New MA course in Children’s Literature
Birkbeck College, University of London, is launching a brand new two-year, part-time MA course in Children’s Literature. The course has been co-designed and will be co-directed by author and broadcaster Michael Rosen.
‘The course offers a unique programme as it combines the theory, practice and performance of children’s literature within a variety of contexts,’ says Rosen. ‘The emphases of this programme are literary, contextual, practical and vocational and it gives students from a range of backgrounds and occupations – such as teachers, editors, play-workers, journalists, and writers – an opportunity to widen and deepen their knowledge of key texts in this multidisciplinary field.’ For more information contact: pgadmin@ english.bbk.ac.uk. To apply online visit: www.bbk.ac.uk/study/pg/englishliterature/childlit.html
Letterbox Club Green
Booktrust has announced that Letterbox Club and the Siobhan Dowd Trust have joined forces to launch Letterbox Club Green, a pilot for looked after children aged 11-13 years of age. The pilot is being generously funded by the Siobhan Dowd Trust, which is the legacy of one of the UK’s most talented children’s writers, Siobhan Dowd, who died in 2007 at the age of 47. The Trust was set up shortly before her death to support disadvantaged young readers.
Letterbox Club Green follows on from the success of Letterbox Club for 7-11 year-olds, which was established in 2007. The aim of improving the educational outlook for looked after children by sending them a parcel of books, maths games and stationery items remains the same but the contents have been specially developed to suit the needs of secondary school children. The pilot will run with 60 looked after children from 12 local authorities across the UK, including Wales and Northern Ireland. See www.siobhandowdtrust.com for more details
Escape to Wonderland: A History of Children’s Book Illustration
This free exhibition is at The Lightbox Gallery, Woking, Surrey until 2 January 2011. It features over 100 works of art from the 19th century to the present day, from Arthur Rackham to Val Biro to Quentin Blake and offers opportunities for visitors to engage with the subject of illustration. For children, there are educational activity packs, drawing workshops, book-making, storytelling and creative writing sessions. For adults there is a lecture programme, featuring talks and book signings by UK illustrators. For further information call 01483 737800 or visit www.thelightbox.org.uk
There’s Nuffin like a Puffin
There’s Nuffin like a Puffin is a Seven Stories exhibition that celebrates the past 70 years of Puffin Books and showcases some gems from the Seven Stories archive. It provides visitors with a rare chance to see original material from some of the best known and loved children’s books, classic and modern, of the past 70 years, including Stig of the Dump, Worzel Gummidge, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, The Borrowers, Artemis Fowl and Percy Jackson. The exhibition also displays one of the treasures of the Seven Stories Collection for the first time: the Kaye Webb archive. Kaye Webb was the second chief editor of Puffin Books, holding the position for almost 20 years, from 1961 to 1979.
Francesca Dow, Managing Director of Puffin Books, said: ‘Puffin was the first publisher of paperback books for children and so it is very fitting for this special show to take place at the first gallery and archive in the UK wholly dedicated to the art of British children’s books.’ Seven Stories is at 30 Lime Street, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 2PQ.
The 2010 Branford Boase Award
Stolen by Lucy Christopher, edited by Imogen Cooper and published by Chicken House, has won the 2010 Branford Boase Award, which is given each year to the most outstanding work of fiction for children by a first time novelist. A story of survival, love and darkness, Stolen is a sensitive, compelling and intense novel with a great sense of place and an extremely confident debut.
The other titles on the 2010 shortlist were:
Devil’s Kiss by Sarwat Chadda, edited by Lindsey Heaven (Puffin)
Life, Interrupted by Damian Kelleher, edited by Anne Clark (Piccadilly)
Guantanamo Boy by Anna Perera, edited by Shannon Park (Puffin)
Big and Clever by Dan Tunstall, edited by Ross Bradshaw (Five Leaves)
Numbers by Rachel Ward, edited by Imogen Cooper (Chicken House)
Paradise Barn by Victor Watson, edited by Leonie Pratt (Catnip)
The Branford Boase Award was set up to encourage new writers and is given each year to the most promising work of fiction for children by a debut novelist. The Branford Boase also honours the editor of the winning title and highlights the importance of the editor in nurturing new talent. The Award has a very strong track record of selecting future best-selling and critically acclaimed authors. Previous winning writers include Marcus Sedgwick, Meg Rosoff, Kevin Brooks and Mal Peet.
