The First Minister’s Reading Challenge aims to help children and young people between the ages of 5 and 18 develop a love of reading. We’re supporting schools, libraries and communities across Scotland to develop reading cultures and give every child in Scotland the opportunity to experience the benefits – and the fun – of reading for pleasure.
We have seen so much inspiring practice from schools, libraries and community groups across Scotland who have found creative and exciting ways to encourage children and young people to discover the magic of reading. This video of our celebration event 2019 shows just what can be achieved by signing up for the Challenge and putting a focus on reading for pleasure each year. Well done to everyone who has shared their reading journeys with us so far!
Who can take part
All public libraries in Scotland can register to take part. You can take part as a whole library, or as individual groups within your library. The Reading Challenge is also open to primary schools, secondary schools and community groups.
Benefits of registration
Registration for the First Minister’s Reading Challenge allows you to:
- order reading passports for individual participants. Both English and Gaelic language passports are available
- order group passports for your groups, which are wall charts that participants can use together to log their reading
- access our huge range of downloadable resources and guides. You can preview all of the resources here, and log in to download them
- apply for our Library Fund to work with an author, illustrator, storyteller or poet
- submit your Reading Challenge stories to us for a chance to win awards and attend our Celebration event
How to take part
- Register your library
A key contact should register the library for the challenge, and order any passports. Registration is quick and easy. If you were signed up last year, your key contact just needs to log in and opt in to this year's challenge. They will then find the passport ordering page linked on their account page. If you didn't take part last year, you can register here and order passports. If you have any issues with registration, please contact us.
- Ask staff to sign up
Once the library has been registered by a key contact, additional staff can register for staff accounts and register their own groups.
- Get reading! You can browse our resource library and our blog for ideas and inspiration.
- Enter the Challenge
We want to hear all about your reading journey!
Resources and inspiration
In our resources section we have a variety of downloadable and adaptable resources available for staff and for children. Resources can be filtered by type and theme, making it as easy as possible to find something that works for you.
Everyone who registers for the Challenge will also be sent regular email updates about taking part, full of support and ideas. You may unsubscribe from these emails at any time without affecting your participation in the First Minister's Reading Challenge.
With our Library Fund, you could invite an author, illustrator, storyteller or poet to work with children at your library and buy books or other resources to make the most of the visit. All libraries taking part in the Reading Challenge can apply for this fund, and the deadline to apply is 26 November 2020. You can find out more and apply here.
Online and local CLPL sessions are available for library staff on request - please get in touch with us if you are interested!
Libraries can enter the Library Reading Culture Challenge.
Challenge submissions will be open on the website in 2021, and you can enter any time before the closing day on 29 April 2021.
Library Reading Culture Challenge
In this challenge we want to hear about how your public library has inspired children to read for pleasure through the First Minister’s Reading Challenge.
Let us know:
- How children have been involved in the library e.g. through events, book clubs, creating book recommendation displays
- The impact on the children you have worked with
Your entry can be in any format, from a written document, to a PowerPoint presentation or a video made in collaboration with families using the library, it’s up to you. You can find more information on entering in the Submission Guide for Public Libraries.
If your library has participated in the Reading Challenge before, your key contact can opt-in to this year's challenge quickly and easily. Just log in to your account and select yes when prompted to confirm you want to take part again.
If you need to change to a new key contact, you can contact us by phone on 0131 524 0160 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
New key contacts will have the opportunity to order reading passports for their library when they register for the Reading Challenge. Passports are available in English language, Gaelic and as group passports, which are wall charts for groups.
Key contacts can also order passports at any time from their account page, so if you're opting in to the challenge this year, remember to place your order!
Changing your library's key contact
If you need to change your library's key contact, please just contact us and we will be happy to help you.
The Library Reading Culture Challenge will open for submissions in 2021, and will be open until 29 April 2021.
There is no set format to submit to the Challenge, and we encourage you to tell us your library's stories in the way that is best for you.