#BookbugPrize: How Libraries Can Work with Schools

How did you find out about the Bookbug Picture Book Prize and why did you decide to get involved?

I try and always check out the Scottish Book Trust Website as much as possible and always eagerly await to hear the nominations for the Picture Book Prize. I am also on [Scottish Book Trust's] mailing list, which is super for keeping me updated. I have been involved in previous years and this year I was approached to attend a meeting with the three local primary schools who wanted to give parents extra support with the Bookbug P1 and the Read, Write, Count bags.

How did you approach the prize with your local primary schools and nurseries?

After attending the meeting with the three local primary schools, we decided to hold events in the library after school during Book Week Scotland, each one focused on a different age group and bag: the P1 Bookbug bag and then the Read Write Count bags for P2 and P3. A different head teacher from each of the schools would come along to these evenings and together we would assist the children and parents to get the most out of their bags. I also contacted the nursery classes in each school and booked in slots that either I would go to them or they would come to me and I would read the three books and the children would vote. I simply covered a small box very brightly and made up small voting cards (the cover of each of the books) which the children then picked and popped in the box.

With the nursery visits, I split the book readings with a few songs, rhymes and finger games

Did you get involved in any activities and creative learning with the children through the prize?

Yes, during the evening events we had tables set with fun worksheets and activities. Within the context of the nursery visits I found through previous experience it can be a wee bit boring for some of the children just to read three books, so I adapted a type of Bookbug session in which I split the book readings with a few songs, nursery rhymes and finger games. I kept the voting box in an area of the Library that the children and parents could easily see and we encouraged as many children as possible to vote.

Have any of the children and their families been more involved with their local library as a result?

Yes. What was really positive was the number of dads who came along: a few had not been in the Library for some time and we did have children join the Library. It was a great opportunity to showcase the wonderful Easy Read books that are available and I found a lot of the parents appreciated the chance to basically ask how best to support reading with their child.

Many parents appreciated the chance to ask how best to support reading with their child

Do you plan to take part in the Bookbug Picture Book prize again this year?

Yes. I find it is a wonderful opportunity to work with the schools. This year’s box and voting cards are ready. I have some visits arranged with local nurseries and I already have my favourite book picked, but as always, will not let on! My choice has never won yet!

 

It's easy and free to sign up your school, library or nursery for this year's Bookbug Picture Book Prize - find out more here.

You can read all our previous posts about the prize for more inspiration and ideas.

Angela Seaton

Angela Seaton is a Community Library Officer at Dunblane Library, and works with local primary schools and nurseries to get children and their families excited about reading.