I have been volunteering lately at my daughter’s school library. It is the ultimate volunteer position for me: surrounded by children’s books. What a dream for a children’s writer.
Last week the library clerk showed me the Forest of Reading nominated books in their collection. The Forest of Reading program was created to encourage a love of reading. In the program, children must read five of the ten selected books for their age and then vote for their favourite. It’s not just for children either. Adults can participate too by reading and voting on the Evergreen nominees. In fact, more than 250 000 readers participate in the program.
I was thrilled when the library clerk asked if I wanted to read any of their books. I snapped up that opportunity right away.
The first book that I read was called “In the Bag! Margaret Knight Wraps it up” by Monica Kulling. The book is nominated for the Silver Birch Express program, for grades 3-4. I have only had the opportunity to read this one nominee, but so far I am impressed. “In the Bag” is about an unconventional woman inventor who is most famous for her invention of the paper bag. It teaches not only about her history, but about history in general, i.e., how young children were when they started work in the 1800s, and how it felt to be a woman at the time. The children’s book carries a great lesson as well about perseverance.
This book inspired my daughter. She informed me that she wished she too could be an inventor when she was older. Later the book encouraged my daughter to engage in some creative play too: drawing machines in a notebook and building a machine first out of blocks and then out of cardboard. Books that spark creativity are always welcome in my house.
“In the Bag” is just one of many that are on the list of nominees of the Silver Birch Express list. I look forward to reading some of the other fiction and non fiction choices that are about loons, dinosaurs, Harry Houdini, as well as one by local author Natalie Hyde called “I Owe You One”.
Through its eight reading programs, the Forest of Reading program supports the Canadian publishing industry and encourages children to read for fun. So go ahead and indulge in our Canadian writers’ literature.
Tip for Canadian writers:
Submitting your book for consideration for the Forest of Reading program will bring a lot of exposure to it. For submission guidelines click here.