SCBA: Six Reasons Why You Should Make a Book Trailer

Since our Scottish Children's Book Awards shortlist was announced in September, classes and book groups all over Scotland have been reading and discussing the books before our voting deadline arrives on 5 February 2016. If you are looking for a different way to approach the books you have been reading, why not enter Scottish Book Trust’s Book Trailer Competition?

Rewind for a second… What exactly is a book trailer? We’re so glad you asked. A book trailer is a short video advert for a particular book which aims to entice the viewer to pick up that book. Unlike Hollywood trailers, no movie stars or sophisticated production is necessary, making this an accessible project for all. Instead you can use photos, quotations from the book, music, video clips and more to intrigue your viewer.

So now that’s out the way, why should your class or book group make book trailers?

Spark the interest of your reluctant readers

If some members of your class or book group have lost interest in the books, or are having trouble completing the shortlist, an exciting new approach could be the best way to renew their interest. The digital nature of the project is perfect for engaging these pupils and prompting them to think differently about reading.

The digital nature of the project is perfect for engaging pupils and prompting them to think differently about reading


Develop critical thinking skills

In order to create a book trailer, readers will have to think more deeply about their chosen book, picking out specific scenes and quotations, and considering why these are important to recreating the book’s atmosphere through their trailer. This means that by the end of the project, your pupils should have an enhanced understanding of their specific book and improved analysis skills too!


Create links with different areas of the curriculum

The process of making a book trailer involves so many different skills and disciplines, from drama and music to media studies and IT. This gives endless possibilities for creating links between reading and other subjects to produce a really exciting class project.

Build team-working skills

This task lends itself perfectly to a collaborative, group project approach. From the beginning, brainstorming and storyboarding can be carried out as a team, with pupils gathering different ideas and combining the best ones to create a unified project. Then in making the trailer itself, pupils can take on different roles as actress, cameraman, editor and more, each contributing their skills to a common goal.

Book trailers lend themselves perfectly to a collaborative, group project approach

Win a prize

The winning trailer receives a £250 Waterstones gift card for their school, which can be used to buy plenty more books to keep your pupils reading!

Have fun

Most importantly, creating a book trailer is great fun! It’s a different, creative way to approach the books you are reading as a class, allowing pupils to work together to make something they’re proud of.


So now that you are absolutely convinced that you need to make book trailers for our competition, what next?

Choose any one of our nine shortlisted titles and get started on your trailer!

We have loads of resources to help you make your trailers, including:

-our video lessons, providing a handy step-by-step guide to making a book trailer

-our activity pack, including a full list of Curriculum for Excellence outcomes linked to book trailers

There are also plenty of examples of book trailers out there to give you some inspiration. Why not check out our winners from last year’s competition, and encourage your pupils to look up the trailers for some of their favourite books online?

Finally, full details of the competition, including information on how to enter and rules for submission, are available here. Make sure you submit your entries before the competition deadline, 5 February 2016.

Good luck in creating your trailers, we can’t wait to see what you come up with!