Cole’s Extreme Reading Challenge




Four-year-old Cole Simpson came up with a unique venue to do a spot of reading as part of a nationwide ‘extreme reading’ literacy challenge for World Book Day.


Cole, who attends Malvern’s Primary Academy in Blyth, decided he would enlist the help of aquarist at Tynemouth’s Blue Reef Aquarium to achieve his own extreme reading challenge.


He elected to dip in to his book in the underwater section of the aquarium’s Seal Cove, much to the interest of its residents.


Youngsters across the country were invited to showcase their reading skills in unusual places as part of the annual celebration of literacy.


Cole’s efforts were recognised with a special award handed out at the school’s assembly along with a £5 book token.


Blue Reef’s training manager Caitlin Shields said: “We all thought it was a great idea and were delighted to be able to help Cole fulfil his challenge so successfully.


“Our resident seals and sea lions also seemed to enjoy the experience and couldn’t resist taking a peek over his shoulder to find out what all the excitement was about.


“Cole actually chose a book about marine life, which was even better from our point of view and we’re hoping we’ll be seeing him back here in the not too distant future as part of the aquarium team!” she added.


World Book Day was designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and is marked in over 100 countries around the globe.


Held on March 5th, the main aim of World Book Day in the UK and Ireland is to encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading.


Issued by Blue Reef Aquarium. For more information please contact Rosie Wiggin on 0191 258 1031.

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