Literacy Pirates

a fleet of learning centres in Hackney, Haringey and soon beyond

Luke the Magician

The Jolly RogersComment

Today we met a magician called Luke and he`s 21 yrs old. He used to play a lot of video games and it was kind of like an addiction so he left it when he was 13 yrs old and at 14 yrs old he started juggling and he did that until he was 20. While he was doing that he was practising close-up magic. He had to practice Most of his tricks for about 3 years before getting them properly. Luke practices magic for about 3-8 hrs. That's a lot of time but I can see why because he is so good! Luke started magic as a hobby. He used to travel a lot so that's why he likes cards because it's easy for him to take all of his equipment everywhere he goes. Luke showed us how to make a coin vanish. I can't wait to show my friends at school, but I won't tell them how to do it. Luke says you can learn magic on Youtube so maybe I'll learn some more tricks too.

Craig and Designing Apps

The Jolly RogersComment

Today we met Craig and he works a company called Mind Candy and they create apps and games like World of Warriors, Moshi Monsters and Pop Jam. Before Craig worked in Mind Candy he used to work with different kinds of magazines like Doctor Who - Monster Invasion, Girl Talk and Skylanders. After that Craig went back to Doctor Who and made a website for Doctor Adventures and Doctor Who - Monster Invasion and you could make you own aliens out of fruits and pizza. Craig is 34 years old and his favourite food is peperoni pizza. What inspired him was the fact that he liked writing and was creative.

Today we also tried out one of Mind Candy games which hasn't even come out yet so be sure to try it in July!

You can find out more about his company in mind: and find their games in the app store.

Arwen the Assistant Producer

The Jolly RogersComment

Today we met Arwen and she works in the TV industry/drama in a company called Tidy Productions. She is 29 years old and she works in the scripts department. Arwen is from Yorkshire. Her favourite colours are green, yellow, blue and white. Her favourite subject is English and that's why she studied and got a degree in English. Her favourite food is burger.

In the drama part of the TV industries there are 7 departments and they are:

  • Costume - they have to design the costumes and make sure they go with that program;
  • Make up & hair - they have to make the make up look real;
  • Location - this leam have to make sure that the location goes with the program;
  • Art - design sets;
  • Camera - focus on what they're doing;
  • Directing - tell the actors what they need to do;
  • Script - this is where all the actors and other departments get the information from.

Paul the Storyteller

The Jolly RogersComment

Today we met Paul and he is from Liverpool. He`s a story teller (for the fun of it) / play-writer (evening job)/ drama teacher( teaches primary secondary and college students). The oldest he has taught is a 57 year old student. Paul is 42 years old. But he also writes stories and he gave us the script for one of them and I loved it.

Paul has also recently written two plays. One of them is about how far a person would go to win money in a game show and the other one is about what you would be doing in 50 years at Dalston and will all the global warming go the way people are saying it would go?

It was fun meeting Paul and I liked his story.

If you want to know more go to this website:

Silvia - Partners for Youth Empowerment

The Jolly RogersComment

Today we met Silvia Giovanni and she works with a company called PYE which stands for Partners for Youth Empowerment. We did a lot of activities with her like games. After that we wrote a poem but not in the usual way! We all wrote about two lines in our own book and then swapped every 15 seconds and added more line at the end we had to choose one poem and act it out. It was really fun and interesting.

My poem was:

The home of Hackney Pirates

Sounds cheerful like a cheerleader

Is as happy as a tickled baby

Giggling with joy

Laughing with joy

Until they wet themselves or want some milk,

They cry.

When a baby cries an ocean appears

As if it rained inside the house while

It's as dry as a summer's day outside.

You can find Silvia's company on

Silvia - Partners for Youth Empowerment

The Jolly RogersComment

Today we met Silvia Giovanni and she works with a company called PYE which stands for Fartners for Youth Empowerment. We did a lot of activities with her like games. After that we wrote a poem but not in the usual way- we all wrote about two lines in our own book and then swapped every 15 secs and added more line at the end we had to choose one poem and act it out. It was really fun and interesting.

