Our Journey so far…
It has been a busy 2023 so far in the HACH Library, and shortly we will be celebrating our 3rd full year of opening in our new location (downstairs on the lower ground floor, before the 6th form entrance).
Our First event of the new Academic year in September was, HACH Harry Potter Book night which was fun and exciting with lots of activities for our guests to enjoy. One of the highlights of the evening was, we managed to get some trained animals into the school, from a company that work closely with the film industry and have worked on several films (including a Harry Potter film). It was a wonderful experience for everyone who attended the evening. There was buzz around the school the next couple of days.
Some Great News!
National Reading Champion Quiz (NRCQ) 2023
The quiz allows keen readers, aged between 10-14 years, to become part of a team, represent their school in a national competition and have a chance to really shine. It celebrates libraries and librarians and brings great excitement and drama to the wonderful world of reading.
Regional heats for the NRCQ run throughout late February and the whole of March. Our regional heat is the Thames Gateway & East London which includes all school in, Essex (incl Thurrock) Kent and schools in London with an E code.
On the 17th of March our heat was a live/ in-person heat, as most heats around the country were virtual, and this was the first time it was live in over 3 years. There were 20 teams in our region and there are 8 rounds with 10 questions in each and round 8 is a visual round - categories ranging from ‘Correct Book Titles’. ‘Journey and Transportation’, ‘Realistic fiction’, ‘Recently published books’, ‘Beginning and Endings of books’ and ‘Brainteasers ‘.
Harris Academy Chafford Hundred had two teams with 4 students in each team.
Team A who were a well established team as they did the quiz last year and team B were getting a feel of the experience.
Harris Academy Team A came 2nd place and were beaten by Bancroft’s School which is co-educational private day school, so this was a fantastic achievement of students, so congratulations to them.
More Good News!
Juniper Book Awards are an ideal way to get more students to read widely and for pleasure. The Awards are launched in October and pupils are invited to read the six shortlisted books and judge which one they consider to be the best. Pupils can write comments and reviews about the books but also can show their creative responses by entering the nominated categories award, such Best Pupil Review, Best Book Trailer, Best Creative Award and Most Innovative School Award. This all culminated in a virtual ceremony which was held on 27 March, where all participating schools and shortlisted authors attend, and the winner of the Book of the Year is announced and this year the winning book voted by the students was The Book of Stolen Dreams by David Farr.
This year over 40 schools, took part in the awards and over 400 reviews were received. 3 of our students at Harris Academy Chafford Hundred, won Best Pupil Review,
Finally, Harris Academy Chafford Hundred won the Most Innovative School Award. For this award the main criteria is a statement describing innovative ways that a school has implemented the Juniper Book Awards. Our entry used the books as a starting point to start an initiative to engage other pupils in the school, this included a number of projects, such as inviting a sensory speaker to the school to raise awareness of deafness, and then some students learning sign language, which they then went on to record a video about the about the blurb on the book in sign language with sub text; after being inspired by a book ‘Keep Dancing Lizzie Chu’ students raised awareness about young carers in England by holding a Christmas Fair to raise money for the Carers UK charity; the animation book trailers was described as ‘beautiful, creative and showed the technical ability of the students’.
So total entries sent to the judges from HACH was 12 Creative entries relating to the 6 shortlisted books, 4 animation book trailers, 39 pupil reviews, and of course the statement and evidence for the application for Most Innovative Award.
HACH have had a number successes this year , and if you want to see how our pupils got on with the Juniper book Awards go to https://bookawards.junipereducation.org/juniper-book-awards-winners-2023/
After all the excitement of the Quizzing, and the Juniper book awards, our next book award comes out in Mar/April culminating in the presentation in June at Thameside Theatre in Grays. The Yoto Carnegie Book Awards for writing and the Yoto Carnegie Medal for Illustration.
The Yoto Carnegie book Awards are more challenging reads, and there are normally 8 books shortlisted for the Award, but some books may not be suitable for certain year groups, so I would advise you at the time which ones may not be suitable for your age.
The most exciting thing about Carnegie Awards is, that it culminates with the pupils meeting other students from different schools in Thurrock, to debate the books they have read and their merits, and why the book you chose should win the Award.
Also running alongside the Carnegie books for writing, there is the Yoto Carnegie Medal for Illustration and there are 8 shortlisted illustrated books for the students to study. These are a great award to get into if you like Art or Media Studies and are interested in why colours and fonts are used in a particular book, but also this is a great way to express your thoughts about the books and whether they meet the judges’ criteria. Again, this culminates on the same day as the writing award, and we will go to the Thameside theatre to champion the illustrated book the students loved.