Children and teachers bring their favourite book characters alive

Thousands of children and their teachers, dressed up as their favourite character to mark the 19th year of World Book Day.

Schools across Wilmslow, Handforth and Alderley Edge joined in the biggest celebration of authors, illustrators, books and reading, which has now spread to over 100 countries all over the world.

An army of Harry Potters, Hungry Caterpillars, Gruffalos, Gangsta Grannys, Willy Wonkas, Cats in the Hat, Dennis the Menaces and Where's Wallys could be seen across the town as hundreds of excited children, and teachers, made their way to school dressed as characters from one of their favourite books.

At Wilmslow Grange all the staff dressed as their favourite characters, including the Leadership Team of Mr Unwin, Mrs Lawson and Mrs Booth who dressed as Willy Wonka, Gandalf and The Gruffalo respectively.

Headteacher Mark Unwin said "The children and parents, from Reception right through to Year 6, made an enormous effort to be inventive and to reflect their children's love of books.

"Some Year 6s dressed as characters from Alice in Wonderland (see photo above) Sophie in Year 5 came as Puss in Boots (above); in Year 1 we had Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf (above) and we even had a Golden Ticket to accompany my Willy Wonka costume."

This year, Book Week has been particularly special at Wilmslow Grange because it coincided with the grand opening of their library.

Ms Clare Daniel, Headteacher at St Anne's Fulshaw CE Primary School, explained "The children and staff all dressed up for World Book Day today and had lots of book related fun. Children wrote biographies of their chosen characters, enjoyed some very imaginative role play, made World Book Day origami book marks and shared stories from their chosen books together."

At Gorsey Bank they invited the children to their 'Festival of Imagination' for which they wore festival themed clothing that has been personalised to suit a favourite text or character.

The day kicked off with a whole-school assembly thinking about how books go on to inspire others - with a particular focus on art, film, music and writing. Then in phases, teachers hosted events in their 'festival tents' which included a traditional tales tent, fun face, drama, art and music tents, poetry tents and magic tents.

Lacey Green Primary Academy celebrated World Book Day with every child, dressed up as their favourite book character, taking part in a range of planned activities, all designed to instill a love of reading.

Headteacher Mrs Dooley said "The children and staff have had such a great day celebrating and reading together. The effort made by all the children and their parents has been amazing."

Lindow Primary School had a visit from local celebrity, Clare Nasir, who lead storybook workshops in Year 1 and Year 2. All children and adults also took part in 'Drop Everything And Read' whilst Mystery Readers visited each class to share a favourite book and the librarians were dressed up and acted as hosts with the children visiting the library to take part in competitions and games.

At Alderley Edge School for girls they took part in lots of activities celebrating books and a love of reading whilst dressed as their favourite character.

Every class enjoyed English lessons planned especially for World Book Day and Year 2 pupils used the iPads to research their favourite books whilst the dalmatians in Year 6 were in fear for their lives.

Whilst at The Ryleys celebrations took a twist with the children creating potatoes of their favourite book characters. They also held a book quiz and in the afternoon the children from the prep read stories to the little ones in pre-prep.

St Benedict's Catholic Primary and Alderley Edge Community Primary School both celebrated World Book Day today. 

Headteacher Jane Gornell said "Children and staff have all arrived at school today dressed in their book character costumes despite the snow. The day began with an assembly and over 60 parents came along to support their children being presented with awards.

"Over the course of the day the children will enjoy taking part in fun activities including interviewing staff members on their chosen books, having a "cinema experience" and book reviews."

Alderley Edge Community Primary School also celebrated by allowing the children and staff to dress as their favourite character from their favourite book. The children dressed as everything from Harry Potter and the Gruffalo to traditional characters such a Pippi Longstocking.

During the morning the children attended a whole school assembly led by Headteacher Mr Perry, who explained what he loved about books and how very often the opening of a story is crucial to hook the reader in.

During assembly Mr Perry also read Mick Inkpen's story 'Nothing'. The story is about a little creature who lies in the attic, alone and forgotten. It cannot even remember its own name. One day the attic door is flung open, and so begins Nothing's search to discover who he really is. This built on assemblies throughout the last few weeks about valuing things, valuing others and children valuing themselves.

Mr Perry said, "The assembly went really well and the children seemed to absolutely love the story I read. Every child from 4 years of age to 11 years listened really well. The children also were totally engaged when we discussed what makes a great book."

Throughout the rest of the day the children got involved in activities linked to World Book Day which also included sharing their favourite books with their friends and older children reading with younger children.

If you would like your World Book Day photos added to the gallery please email [email protected].

World Book Day