World Book Day at next level!

A SCHOOLS trust has staged its first literature festival to get children reading more and widen their horizons.

The Leaf Literature Festival was a fortnight of shared events bringing together the 13 primary schools in the Leaf Trust, including Samuel White’s Infants, Hanham Abbots Juniors, Cadbury Heath, Kings’ Forest and St Barnabas primaries..

Expanding schools’ established World Book Day celebrations in March, the events included visits by authors and illustrators, to inspire children to write their own stories and draw their own characters.

The “headline event” was a live poetry workshop with poet and performer Joshua Seigal for junior children in trust schools.

Schools also hosted individual events and activities, which included inviting parents in as ‘mystery readers’, book fairs and dressing up as favourite book characters.

The event was organised by Mangotsfield C of E Primary School librarian Verity Robinson, who said: “We set about with the aim to introduce our children to a wide variety of diverse and inclusive texts by a range of authors and illustrators across different genres.

“We wanted to give our children the chance to listen to books being read aloud, choose books they want to read, have time to explore new texts and, overall, have fun reading!

“To create a buzz around reading and the idea that all our schools could join together, every child and staff member in our trust was given a sticker on World Book Day which was specially designed for our literature festival and said: ‘Ask Me What I’m Reading’.

“This gave our whole community opportunities to talk about books throughout the day and it was amazing to see these on school jumpers after home time all around Bristol.”

The festival also included a Bookish Pen Pals scheme, where children in different schools exchanged book reviews, postcards and letters.