Marvellous Birds

Marvellous Birds was a creative writing and storytelling project for Years 5 and 6 students that explored the feathered beauty of some truly incredible birds. Through carefully scaffolded creative writing activities, students investigated themes such as community, camaraderie, displacement, environmental change, migration and the challenges of new adventures – through the piercing eyes and under the all-seeing gaze of the magnificent, mysterious (and occasionally menacing!) birdlife of the world.

Over six months (two school terms), Story Factory led creative writing programs at four primary schools, where students were supported to author their own original creative story.

Selected writing from across the four schools was collected into a professionally illustrated and published anthology, which is available to purchase at the Story Factory bookshop (see below).

Marvellous Birds is supported by the BridgeLane Foundation, Sheargold Foundation, the CommBank Staff Foundation and the Key Foundation.

Marvellous Birds, marvellous book

Marvellous Birds, marvellous book

These birds have roosted in our hearts, and in the pages of what might be our most beautiful book ever!

Hard cover, with colour illustrations throughout, and (our personal favourite) a deliciously tactile waxed satin finish on the cover (book nerds know what we mean) as well as being stuffed with hilarious, witty and wise stories from our students.

We’re calling it – this is the perfect gift. Order yours today!


Hear the Marvellous Stories of Marvellous Birds!

While lockdown may have stopped our plans to celebrate this fabulous feathered tales in-person, it couldn’t stop these incredible stories from flying free. Some very talented actors and some brilliant illustrators helped up bring to life the stories written in our Marvellous Birds workshops and we’re willing to bet they will be the best thing you see this week. Take a look!

I snorted, an incredible accomplishment for an eagle who had slanted nostrils.

– student writing

I terminated the call and spread my magnificent wings, stretching inside my New York penthouse. It wasn’t actually mine, I had smashed through the window, grabbed the owner with my massive talons and flung him out the window.

– student writing

The woman had very long jet black hair with some silver and white strands. She wasn’t old, just creative.

– Maple

Plumpton Public School

My life was pretty normal after the confrontation with the Russian Government, apart from the weekly heists on the bank and the everyday terrorising of pedestrians.

 – Minh

Blaxcell Street Public School

@SydneyStoryFactory on Instagram

Join us between 11am-3pm on Saturday 3rd and Sunday 4th of December at Parramatta Female Factory Institutions Precinct (1 Fleet Street, North Parramatta) for a powerful exhibition titled Memory River.  Throughout this year, Story Factory and the custodians of the Female Factory Precinct have worked with Elders, Kaytetye, Anmatyerr and Eastern Arrernte cross-disciplinary artist Carmen Glynn-Braun, and young writers from local high schools to understand, express and reinterpret the stories of the Female Factory through creative writing and art.  As you wander through the grounds, you will discover recordings of stories by students as they responded to the pre- and post-colonial history of this contested site.  Memory River has been made possible thanks to the Balnaves Foundation.  📷 Cassandra Hannagan
Are you an experienced teacher looking for a new challenge? Do you love creative writing and ensuring all young people have opportunities to succeed?  We are currently recruiting for a Senior Program Manager.  The ideal candidate will be an exceptional, experienced workshop facilitator who can work independently to shape and improve our in- school programming.  They will have a passion for nurturing creativity and building skills in their peers, and in young people from diverse backgrounds. Candidates must be a qualified teacher with at least five years teaching experience, and experience managing people. They will be highly creative and adaptable, and love bringing out the best in their team.  The Senior Program Manager will be a key part of Story Factory’s senior management group, providing input into both day-to-day decision making and long-term strategy for the organisation.  Sound like you? Find out more and apply now via link in our bio.  📷 Jacquie Manning
We are running a very exciting multilingual public writing project and we want YOU to be a part of it!  In a Flash invites people to write flash fiction (very short stories - less than 100 words) in response to writing by emerging and established Australian authors.  Everyone who submits a story goes into the draw to win one of three $100 gift cards and a selection of writing will be published on our website!  All the prompts have been translated into Arabic, Vietnamese and Mandarin, and you can write in any of these languages or in English.  Follow the link in our bio to view the prompts and submit your writing.  Submissions are open until December 15, so get writing now, so you don’t miss out! We can’t wait to read and share your stories.  This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body.