Teacher’s tweets spark book boost

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The power of Twitter helped more than 100 teenage students from Bulwell Academy have their own book to read over the summer.

English teacher Kate Hamer tweeted a number of book bloggers and publishers to see if they could donate spare books for students at the school.

More than 300 books were sent to the school, including a number which were signed by the authors and 130 students took their pick from the collection to read over the summer.

A surprise tea party was held for the children to choose their book, to celebrate the 125th anniversary of Alice in Wonderland, with each student getting a Willy Wonka-style golden ticket invitation to the special occasion.

Miss Hamer said: “I’m overwhelmed by the generosity of the people who have donated. Teenage years can be confusing and lonely. All teenagers want is to find someone they can relate to.

“Young adult books are beautifully diverse – regardless of race, gender, sexuality, disability or background, there will always be a book that will help teenagers make sense of the world and realise that they are not alone.

“Me and a friend, who is a book blogger for some publishing houses, just sent out a few tweets to people who we know, and we ended up with more than 300 books being donated to us.”

Paul Halcro, principal at the Academy, said: “It’s clear that tremendous effort and energy has been given to this and were extremely grateful to those authors and publishers who have given their commitment to our students.”

Students left notes for the authors who had donated the books.

John Underwood, 13, said: “I will be travelling to Scotland and I will be reading this on the way.”

Jac Fish, 12, said: “I’m going to read my book at my caravan.”