ACROSS Australia, school kids are gearing up for the last weeks of various state Reading Challenges. These State Government-sponsored read-a-thons encourage kids of school age to read a certain number of books within a fixed period of time. Most of these books have to be from prepared lists.
While the rules vary from state to state, the good news is there are Wilkins Farago books on booklists for several of the challenges across the country.
NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge
In New South Wales, school students have until 1 September to complete their reading targets. We have three books on this year’s NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge booklists:
- Davide Cali and Anna Laura Cantone’s marvellous A Dad Who Measures Up is a new addition to the Kindergarten-to-Year 2 Booklist this year. K–2 kids have to read 30 books between 1 February and 1 September, 25 of which have to be from PRC’s booklists.
- Another by Davide Cali title, the delightful Santa’s Suit (illustrated by Eric Heliot), is on the Years 3 and 4 booklist. Kids at this level have to read 20 books, 15 of which have to be from the booklists.
- André Leblanc and Barroux’s moving The Red Piano (just reprinted) is on the Years 5 and 6 booklist, as it was last year. Year 5 and 6 kids also have to read 20 books, including 15 from the lists.
South Australian Premier’s Reading Challenge
Meanwhile, in South Australia, the SA Premier’s Reading Challenge ends on 9 September and our The Red Piano is on the booklist for Year 6 and older. Kids at participating schools in South Australia (and the Northern Territory) are encouraged to read 12 books, at least 8 of which should be from the recommended booklists.
Victorian Premier’s Reading Challenge
Other states and territories
Here’s some information about the other state and territory challenges:
- The Western Australian Premier’s Summer Reading Challenge, uniquely among the challenges, takes place towards the end of the year and usual runs until the following February. Western Australians like to read on the beach.
- The Queensland Premier’s Reading Challenge finishes on 27 August.
- The Tasmanian Premier’s Reading Challenge finished on 22 July and involved kids reading at least 10 books in 10 weeks and submitting book reviews.
- In Canberra, the ACT Chief Minister’s Reading Challenge requires kids to read 12 books before 9 September.
Reading for charity
There are also two projects that encourage readers to read for charity:
- The MS Readathon is run to support research into multiple sclerosis and celebrated its 30th year in 2009. Its 2011 readathon runs for any 30 days in June and July.
- The fabulous Indigenous Literacy Project, a partnership between the Australian book industry and the Fred Hollows Foundation, is this year running a Great Book Swap Challenge to raise money for indigenous literacy. Kids bring a favourite book to school with a gold coin donation and swap it for another book brought in by a schoolmate.