When I heard about the Patron of Reading Scheme I thought
what a good idea it was and it sounded like something I could probably do. I
put my name forward and it took a few weeks for Jennifer Jacques Van-Baaren,
English Teacher and Literacy Co-ordinator at Pontypridd
High School, to get in touch and
ask if I would be their Patron of Reading. I visited in February, and the deal
As my first project, I’ve set the staff and students a
Summer Postcard Challenge. All they have to do is tell me about the best book
they read this summer, writing the title, author and a sentence about why they
like it on a postcard or the back of a stuck down envelope. I’ll put all the
entries into a hat and one lucky winner will receive signed copies of all my
books (plus maybe some extra goodies).
The idea just popped into my head. It’s easy, fun and, rather
sneakily, it’s a good way for me to find out what students are reading and
enjoying (at least the ones that do read at the moment).
As I live a fair way from the school, I couldn’t launch the
challenge in person so I recorded a little video (with a lot of help from my
daughter) and posted it on YouTube .
The video is being shown to English classes during the last week of term, there
will be an article and link on the school website, and Jennifer, the school and
I have also tweeted about it.
Twitter is a marvellous thing and we’ve had retweets from
Ash Morgan who featured on The Voice and from Welsh rugby players. Ash has
promised to send in a postcard about his favourite summer read too! The more we
can show that all sorts of cool people read, the better!
I’ve no idea how many postcards I’ll receive – the idea may
or may not work - but I’ve already had a lot of fun with it and Jen assures me
that the students are buzzing about it. Let’s hope the sunny weather lasts
through the school holidays and September brings a hatful of good books.