from Carolyn Yates:
Electrifying the region all the way from Stranraer to Langholm during the first week of May. 620 people flocked to Wild Science Family Mayhem! Day where Jean Atkin was Writer in Residence. She arrived with her workshops niftily packed into a battered leather suitcase, rather Paddington Bear. She unpacked her suitcase and the room filled with kids writing Science Fiction in a Flash, and then publishing their work in Jean’s latest invention ‘nanoBOOKS’, which are completed using copper wire and electrical insulating tape.
Later on the capacious suitcase yielded the drop-in Poetry Postcards workshop, in which children choose random nouns, verbs, similes and abstract nouns from little cloth bags, and with what Jean calls ‘light steering’ create short poems for their own Poetry Postcard. Which they then embellish with sets of stamps, inks, and colour pencils. Almost 2000 schoolchildren took part in science workshops, demonstrations and hands-on activities provided to 15 primary schools and 7 secondaries and a further 110 for a cosmic day focussed on Dark Skies as part of the Wigtown Spring Book Festival. All part of the 3rd annual Dumfries & Galloway Science Festival