Summer reading around the globe: Nigeria's success

Earlier this week we announced the Best in State schools, top libraries and top community partners who logged the most reading minutes in the 2017 Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge. In addition to our U.S. participants we also had participation from 14 countries including: Bahamas, Canada, China, Columbia, England, Italy, Japan, Nigeria, Poland, South Korea, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates.

We caught up with Sarah E. Ozuem (CLN), School Librarian at the Greenoak International School in Nigeria, to hear about her student’s summer reading experience. Greenoak International School finished the challenge ranked 35th overall!

How many students are at your school? What grade levels? Our school has a total population of 351 students ranging from grades 7–12.

How many years have you participated in the challenge? This year made it the third time we are participating in this resourceful program and we do this as a school because we know the importance of reading and how it helps the school community.

Is there a particular part of the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge website your students love and/or motivates them to read more minutes? My students really love the background of the website as it is interactive and they can easily navigate from one feature to another.

How do you personally motivate the students to read over the summer/holiday?  Registered students were monitored closely to ensure continuality. Also, constant reminders on booklist titles and other reading materials were sent to students. Students’ progress was recorded and pasted in strategic places of the library in other to serve as a source of encouragement to read and record their minuets.

Do your students have any favorite summer/holiday reading titles? Which one(s)? My students were particularly interested in reading mystery, comedy and horror books. I discovered that the lower graders (grade 7-9) were interested in Beast Quest series, Fable Haven, Inheritance Circle, Beautiful Creatures Series, Dork Diaries, and Princess Diaries Fame School Series and among others. The senior graders (10-12) read books on African literature, Mortal Instrument series, Infernal Devices series, Blood Feud Series e.t.c.

Why is reading important to your school and students? Reading takes us places and expands our imagination and for that reason, we inculcate the habits of reading in our students and give them constant reminder on the importance of reading and as the saying goes “Readers are Leaders” so we try as much as possible as a school, to facilitates that drive of reading. This will in the end bring about positive results in the students grades and make us proud as a school.

How do you plan to celebrate your student’s summer/holiday reading success? The school achievement will be celebrated during our principal assembly. Activities to be carried out include; book review presentation, presentation of the top participating students, award of certificates of participation and prizes. Also, the school reading achievement will be published on the school’s social media platforms, blog and website.

To learn more about the Challenge and see a full list of top schools, libraries and community partners whose students logged the most reading minutes, visit: scholastic.com/summer.

Sarah Ozuem, Greenoak International School