Children’s Books of the Year
The twelfth annual CBY exhibition will be at the National Book League (45 East Hill, London SW18 2QZ) from 2nd to 14th August. It will include over 300 books across the age range chosen by Barbara Sherrard-Smith from the more than 3,000 published in 1981.
As usual there will be storytelling sessions, appearances by authors and illustrators, competitions and activities, with a special emphasis this year on multi-cultural events. The catalogue of the exhibition published by Julia MacRae Books will be available in July. Details from Barbara Buckley on 01-870 9055.
Scotland gets its own Children’s Reference Library
The NBL in Scotland which in the twenty-one years since its inauguration had done so much good work with and for children and books has now opened its own reference collection of children’s books.
One copy of every children’s book published in Britain will be housed in the collection for just twelve months. There is in addition a range of review journals and a small collection of books about children’s books and reading.
The library was officially launched on 3 March by Leon Garfield. It’s open to anyone wishing to use it (Monday – Friday, 9.30-12.30 and 1.30-5.00) and visitors will be sure of a warm welcome from Christine Morgan. School and college groups are welcome but for ten or more people please make an advance booking.
NBL Scotland is at 15A Lynedoch Street, Glasgow G3 6EF. Tel: 041-332 0391.
Worcester College of Higher Education
Summer School 1982
23-30 July 1982
This course is designed to extend knowledge of recent fiction for children. It discusses the latest authors, books and trends in children’s literature and relates them to current school and classroom practice. A critical study will be made of selected aspects of children’s literature and these will be related to children’s books in the classroom. There will be opportunities to read, to discuss and to listen to authors, publishers, librarians and teachers; visits will be made to various school libraries. Some part of the course will be allotted to workshops in the College Teaching Practice Library.
Residential accommodation is available at the College.
Particulars of this course can be obtained from the Director of the Summer School, Worcester College of Higher Education, Henwick Grove, Worcester WR2 6AJ. Telephone No. (0905) 428080.
Eleanor Farjeon Award
Each year the Children’s Book Circle presents the Eleanor Farjeon Award for ‘distinguished services to children’s books.’ Past winners include Margery Fisher, Kaye Webb, Elaine Moss and Peter Kennerley (for his work for the School Bookshop movement). This year, the seventeenth, it is a particular pleasure to report that the prize goes to Nancy and Aidan Chambers whose activities over more than twelve years have done so much to improve both the quality of discussion about children’s books and the level of awareness of books, particularly among teachers.
Signal, the magazine which Nancy edits and which she and Aidan launched twelve years ago, has established itself as a platform for regular and extended serious discussion of children’s books. In recent years Signal publications have given us very useful bookguides on subjects like Humour, Poetry, and Picture Books; and, arising from a particular interest in poetry, they instituted the Signal Poetry Award and created the Signal Poetry Collection, now lodged at the Centre for Children’s Books in the NBL.
Among other things, including writing some excellent children’s novels, criticism, and books about children and reading, Aidan spends an enormous amount of time in this country and abroad talking about and lecturing on books. His Children’s Literature courses for teachers in Avon, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire have produced a steady stream of enthusiastic, well-informed teachers. Many of his early ‘graduates’ are now spreading the word in other parts of the country.
No-one who has had contact with Nancy and Aidan Chambers, directly or indirectly, can fail to have been influenced by their deep concern for good children’s books. Without this concern, allied as it is to knowledge, humour and enthusiasm, all who work with children and books would be much poorer.
The NCPTA/SBA/Hodder and Stoughton story-writing competition this year asked for one chapter and a whole plot outline for a story on the theme, Our Electronic Age. The winners are obviously budding novelists.
1st Simon Wright, Shears Green CP Junior School, Kent
2nd Caroline Moss, St Peter’s Primary School, Rossett, Wrexham
3rd Alison Benton, St Andrew’s C of E Community School, Cambridge
1st Philip Andrews, Hugh Christie School, Tonbridge, Kent
2nd Victoria James, Clayesmore School, Iwerne Minster, Blandford
3rd Sally Hicks, Kingsfield School, Bristol
Motivating the Reader
A two-day, non-residential conference at Brighton Polytechnic, Falmer, Sussex. 22 and 23 July, 10.00 – 4.00.
Speakers include Elaine Moss, Shirley Hughes, Jan Mark and Michael Hardcastle. There will also be opportunities for small group discussion.
Two days £8 (inc. coffee and tea)
One day £5 (inc. coffee and tea)
Lunch extra. Advance booking essential.
Booking forms from: The Children’s Book Conference, The Literacy Centre, Brighton Polytechnic, Falmer, Brighton, BN1 9PH. Tel: (0273) 606622, Ext. 223/366.
Books Events Ahead
Manchester Children’s Book Fair. Friday 10.00-5.00; Saturday 10.00-4.00. Organised by Sherratt and Hughes. Details 061-834 7055.
19 June – 18 July
Lewis Carroll’s 15th Anniversary Exhibition in Dundee (in Edinburgh 1-29 May). Organised by the Edinburgh Children’s Book Group. Details from Val Bierman, 9 Gillespie Crescent, Edinburgh.
Ilkley Literature Festival Children’s Book Bonanza, 10 July. Details from June Oldham, the Festival Office, 0943 601210.
Barnsley Book Bonanza. Lots of events for children, including the Saturday Book Bang. Details from Maggi Turfrey, 01-580 6321.
Peterborough Children’s Book Fair. Details from Peter Shaw, 27 Broadway, Peterborough.