The Scottish Friendly Children's Book Tour with Michelle Paver

We brought the award-winning, best-selling author Michelle Paver to Orkney and Shetland in April for our second Scottish Friendly Children’s Book Tour of 2012. And what a tour it was! Over the week we saw some great teachers, and even better pupils!

Michelle told us about life in the Mesolithic period, that is to say, about 6000 BC. We learned how the hunter-gatherers managed day-to-day.  And we learned that when hunter-gathers killed an animal they never wasted any parts - what do you think they did with seal eyes? Or flippers? Or the whiskers? She also taught us how to speak to wolves -- which is more useful then you might think.




Teaching Resources

Get creative in the classroom with these excellent teaching resources to accompany Michelle's books:


Event Photos

Michelle talks to pupils at Firth Primary School
MIchelle shows off her seal skin at Hope Primary School
Pupils from Glaitness Primary School pose with Michelle
Michelle sporting her reindeer gloves at Stromness Academy
Michelle talking to pupils at Papdale Primary School
Michelle talks to pupils at Aith Junior High School
Michelle tames a wolf at Mid Yell Junior High School


Pupil Feedback

On Wednesday the 25th of April an extraordinary author named Michelle Paver came with her memories and souvenirs. When she started I thought that I shouldn't, no I couldn't get out of listening, like she had put a spell on me -- the spell of adventure! Her flow with words was amazing and when she told stories I felt like I was there too. I listened and looked and thought of all the adventures I could have if I was a writer. I felt like I was riding in a soothing, magical, tremendous time machine, back to the stone age and who could be a better guide for me than Michelle Paver! Daisy, Papdale Primary School

I enjoyed the Michelle Paver event because of the breathtaking sights. The animal skins, animal tusk and antlers and the amazing, dazzling descriptions of the research trips. My favourite part of the event was the descriptional story of when Michelle encountered a bear with a cub nearby. She told us that that was the most dangerous time to see a bear. The trip was amazing, I want to experience it again sometime. Magnus, 11, St. Andrew's Primary School.

It was absolutely awesome, I enjoyed every bit of it, I could understand everything she said. I could almost feel what she was feeling at that exact moment where she was in each of her trips. I hope we get another author soon. Abbey, 13, Stromness Academy.

I absolutely loved meeting Michelle Paver! She is so inspiring and I can't believe that she has seen killer whales, bears and polar bears. Her books are really interesting and she must have done so much research to make her books sound so realistic, as if you're in the book watching the scene take place. I find it really cool that she goes places that she is setting her books and create an amazing atmosphere in the story! I'd recommend the Chronicles of Ancient Darkness to nine-year-olds and over because they are so good! Fiona, 11, Stromness Primary School.

I loved the visit. I thought the best bit was when she told us about all her adventures like her first time meeting a bear it was brilliant. I advise anyone from the age 10 up to read her books or actually get to meet her it's a great experience if you want to be a writer. Sauannah, 11, Stromness Primary School.

I enjoyed it because I thought Michelle Paver was very inspirational to those who are interested in writing and your books sound really good. Bruce, 11, Stromness Primary School.

I really enjoyed Michelle Paver because I love her books and she was very interesting. She was good at telling stories and explaining her books. I think it is great when authors come because it interests us in new books. Jenny, 11, Stenness Community School.

I really liked going to see Michelle Paver. She told us some really interesting stories about herself and I liked how you could get her autograph or one of her books at the end. I enjoy going to see authors because you find new books that you might want to read and usually it's quite interesting especially when they tell us about some of the places they've been to, to help them write their books. Jenna, 11, Stenness Community School.

I really enjoyed the Michelle Paver event because it was fun and interesting. I like that she brought in artefacts because we could actually see what things looked like that were described in the books. It was nice that we got to ask her questions because we got to know more about her. Maddie, 10, Stenness Community School.

