Reading is my Secret Power

What a delicious way to celebrate Book Week 2019 ‘Reading is my Secret Power’ with a High Tea, particularly with reading being a high priority for Teacher Librarians and Teachers alike. Thank you to the Reading Centre Team for the morning program and for being such gracious hosts.

The Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) introduced the theme ‘Reading is my Secret Power’. The CBCA Book of the Year judges Margaret McKay-Lowndes and Pauline McLeod delivered a beautifully presented talk for each shortlisted book.

Left: CBCA judges Margaret McKay-Lowndes, and second left: Pauline McLeod with the Reading Centre Team who hosted the Book Week 2019 event. Far right: Queensland Ready Reading co-ordinator.

The judges encouraged robust discussion from the audience on their thoughts. Some wondered why some books weren’t included for consideration, how books were nominated, how publishers choose which books to nominate – entry appx $100 each book, difficulty of judges’ decision making, referring back to the criteria, which book would win etc., All this before the 2019 CBCA winners Live Stream at 12 noon.

In between this, guest Young Adult (YA) author Tristan Bancks an actor and writer-ambassador for literacy charity Room to Read also spoke. Tristan shared his research, the inspiration for his story ideas and the process for his books: Two Wolves, The Fall and the Tom Weekly series.

How picking up a receipt and a pair of glasses, or his Mum saving six staples from a leg operation – as artefacts became relevant props for his stories. How compiling soundtracks helped him stay to the feeling of the story. How photos and images collections captured the authenticity for his settings and characters when writing each book. Tristan gave us an insight into his new book Detention, and how using the two Points of View (POV), whilst created dilemmas initially, made for a more engrossing read.

Tristan has recently signed a contract to write Ginger Meggs stories for kids to be released in 2021, for Ginger Meggs’ 100th anniversary year. He is very proud of the fact his great, great, uncle, Jim Bancks, created the comic strip character, Ginger Meggs, in 1921. He believed this has lead him to follow his passion in writing for children.

As part of the morning session, Queensland Ready Reading shared their good news that they had hit 2000 volunteers. Ready Reading Volunteers went into schools to support teachers in supporting their readers. Some heart-bursting stories were shared with many reluctant readers becoming eager readers. A school can register to be in-serviced on the program as can individuals. The four-hour free workshop also contributes towards Professional Development (PD) for teachers.

Also on display were some of the Alternative Format Library (AFL) services, with its motto being ‘Every Student with Disability Succeeding’. The AFL produce alternate formats as an educational adjustment to standard print. Some of these included: Braille, Large print, Audio Books, Electronic Text, Twin Vision and Tactile Kits. Some translated books included Alpacas with Maracas by Matt Cosgrove, Between Us by Clare Atkins, Leave Taking by Lorraine Marwood, His Name was Walter by Emily Rodda, Dingo by Clare Saxby, Head and Tail by John Canty, Two Wolves, by Tristan. One of the many services.

Congratulations again to the Reading Centre Team, Department of Education, Queensland Government at Woolloongabba for a brilliant productive venue, easy parking. Thank you to your talented caterer for the festive visual presentation and delicious homemade High Tea.

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