2016 Summer Reading Festival

The 2016 Summer Reading Festival, with a theme of ‘The Art of Reading’, saw students and staff celebrating their favourite literature at the end of June. The festival included a visit by a professional author, Books at Break sessions focusing on particular genres and titles, a Battle of the Books competition, a quiz, a debate, and creative sessions that challenged students to create their own characters and illustrations for poems and fairy tales.

The visit of author Faye Bird saw her talking about and reading from her two novels, My Second Life and What I Couldn’t Tell You, exploring their characters and plots and how she went about writing them. Faye also talked about her career in publishing before becoming an author and revealed that she has begun work on her third novel. You can find out more about Faye and her work on her website.

The Festival saw five ‘Books at Break’ sessions. Lasting just the duration of morning break time, the sessions provided bite-size glimpses into the literature that the staff members leading them love. Manga, Dr Seuss, Sydney Padua’s Lovelace and Babbage, the graphic wonders of Marvel and DC Comics and children’s favourites all featured.

One-off events during the festival included a Battle of the Books contest in Year 7’s assembly. The event pitched four teachers against one another in a fight to have their chosen title voted the one students are most likely to read. Ms King took the day with on-stage cake eating exploits in support of Roald Dahl’s Matilda, fending off the challenges of Mr Kearney (Papillion), Mr Rosser (The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole) and Mr Palanival (The Hunger Games).

Year 7 students also participated in the Annual Book Quiz, facing questions across categories including diaries and diarists, Harry Potter and myths and legends, as well as a picture round that challenged participants to identify books from their cover art work. Students from all year groups participated in the Festival Debate, which saw them arguing the relative merits of graphic and traditional novels. Despite strong arguments in favour of graphic novels, the traditionalists won by a very narrow margin.

The Festival also included a strong creative element, with Mr Wainwright leading a popular lunchtime workshop that saw students developing and drawing their own comic characters, and a special meeting of Acton High’s Art Club at which students created illustrations around poems and fairy tales of their choice.

With the Festival running from Monday 20th to Thursday 30th June, it also included the Ealing Readers’ Award final, which saw a team of five students championing Holly Smale’s Geek Girl: All that Glitters and meeting author and former Acton High teacher Jeannie Waudby.

For further details of the Summer Reading Festival please visit our dedicated event web page.


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