I really liked Michelle Paver she was nice and she had good stories to tell. I like that she brought artefacts and stuff that she had made and bought when she was on her travels. I like how she picked the theme for her books from her childhood and made her childhood dreams come true by meeting a wolf. Mhairi, 10, Stenness Community School.

I enjoyed the Michelle Paver event because I learnt about when she was travelling around. Also I liked the part of the talk when she told us about all the adventures she went on. The picture of Michelle with a wolf was awesome. When she was here I bought one of the books Wolf Brother so far it has been really good. I never thought I would ever enjoy reading a book like this but I do. Bethin, 11, Glaitness Primary School.

I enjoyed Michelle Paver because I found she was enthusiastic and very expressive with her work which made it more interesting to listen to. I liked the way Michelle Paver looked for answers in countries then wrote about hem in her books. When I found out about the bear encounter I was amazed that she used her own adventures and then put them in her books. Lauren, 11, Glaitness Primary School.

I really enjoyed her visit to our class because she talked about her encounter with the bear, her meeting the wolves and a lot about the stone age and wild animals. Next we got to buy books and get them signed. We also got massive posters. Jodie, 11, Glaitness Primary School.

I personally loved meeting Michelle Paver, listening about her adventures about writing. Her life just seems so fascinating being able to travel around the world learning new things and then being able to tell the world about her discoveries. She is a great writer and I am so grateful that I got to meet her. I hope I get the pleasure to meet her again and I think the idea of her going around to different schools, telling students what it's like to be an author and about her books is great and in my opinion very inspiring. She has inspired many of my classmates to start reading her books and the LOVE them. Samantha, 12, Kirkwall Grammar School.

I really enjoyed the talk by Michelle Paver. It was really interesting to hear about her experiences as a writer, especially about the research she did for the Wolf Brother series. It was very interesting to hear what the different parts of the seal are used for. I also enjoyed the part when she showed us how to communicate with a wolf. I think the visit was really informative and interesting. I hope I will meet Michelle Paver again some time. Mirte, 13, Kirkwall Grammar School.

I thought it was interesting. Her display of objects that were relevant to what she was talking about, was really good. I found her work with wolves fascinating and I really enjoyed hearing about her travels and her experiencing different cultures. The snippet she read from her book sounded good so I would like to read the rest. Connie, 13, Kirkwall Grammar School.

The Michelle Paver event was really good. A really good chance to listen to the author's challenges and experiences. Jack, 13, Stromness Academy.

I really enjoyed the event! It was interesting hearing about the bear she met and the killer whale she saw. It was nice how she actually learnt about the animals before putting it in the book. Amy, 13, Stromness Academy.

The books are good but the ending of Wolf Brother is sad. I thought it was good how she'd gone and got all her info first hand rather than do it all behind a laptop. Douglas, 12, Stromness Academy.

I thought the event was really interesting. Hearing about Michelle's life and how she became an author was very nice and interesting. Enjoyed it muchly. Megan, 12, Stromness Academy.

I really enjoyed the visit and found it so amazing to meet one of my favourite authors and also that she came to Orkney! I loved the way Michelle brought the skins and flint in, because I could see what Torak and Renn would have used. Thank you!! Aisling, 12, Stromness Academy.

The Michelle Paver event was very inspiring because she was able to tell us writing tips and ideas. She also already enjoyed to pretend to live in the Stone Age when she was younger and then when Michelle got older she wrote about it. This event told me about her and her research, not just her books. I really enjoyed this meeting with Michelle and I hope to meet other authors in the future. Abbie, 11, St. Andrew's Primary School.

I enjoyed Michelle Paver's visit because it was very inspirational so it gave me some tips to help me write my own story. I also liked it when she was telling us about how when she was little she like to pretend to live in the Stone Age. Emma, 11, St. Andrew's Primary School.

I thought it was nice that she said about her childhood. She gave lots of ideas for my own writing. I thought it was a good idea to bring some of her models and animal skins with her. Melissa, 11, St. Andrew's Primary School.

