Story Lab Summer Reading Challenge launched

More than 100 children registered on the first day for Story Lab, this year’s Summer Reading Challenge at the Henry Bloom Noble Library.


Story Lab, which aims to keep children reading throughout the school summer holidays, is a free and inspired way to encourage young people to discover the world of books, gain confidence and learn new skills.

Created and run by The Reading Agency the challenge has proved a hugely popular and successful reading initiative at the Henry Bloom Noble Library which last year saw 121 children complete a similar circus-themed project.

For the fifth year in succession Scottish Widows is sponsoring the challenge that requires children to read six books of their choice during the holidays and, as they progress through the challenge, earn collectable incentives and rewards. They will also receive a certificate and medal from the His Worship the Mayor, Councillor David Ashford JP., for completing the challenge at a prize presentation on Saturday 22nd September.

Additionally, the Isle of Man branch of the Children’s University Trust is supporting the Summer Reading Challenge, the trust having designated it one of its nationally validated learning activities. Passport to Learning holders who sign up for Story Lab will receive one stamp in their passport for every book they read and one stamp per Story Lab activity session they attend.

The interactive Story Lab website links children with top authors and illustrators and provides an opportunity to talk about their favourite books and share reading ideas. Borough librarian Jan Macartney said: ‘This will be the sixth year that the Henry Bloom Noble Library has taken part in the Summer Reading Challenge. Every year it gets bigger and better thanks to the enthusiastic children, supportive parents and our generous sponsors Scottish Widows. As we have a limited number of Story Lab packs it will be first come, first served so call into the library very soon to avoid disappointment.’

Scottish Widows director Juan Clarke said: ‘Scottish Widows is pleased to be sponsoring the Summer Reading Challenge for the fifth year in succession. This is a project that fits well within our company’s long-standing commitment to connect with the local community in meaningful and practical ways that can help make a positive difference to people’s lives, especially the lives of young people. Part of that commitment is to help raise literacy standards, also demonstrated through our Book Buddies volunteering scheme.  Every summer I, together with my many Scottish Widows colleagues, always look forward to helping Jan and her team in their work to inspire children by volunteering to assist in a programme of creative Summer Reading Challenge workshop sessions that promote the wonderful world of books to young readers.’

Registration for Story Lab is now open and children can register Monday to Saturday at the ground floor counter of the library.

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