The British Council and the Commonwealth Secretariat recently ran an international short story writing competition based on the theme of ‘Belonging’, which received over three thousand entries from both school children and teachers from Commonwealth countries around the world.
Eyako Eli Dzantor from International School of Ahafo, Ghana, is delighted to have been named as one of the winning entries and was commended in the 11-14 category.
Each Commonwealth country has a rich heritage of storytelling which was reflected in the competition Pupils aged 7-14 years, and their teachers were invited to express their experiences and thoughts around ‘Belonging’ in the form of a short story or an illustration.
The competition was judged by the children’s author and former Children’s Laureate Anne Fine, and also by the British Council’s Arts department.
In commenting on the competition, Ms Fine said, “I valued this opportunity to read stories from so many parts of the world. Few of us realize how deeply our thoughts and attitudes are steeped in our own experience. To read about the more intimate aspects of people’s lives in countries I‘d known mostly through political reporting was not just enlightening but at times truly humbling.”
“I’m of the generation that learned about the richness and variety of the Commonwealth way back in primary school. But judging this competition reminded me of its sheer strengths and wonders, as well as making me even more aware of the enormous problems so many nations within it still face. Writing can leave you knowing so much more, both about yourself and about the world that surrounds you.”
Mrs Barbara Deveney, Principal and English teacher from International School of Ahafo said “The Commonwealth Class story writing competition gave Eyako a unique opportunity to write for a different, unknown audience, rather than writing just for his teacher and friends. It has been a great experience for Eyako to be commended by the British Council, and he should be proud of himself although, I must admit, his story is very good!”
The Commonwealth Class initiative also enables schools to take part in online debates, competitions and work on projects with the aim of giving young people a unique and hands-on international learning experience based around the Commonwealth family of countries.
Eyako Eli Dzantor, said “When I first heard about the Commonwealth writing competition, it was never on my mind that I would be a winning candidate. I entered the competition as a fun activity. In fact, my entire class entered the competition. Joining this competition, and being recognized by the British Council, has really boosted my confidence in trying out new writing skills”.
Source: British Council