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Star writer dazzles book club readers

A critically acclaimed Kent children’s author shared her creative writing secrets with pupils during a prize story-time visit on Tuesday.

Kent children's author Lucy Strange with pupils at St Anselm's Catholic School in Canterbury (21879504)
Kent children's author Lucy Strange with pupils at St Anselm's Catholic School in Canterbury (21879504)

Lucy Strange visited St Anselm’s Catholic School in Canterbury on Tuesday (November 12), when she gave a talk, answered pupils’ questions and read from and signed her books, The Secret of Nightingale Wood and Our Castle by the Sea. The latter book was runner-up in the KS2 category of the 2019 Teach Primary Book Awards.

The visit was organised in recognition of the school’s enthusiastic engagement with the KM Charity Team’s reading-rewards scheme Buster’s Book Club.

Approximately 70 years seven and eight pupils aged 11 to 13 attended the session. They were hand-picked because of their commitment to reading, writing and Buster’s Book Club.

Lucy said: “The idea today was to have a bit of an inspiring celebration of reading and writing. We did a Q&A as well they got to ask me all their really, really good challenging and fun questions about being a writer.”

Buster’s Book Club coordinator Ruth Lapka said: “It was a pleasure and a privilege to welcome Lucy to St Anselm’s today.

“Her books are absolutely brilliant and have made such an impression with young readers and critics alike.

“It was so exciting for the pupils of St Anselm’s to get the chance to speak to Lucy and hear her read those magical books aloud.

“The experience is bound to have a positive impact on their attitudes to books and reading.”

Buster’s Book Club uses a spirit of friendly competition to make books cool, and encourages children to read more at home.

Individual schools’ classes compete against each other, with a weekly trophy awarded to the one that records the most home-reading minutes.

And the winners of monthly inter-school challenges involving schools across Kent are rewarded with tickets to leisure attractions or visits by celebrity storytellers.

St Anselm’s teacher Adam Anderson: “This is our second year with Buster’s now, and it’s been a great inspiration for the kids. It’s been great to have the contact with home as well.

“We’ve had classes getting over 1,000 extra minutes a week of reading, which is phenomenal.”

Buster’s is supported by the Education People, Golding Vision, Specsavers, Leeds Castle, Diggerland, Hornby, Wildwood, Rotary, Acorns Read and Grow, Three R’s Teacher Recruitment, Buckland Media and Medway and Kent councils.

For more information, visit www.bustersbookclub.co.uk.

And watch a video about Lucy's visit to St Anselm's here:

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