Shelagh, a past President of Havant Rotary, has been a teacher of special needs, English, and has served as a pastoral leader.
“I have always developed curriculum and written units of work for a variety of pupils during my career,” she said.
“I was asked to write a series on literacy challenges for the more able, and then something for children of all abilities.
“I have since written for a variety of education publishers, which was fun, and so a writing career began!”
Shelagh’s book, ‘The Plastic Warrior’ was based on a bedtime story which developed into something more.
Shelagh is featured in the latest issue of Rotary magazine, discussing the value of literacy and how Rotarians can help.
Her book, ‘The Plastic Warrior’ was based on a bedtime story which developed into something more.
As a mother and grandmother, Shelagh said she believes stories for children are an important way of helping them to understand their world and see what they could achieve if they have an idea.
After all, Earth is all we have and climate change needs us as Rotarians to ensure there is a future for children and young people everywhere.”
‘The Plastic Warrior’ sees a messy beach and does something about it. “Many people are clearing beaches of plastic, so the story might encourage children and adults to join local groups that clear plastic from their shared spaces,” reflected Shelagh.
“I hope to develop the series so that young readers can see there are a variety of ways to help their planet. After all, Earth is all we have and climate change needs us as Rotarians to ensure there is a future for children and young people everywhere.”
‘Plastic Warrior’ is one of a number of children’s stories which Shelagh has written. She is developing further stories to encourage reading, discussion and give information for further exploration.
Shelagh has developed a series of stories for the education publisher Exam Papers Plus for their literacy project.
A project to celebrate the 100 years since Nelson Mandela’s birth called ‘Mandela 100’ looks at the values of Mandela and encourages pupils to explore them with their teachers.
This has proved a popular resource especially when linked to a Mandela Day organised by the African Women’s Forum in Portsmouth.
“As a grandparent, I had the joy of bedtime story telling with my grandchildren,” added Shelagh, who lives in Southsea, Portsmouth. “This led to writing ideas down and developing them into children’s stories over the years.
“When I was asked by Exam Papers Plus to write a series of stories for their new reading units, I seized on the opportunity.
“The units had the story, a ’did you know?’ section of non-fiction based on the story content, a word list and exercises based on the stories themselves.
“It was quite a project but one I greatly enjoyed. The stories are now in book form on my website.”