The Tainan City Government’s “2018 Tainan English Reading Festival” is currently in full swing. One of the most popular events has proven to be “Peppa Pig’s Story Time.” Mom groups on LINE shared news of the event and the registration link even before the event was officially launched, and spaces were snatched up immediately. Many people were left disappointed when they found out they couldn’t get a space. The Tainan City Government has therefore decided to add 15 sessions between August and November, and encourages parents to take advantage of this opportunity.
The organizer of the reading festival is the Tainan City Government’s Office of English as the Second Official Language (OEASOL). It says it originally organized 40 sessions of “Peppa Pig’s Story Time,” a storytelling activity in English, in July and August, and invited local and foreign professional lecturers to tell stories in English. It didn’t expect this overwhelming response from the public. People managed to locate the registration website using Google even before an official announcement was made, and shared it with their LINE groups. As a result, registration for the sessions filled up completely in just a few days, leaving many people empty-handed. The organizer also ran into another problem after it distributed 72,000 copies of the English Reading Passport to elementary school students. The passport contained information on the activity, but spaces were no longer available. Many teachers and parents contacted the office to say, “The children really love Peppa Pig and they are so disappointed they won’t be able to attend the storytelling activity.”
Fortunately, Tainan Public Libraries was willing to lend a hand, and it was decided to add 15 more sessions of “Peppa Pig’s Story Time” with 600 spaces between August and November. The activity will be handled by 15 district public libraries. Tainan Public Libraries Director Hong Yu-zhen says the additional sessions will uphold the quality standards of the original sessions, and foreign teachers or English teachers with storytelling experience will be invited to tell the stories. There will also be prize draws. FLOMO School Principal Tang Ya-hui sent the school’s teachers to libraries to provide assistance in planning and designing content. As many rural libraries lack projection equipment, a large-scale Peppa Pig picture book was specially created, along with a variety of interactive games for the children attending the event. It is hoped this activity will add to the joy of learning English!
The OEASOL says Peppa Pig’s popularity exceeded expectations, and the character has also triggered children’s interest in listening to English stories. Parents have also enthusiastically participated in these events, accompanying their children from beginning to end, resulting in “parents and children reading English aloud together.” Some parents have said that after attending “Peppa Pig’s Story Time,” they began reading English picture books to their children, helping them to learn English and improving the parent-child relationship in the process. It is hoped that “Peppa Pig’s Story Time” will plant the seed for a love of English in the hearts of children, allowing English to become a familiar and fun “life language” as they grow up.
Official website of the 2018 Tainan English Reading Festival: http://www.tainanlovesreading.com.tw/
“Peppa Pig’s Story Time” registration website: https://www.beclass.com/rid=213eef75b5a7b9329d57