Thursday, April 2, 2020

Intl Children's Book Day in a special year ! #StayHome !

International Children's Book Day
Poster illustrated by Damijan Stepančič

"And I know a girl who grew up to be a teacher. She has told me: Children who hadn’t been read to by their parents are impoverished."

 Peter Svetina, translated by Jernej Županič

I agree. This International Children's Book Day, is the year of children been read to by their parents.  

The world suffers a pandemic time. Covid-19 is everywhere. Schools are closed in most countries, kids are at home schooling by Internet, WhatsApp, tutoring by their teachers. Parents read to the little ones. 

For much of the countries sheltering in place over the past three weeks has been a wearisome but essential civic duty. Families don’t want to get sick themselves and they don’t want to bring any sickness to others. So we stay home. All over the world. It’s the right thing to do.

And it's the time to read books, specially on this day, kids. It's their book day!

And why this special day on 2 April? Because Hans Christian Andersen, the loved Danish novelist was born on or around April 2.

Hans Christian Andersen
credits: Getty Images

As we know, he loved children's and wrote the best children's stories. Considered the father of the modern fairy tale, International Children's Book Day (ICBD) is celebrated to inspire the love of reading and to call attention to children's books.

Each year a different National Section of IBBY has the opportunity to be the international sponsor of ICBD

It decides upon a theme and invites a prominent author from the host country to write a message to the children of the world and a well-known illustrator to design a poster.

IBBY Slovenia is the sponsor for International Children's Book Day 2020.

"Where I live, bushes turn green in late April or early May, and are soon populated by butterfly cocoons. These look like wads of cotton or candy floss, and the pupae devour leaf after leaf until the bushes are stripped bare. When developed, the butterflies fly away, however, the bushes have not been destroyed. As summer comes around, they turn green again, each and every time.
This is a picture of a writer, a picture of a poet. They’re eaten away, bled dry by their stories and poetry, which, when they’re finished, fly away, retire into books and find their audience. This happens again and again."
Peter Svetina, translated by Jernej Županič

  • Theme 2020? "A Hunger For Words."

IBBY Slovenia is the sponsor for International Children's Book Day 2020Peter Svetina  is the author  of the message and Damijan Stepančič the illustrator od the poster. 

"The hunger for words manifests itself differently: as gloominess, obliviousness, arrogance. People suffering from this sort of hunger don’t realize their souls are shivering cold, that they’re walking past themselves without noticing. A part of their world is running away from them without them being aware of it.

This type of hunger is sated by poetry and stories.
But is there hope for those who have never indulged in words to ever satisfy this hunger
"There is. The boy reads, almost every day. The girl who had grown up to be a teacher reads stories to her pupils. Every Friday. Every week. If she ever forgets, the children are sure to remind her." 

Peter Svetina, translated by Jernej Županič

Read the message hereIt's a lovely message talking about the hunger for words.

Now, let's read to our children or let them read by themselves.


by Antoinette Portis

This is my favorite cloud. . .because it's the one I am watching.

This is my favorite tree. . .because it's the one where I'm swinging.
This is my favorite tooth. . .because it's the one that is missing.

Follow a little girl as she takes you on a tour through all of her favorite things, from the holes she digs to the hugs she gives in Now, a clever and poignant picture book by award-winning artist Antoinette Portis.
Perfectly captures a child's lighthearted affection for the here and now.
  • Ages 2-6

by Martin Jenkins 
 Stephen Biesty (Illustrator)

Find out what life is like on the International Space Station, what the chances are that we will ever settle on Mars, where in the solar system we might find alien life, and why visiting other stars will almost certainly remain a dream. Budding astronomers, junior astronauts, and anyone who has ever gazed up at the stars in fascination will pore over this beautifully intricate yet accessible glimpse of the infinite wonders of space.

For kids fascinated by the expansive universe, the book offers an excellent guide to what's beyond the Earth's atmosphere and how we have gathered this information.

  • Ages 8 to 12

Small things
Mel Tregonning
Allen & Unwin

On the cusp of having everything slip from his grasp, a young boy has to find a way to rebuild his sense of self. An ordinary boy in an ordinary world. With no words, only illustrations, Small Things tells the story of a boy who feels alone with worries but who learns that help is always close by. An extraordinary story, told simply and with breath taking beauty.

Be True With Me
Adele Griffen

Jean, a privileged, sometimes cruel, often insecure, and always envious girl, is accustomed to living in her glamorous older sister’s shadow. So when Gil Burke, a handsome newcomer with uncertain ties to one of the most powerful families in the exclusive enclave of Sunken Haven, notices Jean, she is smitten. Then Fritz, a girl from outside the gilded gates who humiliated Jean in the island’s tennis championship last year, falls for Gil herself. Soon the girls are competing for much more than a tennis trophy, with higher stakes than either of them can imagine.

A riveting tale of romantic suspense with a shocking twist ending set within the gates of a Fire Island colony of the super rich.

  •  Ages 14 and up


Parents, teachers and carers working to keep children amused and interested while we’re on lockdown might need a bit of magic, so I’m delighted to launch...

J.K. Rowling has launched an online Harry Potter hub for kids, families and fans to tap into during the coronavirus lockdown.

Pottermore Publishing and Scholastic are delighted to introduce Harry Potter At Home to help children, parents, carers and teachers add a touch of Harry Potter magic to our new daily lives.

Harry Potter and the Philospher Stone

"And what happens with these poems and stories?
Words in poetry and in stories are food. Not food for the body, not food that can fill up your stomach. But food for the spirit and food for the soul."

Peter Svetina, translated by Jernej Županič

I am a huge fan of reading in the classroom. This year online schooling home. This is also a chance to encourage children to try new things, broaden their tastes, venture out of their comfort zones. 

And of course, reading aloud means that you can introduce them to books than they would be able to handle independently, which is both a pleasure in itself and a useful way of planting seeds of interest for the future.

Teachers have an ubiquitous responsibility to encourage the love of reading in students by exploring so many magical books! this time on informal learning.

My usual readers know how love to write about reading. I often write about books, specially children books. You will find different posts along the years presenting different books. 

International Children's Book Day is a fantastic motivation to tell and experiment with our students how reading can be a gift by stimulating the imagination and "offering creative solutions to obstacles that we will find along the way." As this year of staying home.

In the midst of chaos, reading to a child can create a small oasis of calm, for both of you. If the one thing this awful crisis has given us, it’s time. Books and children respond well to that.

"And what about the writer and the poet? As summer comes, they’ll turn green again. And again, they’ll be eaten away by their stories and their poems that will then fly away in all directions. Again and again."

Peter Svetina, translated by Jernej Županič 


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Intl Children's Book Day in a special year !#StayHome ! by G-Souto is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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