In 2017, I assisted writing tutor Helena Fox Dunan in a fiction-writing workshop series at Albion Park High School, endorsed by the South Coast Writers Centre.
Over five weeks we instructed the Year 10 English Class in the steps of writing short fiction. The students were mostly reluctant to participate at first and were shy to share their work with the class. However, in assisting Helena, I was pleased to watch her relentless enthusiasm encourage the kids to express their creativity.
Over each class, the students surprised me with their unique imaginations and original works of fiction. They grew to encourage each other when it came time to read their work aloud, and their writing quickly improved as the workshops progressed.
Several months after the completion of the workshops, we were invited to the launch of an anthology the students put together with their teachers from their favourite short stories and poems that they wrote. I was delighted that they had grown so comfortable with their writing that they were proudly printing them off.
After the launch, a large number of the students sat together in a circle and took turns reading their own work from the anthology zine. Given their shyness at the beginning of the workshop series, I was so proud to see that they had grown comfortable with creative writing as a skill. I hope that they’ll continue to explore their interest in writing as their education continues.