LIBRARIES in Alton, Bordon and Petersfield are encouraging all four to 11-year-olds to sign up to this year’s Summer Reading Challenge, which begins next month.
Run by the Reading Agency, in partnership with Hampshire County Council’s libraries, this year’s free activity has an ‘animal agent’ theme.
The scheme encourages children to read any six books of their choice between July 15 and September 17.
Andrew Gibson, the county council’s executive member for culture, recreation and countryside, said: “This year’s animal agent theme has a strong universal appeal to young readers as it taps into the well-loved whodunnit genre. It will inspire children of all reading abilities as the challenge progresses in fun and interactive ways.”
He added: “Last year, more than 15,500 children completed the challenge over nine weeks, so we’re encouraging all primary school children to sign up at their local library from July 15 so that we can beat that number this year.
“Each reader will be helped throughout the challenge by library staff and volunteers in branch, supporting their progress and helping them discover new clues that will help them solve the cryptic case as they move toward their six-book target.”
When children sign up to the challenge, they will receive stickers and temporary animal agent-inspired tattoos along with suggested booklists for the Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 age groups. There will also be a variety of themed printed and online activities including Bernice the Bear as the boss of the highly-skilled crime capers, and Bart the Bloodhound with a strong track record of sniffing out clues.
Hampshire Libraries will be hosting a mixture of animal-themed activities and events to celebrate this year’s Summer Reading Challenge, including animal handling workshops.