Pupils will star on Blue Peter

Shortstown Primary School pupils in Blue Peter Book Awards.

Shortstown Primary School pupils in Blue Peter Book Awards.

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Pupils at Shortstown Primary School are set to become TV stars as they choose their favourite books in the Blue Peter Book Awards.

The year 5 and 6 students will read and vote on six shortlisted books to decide award winners in two categories – best story and best book with facts.

Their comments will be screened on the popular TV show during February, and the film crews visited the school on Thursday, January 14. Only ten schools across the country have been invited to participate in the judging.

Jenna Martin, teacher at the school, said: “Our pupils are extremely excited to play such an important role in the enormously popular Blue Peter Book Awards. Literacy is very important here at Shortstown Primary School and we therefore jump at every opportunity to encourage reading for pleasure. We are very proud of our pupils for being chosen.”

The awards are organised by children’s reading charity, BookTrust. The shortlist, announced live on Blue Peter in December, was selected by a panel of judges – Angellica Bell, Pamela Butchart, Jim Sells and non-voting chair Ewan Vinnicombe – who cited the challenging topics in the books vying for Best Story and said many of the books made them cry with laughter but also with sadness.

Participating pupils have until February 5 to read the six shortlisted books and pick their favourites, with the two winners announced on Blue Peter on World Book Day, Thursday, March 3 by Children’s Laureate Chris Riddell.

The shortlisted book are:

Best Story

The Astounding Broccoli Boy, written by Frank Cottrelll-Boyce and illustrated by Steven Lenton (Pan Macmillan)

The Boy Who Sailed the Ocean in an Armchair, written by Lara Williamson (Usborne)

The Nowhere Emporium, written by Ross MacKenzie (Kelpies)

Best Book with Facts

The Epic Book of Epicness, written and illustrated by Adam Frost (Bloomsbury)

The Silly Book of Weird and Wacky Words, written by Andy Seed and illustrated by Scott Garrett (Bloomsbury)

Factfeed written by Penny Arlon (Scholastic)