You can find Silvia's company on

Kate the Chocolate Maker!

The Jolly RogersComment

Today we met someone called Kate and she makes chocolate sculptures for a living. The name of her company is "Cocoa Den".

 Every Sunday she sells chocolate sculpture at the Chatsworth Market and that`s how she started the business. She worked at a marketing agency and after that business started getting busier and they started running out of chocolate so the agency gave her once a week to make more chocolate.

 After that, we got to make out own chocolate sculpture and eat it or take it home and i LOVED IT!!!

 You can find Kate Burton and the Cocoa Den on Twitter @thecocoaden.

Nicole - Dancer

The Jolly RogersComment

Today our visitor was Nicole and she goes to UCL. She studies History of Art and after she finishes university she wants to be a curator. She likes dances and even though she doesn`t study it at university she is really good at it and because of that she taught us some dance moves. It was fun although it was a little hard at the start, but then we started to get used to it.

What inspired her to be a curator was because she loved art but she didn’t want to draw. Then she found out that she can do something to do with art without even drawing.

What inspired her to be a dancer was when she watched a ballet movie and she wanted to do ballet so she convinced her parents and started lessons after that she started watching dance videos and she learned other kinds of dances.

Tony - Animator

The Jolly RogersComment

Today we met Tony and he is an animator. As an animator, his job is to make animated movies and advertisements (ads) like "Cars" (the movie), "Ben 10", "Toy Story" and et cetera. What inspire him to do this? When he was a kid he loved drawing but because there were no any computers when he was younger so he was about to give up on his passion. But then, laptops, iPads and smart phones were invented and he found a way to pursue his dream job.

If you want to know more about what Tony does you can find it at: -

Lexi - Animator

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Today we met Lexi who is a graphic designer. The most exciting project she has done is working on a documentary which is a movie based on something that happened in real life.

The thing that inspired her was her passion for cartoons like animations by Hayao Miyazaki, a famous Japanese director and producer. Then when she turned 10 years old she started to like dinosaurs.

She moved to England when she was 17 years old. The big difference between Hong Kong and England is the weather because it is really hot in Hong Kong where as in England it is the opposite.

During her spare time, Lexi plays in a rock band called Hoopdriver, she is the lead singer. She also plays different sports like hockey and snowboarding. Lexi was born on 1984 and is 30 years old. Her favourite kind of movie is action animation movie called "Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind". This movie has a lot of impact in her life because this movie came out on the same year that she was born and it reminds her of her childhood.

Gary - Alternative London

The Jolly RogersComment

Today our visitor’s name was Gary and he is a tour guide. He is originally from "Isle Of Wight" which is in South England. He moved to London when he was 18 years old and spent time visiting other different countries.

When he was in college he studied music and more specifically bass. When he came back to London, he had an idea of starting a company where he could give tours but not like the usual tour. He decided to give tours featuring unusual places that people wouldn't usually go to and to look at things that they wouldn't usually notice or wouldn't care about until they hear the back story of it. After working alone for 6 months he needed colleagues so he hired people that knew a lot about London.

Ben Sellers

The Jolly RogersComment

Today Ben came to visit us and he is a music composer from Yorkshire.

First we played a rhythmic game where Ben made us use our bodies to make beats eg stamp stamp tap tap chest chest and clap. Once we had got the rhythm, we had to take away parts of the beat but keep going. So like we would take away the stamp then take away the tap then we would just do the clap part but the others would still have their beats we just didn't play them.

After that Ben showed us an app called "Loopseque" where we got to make our own different music then we got a choice to either play it for a video or play it with your own rap.
If you want to know more go to you can find Ben in twitter @thebosmanruling

Josh and Josh - Cape-Abilities

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Today we met Josh no1 and Josh no2 from Cape-Abilities. Josh no1 wanted to be a supper hero ever since he was a little kid and he liked dressing up. On the other hand Josh no2 liked playing guitars and skate boarding and he even showed us a picture of him doing both at the same time!