I enjoyed Michelle Paver's visit because when she was reading one of her books called Wolf Brother and she read 1 or 2 pages. When she stopped reading I was so interested that I wanted to read on because Michelle stopped at a very exciting part of the book. Ross, 11, St. Andrew's Primary School.

My feelings on the workshop were curious, interesting ad awesome. Curious because I didn't really know what to expect. I've never read her books. I was quite interested in the stories that she wrote. Actually it became more interesting as the day went on. All in all it was AWESOME! John, 11, St. Andrew's Primary School.

It was fun hearing all her stories about her trips. And I got to be a wolf but thankfully she didn't lick my muzzle and hearing about why she was inspired to write those kinds of books makes me want to read them. Lewis, 11, Sandwick Junior High School.

I really enjoyed having Michelle Paver at our school because I really liked hearing about all the places she went to when she was writing her books. I liked hearing Michelle read a bit of Wolf Brother and all of the things she had to eat. I really enjoyed looking at all of the stuff she brought in with her. I thought it was really cool how we got to know how to speak wolf talk and hear about when a bear went right in front of Michelle and all of the other things I really enjoyed as well. Kirsten, 10, Sandwick Junior High School.

The books sounded great and I would love to buy one. Michelle Paver herself was interesting with all those encounters with the wolves and bears were scary. I really enjoyed looking at all the mittens and other things on the table at the back. A few parts were a little disgusting and over all it was fun. Pryde, 11, Sandwick Junior High School.



 Teacher Feedback

The children thoroughly enjoyed it. Michelle spoke with enthusiasm, giving lots of fascinating details about how she researches her subjects prior to writing. Michelle captivated the children's attention and they were all spoke glowingly about the event to the other pupils back at school. Meeting Michelle has generated a lot of enthusiasm for reading her books. In the two weeks since the visit, out of the 4 pupils we took to the event one has read Wolf Brother, one has read the first three books from the Chronicles of Ancient Darkness series, one has read 4 books and the other all 5! Anita Angier, Shapinsay Community School

Well organised and timeous. Just the right length to hold the attention, in fact slightly short leaving us wishing for more. Michelle's descriptions of living the life of her story characters was fascinating and gave us all much food for thought, this was an aspect of writing that added richly to our children's thinking. Being able to handle the artefacts on display was an honour and added an element of fun. Michelle's views of, and respect for, the natural world in a context of survival were refreshing. I was very impressed by how well, and how respectfully, Michelle answered the children's questions. Thelma Holt, St. Andrew's Primary School.

It was a super event . The children have really enjoyed reading Wolf Brother and were so excited to meet Michelle in person. Alison Guthrie, Hope Primary School.

This was a fabulous opportunity for our pupils to discuss the work of Michelle Paver, an author whom many of them really like. She was an excellent speaker and really brought her stories and characters to life with her explanations, visual aids and personal stories. Mark Lawson, Mid Yell Junior High School.

It was a super event -- a first, I believe in this school. Scottish Book Trust staff made holding the event easy and Michelle herself was a very approachable person who had the pupils enthralled. Frances Sinclair, Stromness Academy.

The event was BRILLIANT! The pupils were engaged fully and the Author Michelle Paver delivered her talk so well. All her knowledge and research she had done for her books was very interesting and informative! Jane Spall, Aith Junior High School.

I really enjoyed it. Charlene Leesk, St. Andrew's Primary School.

Well presented, well organised, very interesting. Alison Leitch, Stromness Primary School.

The whole afternoon worked really well. All the children were engaged and hooked by Michelle's speaking. A shame about not having enough books for the children to buy. She had a wonderful way with the children, personalising the chat when she signed the books. This was a lovely touch. Michele Dufort, Papdale Primary School.

All us teachers loved the event. Thanks very much to all at Scottish Book Trust and to Michelle for making the effort to come to our slightly out of the way place. We really appreciate it. Simon Hall, Kirkwall Grammar School.


In partnership with:

Scottish Friendly Assurance