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UKLA announces the winners of Our Class Loves This Book: The John Downing Award 2018


UKLA is delighted to announce that the winners are Lynn Stuart and Heather Sanderson and their P3 pupils from Wallace Primary School, Renfrewshire for their work based on ‘Pugs of the Frozen North’ by Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre. Their work will be presented at the UKLA International Conference in Cardiff July 6th-8th, and at the UKLA National conference in Bristol March 2019. We also hope to arrange for the authors to visit the school to meet the children who love their books!

Roger McDonald , chair of judges, writes: “The panel had a very difficult job in selecting an overall winner from the high quality of entries we received. We particularly enjoyed the way that Lynn Stuart and Heather Sanderson had enthused their class with Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre’s hilarious book culminating in a most wonderful Pug Fest! The entry included a video showing the class engaged in a range of creative activities which afforded opportunities for the children to immerse themselves in the text. The submission showed how the text had been used across the curriculum and also included a visit from some Pug breeders”.

We were also particularly impressed by the submissions from:

  • Alice Atkinson and her P6 class from Westpark Primary Aberdeen for work based on ‘The Reluctant journal of Henry K. Larsen by Susin Nielsen
  • Mary Hunter and her P6/7 class at St Fergus Primary Renfrewshire for work based on ‘The Wolf Wilder’ by Katherine Rundell
  • And Y2 from Redfield Educate Together, Bristol for their work based Grandad’s Island, by Benji Davies

These schools will be invited to be ambassadors for the award and to share their work at our National conference in March 2019. We also hope to arrange author visits to these ambassador schools, for the authors to meet the pupils who love their books!

Notes for editors:

This award encourages teachers across the UK (and beyond) to read and explore books shortlisted for the previous year’s UKLA Book Award.

This means an extended period of interest in and potential sales for the shortlisted titles every year.

Teachers are encouraged to explore these books in detail, by not only looking at the author and the text, but also immersing their classes into worlds of possibility thinking.

The winning teacher and author receive a framed, signed limited edition print of the award logo designed by author/illustrator Chris Wormell (author of first winner OCLTB)

The award is presented at the UKLA International Conference in July

Where possible, UKLA arranges an author visit to the winning school

John Downing was the first UKLA (then UKRA) president

Panel: Roger McDonald (chair), Carrie Ansell, Lynda Graham, Chris Lockwood, Elizabeth Robertson, Dianne Smith. 

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