NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge 2016

I had the hon­our of attend­ing the NSW Pre­mier’s Lit­er­ary Awards recent­ly. It was a spe­cial plea­sure for me, as my friend and guid­ing star Rebec­ca Young won the Patri­cia Wright­son Prize for Chil­dren’s Lit­er­a­ture for her mas­ter­piece, Teacup, illus­trat­ed by the bril­liant Matt Ott­ley. It was also an hon­our to hear Pre­mier Mike Baird dis­cuss his own vision of read­ing as some­thing impor­tant for all Australians.

With the incred­i­ble Rebec­ca Young.

His Pre­mier’s Read­ing Chal­lenge is one of the jew­els in the state crown, and a tri­umph of bipar­ti­san sup­port for lit­er­a­cy devel­op­ment in NSW. Dur­ing the ten years I worked as a book­seller at Dymocks Bur­wood I enjoyed unnum­bered con­ver­sa­tions with par­ents and young read­ers about the plea­sures of the Chal­lenge. Now, under the guid­ance of chil­dren’s author and edu­ca­tor Yvette Poshoglian, the NSW Pre­mier’s Read­ing Chal­lenge is set to go from strength-to-strength. 

So it is with great joy I share my own involve­ment in the NSW Pre­mier’s Read­ing Chal­lenge for 2016. Stu­dents from Kinder­garten to Year 9 are invit­ed to enter the NSW Pre­mier’s Read­ing Chal­lenge ‘Words and Art’ Com­pe­ti­tion. See here for terms and con­di­tions and how to enter. And the prize? For stu­dents in K‑2, a vis­it to your school by the won­der­ful Belin­da Mur­rell. For Years 3–6, a vis­it by Kate and Jol Tem­ple. And for Years 7–9? A vis­it by me, your res­i­dent neigh­bour­hood pirate wrangler! 

Good luck to all entrants, and hap­py read­ing to all those stu­dents par­tic­i­pat­ing in the NSW Pre­mier’s Read­ing Chal­lenge for 2016. 

Hap­py times and places. I hope to meet all of you some day!