James Reckitt Hull Children’s Book Award 2017
On Thursday, 27th April 2017, 14 Year 7 pupils took part in the annual James Reckitt Hull Schools’ Book Award. The book award has been running in Hull since 2007 and Kelvin Hall pupils have participated in every event since the start.
Each year, the secondary and primary schools of Hull are sent a set of shortlisted books (different books for each key stage) and the pupils who participate in the book award have to read each of the books that have been shortlisted. The pupils then attend an awards ceremony where they are all asked to vote for their favourite book. The winner is then announced to the audience. This is what makes the James Reckitt Hull Schools’ Book Award so exciting - it is the pupils themselves who decide which book wins.
This year, the shortlisted books were: ‘The Best Medicine’ by Christine Hamill, ‘The Mighty Dynamo’ by Kieran Crowley, ‘The Secret Cooking Club – by Laurel Remington, ‘Shadowsmith’ by Ross MacKenzie and ‘Storm Walker’ by Mike Revell.
It took the pupils three months to read all of the books, which meant committing a lot of spare time to reading, as well as attending a reading group once a week where the pupils read and discussed the various merits of each book.
Kelvin Hall were fortunate to have Mike Revell, Laurel Remington and Christine Hamill visit the school to talk to the pupils about their books; to discuss with pupils the writing process, and to take part in a Q&A session with the pupils. The pupils thoroughly enjoyed meeting the authors and said it gave them a deeper appreciation of the characters and their stories.
The Key Stage 3 awards ceremony took place at the Freedom Centre on 27th April and the winner was ‘The Best Medicine’ by Christine Hamill. It is a book based on Christine’s real life journey through breast cancer and the difficulties her son faced at school at the same time as dealing with his mother’s illness. The pupils thought the book was at times hilarious, as well as very moving and emotional.
The pupils thoroughly enjoyed the whole process of participating in the award and Miss Wilkinson, Kelvin Hall’s school librarian, who also attended the ceremony with the pupils, said “the pupils were a credit to the school and themselves and I was very proud of them all.”