How to Train Your Dragon author Cressida Cowell – named as the new Children’s Laureate – made Wormholt Park primary school one of her first ports of call in her mission to encourage youngsters to read.
“I want to get children reading for the joy of it,” Cressida explained as she read aloud extracts from books in her Wizards of Once series.
BBC cameras were there to film Cressida’s visit to the school in Bryony Road, White City, just before children broke up for their summer holidays.
“It was so exciting to welcome Cressida to Wormholt Park,” said headteacher Julie James. “She read with some children, and talked to them about their love for reading.”
The Children’s Laureate, who has three children of her own and illustrates her own stories, said that books created a world of magic for young readers way beyond the appeal of television.
“The telly is glorious, but that’s the competition,” she said. “The magic of books must be available to absolutely everyone.”
She said she was honoured to be chosen as the 11th Children’s Laureate, and promised to use her role to fight for books and children’s interests ‘with passion, conviction and action’.
She said that halting the decline of primary school libraries was vital, as was boosting creative writing in schools. “Children should have more creative space in the curriculum to write; at least 15 minutes a week,” she said.
Watch Cressida Cowell speaking to the Wormholt pupils, just before the end of term.
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