WORLD BOOK DAY AWARD –WINNING SCHOOL WINS ‘LIFE-CHANGING’ LIBRARY MAKEOVER
PRIZE OF £5,000 OF BOOKS A ‘DREAM COME TRUE’ FOR SCHOOL AFTER THREE YEARS OF STRUGGLING TO RAISE FUNDS FOR A LIBRARY
The winner and runners-up of the third annual World Book Day Award have been announced today (Thursday 2nd March) on World Book Day. The first prize of £5,000 worth of books was awarded to Cherry Burton Primary School in East Yorkshire for their ‘Old Curiosity Shop’ entry, pictured above. A further three schools were awarded the second prize (£3,000 worth of books), and an additional 10 schools awarded the third prize (£1,000 worth of books).
Each year, schools are invited to take part in a creative challenge, which celebrates reading for pleasure – this year picture book giant, Oliver Jeffers and acclaimed fine artist, Sam Winston asked schools to create their own ‘world of stories’ inspired by their new children’s book, A Child of Books, published by Walker Books, who have funded the Award for 2017.
Cherry Burton Primary School responded with a whole school project which transformed their summer playhouse into an ‘Old Curiosity Shop’, inspired by the classic novel by Charles Dickens. Designed to convey the “individual experience” of reading, the shop was filled with displays and crafts made by the children, sparked by their favourite books, which ranged from Owl Babies to The Snail and the Whale and The BFG . The massive influx of £5,000 worth of new children’s books provides fresh hope to a school that has spent the last three years struggling to fundraise to expand their collection of books from just one bookshelf into a fully-fledged library.
Winning entries from the West Coast of Scotland to the West Midlands and Northern Ireland were chosen by a panel of judges consisting of Oliver Jeffers and Sam Winston, World Book Day Director Kirsten Grant and Arts Editor for The Times Alex O’Connell. Each winner, plus 100 runners-up, will also receive a signed copy of A Child of Books , plus a limited edition print for their school.
Sarah Shepherdson, Literacy Coordinator, said: “We’re honoured and thrilled to have been awarded first prize for our entry to the World Book Day Award. The children all worked incredibly hard and loved exploring and interpreting their favourite books for the project. The addition of £5,000 worth of books to our school library is a dream come true. Three years ago, our library consisted of one meagre bookshelf, and while we have come a long way since then, there is no doubt that this prize will be life-changing for our pupils.”
Speaking on the judging process, Oliver Jeffers and Sam Winston said : “It was incredibly difficult to choose between all of the fantastic responses we received. Each entry was clearly crafted with passion and imagination, and we loved seeing the types of stories that are engaging children today. The joy of stories was evident in Cherry Burton School’s outstanding project – their infectious enthusiasm for reading inspired not just pupils, teachers and parents, but also their local community.”
World Book Day Director, Kirsten Grant said: “Each year I am blown away by the fantastic entries we receive for the World Book Day Award, and this year has been no different. World Book Day is all about celebrating books and finding fun ways to encourage children to read for pleasure. This year, schools said that ‘the challenge has brought a bigger focus on books and stories’ and ‘prompted a different approach to reading for enjoyment’, which is incredible to hear, and the time, creativity and imagination in the entries is breath taking. The World Book Day Award gives schools the opportunity to transform their libraries, which play a vital role in promoting literacy and the joy of reading to children and young people. We hope our winning schools and their pupils enjoy their brand-new books!”