Vivacity welcomed Top TV Comedian Harry Hill to Peterborough Central Library on Wednesday October 11 for a packed day of fun with Peterborough school children including readings from his latest book: Matt Millz, a story about a young boy who wants to become a stand-up comedian.
191 children and 24 teaching staff across years 4-7 attended the day with six different schools in attendance including the John Clare Academy, Newark Hill Academy and Hampton College.
The day consisted of a series of workshops, performances and a Peterborough’s Got Talent Joke Competition where children’s jokes were judged on a laugh-o-meter.
Two winners were crowned and the day concluded with a book signing and question and answer session.
This is just one of many initiatives run by Vivacity to inspire children to read more for pleasure and thereby improve literacy rates in the city. As a result of these initiatives, including Vivacity’s contribution to the nationwide Summer Reading Challenge and the city’s first storytelling festival which saw over 3,000 attend, literacy rates in Peterborough primary school leavers have improved by 10% 1 in the past year, a trend which only promises to continue.
Vivacity’s Reading Development Manager Elaine Wilkinson said: “As a popular TV personality, Harry Hill is a fantastic ambassador for children’s reading. The majority of children in attendance bought one of his books to take home with them and were all very eager to ask questions about his work.
“Reading is such a vital life skill and the work of authors meeting children is incredibly important.
“The more children we can help gain a positive, personal experience with reading such as these crucial interactions, the better the chances are that they’ll keep up the practice of reading for pleasure.”
One teacher from Jack Hunt said: “The students at Jack Hunt were super excited about meeting Harry Hill. They really enjoyed his enthusiasm and fun performance.”
Harry Hill has written six fiction books for children and Peterborough Central Library was privileged to be the only library to feature on his latest promotional tour.
This is not the only chance that children will have to meet authors at Vivacity Libraries however. This October half term sees James Nicol, author of The Apprentice Witch, fly in on his broomstick for a Wonderful Witchy Workshop (Friday October 23) and, just confirmed for February Half Term, are a series of workshops for pre-schoolers with local writer Sayeh Stone – author of ‘Shaped Animals’ a book which teaches children the basics of geometry.