Throw a Harry Potter Library Party
To celebrate the 15th anniversary of the U.S. publication of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Scholastic is sponsoring a contest to give public libraries the opportunity to win a Harry Potter party pack. To enter, librarians are asked to describe in up to 500 words how they would host a Harry Potter celebration that would also acquaint a new generation of children with the beloved series. All entries must be submitted by July 17. On July 31st, Harry Potter’s birthday, 15 winners will be announced. Parties will be held on August 27—the date when new paperback editions of the full series will be released with cover art by author/artist Kazu Kibuishi.
The winning libraries will receive 100 copies of the new edition of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, a paperback boxed set of all seven Harry Potter books signed by Kibuishi, a $100 gift card to fund the library’s Harry Potter celebration, and a Harry Potter kit with stickers, name tags, bookmarks, and more.
“Throughout the past 15 years, librarians have introduced millions of children to Harry Potter, and helped young readers discover the joy of reading,” said Ellie Berger, president of Scholastic Trade Publishing. “Today we celebrate librarians, the magic of Harry Potter, and all the future readers who are getting ready to start their journey to Hogwarts.”
Summer Reading Challenge for Latino Students
During the summer months, students can lose important literacy skills they learned during the school year. Libraries, summer camps, youth groups, and cultural centers planning programs this summer can register their group for the Latino Children’s Summer Reading Program, sponsored by Google and launched by Latinas for Latino Literature (L4LL). The program runs through August 12. Register for free online, and receive reading lists featuring Latino books for all ages, reading logs, bilingual student pledges in which readers agree to read at least eight titles, and certificates of achievement. Once registered, each group will be entered to win a Google Hangout with Latina poet Margarita Engle or author/illustrator Lulu Delacre. Hangouts will take place in July.
To incorporate the program into your class or camp, print the summer reading packets for students. Have them sign the pledge at the beginning of the program, and give them logs to take home to record the number of books they have read. At the end of the program, ask the students to write a book report on one of the books that they have read or one of the books that you’ve read together as a class, or ask them to give an oral presentation. Give all the students certificates of achievement at the conclusion of the program.
Latinas for Latino Literature was created in 2012 by four Latina bloggers in response to the New York Times article, “For Young Latino Readers, an Image Is Missing,” in which the author notes that Hispanic children now make up about a quarter of public school enrollment, but most books for young readers don’t have characters who are non-white Latino children.