Tag Archives: Excelsior award

Christmas and the Excelsior Award

We’re reflecting on another amazing term at Hamstead Hall Library. We’ve seen student librarians leave (goodbye Duaine and Wari!) but we’ve also added four new members. A big library welcome goes to Atara, Ishmail, Courtney and Aleena! They’ve already proved themselves to be excellent student librarians and we hope that they are enjoying themselves.

What have we done this term? Well we kicked off the year by running the year 7 reading challenge. Over the summer, pupils were given the chance to write a review of the book they were reading. Our favourite entry would win a £10 book voucher. The eventual winner was Elsie who reviewed ‘A Whole New World’ by Liz Braswell. Congratulations! All entries are currently on display at the back of the library.

Speaking of year 7, every pupil received a free book courtesy of the Book-Buzz scheme. They got to choose which book they would like from a selection of fifteen amazing titles. This scheme is funded by the Academy in partnership with the charity Book Trust. Students who have finished their books should head to the library where they will find a copy of every Book-Buzz book available for loan.

We’ve had some great displays this term. Students where able to go on a blind date with a book. This involves them picking up a wrapped book and borrowing it on the strength of the genre and first line. These nearly all went out, which was awesome! We also ran a Christmas countdown in which we revealed a new book every day and as usual we’ve been getting in at least 9 new books a week and running our awareness week display. Topics covered this term include Anti-Bullying Week, Black History Month and Remembrance Day.

We’ve got so much planned for the spring term. We’ll be launching the Excelsior Award in January. The scheme which allows pupils to read ten graphic novels and then vote on which one they believe should win the coveted award. This year the award is split into 2 categories:

Excelsior Award Blue, for students aged 11 and over- Key Stage 3 Excelsior Award Red, for students aged 14 and over- Key Stage 4

You can check out the shortlists here.

We hope you all have a wonderful break. Lets make 2019 the best library year yet!



The Excelsior Award Winner is…

We’re still a few months away from hearing the winners of the official Excelsior Award but this week we counted the ballots and can reveal the winners here at Hamstead Hall Academy.



Yona of the Dawn


  Black Panther

Interestingly Black Panther was the most read comic, but was rated the lowest. Whereas Yona of the Dawn had relatively small amounts of votes but was voted extremely highly. Manga in general did very well this year. Shuriken and Pleats was in 2nd place for most popular comic.

Captain America: White was the voted best superhero comic meaning that Marvel really stomped on their DC competition this year. Independent comics Clear Blue Tomorrows and Audubon unfortunately failed to get any votes.

All the comics are now available for loan. Next week we will be dismantling the display to make way for a new one and you’ll find all the nominees in the comics section.

New Video: Excelsior Award, First Impressions

Student Librarians Duaine, Karan and Joseph have been working on a new Youtube video for the Hamstead Hall Academy Youtube channel. In the video they go over what they do and do not like about this year’s nominees from the Excelsior Awards. This is the nationwide competition where students get to decide the best graphic novel of the year by voting for their favorite.  Click the link below to watch the video.

Excelsior Award: First Impressions

For more information on the Excelsior Award check out their website at excelsioraward.co.uk or come into the library to look at the selection yourself.

The Excelsior Award shortlist is here!

The library team is very excited about this one. The Excelsior Award shortlist for best graphic novel of the year is now available.

Titles include:

Superman: Lois and Clark

Shuriken and Pleats, Volume 1

Clear Blue Tomorows

Audubon: On the Wings of the World

Black Panther: A Nation Under Our Feet

Yona of the Dawn, Volume 1

Captain America: White

We Are Robin: The Vigilante Business

You can learn more about these titles by following this link

All of the above books are currently on order and will be available to view in the library from January. As always readers get to vote for who they think should win the grand prize.  See you in the new year.