PUPILS across Swindon seized the chance to dress up as characters from their most treasured books yesterday.

From Hermione in Harry Potter to Oompa Loompas in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, youngsters went school in colourful costumes to demonstrate their love of reading on World Book Day.

Hayley Clayton, teacher at Even Swindon Primary School said: “They love it, the chance to dress up like your favourite character to be part of that imaginary for a day is something that they really enjoy.

“We’ve got a big focus on English literacy in school across the country and in Swindon we have a real passion for reading. We are looking at promoting reading, promoting language and talking about books, so being able to dress up as a character just adds something extra.

“Children really got involved and talked about their favourite books and it’s good just to have that sort of sharing culture.”

Throughout this week, Drove Primary School set up various literary events to stimulate pupils’ creativity.

Reading lead Craig Roberts said yesterday: “On Monday we had authors coming. We had several workshops, writing and sharing stories.

“They all brought their own books in today to share with each other and later on we will be singing songs from the Matilda musical.

“We take it as a good chance to celebrate children’s creativity and their love of reading. Books are great outlets for children to go into the book and become a character.

“They can take ten minutes of their normal day to really enjoy a book and the more they read, the more they better at writing.

“That’s why we really need to push it, especially our school where a lot of our children have English as an additional language.”

At The Croft Primary School, Amy, 8, who dressed up as Hermione Granger, said: “When I read a book, I kind of feel like I am in it, if it’s sad I kind of like to think what is going to happen next.

“The book kind of feels more real than a film. If you’re name is Harry and you’re reading Harry Potter, you would say ‘oh that could be me’”

Laura, 8, added: “I’m dressed up as Bellatrix Lestrange because she is quite inspirational.”

Swindon schoolchildren also received a £1 token which they can exchange for one of a dozen titles at participating booksellers.

More World Book Day

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