Providers of Education may wish to consult this guide to examine means by which the FLITLITS JUNIOR concept may be adapted to the specific context of their programmes.
Individual course instructors in and out of the classroom environment are invited to identify sections of this guide that relate most closely to the courses that they teach.
The resources provide learners with experiences designed to:
• Enhance their knowledge, skills and attitudes
• Increase their language proficiency for study, leisure and personal enrichment
• Contribute to life long learning so as to enhance their personal and intellectual development
The evolving concept is designed to provide positive links between the home, libraries and schools by means of multi-platform resources and social interaction
The Flitlits Junior Concept
THE FLITLITS JUNIOR concept grew from a series of bilingual, English / Welsh stories written in a humorous, lyrical format for children aged 7-9 years. It links seamlessly to a more mature follow-on concept titled THE FLITLITS, that is designed for pupils ages 8-11 years.
A map of the setting has been integral to the project since its inception and the material has been successfully piloted at schools in the U.K. and beyond. Current resources include a series of Flitlit apps along with print book versions of Flitlit Book One/ The Funny Fair/ Miri Yn Y Ffair/ printed by John Catt Educational Ltd. aas both first and second language editions.
Please see further educational guides as posted under EDUCATORS on the menu bar, created to assist multi-platform, cross-curricular learning.
Bilingual Flitlits Junior stories and The Flitlits adventures are available on CDs for blind and partially sighted young learners free of charge by Talking Books Wales, Llyfrau Llafar Cymru.
Pending resources include further print books/The Flitlits and Flitlis Junior titles/ e-books, audio books, Flitlits Junior apps and games.
The concept is committed to the advancement of literacy and numeracy skills and to assist pupils to become more creative and capable of developing innovative solutions to problems. It enables pupils to enhance analytical and critical capacities as well as the ability to synthesise ideas and adapt to new situations.
It equips pupils with a range of skills and attributes to help them succeed in a wide range of tasks and responsibilities and to contribute to the society in which they live.
Philosophy and Approach
The Flitlits Junior concept enhances existing curricula by making available multi-platform and cross-curricular resources.
The material can be adapted as required in courses that are specific, or infused into other courses in the curriculum. It provides opportunities to link to the components of generic skills that are fundamental in enabling pupils to learn about:
- Engagement / learning through enjoyment, immersion and humour
- Communication, conversation, discussion and debate
- Critical thinking
- Self-esteem, confidence, self-management and making choices
- Responsibility and respect
- Personal and social values
- Study skills and creativity
- Information Technology
- Music and musicality
- Art and design
- Dramatic interpretation and presentation
- Exercise and physical well-being
Values and Attitudes
Values that we develop underpin our conduct, and decisions and can be positive and negative in their effect.
Attitudes, being personal dispositions, may affect behaviour positively or negatively.
The Flitlits Junior concept helps to develop positive values and attitudes pertaining to:
These, along with positive attitudes to language learning, are integral to the concept, map and stories.
The Map and Setting
FUSSBUT, SELDOM SEE is a wondrous land lost in time, so named since children may fuss, but access it only by means of their imagination.
The map/setting sets up a small world area that enables children to interact with it independently or in groups. It is a land that invites them to visit, discover and explore.
Four stars: SOL-FA, SHIFT, AGLOW and GLEE govern the ethos of the concept. They influence the musicality of the characters and language, action, vibrancy and fun.
Each plot and its associated landmark/s links to an appropriate element of the curriculum through humorous, entertaining and engaging means. These enhance imagination and stimulate children to create adventures of their own.
Cognitive, Physical and Social Skills
The concept provides cognitive skills support pertaining to:
- Logic and reasoning
- Auditory, visual and processing speeds
Interpersonal strand support pertains, for example, to:
- Evaluating feelings, interests, and ideas.
Dreaming up new plots and characters engenders creativity, artwork, logical thinking and play-acting.
Hot seating and role-play corners can be based on places featured on the map, with masks, props and puppets enabling children to retell and act out the stories. They may imagine different scenarios to change endings. Based on the children’s understanding and knowledge of the characters, they may place the characters in different situations and relate how they feel the characters would react.
Images of the characters, surrounded by adjectives that best describe them, are extremely effective. The illustrations lend themselves to the development of descriptive writing and free role-play, particularly with the use of role-play cards in role-play corners. A simple key prop for each character, such as a hat or cloak, would be all that children need to project what they know of a character into a role-play situation.
Adult roles in terms of response and facilitation of good quality questioning are crucial.
