09 July 2013

Northamptonshire County Council’s libraries will launch the Summer Reading Challenge for 2013 this weekend (Saturday 13th July).

What is the Summer Reading Challenge?

The Summer Reading Challenge aims to encourage children aged four to 11 to read six books during the summer through their local library.

This year’s theme is Creepy House, illustrated by award-winning writer and illustrator Chris Riddell. The theme invites children to explore a Creepy House and its host of characters; they’re encouraged to read six or more books of their choice during the holidays and on the way collect pungent smelling stickers to complete a collectable Creepy House poster.

Children can also go on the national Summer Reading Challenge website to create a profile, chat about books, and get help on what to read next via the digital Booksorter which also works on mobiles and tablets.

When children have read six books and completed the challenge they will receive a certificate and medal and be entered into a prize draw to win the chance to run their local library. They will also earn a point for their school in the Top Schools Competition, with the school with the highest percentage of children completing the challenge being presented with a certificate in September.

Research shows the Summer Reading Challenge increases children’s reading range and their enjoyment of reading. It builds confidence and independent reading, while combating the damaging dip in children’s literacy levels during the break from school.

Get reading and earn a free swim

This year Northamptonshire libraries are working in partnership with eight leisure centres and swimming pools across the county to further reward children who complete the summer reading challenge with a free swim. They can claim this at Lings Forum, Waendel Leisure Centre, Towcester Centre for Leisure, Brackley Swimming Pool, Kettering Swimming Pool, Nene Centre, Splash Leisure Pool or Daventry Leisure Centre.

Frank Lampard, a Summer Reading Challenge Champion, said: “I’m proud to be a Champion for Creepy House, and that Frankie's Magic Football is included on the books to read list.

“Reading with my children is incredibly important to me and a wonderful way to spend time together as a family. I hope that many boys, and girls, will be inspired this summer to take up The Reading Agency’s Summer Reading Challenge with libraries and enjoy all of the brilliant books available to them at their local library.”

For more information

This is just one of over 300 activities taking place in the county's libraries this summer, all of which are completely free. These include theatre groups, live animals, and art workshops as well as plenty of book related and craft activities.

Full details of all activities can be found on the library events webpage or by asking in a local library. Booking is essential except for rhymetimes or drop in activities. Children under eight must be accompanied by an adult.

The Summer Reading Challenge is free and starts on Saturday 13th July 2013 and runs until Saturday 14th September 2013.