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February 14 is International Book Giving Day, a day dedicated to getting new, used, and borrowed books in the hands of as many children as possible.
I’ll certainly be giving some books away and sharing others on February 14, and I hope you will too. For those books you’re giving away, you might like to put an International Book Giving Day bookplate inside them.
Last year Clara Vulliamy designed a gorgeous bookplate for International Book Giving Day:
This year Nicola L Robinson has designed another really fun bookplate you can download, print off, and stick in your books:
To download the full size bookplate from Nicola L Robinson click here.
If you are an illustrator and would like to design a bookplate for International Book Giving Day, please get in touch! We welcome bookplates written in a variety of languages. The bookplates must be 11.4 cm x 6.9 cm (or 4.5 inches x 2.7 inches) in size. We will make the bookplates available for free at International Book Giving Day’s website for people to download and print themselves.
It’s always handy to have a few activity sheets up one’s metaphorical sleeve when it comes to the summer holidays and so once again I’ve sought out some great free resources created by children’s authors and illustrators for us all to enjoy.
Click on the relevant image or coloured link to be taken to activity sheets you can download.
Debi Gliori has created an entire fun pack you can download
. It includes a wordsearch, a mask to make, colouring in and more.
On Neal Layton’s site you can find Emily B activity sheets and an Oscar and Arabella colouring Sheet
Illustrator Claire Sells has two colouring-in sheets (a fairy, and some dinosaurs) for a quick and easy 5-minute activity.
If you loved Maudie Smith’s Opal Moonbaby, you won’t want to miss out on her Mingle Maker
3 Comments on 1st set of free activity sheets from authors and illustrators – Summer 2012, last added: 8/5/2012
The Bear With Sticky Paws Won't Go To Bed
by Clara Vullimay is a night adventure that takes Lily and her bear friend on a magical bed to a tropical island. As the party starts the Bear fills himself with goodies. They build sand castles, play volleyball, and pick coconuts. However, soon Lily starts to get tired. The bear is still wide awake. He dresses up in an Hawaii outfit and whirls and twirls until Lily calls out, "No more! It's my bedtime." As the Bear dances away Lily starts to fall asleep and is tucked in my her mother.
This is a sweet and imaginative way to say goodnight to a child.
Inside the front cover is a tag similar to the one Paddington Bear wore that reads This Bear with Sticky Paws book belongs to: ___________ (a little space left for a children's name) and a warning KEEP YOUR PAWS OFF and a sticky print!
Last week the UK Secretary for Education Michael Gove suggested that children as young as 11 should be reading 50 books a year as part of a drive to raise literacy standards. This raised a lot of eyebrows amongst the British book-loving public, not least as it comes following large cuts in funding for libraries in the UK.
Whilst most commentators of course agreed that reading should be encouraged, many argued against a prescribed list of set length:
“I feel it’s the quality of children’s reading experience that really matters. Pleasure, engagement and enjoyment of books is what counts – not simply meeting targets” ~ Anthony Browne
“The important aim is a reading that should be wide and deep rather than numerical” ~Alan Garner
“When it comes to reading books children should be allowed – and encouraged – to read as much rubbish as they want to” ~ Philip Pullman
In response to Gove’s 50 books a year suggestion, The Independent newspaper published an article “The 50 books every child should read“, containing books for 11 year olds suggested by Philip Pullman, Michael Morpurgo, Michael Rosen and others. This list gave me lots of food for thought. Of course I want to do all I can to encourage a love of reading in my children, and one of the ways I do this is by reading lots and lots to them – if they don’t love books when they are 6 it’s unlikely they’ll love books when they are 11 or 16.
So I try to let them read whenever or whatever they want, but I also try to ensure they’re surrounded by superb, stimulating, brilliant and breathtaking (picture) books. But how do I, you, or any other person discover and choose such books?
I approached six brilliant UK-based illustrators and asked them to contribute towards a list of books every child should be read. Tim Hopgood, James Mayhew, Jan Pieńkowski, Katie Cleminson, Viviane Schwarz and Clara Vulliamy all very gamely accepted my challenge of producing a list of 10 or so books each that they love.
This list is not prescriptive, this list is personal. This list does not claim to be the definitive top 50 picture books of all time, although it certainly would create a fantastic library for any child. This list is merely a starting point and this list, hopefully, will generate lots of discussion; I look forward to hearing what you think about the books, authors and illustrators which have been included (and those which have been left out).
Tim says “This is not my top 10 – that would be impossible! My top 10 changes constantly as I discover more and more new (or sometimes old) picture books to add to my collection. And I don’t claim to be an expert on what makes a great picture book. The list I’ve put together is simply 10 books that I find inspiring and enjoyable to look at time and time again and hope others will too!”
3 Comments on 50+ picture books every child should be read – a non-prescriptive list for inspiration
, last added: 4/1/2011
I’m so excited! The wonderfully talented, super generous author and illustrator Clara Vulliamy is kicking off a new series here on Playing by the book today.
Every month (where possible), she is going share some ideas to encourage children to tell stories of their own, using the monthly theme from the “I’m looking for a book about…” carnival. She and I will be turning her prompts into a library of mini books you can print off and give to the kids in your life (and yourself!), along with a blank mini-book ready and waiting for stories and illustrations to fill its pages.
These mini books are unique little treats, and Clara and I hope that with her prompts, and a great list of books to read/share from the monthly carnival, we’ll be firing up imaginations and encouraging kids, young and old, to create tales of their own.
As Clara says…
Maybe it’s an older child who would like to write their story down, or a younger one who would be happy telling theirs by drawing pictures…
or, my own personal favourite, making up a story together while chatting at bedtime after lights-out…
I’ll suggest a starting point, a few nudges along the way to keep the story flowing along and an inspiring object or two (I always find an actual THING helps me when I’m writing a story) –
Whose bed could this be?
- and the rest is up to them!
Now to the first mini-books from our library-to be…
Two books especially for you from Clara and me
The Small book of Big Story IDEAS by Clara Vulliamy
A blank book waiting to be filled with stories!
For each book you’ll need to download a pdf file (see below), print it off, and then use the method shown in this video to fold/cut the paper to create the actual book:
To download Clara’s Small Book of Big Story Ideas (No. 1), on the theme of elves and fairies, please
4 Comments on A World Exclusive! A mini illustrated book for inspiring young story tellers, by Clara Vulliamy, last added: 5/14/2012