What's new for this year's Reading Challenge

Pupils using Bookzilla

Welcome back to another year of the First Minister's Reading Challenge! We are so excited to continue supporting you with your reading journeys this year, and to welcome new schools, libraries and community groups to the challenge. Over the summer we were busy creating some exciting new resources, opportunities and features, so without further ado here's a quick overview of what's new this year.

Quicker Registration

Our website now makes it easier for organisations that have taken part in the challenge before to continue taking part. If your organisation took part in 2018-19, your key contact just needs to log in and select yes to opt in to this year's challenge. If you would like to order reading passports, the key contact can do this from their account page at any time.

Bookzilla

Bookzilla is our brand new app designed by young people, for young people! Last year we worked with hundreds of teenagers across Scotland to create an app that would encourage them to read for pleasure, and now this free app is available to download from the App Store and from Google Play. Young people can select the types of books they are interested in, add books to their reading list, receive recommendations, set challenges and much more! There is also a learning resource coming in November to give you ideas for using the app in school.  

Resources

We have been working on a variety of exciting new resources that we are very pleased to share with you! For primary schools, secondary schools, libraries and community groups alike, our updated mindmaps provide a great overview of everything the challenge offers and are perfect for displaying in your staff room. Secondary schools will be spoiled for choice as we have a brand new case study from Dunfermline High School with great ideas for engaging staff and involving families, plus brand new book lists to get your Maths and Computing Science departments on board.

We’ve also been developing resources linked to other Scottish Book Trust programmes, so if you want to see how you can use Authors Live or Read, Write, Count to help develop your reading culture, make sure you have a look at those! Finally, at the end of last term we launched our Escape Room Resource, made in collaboration with Padlox Escape Rooms. If you work with children aged 10+ and haven’t tried this out yet, make sure you have a look at it!

We're always keen to hear what you think of our existing resources and your ideas for new ones too! Get in touch with us at readingchallenge@scottishbooktrust.com to let us know your thoughts. 

Funding

Our Inspiring Classrooms and Creative Workshops funding for schools have been very popular over the last few years and have supported a number of fantastic projects around reading for pleasure. We are delighted that this year we are also offering a Library Fund and Community Fund so that all organisations taking part in the Reading Challenge can apply for funding to support an author visit. The deadlines for these funds are just a few weeks away, so make sure you apply soon if you are interested – you can find all of the details on our funding page.

You can keep up to date with our new resources, competitions and inspiring examples of best practice by following us on Twitter @FMReadChallenge

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