Empowering with words: British Council holds Reading for Life challenge

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Congratulations to Polymath College which became the first school to complete the British Council Reading for Life challenge!

Over 150 Polymath students completed the March-April 2024 Reading Challenge by reading at least six books in six weeks and were rewarded with a certificate upon completion.

Orlando Edwards, Country Director, British Council Sri Lanka said “Reading is a great way to improve vocabulary and learn new things. Reading opens up a world of opportunities for children, exposing them to other cultures, attitudes and issues, such as the environment. It can inspire imagination and creativity.”

Books were lent by the British Council Library which has just refreshed its 2024 stock with many new titles, including works by Sita Bramachari and Sophie Anderson. Polymath College students’ favourite reads included Diary of a Wimpy Kid, the magical world of Harry Potter, and the timeless tales spun by Roald Dahl and Michael Morpurgo. But there are many other titles which will transport readers to extraordinary realms where anything is possible.

Our reading challenge aims to inspire children to read for fun, pleasure, and to gain a sense of personal achievement. It helps them explore new titles by different authors and we encourage students to talk about them with their friends. Every child who takes up the challenge is encouraged to read six books within six weeks. They can choose the books they want to read from a wide selection and learn how to write a book review for their age group, as part of the challenge. 

Orlando Edwards added “Hats off to the children who have unlocked the doors to a marvellous literary universe, transforming into avid readers and gaining greater proficiency in expressing themselves.

“We look forward to more Cambridge partner schools taking up the challenge!” 

The British Council Library organises regular literary events and has a digital library which contains thousands of the latest books unavailable in shops in Sri Lanka.

The British Council has libraries In Colombo, Kandy and Jaffna, and a reading corner has been set up at APEX in Matara. These libraries house over 65,000 thought-provoking books.

The digital library collection has over 2,500 audio books and 16,000 books including genres such as fiction, environment, non-fiction, mystery, romance and more. It also contains over 10,000 research publications, academic journals, and scholarly articles in addition to over 13,000 newspapers and magazines from 149 countries and 65 languages.  

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We support peace and prosperity by building connections, understanding and trust between people in the UK and countries worldwide. We do this through our work in arts and culture, education and the English language.  We work with people in over 200 countries and territories and are on the ground in more than 100 countries. In 2022-23 we reached 600 million people.

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