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‘Ready, Set, Read!’ with the Summer Reading Challenge at Norfolk libraries

12 July 2023

Library Services, summerreadingchallenge

‘Ready, Set, Read!’ with the Summer Reading Challenge at Norfolk libraries

This year’s Summer’s Reading Challenge has begun, and Norfolk Library & Information Service is inviting all children aged four to 11 to take part.


Developed by the Reading Agency in collaboration with the Youth Sport Trust, this year’s theme - Ready, Set, Read! - celebrates play, sport and games.


When children sign up, they receive a free pack that follows a fictional team, designed by the children’s writer and illustrator Loretta Schauer, as they weave their way through a summer obstacle course. Each time children finish a book, they can collect a special sticker from the library to add to the pack. On completion, children will receive a certificate and a medal.


The library service recommends reading around six different books, but children can set their own reading goals. There is also a mini-challenge available so that pre-school children don’t miss out.

You can take part at your local library, where children can borrow and read books, eBooks and audiobooks of their choosing. For inspiration about what to read, there’s a Ready, Set Read! booklist, which includes picture books, early readers and non-fiction books.


Councillor Margaret Dewsbury, Cabinet Member for Communities and Partnerships at Norfolk County Council, said: “We’re looking forward to welcoming children to our libraries over the summer as they embark on the Summer Reading Challenge.

“Research has shown how important reading for pleasure is for the mental wellbeing of children and young people. The Challenge also significantly helps improve children’s reading confidence, making sure they are ready for their return to school in the autumn.”

To take part, just drop in to your local library and ask to register your child. If you are not already a member of the library, joining is free and easy (you will need to bring proof of address such as a utility bill).


If you can’t make it to a library, children can also take part via the official Summer Reading Challenge website, where they can sign up for a free Challenge profile and get book recommendations and tips for accessing books for free at home.


In 2022, more than 8,000 children took part in the Summer Reading Challenge in Norfolk, and schools across the county are helping to increase the number this year by getting behind the Challenge.


Jon Biddle, teacher and literacy lead at Moorlands Church of England Primary Academy in Belton, said: At Moorlands, we know the single most important thing that affects a child's educational success is whether or not they read for pleasure.

“We encourage all our pupils to take part in the Summer Reading Challenge because we know they'll enjoy it and because we know it'll be of an enormous benefit to them. I'd encourage parents and carers everywhere to sign up for it. It's so easy to do."


It’s not just about reading books though - to make the Summer Reading Challenge even more fun, there are lots of free events and activities taking place at libraries across Norfolk. Children can join in with sports-themed Lego clubs, sporty story sessions, robot football, stop motion animation sports day, sporty crafts - and much more!


You can find out more about the Summer Reading Challenge: Ready, Set, Read! including all the activities on offer in Norfolk at www.norfolk.gov.uk/summerreadingchallenge


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