In 7 days time, much excitement will be felt in schools across Norfolk as the summer holidays finally arrive. This revelation has caused us to pose two questions: 1) just where on earth has 2014 gone and 2) what will everyone be reading over the Summer?
The Mythical Maze Summer Reading Challenge 2014 officially launched last weekend and many children may have already begun to take part, reading books to receive stickers and (eventually!) a certificate and medal. It’s a great way to ensure that children maintain their reading levels over the Summer and is designed to appeal to all reading abilities. The programme is coordinated by The Reading Agency in conjunction with Libraries across the country and here in Norfolk, lots of exciting events have been planned and will be taking place in celebration of the challenge. For more information of these keep your eyes peeled on the events page of the Norfolk Library and Information Service website and on the official NLIS twitter account.
Though the end of term is approaching, our team has been keeping very busy and the last few weeks have seen our final Author visits taking place, including a successful visit to a school in King’s Lynn by our Author in Residence, Dee Shulman. Here she is with the wonderful display she was greeted with upon arrival- how lovely is that? She thoroughly enjoyed her time with us again and rumour has it, she may even pop back in the Autumn…
Our Librarians have also been out on several school visits across the county recently- Rollesby Primary School, for example, invited Mandy Steel to their Reading for Pleasure Day for a Story café session with Nursery parents and grandparents. She shared Butterfly Butterfly by Petr Horacek, a simple pop-up story which is great for just that age group. Beautiful bright illustrations help us share Lucy as she explores her garden looking for the butterfly which almost explodes from the last page.
Mandy encouraged the parents to make time to have fun with books and share stories and to join the Public Library.
Next, everyone helped to tell the story of One Duck Stuck. Many friends tried to help the duck to get out the muck in the pricky, sticky marsh- but they all had to work together to free her. Counting, repetition, rhyme, joining in and interesting language- it’s a lovely story.
Back in the classroom there were Duck finger puppets, duck masks and big white ducks to be made. Wonderfully themed activities enjoyed by all!
AND in amongst all of the above excitement, we’ve also managed to find time to read a few books- here is What we’re reading (this) Wednesday!
Apryl: I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was revisiting the works of Judy Blume and I’ve just begun to re-read both Forever and Deenie, two classics by the American author. I also spent 24 hours this weekend devouring Dawn O’Porter’s brilliant Goose, a follow-up to her debut novel Paper Aeroplanes which I thoroughly enjoyed last year. I loved jumping back into Renee and Flo’s story to see how their lives had changed now they’re in sixth form, and I was not disappointed- a wonderful teen read with an authentic and relatable british voice, it’s even better than the first instalment (and apparently, there is to be a third- yippee!)
Harriet: Cowgirl by G.R. Gemin- This is an entertaining story which would appeal to Jacqueline Wilson fans. Set on a council estate in a small town in Wales, the community comes together to help a local farm keep its herd of cows, when it is threatened with being bought out by a larger neighbouring farmer. It is easy to see this making an excellent TV drama, with its dysfunctional families, the farcical attempts to hide the cows in the back yards of the council houses, and the final joyful resolution. The main characters are very appealing and the tone, although the situations are serious, fairly light and sometimes amusing.
Kirsten: currently enjoying (and trying to keep pristine my signed copy of) Patrick Ness’s More Than This. The book is told in a mixture of flash backs, and what seems to be a post death reality experience – only a third of the way through so it’s all still unfolding. I like sci-fi and young adult fiction and I am a big Patrick Ness appreciator – so all good so far!
Mandy: I’m really enjoying (guilty pleasure I think!) Silver by Andrew Motion, former Poet Laureate. It’s a rollicking good pirate adventure, written as a sequel to Treasure Island, with Jim Hawkins’s son and Long John Silver’s daughter as the main characters, returning to find the rest of the treasure. It’s long, and written (beautifully) with a feel for the slightly archaic language of Treasure Island and including all the elements you’d expect, storms and becalmings, evil pirates and good honourable captains, treasure and murders! Great for y7&8 boys and girls and all fans of Pirates of the Caribbean!
You can see our past mid-week reads here.