Anyone who walked into the primary school where I work last week would have been forgiven for thinking that it was a bakery because of all the marvellous cakes brought in to celebrate our annual reading challenge – Cakespeare!
Every year we run a whole-school competition for the children to enter, based on a theme to do with books or reading (previous years included ‘the strangest place to read’ and a superhero/supervillain made of fruit or veg, based on the popular picture book Supertato by Sue Hendra). With all the celebrations surrounding Shakespeare this year, we thought it would be appropriate to bake for the Bard. The idea was to bake, buy or draw and decorate a cake that could be given to William Shakespeare to celebrate his birthday, so that’s what we did!
Before the competition, children in Key Stage 1 and Year 3 learned about Shakespeare’s life through an excellent sticker book I used with them from Usborne. This proved a good starting point as it wasn’t too text heavy and provoked a lot of discussion which carried on into following weeks. The children seemed to know a lot about Shakespeare anyway, and could list quite a few of his plays off the tops of their heads!
We also did some Shakespeare ‘selfies’, where the children had to pretend they were a character in a Shakespeare play, or Shakespeare himself, and write who they were and what they were doing, next to their Selfie. We had a fair few Julius Caesars who were unaware of Brutus creeping up behind them, plus a couple of Shakespeares, one of which had writer’s bock (see, even the best of them get it!).
In all, we had twenty entries across the school for the competition – most of them coming from Key Stage 1 – and all of the cakes were AMAZING. So much so that Lizzie Payton from The Phoenix comic, who kindly came to the school to judge the competition, just couldn’t decide which to choose as winner. Therefore, all of the children received a certificate and prize for their efforts, and rightly so, too.
Below are pictures of most of our entries (there are a few missing as they came in earlier). I hope you’re as impressed with them as I was!