Touring libraries with the Upper East Regional Librarian for reading competitions in Ghana

The Ghana Library Authority declared this year as “A year of reading”. As part of the activities to mark the year of reading, the Ghana Library Authority is organising  nationwide reading competitions through the Regional and branch libraries across the nations. The Upper East Regional Library has held some reading competitions in some of its branch libraries and climaxing it at the regional library. I accompanied the Regional Librarian last two weeks on the 14th of October, to the Navrongo Library for him to monitor and coordinate the reading competition there between three Junior High Schools (St. John Bosco JHS, Adebayeri and Abaache JHS) with the Navrongo Library Librarian. On the 16th of October, we were at the Bongo Library in the Bongo District for the reading competitions between three Junior High Schools there; St. Anne’s JHS, St. Joachim and Salibga JHS. The climax was on 21st October, at the Upper East Regional Library, Bolgatanga. Four Junior High Schools took part in this reading competition. The schools were Yorogo JHS, St. Anthony’s JHS, Methodist and St. John JHS.
Now this is how the competitions were usually done; all contestants were given same books, each school do present three contestants, so they normally have first readers, second readers and third readers in every round. The first readers were either given a page, a chapter or some paragraphs in a chapter to read. Now those who were the judges (normally three people) were given certain criteria in awarding the marks. The judges were asked to take note of the reader’s pronunciations, Fluency, speed, omission and respect for the punctuations. These and others were the criteria used in awarding the marks. At the close of each competition, prizes were usually awarded to all contestants starting from the winners. Refreshment was provided for supporters (the students) and contestants, the judges and teachers who came with their students.