LIAN TANNER

Books are fun

June 2nd, 2019

Back in 2010 I was invited to New Delhi to take part in the Bookaroo Festival of Children’s Literature. It took place over four or five days, and there were flags and banners, and people telling stories under trees, and busloads of excited kids.

There were authors from all over the world, most of them as excited as the children. And the organisers were passionate about literacy and passionate about books.

 

But the overall sense of the whole festival, as soon as you walked into the park, was ‘books are fun’. ‘Books are exciting.’ ‘Reading will take you to amazing places.’

Last Tuesday I visited a grade 5 class at Lauderdale primary, which is my local school. And I came away thinking about what my main aim is when I go into schools.

Just like the Bookaroo Festival, whether I’m giving an author talk or a workshop, my number one aim is for the kids to have fun. For them to experience the breathless delight of reading or listening to an exciting story, and the thrill of making their own.

My number two aim is to give them some writing skills – which also transfers into reading skills. But fun comes first.

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