workshops

Testimonials from children and adults

 

What kids and adults said about my visits:

By Jamie-Leigh and Bun-Bun bear

 

 

Teddy bear story-time: visits to schools, nurseries, libraries and bookshops

From grown-ups

By Amy and her bear Bartolumu
  • "Natural talent... Superb interaction through music and drawings which captured the children's attention. They were engrossed throughout her storytelling... Inspirational for children to become members of the local library and positive encouragement to select and read their own books... " (St Joseph's PS / East Renfrewshire libraries)
  • "My daughter REALLY enjoyed your wonderful event. Top of her Christmas list is all your Hamish books - she feels really privilaged that you shared your secrets! ...We go to many book festival events and I have to say you were really on the childrens level and so animated and fun - I was constantly looking at the children during the event and every one of them was fullly engaged - so well done! I hope many more children are excited and motivated by your workshops in future." Angela Turnbull, parent who attended P2 class visit at Morningside Library)
  • "Your events (Hamish bear session and cartoon workshop) were fantastic and we have had excellent feedback from the families that attended.... I hope you enjoyed your time here as much as we enjoyed having you here. I also hope to see you again soon Moira."(Fiona Christie, Aberdeen Writers Festival - Word 06)
  • "Thanks for such a delightful talk. Emma throughly enjoyed herself and I have to admit we have been to quite a few authors visits, but yours has to be the best, you really know how to connect with the children, a gift that not many people have." (Emma's mum)
  • Thank-you so much for sharing many tips and ideas. We had a fantastic time and are all now quite cartoon crazy! (Miss Jackson, P6 teacher, RDM School, Scone)
  • "You inspired us to write! I think your talk was very interesting and much better than Maths! Also, the presentation was really good and you answered all of our questions throughly." (David, pupil, Williamwood High School, Glasgow)
  • I've heard from two large bookshops that my author event was one of the best they'd ever had.

Children's author visits in Glasgow: Laura from ERS knitted a toy Finn

The Education Resource Service in Glasgow invest greatly in my visits, preparing the classes ahead of time and providing a box with supporting materials. Every box contains a bear wearing a scarf like Hamish's, knitted by Pat Carberry. And now Laura Hogg has knitted a unique Finn for my visits.

Verbal comments from teachers collected by another teacher after a session with 150 primary school children:

  • 'It was just delightful!'
  • 'Moira found the right kind of balance in her manner with the children - what a lovely presence!'
  • 'She looks like such a happy person, it really comes across!'
  • 'Sue in my class would love to be an author and she was just, on cloud nine. I was watching her, watching Moira: she couldn't take her eyes off her.'
  • 'What a talented woman - and so nice with it too'

OK, I'll stop here before you feel sick

From children

  • 'It was fantastic I loved it. That was the best school day ever. I think she will become famous one day.' (Dion, P6)
  • 'I thinked your illustration's were fantastic. When I get home I'm going to write a story about a bear.' (Katie, P6)
  • 'My favourite part was when you told us that your publisher made you do 153 teddies before you got it right.' (Bartolumu and Amy)
  • 'Are you going to write some more books about Hamish. I liked that you had to graw 153 teedys. The story was fantastic. Can you tell me what your dauter looks like.'
  • 'I like your droing of cool dude and all your teddy bear and I don't know why your publishur took our last bit out because I rley liket it and I hop that you will wite anuthe book of teddy bears. Love from Ashley'
By Dean: a drawing of Cool Dude, from 'Hamish' story
By Robbie: "I love your book. I love Hamish"
  • 'Thank you for coming to talk to us. I liked that Hamish had attitude and liked to do things his own way (just like me). I am writing a book and I wonder if you could give me some tips. I will enjoy reading your book to my teddies and me at night' (Jordyn, age 7)
  • 'Are you going to make any other Hamish stories but your first was very very good' (Frazer, age 7)
  • 'My favourite part was when you passed round your cuddly toys. I loved all your colourful pictures in Hamish. I liked when you read us Hamish it was just a lovely book.' (Laura and bear)
  • 'My favourite part was when you showed us how you drew a bear.' (Andrew)
  • 'My favourite was when we had to draw and write about a bear in 20 seconds' (Lewis)

Keir, Clifton Hall

  • My favourite part was when you drew and when you passed the drawings round and all your pictures.' (Emma)
  • 'Moira Munro visited us at assembly. She was telling us about her book called Hamish. It was written for the younger children. She showed us how she drew Hamish and how she made the book. She showed us that she had to draw and draw and draw her characters before they were right. Moira Munro said she started from scratch and that we could all write good a story about anything if we try. Moira Munro was very kind and we were all intrested in what she had to say. We got to bring our teddies in, which was great for most people. If we had money we got to buy a signed copy of Hamish. I enjoyed her visit.' (Calum, P6)

By Jordyn: "I am writing a book and I wonder if you could give me some tips"

 

And just in case you thought I made these up, here are a few more treasures:

  • 'I enjoyed the talk because I know how much she gets everytime a book gets sold' (Calum)
  • Would you like to do something similar again? 'I don't really mind but if we had to I would prefer someone who wrote older books like Jacqueline Wilson!' (Abigail, P7)

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Puppies, Mermaids and Meanies: create and draw a character

Feedback from grown-ups

  • "Enthralling sessions... The teacher was really delighted with their visit. She could immediately see that there was not only real educational value in the children meeting you - she also commented that there was plenty of scope for follow up work. Your sessions were very well structured and thought through. " (Teresa Lowe, The Village Storytelling Centre)

 

Illustration/writing workshops for children

Feedback from teachers

Following a series of workshops I gave with another artist at the Vennel Gallery in Irvine, teachers gave the following feedback directly to the event organiser.

