Literacy project kicks off as media stars of the future are born!

Literacy project kicks off as media stars of the future are born!

Enthusiastic youngsters marked themselves as media stars of the future as a new partnership between South Shields Football Club and The Word kicked off.

Eleven pupils from Westoe Crown Primary School and St Bede’s RC Primary and Nursery School, both in South Shields, have completed a literacy project run by the two organisations.

They were among about 150 children from the two schools who attended the Mariners’ game against Mickleover Sports earlier this month.

The lucky 11 were then invited to attend a media workshop at The Word, National Centre for the Written Word to record and capture their matchday experience.

The workshop was led by artist James Whitman, who was helped by South Shields defender Blair Adams – who has a degree in sports journalism – club media officer Daniel Prince and Foundation manager Steve Camm.

Adams said: “I was really impressed with all of the children and there are definitely some reporters of the future among the group.

“They did a fantastic job working in a live studio at The Word, first writing a match report before then reading it out on camera.

“I know how difficult that sort of thing is as I did a lot of it while studying for my degree, so the children did really well.

“They were also excellently behaved and were a credit to their schools.

“It was a great way to begin this partnership.”

The Year 5 and Year 6 pupils split into four groups, with St Bede’s represented by Ryan Shabani, Riley Bell, Lucas Britton, Will Watson and Jude Hill.

Westoe Crown’s pupils were Lillie Oliphant, Molly Jewitt, Penny Simpson, Matthew Bennett, Isaac Cave and Tom Hobson.

Tania Robinson, head of marketing and culture at The Word, National Centre for the Written Word, said: “We’re delighted that The Word has been able to play a part in this exciting venture, which has hopefully fuelled young people’s interest in literacy by sharing their sporting experience.

“This is a very exciting partnership with South Shields Football Club which hopefully will continue to grow and it has also put a spotlight on the fantastic facilities we have at The Word, including the media studio run by OpenZone and the support we received from the library service along with the sponsorship from Mirabaud.

“All of this contributed to a really memorable day for everyone involved.”

Westoe Crown and St Bede’s were the first two schools to take part in South Shields Football Club’s new schools programme.

Adams, as well as team-mates Carl Finnigan, Daniel Wright and Ursene Mouanda, are visiting primary schools across the borough to answer questions and encourage youngsters to attend games.

This week, they have been to Sea View Primary School and Stanhope Primary School as they continue to recruit the ‘Class of 2023′ – youngsters they hope will be the 12th man by the time they turn 16 and the club is, as it aims to be, Football League-ready in five years’ time.

The Sea View and Stanhope pupils will attend Saturday’s game against Matlock Town at Mariners Park before a number of them will be selected to attend the same media workshop.