Reward and celebrate home learning with our free-to-issue digital badges.
During the school holidays children’s learning can stagnate. Some may even experience summer learning loss. Research suggests that the habit of reading for pleasure is a strong indicator of educational success, so we are pleased to offer schools and their families a set of free reading badges, specially designed to encourage wider reading and reading for pleasure during the summer break.
Powered by Sonar Awards, our digital badge and certification platform, the Summer Reading Adventure badges will encourage children not only to keep up a habit of reading but also to read widely, discover new authors, genres and formats and most importantly to read for fun and pleasure.
What are digital badges?
Digital badges give all pupils the chance to be recognised for the great things they achieve every day. During a typical school week, pupils are often rewarded for their achievements, progress, values and behaviours – whether that be merit points for good behaviour, a certificate for completing a challenge or a weekly Headteacher’s award.
Digital badges are a new and innovative way of celebrating and rewarding achievement in and out of school. Pupils store badges in their own secure digital backpack. These can be easily shared with family, helping to build communication between parent and child, whilst reinforcing the link between home and school. Digital badges can be collected and can sit alongside traditional qualifications and accreditations.
What types of Summer Reading Adventure badges are available?
To start with, we have created a set of 33 Summer Reading Adventure awards which can be awarded for free by both parents and teachers. Each of our digital badges represents a different genre or text type. As a child reads the story, poem, comic, or non-fiction book they have chosen they can progress through the badges building their collection of awards.
For an additional challenge, there are also special Bronze, Silver and Gold Reading Adventure Badges to be collected for reading three, five and ten different genres.
As we gain feedback from more participating schools, we may extend this offering to include a wider range of achievements. The available badges are below, including the suggested criteria for awarding:
A Book In A Series
Have you read a few books that have the same characters, settings and sometimes follow a numerical sequence? Then this badge is yours!
Popular books in a series include: My Funny Family by Chris Higgins, Harry Potter by JK Rowling and Horrid Henry by Francesca Simon. Criteria – Read a book in a series.
A Book With A Chapter
Read a book divided into sections which have an average of 8 to 10 pages, with different headings or chapters to unlock this badge. Criteria – Read a book with chapters.
A Book Written Recently
To earn this badge is simple – just read a book published in 2021. Criteria – Read a book written recently.
Do you like exciting books with fast paced action that involve courageous heroes overcoming danger and risking their lives to save others? Then read an adventure story and this badge is yours! Many Science Fiction books can also be adventure stories.
Popular adventure stories include: Nim’s Island by Wendy Orr, The Legend of Kevin by Philip Reeve, Stormbreaker by Anthony Horowitz, The Explorer by Katherine Rundell. Criteria – Read an adventure book.
Earn this badge by listening to a recording of a story being read out loud or a ‘talking book’ rather than reading it yourself.
Popular audible books include: The Boy who grew Dragons by Andy Shepherd and Billionaire Boy by David Walliams. Criteria – Listen to an audio book.
This badge is acquired when you read a story written by someone about their life.
Examples include: Boy by Roald Dahl, Ade Adepitan: A Paralympian’s story, Coming to England by Floella Benjamin. Criteria – Read an Autobiography.
Earn this badge when you read a story of a person’s life written by someone else.
Examples include: Charles Darwin by Jane Kent and Bradley Wiggins by Roy Apps. Criteria – Read a Biography.
Have you read a story that somebody else suggested you try? It could be a friend, parent or even a book that has won an Award or you read about in a newspaper. If you have, add this badge to your collection. Criteria – Read a book you have been recommended.
A Book With No Words
There are lots of fantastic wordless picture books out there and if you have looked at one of these, then award yourself this badge.
Popular examples include: Flood by Alvaro Villa, Mr Wuffles by David Wiesner and The Snowman by Raymond Biggs. Criteria – Read a book with no words.
Character Like Me
Get a hold of this badge if you recognise yourself in this book.
Does the main character look like you, have the same personality or likes doing similar things to you? Criteria – Read a book which has a character like you.
Add this badge to your collection by reading a classic book. These are high quality literature that has withstood the test of time. Follow in the footsteps of previous generations who have enjoyed reading these books and gain this badge.
Popular classics include: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by CS Lewis, Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame and Tom’s Midnight Garden by Philippa Pearce. Criteria – Read a classic book.
Make sure to add this badge to your collection by reading a magazine where the story is told through illustrated comic strips or speech bubbles.
Favourite examples of comics include: The Beano, The Simpsons, The Phoenix. Criteria – Read a comic.
Award yourself this badge if you’ve read a book where someone keeps a daily record of their personal thoughts and experiences throughout the day.
Popular examples include: Ann Frank’s Diary, Antarctica Journal, Elephant Diaries. Criteria – Read a diary.
Have you read a story where creatures have magical powers and it contains: fairies, wizards, elves, trolls, gnomes, goblins and fire-breathing dragons and usually begins with once upon a time? Then this is the badge for you!
