Sunday, 17 July 2011

Winner Gets A Bit Lost In Doddington

Thousands of children voted in a close run competition to name the winner of the Read it Again! Cambridgeshire Children's Picture Book Award.

A special presentation was held at Doddington, yesterday, to announce author Chris Haughton (Walker Books) winner of the award for his book 'A Bit Lost' - a delightful and witty story about a little owl who falls out of a nest and is just "a bit lost".

Chris received the award from last year's winner, Amy Husband at the special presentation event held at Doddington Village Hall and attended by nearly 200 children from local schools.

"Read it Again!" is a unique award for a first time picture book where the words and pictures are the work of one individual. It is run by Cambridgeshire County Council and judged solely by children who live or go to school in Cambridgeshire

This year, over 5,600 children from 48 local schools and 8 children's reading groups took part in the voting and it was the closest finish ever.

Cambridgeshire County Councillor David Harty, Cabinet Member for Learning, said; "This was the sixth year we have hosted "Read it Again!" and it was probably our strongest shortlist ever. This was borne out by the fact that all eight titles on the shortlist received hundreds of votes with the top three titles each exceeding 1,000 votes. "Read it Again! encourages children to read, explore and discuss picture books and promotes exciting new talent in the world of children's books."

Authors and books shortlisted:

"Magpie's Treasure" by Kate Slater [Andersen]
"The Wychwood Fairies" by Faye Durston [Macmillan]
"Not Me!" by Nicola Killen [Egmont]
"Birdsong" by Ellie Sandall [Egmont]
"The Talent Show" by Jo Hodgkinson [Andersen]
"Immi" by Karin Littlewood [Gullane]
"Annie Hoot and the Knitting Extravaganza" [Andersen]

Friday, 15 July 2011

Roll Up Roll Up For All The Fun Of The Circus At Your Local Library

This summer, libraries throughout Cambridgeshire will be hosting the "Circus Stars" summer reading challenge, a great way too keep children reading during the summer holidays.

Last year over six thousand Cambridgeshire children took part in the "Space Hop" reading challenge with over half receiving medals and certificates.

Libraries take part in the highly successful reading challenge as pat of Cambridgeshire County Council's drive to encourage more children to use libraries and enjoy reading.

Children of all ages up to 12 years can enroll at their local library from July 23rd. They will receive a free Circus Stars 3D folder including a membership card and stickers.

Throughout the summer, they will be challenged to read at least six books and to record the details in their folder. For each book they read, they will be awarded stickers [some with scratch and sniff panels!] to decorate their folder.

Most libraries will also be offering special sessions where children can talk to staff about what they have been reading and enjoying and get new reading ideas.

Children may read any kind of books picture books, story books, information books, poetry, joke books or listen to stories on CD. Very young children can read with their parents or carers, older children can challenge themselves with books they have never tried before.

All children who complete the challenge will receive a medal and certificate at special presentation ceremonies.

Every year the Challenge has a new theme. Last year's "Space Hop" challenge had a theme of space travel.

This year's theme has a fun circus theme featuring acrobats and jugglers. There is also a website offering children an exciting fusion of reading and IT with games and blogs from some of their favourite authors.

Cambridgeshire County Council David Harty, Cabinet Member for Learning, said: "The Summer Reading Challenge is a great example of how Cambridgeshire County Council libraries are supporting reading in new ways. The challenge has seen thousands of children taking part and gaining medals but more importantly enjoying reading and using the library. It combines free access to books with social activities and is a proven way of helping children overcome the summer learning dip, sending them back to school really positive about reading."

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Novel Children's Awards Turn Over A New Leaf

The winner of the sixth "Read it Again!" Cambridgeshire Children's Picture Book Award will be announced at a special presentation event at Doddington next month.

Around 4,000 children are due to vote in the unique awards which is for first time author illustrators and is judged solely by Cambridgeshire youngsters.

Children in schools, libraries and reading groups across the county have been reading and discussing the 8 books on the shortlist before voting for their favourite.

The ceremony will take place at Doddington Village Hall on Wednesday, 13 July, between 12.45pm and 2.30pm.

Children's Services Manager for Cambridgeshire Libraries Richard Young who devised the award said: "Read it Again! is incredibly popular with children and teachers. By the end of June, around 4,000 local children will have taken part. One teacher described it as the best literacy project she has ever worked on with her pupils. This year's list is one of the strongest ever with eight outstanding books, all very different, and all gathering lots of votes. Three of the shortlisted authors studied at the Cambridge School of Art."

Cambridgeshire County Councillor David Harty, Cabinet Member for Learning, said: "Encouraging children to read and take an active role in looking at and thinking about books is very important. This is why we encourage children to use our libraries and see reading as fun."

Besides delighting thousands of children by introducing them to exciting new books, "Read it Again!" provides feedback for the authors, with many pupils contacting them via letter or e-mail with their thoughts and questions. "How long did it take you to do the pictures?" and "Where did you get the idea from?" being the most frequently asked questions. Many lucky children have already met some of the authors at special events organised by Waterstones bookshop in Cambridge.

The award presentation will take place in front of an invited audience of around 200 school children and local councillors. The award trophy has been generously sponsored by the Rotary Clubs of Wisbech and March.

The shortlist:

"Immi" by Karin Littlewood"
"The Talent Show" by Jo Hodgkinson
"Not Me!" by Nicola Killen
"The Wychwood Fairies" by Faye Durston
"A Bit Lost" by Chris Haughton
"Magpie's Treasure" by Kate Slater
"Annie Hoot and the Knitting Extravaganza" by Holly Clifton Brown
"Birdsong" by Ellie Sandall