GALLERY: Worthing schoolchildren transformed into book characters

  • Pupils dress up as favourite book characters
  • Children’s author visits Springfield First School
  • Special activities encourage love of reading

CHILDREN across Worthing celebrated World Book Day by dressing up as characters from their favourite stories.

A ‘fantastic and inspiring day’ saw children enjoy literary activities while dressed in costumes from a range of novels on Thursday, from Harry Potter and Horrid Henry to classics such as Little Red Riding Hood and The BFG.

St Mary's Catholic Primary School pupils. LP1500177 Picture: Liz Pearce

St Mary's Catholic Primary School pupils. LP1500177 Picture: Liz Pearce

Pupils from Springfield First School in Sackville Road, Worthing, were treated to a visit from children’s author Kate Lee, who led activities with each class on storytelling and artwork, as well as how a book is created from start to finish.

Meanwhile, Thomas A’Becket First School in Pelham Road, Tarring, had a Roald Dahl theme running throughout the week with areas around the school decorated to help transport pupils to a ‘Dahl’ themed place. Highlights included Fantastic Mr Fox’s den and a ‘Scrumdiddlyumptious’ chocolate fountain in the library.

Visitors also flocked in to help inspire the children to read and write, including Steyning book shop, governors, parents, and local authors. Even the formidable Mrs Trunchbull made an appearance, but luckily it was just head teacher Amanda Dingwall in disguise.

English subject leader Jane Rice organised the event and said: “The children have been totally immersed in the Dahl theme and have enjoyed some fabulous experiences.”

This is a good way for children to read new authors and genres

Nina Sparrowhawk, deputy head teacher at West Park School

St Mary’s Catholic Primary School in Cobden Road, Worthing, had a picture book and graphic novel theme linked with the Picture Books to Shout About competition run by West Sussex School’s Library Service.

Children were encouraged to bring in their favourite picture book or graphic novel and share with the class why it was important to them.

English lead Fiona Whittaker, who fooled children into thinking the tortoise with her Esio Trot costume was real, described the day as a ‘celebration of learning’.

As well as dressing up, West Park School set up a book swap which saw children bring in old unwanted books in order to swap them with other children’s.

Deputy head teacher Nina Sparrowhawk said: “This is a good way for children to read new authors and genres.”

Children in Durrington First and Durrington Middle schools, in Salvington Road, Durrington, did lots of book-related activities, including sharing books with adults and children in other year groups. Both schools made a beautiful ‘reading tree’ and the children wrote what they loved about books on each leaf. Everything was organised by Zoe Wilby, the literacy co-ordinator.

As part of the event, every child was issued with a £1 book token by sponsor, National Book Tokens. A list of books priced at £1 is available at