Announcing the SCBA Booktrailer Competition

Image by Kratka Photography on Flickr
Category: Reading

It’s the start of a new term, and you’re looking for something meaty, worthwhile and fun to whet your pupils’ appetites for creativity and books.

Look no further! For the first time ever, SBT are running a booktrailer competition alongside the Scottish Children’s Book Awards, with a ton of supporting resources to get your started. With £250 of book tokens from Waterstones going to the winning school, there’s a strong incentive for your pupils to step into the director’s chair.

The competition is open to pupils of all age groups. Booktrailers are normally done with upper primary and secondary groups, but if you want to pair older pupils up with younger ones, you can go that way too.

Here’s what we’re asking for: we need your pupils to produce a booktrailer for one of the books shortlisted for this year’s Scottish Children’s Book Awards. They can produce a trailer for any of the books – they don’t have to stick to the books in their own age category. The trailers need to be under two and a half minutes, and need to be submitted to us by 7 February 2014.

So what is a booktrailer? Well, it’s exactly what it says on the tin: just like the movie trailers we’re familiar with, a booktrailer is a short ‘teaser’ of a book, giving an audience an impression of the characters, premise and atmosphere and enticing them to read the book. You might think it sounds a little daunting, but fear not, as we’ve developed a whole range of resources to show you what a trailer might look like and how your pupils can do it with simple, free software. Our Booktrailer Masterclass videos will take your pupils through each stage of the process, and on the video page we’ve got a great unit of work to help you integrate trailers into your planning.

We’re also holding a free GLOW CPD  event on the 28 August at 4pm to tell you a little more about the how and why of booktrailers – we’ll also be pointing to some great free software and tools.

To give you some more guidance, we’ve asked three secondary schools to produce exemplar trailers for the shortlisted books. These exemplar trailers will be available from Tuesday 22 October, along with blogs from the schools explaining how they went about the project. All in all, a booktrailer project will probably stretch over a whole term when combined with other syllabus work, so you’ve got a fair bit of time to cook up some directorial masterpieces.

Making booktrailers with your pupils is a fun and creative way to get them thinking critically about books, and a whole range of writing skills are used in the creation of a trailer too. Back in 2011, we worked with a group of secondary teachers across the country to help them create booktrailers with their pupils (you can watch this video to hear from the teachers and pupils). All of the teachers agreed that creating trailers had helped their pupils to respond critically to books in a fun and engaging way.

There’s a wide range of genres represented in this year’s Book Awards, from thriller to fantasy, action adventure to apocalyptic comedy. So what are you waiting for? Check out the competition page to find out more!