Read all about it: Every pupil in P1 to get copy of Marta Altes' book Little Monkey
Every P1 pupil in Northern Ireland is to receive a copy of 'Little Monkey' by award-winning children's author Marta Altés.
The 25,000 copies of Little Monkey are being distributed by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland in partnership with BookTrust, the UK's largest children's reading charity.
The book will form part of a 'Time To Read' pack which children can take home to share with their families and friends.
With the help of the Education Authority's Schools Library Service, all schools will receive the packs at the beginning of the autumn term.
To celebrate the book distribution, author and illustrator Ms Altés will visit four schools over the course of two days to run reading and craft workshops, designed to inspire and engage, as well as to help to create authors and illustrators of the future.
The schools involved are St Joseph's Primary School Carryduff; Millennium Integrated Primary School, Saintfield; Moorfields Primary School, Ballymena and Parkhall Primary School, Antrim.
Speaking ahead of her visit to Northern Ireland today, Ms Altés said: "One of my favourite parts about my work is getting to visit the children and watch their creativity grow!
"It's incredible that my book will be in so many homes around Northern Ireland, and I hope that Little Monkey and her adventures in the jungle not only inspire a love of reading but also remind children that even when you're small you can do amazing things!"
Welcoming the reading initiative, Damian Smyth, head of Literature and Drama at the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, said: "This is all about inspiring a future generation of readers to enjoy reading from their earliest years, as they set off on their own journeys discovering new characters, places, stories and ideas.
"Access to books is something which we know supports all aspects of a child's development."
Ms Altés' two-day visit is the first in a series of author visits planned for this year.
The BookTrust programme is supported via the Arts Council of Northern Ireland's National Lottery funds, which this year celebrates its 25th anniversary.