Idea matches best books to teens' personalities

By Joseph Aldridge

Otumoetai College student Annie Freeman is passionate about reading and she thinks everyone could share her enthusiasm - if only they were reading the right books.

To fix the problem of people not reading, the 14-year-old came up with an idea to develop an online programme that would suggest books based on a person's personality type.

Annie presented her idea at the inaugural Year 10 TED Presentations in Mount Maunganui this week, and was declared the overall winner.

TED stands for Technology, Engineering and Design and is an annual conference, held in locations around the world, where inspirational ideas are presented.

Organised by Priority One's Instep Programme in Tauranga, the event on Wednesday featured 12 Year 10 students from four Tauranga secondary schools.

Three representatives from Tauranga Chamber of Commerce, Export NZ Bay of Plenty and Priority One judged the participants on their ideas and presentations.

Jacques Glover from Otumoetai College won the Best Content award for his presentation on medical genetic engineering innovation in Tauranga, while Tyler White from Tauranga Boys' College won Best Presentation for his presentation on bullying.

Guest speaker Will Johnson, from the Classic Hits breakfast show, used real-life examples of innovation in the radio industry to entertain the audience and show you can learn from your mistakes.

Annie said she was surprised to learn that some teenagers don't like to read.

"I love reading and when I heard people say "I can't be bothered' I thought 'why?"' she said.

Brainstorming about the problem, and its potential solution, led Annie to the idea of a programme that matched a person's personality to certain types of books.

"It would be online and it would just ask various questions about you, like different hobbies you like, if you're a quiet person or a risk taker and stuff like that, and the application would tell you a list of books that would be suited based on your answers to the questions," she said. Annie describes herself as outgoing so she likes to read books such as Harry Potter and Tomorrow, When The War Began.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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