FOR the second year in a row, a Surrey team won the Grand Reading Link Challenge. Erma Stephenson Elementary School beat out 166 teams from 32 Surrey schools as well as teams from Coquitlam, Port Moody, North Van City and Fraser Valley. This year’s Grand Challenge was hosted by Surrey Libraries at Kwantlen Polytechnic University on Wednesday, May 3.

“The Reading Link Challenge program is an excellent example of how Surrey Libraries engages with partners to promote literacy and community engagement. We’re so proud of all the students that competed and were inspired to read,” said Surinder Bhogal, Chief Librarian.

The Reading Link Challenge program is run by Surrey Libraries in collaboration with other Lower Mainland libraries and their respective school districts.  This event comes to Surrey every four years as libraries rotate hosting the Grand Challenge where teams from various municipalities compete. Teams of six children from grades 4 and 5 read and become familiar with a set of six selected books.

At the first challenge level, teams within a school compete with each other answering questions about characters, plots and settings. The winning team at each school then goes on to the next challenge level at the local branch library where the competition is repeated with a different set of questions. From here the teams advance to a Community Challenge where they compete with various Surrey neighbourhoods for a spot in the Grand Challenge.

The Grand Challenge is comprised of the top teams from other Lower Mainland library systems where they vie for the top honour in front of a public audience.