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Youngsters put pen to paper in an attempt to break record

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: February 19, 2013

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PUPILS from Derbyshire’s biggest school have taken part in a world record attempt to bring together the most people writing a story at the same time.

Youngsters from across the age spectrum at John Port School, in Etwall, joined with thousands of other children across the country to try to break the record to mark National Libraries Day.

Pupils used a first paragraph written by author Matt Haig and then had to write two sentences each to continue the story.

The event aimed to break the Guinness World Record for the most number of people writing a story at multiple venues.

The mammoth story began with a child discovering his parents are aliens.

Youngsters then took it in turns to add two sentences at each school.

The award-winning author said: “This is a brilliant initiative and I am extremely proud to be part of it.

“I wish everybody the best of luck and cannot wait to read some of the fantastic, creative and wacky ways in which the children finish the story.

“I think this is a great event and it really gets all the pupils interested in writing and being creative.”

Independent witnesses had to be on hand to oversee the event.

After the event, all 130 schools around the country had to send in their finished stories to the Guinness World Records to be officially adjudicated.

Schools will find out if they are record breakers during the coming months.

Barbara Band, vice-president of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) and Parallel Universes organiser, said: “This was a wonderful opportunity to involve students in an event which shows how reading and writing can be fun and exciting.

“Libraries are not just about books; every day school librarians find new and innovative ways such as this to promote a reading for pleasure culture throughout the whole of the school.”

The nationwide event was organised by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals.

The project, called Parallel Universes, was aimed at years 6 to 9 so both primary and secondary schools could take part up and down the country.

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