World Book Night Book Party Activities

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Want to celebrate World Book Night in style but not sure what kind of event to put on? Never fear, the World Book Night pack is here! Browse for some quick tips to make your WBN party a success.

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World Book Night Book Party Activities

  1. 1. Book activities As part of your World Book Night Party, try one or more of these bookish activities: • A book topple • A book swap • Book dating • Book crossing
  2. 2. Book Topple A book topple uses books like dominos. You line them up on their ends in some kind of pattern, knock the first one over and watch them fall, well, like dominos. To make it work you’ll need lots of hardback books from the library, plenty of time to set up, a large flat surface to put them on, some logical and creative minds to plan the positioning and some steady hands to arrange them. And a video camera to record the event for posterity.
  3. 3. If you’re really clever you can make them fall into a pretty pattern. Here’s a recent example from Barnsley library: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cx4SC6EMbPc Not bad, eh?
  4. 4. Book swap A Book Swap pretty much does what it says on the tin. Everyone at the party should bring a book and swap it with someone else. You could bring books that you love but no longer want to keep or bring one of those books that you bought and, let’s face it, are never going to get round to reading.
  5. 5. There are several ways you could do your book swap. Here are just a few options: • Lay them out on a table and rummage for one you fancy jumble-stylee. • Pitch your books to the audience as if at an auction and present to the highest bidder (or the person who gives the best reason for needing the book). • Stalk the person who has the book you want and then try to persuade them that they really need your book. • Stalk the person you fancy and persuade them that you really need their book and that you’d love to meet them for coffee to discuss it afterwards.
  6. 6. Book dating Carrying on the romantic potential of World Book Night, why not try book dating? For this you could adapt any number of tried and tested dating formats such as: • Take me out (in which 30 young people ply their library books to one reader) • Blind date (in which one reader asks questions of three potential books and their owners to decide which one to take home with him/her) • Speed dating (in which participants move around the room interviewing prospective books and their owners)
  7. 7. Take me out For this dating game, follow (loosely!) the format of the game show. One person stands at the front and talks about his or her reading habits and preferences, whilst everyone else stands with their chosen library book. Book givers can take themselves out of the game if they don’t think their book is appropriate to the contestant (You like to eat pizza while you’re reading? No way!)
  8. 8. When there are 5 or 10 books left, the contestant gets to ask some questions of the book givers and then selects which book he or she is going to take out from the library.
  9. 9. Blind date Blind Date was a long-running TV dating show in which one man or woman asked three questions of three unseen potential dates who were hiding behind the screen. From their answers, he or she chose someone to go on a date with. To apply the concept to books simply do the following:
  10. 10. Have three young people bring along a favourite book (or choose one from the library) and put them in brown envelopes. Have one person be the book chooser who asks three questions of each book holder. Questions like: • I like a book that keeps me guessing until the end. How will your book hold my interest? • I like an element of risk in my books. Will your book leave me hanging from a cliff? • I want a book that will make me cry. How will your book tug at my heartstrings?
  11. 11. When the questions have all been asked, the book chooser makes his or her selection and the identity of the chosen book will be revealed. In the real Blind Date, a camera crew then followed the couple on their date and they came back the following week to tell the viewers how it went. It might be a bit much to film the contestant reading in the bath but you could ask him or her to make a short video diary to bring back to your group.
  12. 12. Speed dating In a speed dating event, participants sit at either side of a long table and, after a set time (say 2-3 minutes) they move clockwise around the table to size up the next person. Participants have a score sheet and rate potential dates out of 10 and make notes about their preferences. At the end of the event, organisers review the score sheets and let participants know about their potential matches. Brutal but efficient.
  13. 13. With book dating, instead of representing yourself, you’ll be representing a book that you’ve enjoyed (or you might chose to represent one of the World Book Night titles). During your 2-3 minute chats, you can discuss the relative merits of the books on offer and jot down your scores on your score sheet. At the end of the event, the organisers will review the sheets and look for potential matches. In order for it to work, two people would have to score each others’ books highly and therefore be able to swap books. It might be helpful to have contigency plans for when this doesn’t work out neatly!
  14. 14. Book crossing Even if you haven’t got World Book Night books to give away, you can still spread the word about reading by taking part in Book Crossing. Free some old books into the wild by registering them on the Book Crossing website and then leaving them in interesting places around your local community. For more on Book Crossing see: http://www.bookcrossing.com
  15. 15. Find out more: readingagency.org.uk/readingactivists worldbooknight.org

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