World Book Night 2014 – Bringing the World of Terabithia to 3rd Graders

World Book Night is an annual celebration dedicated to spreading the love of reading, person to person.  Each year on April 23 –Shakespeare’s birthday tens of thousands of people in the U.S. go out into their communities and give a total of half a million free World Book Night paperbacks to light and non-readers.  
An independent panel of booksellers and librarians selects the books, using lists curated by experts in the bookselling and library world. All of the information comes from external, independent sources. Additionally, each year, givers from the previous year’s World Book Night nominate books for the panel to consider. 

The World Book Night U.S. books must meet the following criteria:

  • Accessible books of quality.
  • Recently-published books as well as established classics.
  • Books available in paperback.
  • Any genre of book – fiction, mysteries, romance, SF/fantasy, classics, poetry, humor, autobiography, and young adult books.
  • The list overall must have a gender, ethnic, and geographical balance.

This is my first year working with World Book Night and I was allowed to giveaway Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson.  As you can see these books have special covers specifically for World Book Night.  The font was also a good size font – not the small mass market paperback print.  Perfect for third graders.

I read this book when I was younger and just loved the fantastical world created by the characters.  A world where they could be friends, heroes, problem solvers and more.  A world where they could be totally happy and have so much fun.  And a world where family is there to help you through some difficult time.  The book is rated for grades 3 through 7. 


I was not an avid reader when I was younger.  I wish I was.  But then when my parents were getting a divorce I spent a great deal of time with another family.  I was mortified – they didn’t have a TV!  Back then there were not computers in every home, cell phones, tablets or anything like that.  Back then you were either outside playing or in the house reading.  That time in my life was phenomenal – I learned to do tons of water activities, learned to have patience, not to be jealous, and just plain old appreciate life.  But best of all – I learned to love to read.  Sure, I knew how to read but I never really enjoyed it.  This family turned me on to some of their favorite books and the rest is history.  I would buy books with every paycheck – even if it meant I had to do without in other ways.  The world is very different now with kindles and everything now available to us for such a small up front investment.  Everyone should have the love of books that I have enjoyed and continue to enjoy.

I opted to give the books to my daughter’s third grade class.  They were very excited!  Prior to issuing the books the kids all had snacks – water and granola bars.  While snacking we discussed what their favorite book was, if they enjoy reading, why they enjoy it and whether they like fiction or non fiction. 

Prior to handing out the books I explained some of what they can expect out of this book – the whole range of emotions.  Then my daughter helped with distribution of the books.

Look at all the smiles on their faces while they patiently wait for a book for themselves?  
There were actually 21 kids in the class so I did purchase a few extra (teacher, student and an extra).  
A couple kids were familiar with the story and their excitement also spread through the class.  
Along with the books I pieced together some of the resources available to “givers” and created a World Book Night 2014 bookmark for the children to use with their book.  I laminated it so it will last a good long time.
What a great opportunity this was – I was able to present young readers with another reason to love books!
If I am selected next year I would like to give books to adults who are learning English as a second language.  

As a “giver” for World Book Night I was provided with 20 free copies of Bridge to Terabithia to distribute. 

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