The Tamar Tales challenge began with plenty of enthusiasm and imagination.
In the training grounds of Newstead College, brave heroes from Norwood Primary, Queechy High, Big Picture, East Launceston Primary, St Leonards Primary, Punchbowl Primary, Ravenswood Primary and Waverley Primary schools set out to produce a book - from plot to illustration - in a day.
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There were 14 teams in total, and all were quick to get to work, constructing ideas on paper and whiteboard alike, careful to write within their parameters. In their stories, each team had to include a carefully constructed list of characters, issues, settings and random words.
This provided both a challenge for the young authors as well as a connection between each book. They started by brainstorming all their ideas and, from the scribbled notes and fragmentary sketches, drew forth a plot.
From the snowy landscape of Poatina to drought-ridden lands in Western Australia, their settings began to take shape.
The common themes of death and destruction were prominent early on, however, the ever-vigilant student helpers worked tirelessly to quench their bloodthirst.
The children were guided away from the dismemberment and disembowelment they were planning after some gentle persuasion.
By lunch, all teams were well and truly working towards their goals.
Fuelled by intense amounts of sugar and adrenaline, students began to type up their work on computers and started illustrating their covers with enthusiasm that no teacher was prepared for.
With only five hours left of the challenge, teams retreated to their lairs of creativity and with the guidance of their teachers, students finally began to knit their chapters together and their ideas truly took shape.
Their expert craftsmanship was hard to miss, and even as they began to feel the pressure of time, their never-ending love for writing was contagious.
From the moment the Domino's delivery man stepped into the office, chaos was unleashed.
Never has a person run from one end of the college to the other so fast - dust was blown off the walls, signs and posters sucked into the whirlwind of eager legs as they raced to the cafeteria.
Teachers were the last things on the starving students' minds, leaving them to catch up on their own.
With the smell of cheese and pepperoni in the air, all anyone could focus on was the growl in their stomachs and the awaiting feast.
And feast, they did. Pizza boxes lined the benches, the tables. They spilt over the edge of the bins, each box licked clean. A worthy meal for hard-working warriors.
They launched back into their work with the desperation of an army close to victory. Their dedication to their craft was beyond impressive, blowing away the expectations of staff and helpers.
Each book, sharing the same parameters and prompts, was completely unique.
By the time 6.30pm rolled around, everyone was exhausted. Every single team had a story to share.
They had the chance to, finally, after nine draining hours of hard work, read out their blurbs and share their brilliant creations.
The eagerness to write and the extent of 2021's Tamar Tales student's imagination was inspiring to all and served as guidance to all to indulge in their creativity and write, not only for the sake of turning in assignments or completing work but for the sake of enjoyment.
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