Author Sophy Henn joins the BookTrust Northern Ireland Stories tour

Published on: 30 January 2024

Pupils got to meet Sophy Henn and learn some amazing animal facts on her tour of Northern Ireland schools, supported by Arts Council NI National Lottery funding.

Sophy Henn visited Northern Ireland on Tuesday 14 and Wednesday 15 November 2023. Her first visit was to Sunnylands Primary School in Carrickfergus, to which pupils from nearby Woodlawn Primary School walked to enable us to have a joint-school event. This was Sophy’s first visit to Northern Ireland, so she was very excited to visit the schools and meet the pupils.

The pupils learned some fascinating Lifesize animal facts. Everyone drew amazing great white sharks and was given a copy of Lifesize Deadly Animals to keep.

“Sophy was fantastic with the children. She had their attention for over an hour. My class returned to school buzzing and said how much they had enjoyed the morning.”

Helen Hamilton, Woodlawn Primary School

On the Tuesday afternoon we travelled to Acorn Integrated Primary School, also in Carrickfergus, where Sophy led a session with 58 pupils.

“This event was unbelievable, it was fantastic, the books the children received were first class. Thank you to the Arts Council, BookTrust and to the amazing Sophy Henn for delivering such a great experience for our children.”

Athena Davis, Acorn Integrated Primary School

The next day we took Sophy to schools in Larne. In the morning, we held a second joint event, this time at Moyle Primary School, and pupils from St Macnissi’s came along, where Sophy led a session with over 130 pupils.

We finished the tour at Linn Primary School visiting 97 pupils. In total over 400 books were given out, thousands of shark teeth were drawn and four valiant attempts to flap faster than a bee hummingbird were made. 

Sophy said:

“I found the school visits great fun. As I didn't have to worry about getting myself there or all the usual organisation I could concentrate on the important business of the event and having as much inspirational fun with the pupils as possible! The schools were so welcoming, each visit really was a joy, and the pupils and teachers really got on board.

I loved visiting schools I feel I would not normally have had the opportunity to visit. The welcomes were warm, and it was all so well organised by Booktrust NI, that everything I needed was ready and waiting for me upon arrival. And witnessing the charity and their funder’s generosity in gifting every pupil a book, and the pupils’ reaction to that, was something incredibly special."

Supported by the National Lottery through the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. With thanks to National Lottery players and money raised for good causes.


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