Wednesday, 27 June 2012

All for books - George Watson's College off to NZ, representing the UK

I'm very very proud of a school in Edinburgh that I have strong links with. Actually, I'm very very proud of two schools in Edinburgh that I have strong links with. One is The Mary Erskine School, and I'll be blogging about them soon. And the other is George Watson's College.

I used to live within spitting distance of GWC, not that I'd ever want to spit at them, of course. And I have done a load of events there and have got to know the very supportive librarian, Jane Shankland, quite well.

So, I was DELIGHTED when Jane told me recently that a team consisting of girls from GWC had won the UK finals of the wonderful international Kids' Lit Quiz - something else I have strong links with. Yes, I am so strongly linked to things that sometimes I can barely move my arms.

So, these clever girls fly off to New Zealand this Friday for the WORLD FINALS. They must be so excited. I think they look quite excited, don't you? They are: Rosie Isaac, Rebecca Poon, Katherine Holdgate and Beth Miller.

Their experience began last November when the team won the Central Scotland Heat. They then progressed to the UK Final. in which they had a decisive victory. Essentially they’ve come top of around 700 teams in the UK already. *bows in awe*

Jane said, "We have had great fun coaching the girls and they all have a huge love of books and taking part in the quiz has definitely helped create a buzz about reading in the school. It is so encouraging to see reading rewarded in this way - not just sport!!"

And indeed it is. I wonder if the girls realise that their school was also where, in my mind, Deathwatch is set. The scene with the Madagascan Hissing cockroaches... And, coincidentally, that's the book that the other school I mentioned, The Mary Erskine School, helped me write. And that school recently won the UK debating championship - as I discovered when I bumped into them at the airport as they set off to Istanbul to make an official visit to the parliament there as part of their prize. Clever schools, and it's no coincidence that they focus so strongly on reading and books.

Good luck to the girls of George Watson's College! Have a wonderful trip and come back with memories to last you a lifetime! We are proud of you already.

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