This year’s judging panel included Helen Boyle, editor of tBk magazine, Tricia Adams, executive director of the School Library Association, John Newman, children’s buyer at the Newham Bookshop and Chair of the Booksellers Association’s Children’s Bookselling Group, and B R Collins, author of The Traitor Game, winner of last year’s Branford Boase Award. The panel is chaired by Julia Eccleshare, children’s books editor of the Guardian. For more information visit www.branfordboaseaward.org.uk.
The 2010 shortlist for the Booktrust Early Years Awards
The shortlisted books by category are:
The Best Book for babies under one-year-old
Goodnight Buster by Rod Campbell (Macmillan)
Happy Snappy (Mr Croc) by Jo Lodge (Hodder)
Hop a Little, Jump a Little by Annie Kubler (Child’s Play)
I Love My Mummy by Giles Andreae, ill. Emma Dodd (Orchard)
That’s Not My Tiger by Fiona Watt, ill. Rachel Wells (Usborne)
Who’s in the Garden? by Phillis Gershator, ill. Jill McDonald (Barefoot)
The Best Picture Book for children up to five-years-old
Ernest by Catherine Rayner (Macmillan)
The Fox in the Dark by Alison Green, ill. Deborah Allwright (Alison Green Books)
Jeremiah Jellyfish Flies High by John Fardell (Andersen)
The Night Iceberg by Helen Stephens (Alison Green Books)
One Smart Fish by Chris Wormell (Jonathan Cape)
Sing a Song of Bottoms by Jeanne Willis, ill. Adam Stower (Puffin)
Best Emerging Illustrator for children up to five-years-old
Birdsong by Ellie Sandall (Egmont)
The Django by Levi Pinfold (Templar)
Dogs Don’t Do Ballet by Anna Kemp, ill. Sara Ogilvie (Simon & Schuster)
Jack Frost by Kazuno Kohara (Macmillan)
Jeremiah Jellyfish Flies High by John Fardell (Andersen)
The Talent Show by Jo Hodgkinson (Andersen)
The judges for the Booktrust Early Years Awards 2010 are chair Wendy Cooling MBE, presenter and broadcaster Kirsty Gallacher, author/illustrator Michael Foreman, Booktrust Development Manager Janet Harrison and Modern Matron Jackie Woodroffe.
The winner for each category will be announced on 2 September.
The SLA School Librarian of the Year Honour List
The librarians chosen for the Honour List are Sue Bastone – Licensed Victuallers’ School, Ascot; Rebecca Jones – Malvern St James, Worcestershire; Shiona Lawson – Rothesay Academy, Isle of Bute; Denise Reed – Hurst Prep School, Hurstpierpoint, Sussex; Kevin Sheehan – Offerton School, Stockport; and Duncan Wright – Stewart’s Melville College, Edinburgh. Their work will be celebrated at a ceremony held on International School Library Day, 4 October, when the SLA School Librarian of the Year 2010 will be announced.
The SLA School Librarian of the Year Award recognises the excellent work that is carried out in our school libraries. ‘It celebrates the essential work that school librarians are doing at a time when school libraries are being closed at an alarming rate,’ says Ginetta Doyle, Chair of the Selection committee and Chair of the School Library Association, adding, ‘We were impressed by the passion and dedication of the librarians we visited and the innovative and inspirational ways in which they bring books and an enthusiasm for learning into the heart of the school and into the lives of children.’
The 2010 CLPE Poetry Award
The shortlisted titles are:
Orange Silver Sausage by James Carter and Graham Denton (Walker)
New and Collected Poems for Children by Carol Ann Duffy (Faber)
Umpteen Pockets by Adrian Mitchell (Orchard)
Michael Rosen’s A-Z: The Best Children’s Poetry from Agard to Zephaniah, edited by Michael Rosen (Puffin)
The Magic Box by Kit Wright (Macmillan)
The winner will be announced on 30 September. Further information from www.clpe.co.uk
9 November 1914 – 9 July 2010
The radical journalist and historian, Basil Davidson, who worked tirelessly for campaigns for Africa’s liberation from colonialism and apartheid, has died at the age of 95. Amongst his many publications was Discovering Africa’s Past which was published in 1978. Written specifically for secondary school students, it was the first non-colonialist history of Africa aimed at a young audience and it won the alternative children’s book award, the ‘Other Award’.