We want to help create motivated and engaged young readers. This blog is about children's and YA literature (especially New Zealand), literacy research, and ways to get, and keep, kids reading.
Towels, check. Togs, check. Kitchen sink, check. Create Readers is off to the beach for a well earned Christmas break. We're going to wiggle our toes into the sand, try out the flutter board and, importantly, catch up on some summer reading.
But we'll be back. That'll be late January 2009 refreshed and ready to go with more reviews and news from the world of children's literature.
Meanwhile dear readers have a restful and relaxing break. And if you're looking for some reading of your own, try the latest Listener 20-26th December 2008. There's an excellent interview with Margaret Mahy by Kate De Goldi and also a run down of the best in children's publishing by David Larson. Catch you all in 09.
Flickr Image by infrogmation2
The above comments only begin to describe the Auckland Service Centre’s "Reading at the Beach" evening held on Tuesday December the 9th.
Almost 200 National Library of New Zealand bags of books for holiday reading, selected by librarians enthusiastic about promoting their favourite reads, left the centre. This will surely see many students benefiting from their teachers’ hours of literary nourishment.
Many examples of great ways to be in touch with books were promoted, and book reviews were enjoyed. The Reading at the Beach Blog was highlighted as a marvellous way for the group to maintain contact, and, Gavin Bishop presented a fascinating account of his skills as a writer and illustrator in a video link from Christchurch.
The evening was a wonderful success due to the great variety of enthusiastic presentations and the perfect opportunity for many teachers to enjoy chatting about books, books and more books.
by Barbara Smaill
by David Burnie. Published by Oxford University Press 2008
An attractively presented book with a strong conservation message this is a useful introduction to the topic of extinction and man’s role in it.
Each page opening is a separate sub-topic and is a blend of short paragraphs, photographs, and fact boxes. Eye-catching messages sprinkled through the pages draw the reader into the text. E.g ‘Smuggled birds often die before they reach their destination’; ‘500 million rabbits threaten Australia’s native wildlife.’
New Zealand has its own page under the heading ‘Land of the Moas’ with segments on moa, tuatara, weta, kiwi and takahe.
A good browse book for reluctant readers.
Reviewed by Melva
The Willoughby’s/ Lois Lowry
Everything about this book spells ‘old-fashioned,’ even the characters by their own admission. Even stranger is the fact that there is no love lost between the parents and the children. The story begins with the advent of a little baby deposited on the Willoughby’s doorstep. Children will love the humour, the twist and turn of events and the situations that the characters find themselves in.
Level: Primary Subject: Orphans, family life, humour.
There’s more to Life/ Rachael Billington
Ned arrives at Great Aunt Ellen’s Lilac Cottage for his two-week holiday by the sea, only to see her being driven away in an ambulance. Then the strangest things begin to happen. The sounds of footsteps around the house, an apparition, and the feeling of being watched sets the stage for this great little mystery.
Level: Primary. Intermediate Subject: Holidays, mystery.
Dog Diaries/ Betsy Byars, Betsy Duffey and Laurie Myers
Members of the WOOF (Words of our Friends) Society have decided to meet and listen to stories about dogs from all over the world. They want to establish the fact that dogs can narrate stories too and do have a more prolific vocabulary than ‘sit’, ‘stand’, or ‘roll over’. A wide variety of short stories that are both engaging and entertaining.
Level: Primary Subject: Dogs, storytelling.
by Janice Rodrigues
The Wellington Children's Book Association has just announced Spinning Gold - a major New Zealand Children’s Book Writing and Illustration conference to be held in the Capital in September 2009.
It's an exciting opportunity for those wanting to attend to gain new skills and network as the four conference strands cover; new technologies, the business of writing, marketing your work, and professional development.
There will be Master classes, keynote speakers, workshops, and panels discussions over the three day conference. Publishers and agents will also be in attendance.
Early bird registration opens in April 2009 but you will need to be quick as space is limited to only 80 attendees.
Interested? You can contact the Wellington Children's Book Association by email; email@example.com to get on their mailing list for updates and advance warning of registration.
Flickr photo by Nuanc
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