We played a game where we had to partner up and hold one willow stick between us. We had to hold it with one finger and while doing that we had to move around. Then we added two pairs together and did the same thing. Then we had all the group together with 8 willow sticks between us. The point of that game was to communicate with each other with out talking. It worked really well with four people, but it was too hard with the whole group.

After that we looked at different maps that were made by different people in different times. There was one in a shape of a heart, inside it there was everything that happened to that person. Looking at that we had to make our own map about Hackney and we had to write things that were important to us.

Mussel Men

The Jolly RogersComment

Today our visitors were Kirsty and Sean, they work in a restaurant called Mussel Men.

Mussel Men has been in Dalston for 10 months. In the restaurant they sell Mussels and other seafood.

They get mussels and fish from the sea and cook them for people. Before they cook the fish they prepare them. To do that they have to cut the head off and take away all the disgusting parts.

The owner’s name is Captain Gills and he likes dressing up as a pirate captain when her is serving the food to the customers.

I want to go there for dinner and you should too!

Alexis Deacon

The Jolly RogersComment

Today we were visited by Alexis, an author and illustrator. He wanted to talk to us about what he does and what kind of books he writes. 

He writes children's book mostly about animals. So to get us started we played a game where we had to choose 6 different animals so that he can combine them together and draw a weird animal. Hew drew this thing that we have called a Pishongachiky. Can you guess what animals it's mad up of?


Then he read us a book that he wrote and it was called "Croc and Bird". The book is about two animals (crocodile and bird) who thought they were brothers because they hatched out of eggs next to each other. Then one day when they went out hunting they got caught up in a river which took them somewhere where there were other crocodiles and birds. Then they realized that they were not brothers and decided that they should say goodbye to each other  but when they went to their own kinds they did not do any thing right so they decided to go back to being brothers.

To read some more stories go to this websites:, or

PrintME 3D

The Jolly RogersComment

Today our visitors were Peter, Dan and Priya from a PrintME 3D. First they showed us some of the things they've already made with their 3D printers, like a ukulele, the London Eye, a castle, a mini squid, and a robot hand. Then I got to use the 3D printing pen. The 3D pen is like a pen that works with white plastics that is soft when it comes out but gets really hard and sets after a little while.

I also found out about the Choc Edge. The Choc Edge is also a kind of 3D printer that make things with real chocolate so you can eat it!

This is the link to the video about Choc Edge so you can see how it works.

Anna Clover

The Jolly RogersComment

Anna is an actress and writer. She is from Hackney Shed, an organisation that helps kids with their drama skills. Anna talked to us about devised theatre which is when you act without scripts and you make the story up on the way. It is really fun and easy as long as you stick with two rules. The first is that you must use the obvious so that the other person knows what your talking about, and the second rule is to always "yes" to anything the other person says.

Street Doctors

Jolly RogersComment

Today Charlotte from Street Doctors came to talk to us about what she does. Street doctors are people that teach kids about how to help a person when they are bleeding.

First what we did was we played a game that included on voting how important it was to help or save people that are injured. After that she had a drawing of a person and we had to draw the important parts of a body that help you stay alive.

Then they told us about how much blood each person has in his or her body. After she showed us a routine of how to help a bleeding person we got to do it in groups and to do that we had to remember the steps. It was:-

  1. First call an ambulance 
  2. then use fabric to stop the blood from running
  3. then ask them to lay on the floor 
  4. after ask them to put their leg up because if you loose blood in your leg you won't get hurt 
  5. then put something warm like a coat to put around them 
  6. and the last one to tell them that everything is going to be okay

I think that this is important because if one of your family or friends or even any one in the street is hurt then instead of just standing there and watching you could help them. So my advice to you is to be careful and help someone who is hurt, and who knows they might even give you something to thank you.