Knowledge strand support includes, for example, information-gathering through activities such as:
- Drawing conclusions
The Flitlits Junior concept recognises the importance of fostering connections between language and other subjects through cross-curricular collaboration. It enables pupils to make connections among ideas and concepts so that their motivation will be raised and their learning strengthened.
The stimulating language aims to help learners to achieve a balance between the breadth and depth of language learning. It aims to facilitate articulation and to give equal emphasis to language learning and language use.
Listening, Speaking and Reading
This supports learner-centred pedagogy relating to:
- Thinking and communication
- Application, development and acquirement of knowledge
- Responding and applying expression to experiences within these contexts
- Development, application and understanding of how language is organised, used and learned
- Participating in presentations
- Identifying, interpreting and discussing themes
- Participating in dramatic presentations and reflecting on the way in which the author uses language to create effects
- Giving expression to imaginative ideas through oral, written and performative means.
- Use and understanding of gestures
- Creating poems and lyrics
- Creating short, dramatic episode
- Examination of text structures, activating prior knowledge, building schema and making predictions
- Discussion of the prologue to the stories
- Discussion about the author and what is her purpose in writing the text
- The use of the map to enable tracking of purpose, movements and destinations
- Discussion about the role of the setting in the initial events of the stories
- Discussion about ‘What the author means by…’
- Summarising the key elements, events, characters and stories
Writing, Vocabulary and Grammar
Grammatical analysis such as sentence structure may be incorporated into structured language and grammar exercises.
The vocabulary encourages engagement, development, innovation and expression within the understanding of text types.
Basic grammatical structures are complemented by examples of:
- Cadence and assonance
- Expressive adjectives, adverbs and verbs
- Alliteration and Onomatopoeia
- Metaphors and Similes
- Unusual word combinations
- Rhythm and Rhyme
- Half or Near Rhymes
- Repeated patterns and words, especially in association with character Jake MacJake’s duality in terms of speech and choices.
Star Sol-Fa governs the musicality of the language, characters, nature and Pine Plot, in particular.
The FUSSBUT FLING Ⓒ composition aims to encourage children to sing, act, dance and keep fit. It offers them opportunities to become creative and expressive and to unwind following long periods of concentration.
The Flitlits Junior concept offers many opportunities for the development of extension programmes based on the special needs and interests of your target audience and the purpose of the education. This applies across the curriculum and to more able and talented pupils, for example in relation to:
- Script writing
- Character design
- Story telling
- Story development
Numeracy will be supported by the availability of a pending series of Flitlits Junior card games and apps. They have been designed to stimulate and challenge young minds and to develop and enhance numeric skills.
The resources that are suggested may be seen as a menu from which instructors can select those that fit their course/s and teaching style. They are generic in nature and can be used accordingly.
A MAP of Fussbut, Seldom See, available in various sizes
A4 PRINTS of the 13 Flitlit Junior characters
A4 prints of characters with their associated home plot and plot landmark/s
Additional resources at various stages of development that will be detailed on www.flitlitsjunior.co.uk
About the Author
Eiry Rees Thomas was born into a creative family comprising a poet, illustrators and a calligrapher/sculptor.
The coal-mining community where she spent her formative years was mostly Welsh- speaking, with English being introduced to the school curriculum at the age seven level. The musicality of the Welsh language is apparent in the author’s unique lyrical voice, described in Welsh as ‘telynegol’ or harp-like, true to her Celtic roots.
Her love of writing bilingually since a young age was given expression following a serious accident in 1998. This ended her career as a Public Health practitioner, peripatetic teacher and medical translator.
Her experiences in the field of child development and the privilege of having worked with children and families with additional needs contribute to her work as an author and curriculum concept creator.
Staff and pupils of Palmerston Primary School, Barry, Wales, UK, with special recognition of the invaluable input of Senior Teacher / Literacy Co-ordinator, Melody Jones.
Staff and pupils at Llanedeyrn Primary School, Cardiff, Wales, UK. With special thanks to senior teachers, Lisa Jopson and Ian James.
With gratitude to F and KSI Deputy Head, Elizabeth Robinson, and Literacy Coordinator, Sian Scott Wilson, JESS School, Dubai for their accomplished assessment and guidance.
Composer: The FUSSBUT FLING: Darren Adams; Ⓒ All Rights Reserved
Sound Technicians: Ian Mason, WJEC Studios
Video production: Hywel Jones
Web Design: Chas Shaw, Cardiff Web Design Ltd
Ⓒ Eiry Thomas; All Rights Reserved