Examples of fairy stories include: Cinderella, Jack and the Beanstalk, Little Red Riding Hood. Criteria – Read a fairy story.
Full of mythical creatures, supernatural characters, legendary quests and daring heroes, fantasy books are usually set in magical and enchanted imaginary lands.
Popular fantasy examples include: Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkein, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl and, of course, the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling. Criteria – Read a fantasy book.
Similar to a comic, but a complete story in pictures with a beginning, middle and end. Graphic novels can be fiction or non-fiction.
If you recognise this format, then award yourself this badge. Criteria – Read a graphic novel.
Did this book has made you laugh out loud? Did you enjoy the jokes? If you were ‘splitting your sides laughing’ then claim this badge. Criteria – Read a funny or joke book.
‘Pictures speak louder than words’. Add this badge to your collection by reading a book where the pictures show what the characters and settings look like and help you follow the story.
Popular examples include: The Paperbag Prince by Colin Thompson, Little Beauty by Anthony Browne and The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson. Criteria – Read an picture book.
Award yourself this badge if you enjoy following the clues and finding out ‘whodunit’ at the end of the book.
Popular examples include: Murder at Twilight by Fleur Hitchcock, The Case of the Vanishing Granny by Lauren McCall Smith, The Midnight Picnic by Lauren St John, The Mystery of the Secret Room by Enid Blyton. Criteria – Read a mystery book.
Myth Or Legend
Mythical creatures, gods, supernatural figures, humans and animals or a mix of both appear in these stories whilst legends usually have an element of truth and are based on an historical fact.
Examples of myths include: Medusa and the Gorgons, Hermes, the Winged Messenger and Thor’s Hammer.
Examples of legends include: George and the Dragon, Robin Hood, Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Criteria – Read a myth or legend.
‘Read all about it, read all about it’. Have you kept up to date with the news by reading a newspaper? Then make sure to add this badge to your collection. Criteria – Read a newspaper.
Read a play script to unlock this badge. Can you act out the different characters/parts with your family or friends? Have fun with dressing up and making the scenes where the play is set. Criteria – Read a play.
Add this badge to your collection by reading a poem or a book where the words rhyme or follow specific patterns.
Popular poets include Benjamin Zephaniah and Michael Rosen.
Popular stories in rhyme include Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae, What the Ladybird Heard by Julia Donaldson. Criteria – Read a poem or rhyming book.
Award yourself this badge if you’ve completed a puzzle book containing for example crosswords, wordsearches, or Sudoku. Criteria – Complete a puzzle book.
Do you like time travel? Are you a fan of space adventures? Then add this badge to your collection by reading a book set in the future that involves new worlds, space travel or other technological advances like robots.
Popular examples include: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, Aquila by Andrew Norriss, Orion Lost by Alastair Chisholm. Criteria – Read a science fiction book.
Set In Another Country
Read a book inspired by the culture, history, identity of another country to unlock this badge.
Popular examples include: Grace and Family by Mary Hoffman, Anna Hibiscus by Atinuke, Welcome to Nowhere Elizabeth Laird. Criteria – Read a book set in another country.
Get a hold of this badge by reading a traditional story or folk tales that has been passed down through different generations. Has this story got a moral that has taught you a lesson? Then award yourself this badge.
Examples of traditional tales include: Anansi the Spider, The Boy who Cried Wolf and How the Rabbit Stole the Fire. Criteria – Read a traditional tale.
Awarding A Badge
Your school will have provided a link to a web form where you are able to enter your child’s details and select the digital badge that you wish to award. Watch our video on how to issue a badge:
The platform then sends an email to your children (or their parent/carer), where they can claim their digital badge. Children are then able to view their badges in their digital backpack webpage. Watch our video on receiving and sharing badges.
FAQs for parents and carers
Absolutely – you can award as many badges as you wish. Perhaps your child could work towards a target of achieving X number of badges per week to earn a reward at the weekend?
NB: Be sure to make this achievable and realistic (don’t promise a puppy, for example!).
Don’t worry – simply collect the badges via your own email address. If/when your child does get their own email address, you will be able to transfer any badges you have been collecting on their behalf to their own digital backpack.
Badges are issued to individuals and have their names on them. If/when your individual children do get their own email addresses, you will be able to transfer any badges you have been collecting on their behalf to their own unique digital backpacks.
FAQs for schools and teachers
Absolutely – if you upgrade to the full Sonar Awards platform, you will be given your own school platform and will be able to import all of your student and staff details to make awarding badges even easier. Contact our Sales Team to find out about our special offers.
Yes, if you upgrade to the full Sonar Awards platform, you will be able to add your school’s logo to the full range of pre-loaded badges or you will be able to create your own set of badges using the Badge Maker tool. Contact our Sales Team to find out about our special offers.
If you upgrade to the full Sonar Awards platform, you will be able to take advantage of the Badge Maker tool to create your own set of badges. These can be used alongside our full range of pre-loaded badges. Contact our Sales Team to find out about our special offers.