Monday, May 12, 2014

Welcome to Children's Book Week 2014!

Ninety five years since its inception in 1919, the national literacy initiative is still going strong. 

Reading is a life-changing experience. 

To discern the squiggles on a paper and extract a pattern and learn to communicate using the same coded language is a skill only humans are capable of at this level of complexity. 

World is not a mystery anymore for a reader, and thoughts are not suffocating inside with no way of expression.

From board books to touch-and-feel and squeak and pop-up books; from abecedary to wordless picture books to poignant poetry collections; from magical picture books to early readers to chapter books to graphic books and pithy young adult novels; children these days grow up with an array of choices to match their reading preferences and needs.

I still remember the thrill with which I read to my baby girl, my firstborn.

A week after registering her birth, we got a surprise package from our local library with 3 board books plus brochures and pamphlets about the benefits of early childhood literacy and the programs available at the library for fostering and nurturing it. 

The first board book of the three that I randomly chose to read to my 9-day old infant then was I Spy Little Book, rhymes by Jean Marzollo, photographs by Walter Wick. Didn't matter that she couldn't understand the words or focus on the pictures then.  

I read the same I Spy Little Book to my 9-week old - clinging to my chest crying with colic while I sounded out the now-familiar rhyming text in a soft sing-song. Didn't matter that this seemed highly ridiculous to some while strangely soothing to the mother and baby.

Nine years later, "I Spy" books are still a huge hit with my daughter; and, happily, there seems to be a never-ending supply of them.

The other two board books in the package were Goodnight Moon by Margaret Weiss Brown, illustrated by Clement Hurd; and Guess how Much I Love You by Sam McBratney, illustrated by Anita Jeram

I was hooked!

Since Saffron Tree is all about sharing children's books and celebrating the authors and illustrators who make this magic happen, we are excited to be a champion of Children's Book Week, 2014.

There are many ways to join in the fun of Children's Book Week and spread the joy of reading:

  •  host a book exchange or book giveaway 
  • dress up as a favorite children's book character, or author, or illustrator
  • host a story time session for kids  who would otherwise have no chance of attending one
  • have the kids design a poster that represents the joys of reading for them 
  • make a book with the kids- written and illustrated by them!
  • ask the kids to list 3 of their current top favorite books and share why they like them
  • organize a treasure hunt based on favorite children's books with fun book-related clues
  • hold a cooking party based on book: make an Ugly Pie as shared in Ugly Pie by Lisa Wheeler or Arroz con Leche as shared in The Cazuela that the Farm Maiden Stirred by Samantha R. Vamos

A couple of fun ideas from CBW website- Story Starters and Puzzles.

To celebrate this week, our own ST contributors, many of whom are authors and illustrators themselves, have come up with a list of books that influenced them in more ways than one, which they share in a series of posts coming up over the next few days.

Also, look for the CBW Children's Book Giveaway we will be running during this week.

Happy Reading!

No comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails