Bored with your school summer holidays? Looking for something exciting to do away from the miserable Scottish summer? Then why not sign up to Edinburgh's 2010 Summer Reading Challenge.
Libraries across the city have launched children into orbit for an intergalactical adventure that will keep them reading throughout the school summer holidays.
And it’s all free, which is out-of-this-world news for parents
Now in its twelfth year, the Summer Reading Challenge is an immensely popular and successful reading initiative. It involves up to 750,000 children aged four to 11 years across the UK library network.
Each year, children are encouraged to read six or more books of their choice during the holidays with collectable incentives, plus a certificate and medal for every child who completes the Challenge. There is also a chance for every child who completes the challenge to win book tokens and family tickets to all kinds of attractions.
Children can sign up at their local library until 29 August and all materials are absolutely free.
The 2010 Summer Reading Challenge has a space theme. Space Hop will enable children to boldly go to new worlds, to discover the joy of reading and nurture a life-long love affair with reading and books. Illustrated by leading children’s book artist Tom Percival, Space Hop coincides with the 350th anniversary of The Royal Society’s scientific endeavours, and the 2010 BBC Year of Science.
Edinburgh libraries have teamed up with the Royal Observatory Edinburgh to inspire children‘s interest in the stars and astronomy. Every child will receive a Dark Sky Scotland stargazing guide when they sign up for the Space Hop mission. And some lucky children will even get a chance to marvel at the night sky in the Starlab Planetarium when it visits Leith and Oxgangs libraries or see what they look like in infrared. These events are part of a packed programme of free events for children in libraries across the city.
The Summer Reading Challenge is just one of many exciting ways in which public libraries are helping children to love reading. So pop down to your local library and find out more or visit
www.spacehop.org.uk) website has also just launched, linking children with top authors and illustrators, and giving them space to talk about their favourite books and share reading ideas. Space Hop also promotes their local library as a place of wonder for children, where librarians can offer them invaluable advice and guidance to help them on their mission. www.edinburgh.gov.uk/spacehop