Our SPCA Reading Challenge has now wrapped up. We can report it was great fun! Thank you to everyone - parents and teachers, schools and libraries, grandparents and aunties and uncles who shared the challenge with their young readers.
We're also sending a big thank you to our supporters SPCA, and Paper Plus and Gecko Press, who supplied us with prizes.
Our biggest thanks of all go to the children who took part. We hope you had fun and found yourself immersed in books this summer, like Austin (below), who sent us this beautiful picture taken when he was reading Donovan Bixley's Flying Furballs to his adorable foster kitten Yoshi.
The SPCA Reading Challenge is the third challenge we've run. It follows the Stay Home Book Club (during the nationwide lockdown in April 2020) and the Super Smash Reading Challenge (launched December 2019).
Like the Stay Home Book Club, this time players logged audiobooks, online storytelling sessions, e-books and even podcasts. But the vast majority of the entires logged were books.
Read on for a round-up of the challenge, and to see some of the wonderful animal pictures we received from our players.
We had more than 700 children playing in the challenge and together they logged a total of 7,536 books!
The top readers in each team were:
Olive: Gabby the Goat
Norman: Caleb J
Eddie: Chewy Barker
Flick: Nathan J
Cora: The Mad Catter
Here's the readerboard as it finished up: well done team Puma!
We sent out spot prizes every day (books and Paper Plus gift cards) but there was also the chance to win a pack of three animal books from Gecko Press. To be in the running for these, we asked children to send us photos of themselves reading to an animal (real or toy!)
We loved receiving these over the summer. The winners of the three Gecko Press book packs are:
Maiya (12+ age group), Kowhai (9-12 year group) and Layla (5-8 year group).
Are you curious about the books being read? The top four most-logged authors were Dav Pilkey, Geronimo Stilton, Roald Dahl and David Walliams.
Our most-logged New Zealand author was Lynley Dodd.
The four most popular books read were:
Books in the Erin Hunter’s Warriors series
Fing by David Walliams
Fantastic Mr Fox by Roald Dahl
Smile by Raina Telgemeier
We asked our top readers about how they found the challenge, and the books they most enjoyed over the summer.
Madeleine said: ‘’I cannot choose a favourite book but my favourite author would have to be Chris Colfer. I have read his books over and over again.
"I have just finished reading the Dragonslayer Legends and next I plan to read the Darkstalker legends. Those are both by Tui. T. Sutherland."
Charlie said he loves to read, and his favorite book was Percy Jackson, the Lightning Thief. He found it to be very descriptive and fun, with a cool plot.
Lily told us that her favourite book I read was Jake Atlas and the Tomb of the Emerald Snake, one of the first books she logged in the challenge.
"I found it really engaging and I loved all the plot twists it had. I am currently reading the Murderous Maths of Everything, which pretty much covers the areas of maths that the other books in the series don't. I will probably read Starsight, the sequel to Skyward, next."
Pictured below, clockwise from top left: Addison reads to Ellie, Rowoon to her soft animals, and Phoenix reads to Archie. Layla reads to Rufus, Evie to her guinea pig Isla and Junia-Rose reads to Winnie. Find more of these pictures on our Instagram feed.
Congratulations again to our wonderful readers. Stay in touch with us and we'll look forward to another challenge with you next summer!