What did you think of the tutor?

  • Excellent!
  • Very pleasant, welcoming, knowledgeable and positive towards the children and their efforts regardless of ability.
  • Very good and encouraging towards the children. Made them feel that they could draw.
  • Nice manner when working with children

Any comments you would wish to add?

  • Magic Pencils has really motivated my pupils. We have now written our own stories for Hamish and are going to read them to our P1's. Meeting Moira and Justin has made the whole process of writing a book and illustrating it much more realistic and achievable for the children.
  • Children really enjoyed visit and discussed 'Hamish' over next few days!
  • I felt that the whole workshop experience was excellent. I would be happy to repeat with other classes.
  • Really enjoyable and interesting, the children loved every minute of it.
  • The arrival of 'Hamish' caused a great buzz in our classroom yesterday and a storytelling session renewed interest and brought bout good discussion. A wonderful idea.

Feedback from pupils

  • 'I was a girl from Springside primary school. We done Hamish pictures. I love the book Hamish. Can you send me some tips about drawing please.' (email from pupil)
  • 'We met a real life author called Moira Munro. At the end all of us looked at all the pictures. Everyone enjoyed themselves.' (Holly and Emily)
  • 'We met a real live author and an illustrator! We had to draw or paint a picture of Hamish. At the end we got a book mark. We had fun!' (pupils from Glebe Primary school)
  • 'Utturly brilliant'
  • 'Fandaby Dosey'
  • 'Cool!!!!!'
  • 'I enjoyed it very much and I hope we can do it again.'
By Rachael, Mearns School

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Cartoon workshops

Feedback from organisers and parents

  • "We all felt totally inspired by your work and learned an enormous amount about the art of cartooning. I thought your approach to the children was especially good and they were obviously very relaxed and happy with their work and had a great afternoon. I hope I will be able to recommend you to other groups" "...to say how much we enjoyed your visit and what a successful workshop it was for both the children and the adults. One child was heard to say that it was the best of the season." (Caroline Lorimer, NADFAS Young Arts)
  • "Thank you for a brilliant workshop. Rosi was inspired and has been drawing ever since. She usually draws "Geladine (sic) the Goth" and she was saying how much she enjoyed adding to her repertoire of characters." (Veronika Tudhope)
  • "Your events (Hamish bear session and cartoon workshop) were fantastic and we have had excellent feedback from the families that attended.... I hope you enjoyed your time here as much as we enjoyed having you here. I also hope to see you again soon Moira."(Fiona Christie, Aberdeen Writers Festival - Word 06)
Feedback from youngsters
  • "I thought you were fantastic... I love to draw and I have got a lot better. I draw when I have spare time. I hope I am going to be just like you when I am older" (Luke, P6/7, Niddrie Mill Primary School)
  • "I hope you come back to Niddrie Mill again because you are fantastic. Your teddy bears are fantastic too"" (Robert, P6/7)
  • "I want to do the job you are doing because I really enjoy drawing. It is fun. That was my favourite session. I like your movement lines and you are funny. You are a great drawer. I hope you come and visit us again" (Steven, P6/7)
  • "It was really good when we were drawing our scary faces and when we were drawing eyes on the tracing paper and seeing where it looks good. I hope you will come back to my school" (Mark, P6/7)
  • "I liked drawing the angry teachers and finishing off the faces. I enjoyed it. I liked everything. You were great and I enjoyed it" (Gemma, P6/7)
  • "I had lots of fun designing a new face. When you drew a bear, I really liked that. It was very funny" (Bradley, P6/7)
  • "I, on behalf of Primary 6R have emailed you to thank you again for your fun and very entertaining talk!! I loved every minute of it and enjoyed the drawing thoroughly!!" (Douglas, Bridge of Allan school)

Bunnies in search of a publisher: for adults who want to get a children's book published

  • "I thoroughly enjoyed the too short time I spent with you and the others in your seminar. Your information was just what I was looking for to move forward with the two books I have in mind. Your engaging, enthusiastic and personal presentation held every second of my attention. The list of references is excellent and the fact you brought some of the books along was helpful. Again, thank you Moira for your splendid presentation." (George Finley)
  • "Brilliant - so helpful. The step by step instructions were very good. Seeing the dummy was also very helpful. Details/guidance about contracts/length/layout very good. Plus I loved Hamish!" (Jo Walker)
  • "Really enjoyed your enthusiastic and honest approach. I'm now keen(er) to give writing a go."
  • "Very helpful. Lots of practical experience"

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The business of being an illustrator/writer

  • "I enjoyed a presentation you gave to our class on the finer points of a career in this field. On gaining so much insight from your advice and anecdotes I felt motivated in pursuing such work for myself, became more able to focus my passion and vocation into a business. As a result, some of the drawings and paintings I have produced over a year will be displayed in my first solo exhibition early next month... I felt that I benefited so much from the advice and information you were so kind to impart..." (Katie Carmichael while a student at Metropolitan College)
  • I thoroughly enjoyed this evening: your talk was so interesting and the drawing tips were great. I really found it all very inspiring and loved your story about Princes’ Square. (Heather Holton, Erskine Writers Group)

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