Monthly Archives: March 2012
A young girl has earned herself a place in a national dance team less than a year after major surgery for a rare heart condition.
Talisha Cooper, eight, was born with a hole in her heart and was monitored with six-monthly scans until last year when paediatric cardiologists at London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital advised surgery.
The South Wootton Junior School pupil joined Alison’s Street Dance Club, in South Lynn, when she was just four years old. And as a member of 10s Enigma team, she was still rehearsing for a charity concert three days before a five-and-a-half hour operation.
Talisha was under the care of Graham Derrick, consultant paediatric cardiologist, who greeted her and her parents, Gareth and Keeley, on arrival. He always encouraged Talisha to enjoy her dancing, a passion which probably contributed to her being fast-tracked through recovery after the operation.
The build up to surgery was far more harrowing for her parents who found themselves on a rollercoaster of emotions as they wandered aimlessly around the nearby British Museum while surgeons repaired their daughter’s defective heart.
Gareth, manager at the T-Mobile shop, Lynn said: “It wasn’t until I read the consent form that I realised they were actually going to stop her heart and let a machine do the work while they repaired the hole. Let’s just say it seemed an eternity before I could actually write my name at the bottom of the page.”
Back in Lynn, Talisha’s older brother Jayden, thirteen, and younger brother, Khyan, four, were being looked after by family, while a contingent of parents from the dance club descended on the family’s Grange estate home and redecorated Talisha’s bedroom in a Hello Kitty theme, complete with matching bed linen and curtains.
“Nothing quite prepared us for the shock of seeing her in cardiac intensive care because part of you thinks ‘She’s had the op and will be fine now’, but in fact she looked much worse,” sai
Renowned author David Orme shares a day in the life of a school bound author….
“Off to Stoke Park Juniors to talk to year 6 about how to plan and write fiction – and not just because SATs are looming!
They were all well taught, and knew about the key elements of fiction: Who? (Characters) when and where? (Setting) and What? (Plot). At this point I asked them which of the three was the most difficult to do, knowing the answer I would get because it’s always the same – the plot!
My job is then to convince them that the plot is really the easy bit – because every story ever written has the same plot. Of course, at this point they look at me as if I’m mad!
Someone somewhere worked out that there are actually seven different plots for stories, but I boil it down to one.
It goes something like this:
1. There is a problem.
2. A character or characters try and solve the problem.
3. They solve it (happy ending) or make it worse (sad ending) or, better, they think they’ve solved it, but something unexpected happens. (The twist ending.)
And that’s it. The problem can be anything from alien invasion to forgetting your maths homework. The main part of the story is going to be part two – solving the problem.
I illustrated this with the story of Theseus and the Minotaur. King Minos and the Minotaur is the problem, Theseus does his best to solve the problem (with a little help from Ariadne) thinks he’s solved it – but there’s a twist; he forgets to change the colour of his sails which brings about his father’s death.
This story also illustrates the idea that most stories are really new versions of old stories. The Plot of Theseus and Minotaur became the basis for Star Wars, with Luke as Theseus, Darth Vader as Minos, and Leia as Ariadne. And at the end, Luke brings about his father’s death without knowing it – just like Theseus.
It’s a great theme, and to read another version try my Badger