To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Artsmark, CILIP has teamed up with Arts Council England to create a special selection of Kate Greenaway titles, ‘Greenaway Greats’, offering young people a fantastic reading opportunity featuring outstanding illustration.

20 titles have been selected from the alumni of past winners, curated into 10 books for primary schools and 10 for secondary schools to create the Greenaway Greats reading scheme. The scheme offers young people a diverse selection of illustrated texts to explore, supported by high-quality reading resources to prompt debate, discussion and inspire creativity. Running from March to July, the Greenaway Greats reading scheme will culminate in the opportunity for young readers to vote for their favourite book from the lists. What will be your Greenaway Great? 

Jake Hope, Chair of the Awards Working Party and author of Seeing Sense (Facet Publishing, 2020) commented: 

‘The Kate Greenaway Medal has recognised some of the most innovative and exciting illustrators across its history.  To help celebrate the 20th anniversary of Artsmark we are delighted to offer children and young people the opportunity to make their own choice of Greenaway Greats.  We’ve curated two collections of ten books – one aimed at primary schools, and one aimed at secondary – and are inviting young readers to share their views and vote for their favourite to be named the readers’ Greenaway Great!  There will be loads of opportunities to get creative too with draw-alongs, opportunities to engage with illustrators and to have a lot of fun!’   

Mirroring the annual Kate Greenaway Awards Shadowing Scheme, the Greenaway Greats reading scheme will offer young people the chance to read for pleasure and debate and discuss these illustrated books with their peers. The scheme encourages young readers to develop their visual literacy skills as they are encouraged to delve deeper into illustration, attending to the detail and developing their analytical skills. Focusing on illustrated texts is a great way to spark discussion around visual techniques, styles and representation and to inspire readers to explore their own creative responses to the books. Readers will be encouraged to produce their own artwork inspired by the book lists, from designing their own book covers, recreating their favourite spreads or producing original artworks inspired by the stories.  

This year marks 20 years of Artsmark, the only creative quality standard for schools and education settings in England. The award, accredited by Arts Council England, supports schools to develop and celebrate arts, culture and creativity in their setting.   

Today, nearly 4500 schools and education settings are engaged in the programme – that’s 1.9 million children and young people who are benefitting from being part of the Artsmark community. 

In this special anniversary year, Artsmark is celebrating the vital role reading and libraries play in the creative lives of children throughout their education, sparking imagination, nurturing creativity and supporting wellbeing.  

Anne Appelbaum, Director of Children & Young People at Arts Council commented “As champions of a creative andcultural education, we are delighted to bring Artsmark and CILIP together to create the Greenaway Greats scheme, which celebrates what Artsmark stands for – providing young people with a platformto have their voice heard and to instil a joy in being creative. Artsmark is committed to ensuring every young person has equal access to diverse, high-quality cultural experiences, which is why we’re also gifting book packs to schools in our priority places”. 

As part of the scheme, Arts Council is gifting Greenaway Greats book packs to a selection of Artsmark schools and education settings in Arts Council’s priority places, reaching children and young people most in need. The Greenaway Greats Reading Scheme will launch on Thursday 3rd March, World Book Day with the reveal of the Greenaway Greats titles and accompanying resources. Any school, specialist or alternative education setting can participate, by purchasing the book packs from our official supplier, Peters, and receive a 26% discount. 

Pre-order your book packs with Peters today and be among the first to receive them when the Greenaway Greats Reading Scheme launches on World Book Day! 

Find out more on the Greenaway Greats page here.

Would you like to develop your setting’s Arts and Culture offer? Find out mroe about how Artsmark can support you at including other exciting ways to get involved in Artsmark’s 20th anniversary celebrations, such as Day to Create on 6 July.