Award winning children’s author Gareth P. Jones read and performed to a group of children from Thorney Close Primary School at Sandhill View Library. It was the end of a 10 week long reading initiative created by the Chatterbooks Reading Group that the children had been taking part in.
Gareth P. Jones, from Birmingham, has written children’s classics such as The Dragon Detective Agency, Ninja Meerkats, The Considine Curse and his new series The Adventures of the Steampunk Pirates. In 2012, he won Blue Peter Book of the Year for The Considine Curse.
During the session, Gareth read from his books, performed songs on a ukulele and answered questions from the children.
The children were engaged with the author as he got them to perform actions along to his songs, asked what they liked reading and then presented them with a certificate each to congratulate them on completing the programme.
When asked about the Chatterbooks initiative, Gareth said, “It’s a good idea because it introduces children to other things outside of their normal reading experiences.
“Some children do need the encouragement to read, watching them overcome the mountain of learning to read to see them reading a sentence fluently and then seeing the enjoyment of reading is a great thing.”
The Chatterbooks Reading Group consisted of weekly themed sessions with children from different participating schools.
During these sessions, the children had the chance to discuss books they had read and were encouraged to develop their love for literature by discovering new authors and new stories.
Eight different schools in Sunderland took part in the programme: Barmston Primary, Rickleton Primary, Bernard Gilpin Primary, Gillas Lane Primary, Hetton Primary, Southwick Primary, New Silksworth Primary & Thorney Close Primary.