A week ago today, we were joined at our ELS base by three students from Litcham School who were visiting us and NLIS for #TakeoverDay, an initiative which encourages businesses to invite young people to take over adult roles, giving them experience of what it’s really like to run an organisation. We relish the opportunity to hear what young people really think, particularly when it comes to their engagement in books, reading and libraries, so we were pleased to be involved.
The Litcham students who were with us for Takeover Day were not only on the UK team who made it to the Kids’ Lit Quiz world final in 2015, but they’re also involved in Reading Hack, a country-wide programme led by young people aged 13 to 24 who involve themselves in reading activities and volunteering- called hacks- to gain skills and experience. A new Reading Hack book group has recently been established at the Norfolk and Norwich Millennium Library (details here), and their next meeting will take place on Tuesday 13th December. The theme is ‘let it snow’, with attendees encouraged to bring along their favourite books set in winter, for some festive discussion. If you’re between 13-16, why not pop along to meet some like minded peers; who knows, you might even leave with a few book recommendations to keep you busy over the upcoming holidays?
This week’s Friday Reads are below and remember: you can find more recommendations in our archive.
Gail: Where’s the Baboon? by Michael Escoffier, illustrated by Kris Di Giacomo
An unusual hide and seek word game that would be enjoyable and educational for adults and children to share. Each double page spread has an illustration of animals doing activities. Hidden in the text (using different coloured letters) is the answer to a question on each page eg: who made this painting? Answer –pig!
The colours are rather subdued/retro, the font could be more child-friendly and the whole book reminded me of word games from the 70’s but I thought it was fun.
(Andersen Press, £6.99 paperback, ISBN 9781783444823)
Harriet: The Bubble Boy by Stewart Foster
What a brave boy Joe is, living as he must in a totally sterilised ‘bubble’ in hospital all the time, his contact with the outside world limited to a very few visitors, the internet and chats via Skype with his friend Henry who is in a similar state in the USA.
While I skipped the medical details the human story was heartbreaking but uplifting and amusing at times, and as a book about empathising with a person who feels all the normal emotions and desires, but trying to survive under such restricting conditions is a really good read.
(Simon & Schuster, £6.99 paperback, ISBN 9781471145407, find it at a Norfolk Library)
Zoë: The Phantom’s Fang-tastic Show by Wes Magee
This spooktacular book of poems by Wes Magee contains several poetry styles and features including narrative, shape, rhyme, different length stanzas and poems with a chorus. Supported by simple yet effective (and amusing) black and white illustrations courtesy of Leo Broadley, these poems are ideal to set the scene for Hallowe’en or imagine story-telling long ago on dark, stormy nights, people huddled around with only firelight.
The poems could be used in a variety of ways to engage pupils, including reading for pleasure as the topics within the poems would suit both boys and girls. There are wonderful examples of word play, along with plenty of ‘Wow’ words to increase vocabulary. Rhyme features highly, with several different rhyme patterns used.
I particularly liked ‘Up in the Attic… And Down in the Cellar’ as it is a shape poem with less familiar presentation.
(Oxford University Press, £3.99 paperback, ISBN 9780192762177)