World Book Day 2018: Mayor and authors join kids for literature-themed fun

PUBLISHED: 13:22 02 March 2018 | UPDATED: 13:22 02 March 2018

World Book Day 2018 - Mayor and children enjoy storytelling by Andy Hawkins. Picture: Margesson Photography

World Book Day 2018 - Mayor and children enjoy storytelling by Andy Hawkins. Picture: Margesson Photography

Archant

Children across the land dressed as their favourite characters from literature yesterday to mark World Book Day – and a fair few grown-ups got in on the act too, including authors and a mayor.

World Book Day 2018 - Mayor Michael North in the doorway to Narnia. Picture: Margesson PhotographyWorld Book Day 2018 - Mayor Michael North in the doorway to Narnia. Picture: Margesson Photography

Some schools stayed shut yesterday amid the arctic weather conditions, but youngsters who did brave the cold enjoyed learning all about the world of books.

At Biggleswade’s Ivel Valley School, town mayor Michael North joined pupils and staff for a magical trip through the wardrobe to an even more snow-covered place – CS Lewis’ Narnia.

Joe Creswick, principal at the special school off Hitchmead Road, also enjoyed the captivating storytelling experience led by teacher Andy Hawkins.

Mr Creswick said: “We’ve had a fantastic time here at Ivel Valley School with our own unique celebration of World Book Day 2018.

“Our very creative staff team transformed one of our specialist rooms into a magical scene, where children walked through a wardrobe to enter Narnia.”

At Ickleford Primary School near Hitchin, Isadora Moon author and illustrator Harriet Muncaster came in to spend time with each of the classes and answer their questions.

Harriet, whose character Isadora is half-fairy, half-vampire, worked with the Year 6 children on a story about a ‘cracker-tan’ – a half-cracker, half-orangutan creature.

The writer, who grew up in Hitchin, also drew one of the school’s teachers in the Isadora Moon style as a wizard-dragon-mermaid hybrid, and was touched to receive a set of hand-written messages from the children.

Harriet found that many of the youngsters had already read the seventh book in the series, Isadora Moon Goes to The Fair – which had only been launched that day.

“It was wonderful,” said Harriet, 29. “It was also so lovely to see so many children dressed up as my characters on social media all day.”

Children’s author Kevin Price was at Letchworth’s Norton St Nicholas Primary School to help them mark the day and open their new library.

He visited each class from nursery to Year 6, where he performed a few of his stories. He also spoke to the children about why and how he became a writer, and how he thinks of his funny names.

Year 2 teacher Jenny Freeman told the Comet the children were “very inspired” by the visit. Several youngsters were thrilled to have their books signed in the new library, which was funded by the Nicholas St Nicholas parents’ fundraising organisation SNAPS.

School head Stephen Cowdery said: “We were incredibly pleased to open our new school library on World Book Day with poet Kevin Price. SNAPS have worked tirelessly to raise enough funds to equip the area with new shelving and seating, and we have been fortunate to receive a grant from Councillor Simon Bloxham to fill the new area with brand-new books.

“The excitement and energy created by our new library has been evident among the children, with many eager to sit, relax and enjoy a new book. This project will further raise the profile of reading, excite the children and will really help to ensure children leave our school with a lifelong love of books and reading for pleasure.”

Norton St Nicholas School pupils Ella Major, Mae Hasler and Bonita Hasler enjoy getting their books signed children's author Kevin Price on World Book Day. Picture: Jenny FreemanNorton St Nicholas School pupils Ella Major, Mae Hasler and Bonita Hasler enjoy getting their books signed children's author Kevin Price on World Book Day. Picture: Jenny Freeman

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