Wednesday, 19 March 2014

The Libraries Project 2014.

Bringing brilliant authors and illustrators to libraries in the North East of England. 

The Children's Bookshow is delighted by the success of its second Libraries Project, which took place earlier this month.

The celebrations of World Book Day on 6th March were a uniting focus for our series of free events for school children, hosted by libaries in Middlesborough, Hartlepool, Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Stockton-on-Tees from 3-7th March. 

Catherine Rayner, Alexis Deacon, Jessica Souhami and Daniel Morden enthralled children in a range of styles of libaries; traditional and modern, large and small. The library staff gave the schools a wonderful welcome and teachers and pupils alike were entertained and inspired by the talented writers and artists as they shared their stories and pictures, inviting children's responses, suggestions and questions. 

Each child was presented with a free copy of a book by the author they were meeting, giving a lasting souvenir of their special experience. One teacher told us: "My class had a brilliant time, and were totally transfixed by the talk and illustrations. Thank you also for the copies of 'Beegu', my children couldn't believe it. Our thanks to Alexis, and all the staff at the library for making us so welcome, we had a fabulous time". 

Jan Dumbell of Newcastle Libraries described Alexis Deacon's visit to Newcastle City Library: "It was a big success with over 130 attending. The children were enthralled and had entered into the spirit of World Book Day with some of them arriving in book character costumes. One school had been reading Beegu in class and a great cheer of recognition went up when she appeared on Alexis’s presentation. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon and were all delighted to go away with a free copy of Beegu."

"What a fantastic time everyone had, thank you so much for organising it." - Judy at Newcastle Library 

Daniel Morden
We were also thrilled to hear such lovely feedback from Lucy of Stockton-on-Tees Library, about their visit from Daniel Morden:  "By working with The Children’s Bookshow for World Book Day 2014 it enabled Stockton Libraries to be able to offer a free author session and free book to 200 children from 5 different local primary schools. We would not have been able to do this without the support of the organisation - for the library service to be able to afford a high profile author and storyteller like Daniel Morden and to purchase a free book for every child who attended is something we don’t have the funds to be able to deliver. The Children’s Bookshow is about inspiring and creating a love of books, reading and libraries in children and young people. By giving them the opportunity to meet an author it brings alive the story for them in a real way that creates a lasting impact for them. By offering children the opportunity to then read a
Daniel Morden
free book by that author it creates an excitement which is fantastic to see and as this is all taking place within the local library for the children and teachers attending it showcases all that libraries are and what we can offer. My favourite comment from a teacher which I think says it all ‘They were reading their free book as they walked the whole way back to school and actually wanted to stay in and read rather than go out for their lunch!’ I just wanted to say thank you so much for giving Stockton Libraries the opportunity to be part of The Children’s Bookshow North East Tour, the sessions this morning with Daniel went really well and the children and teachers had a fantastic time and seemed to get so much out of it and really where hanging on his every word."

Children contributing ideas
for Alexis Deacon's illustrations. 
"Just a quick message to say thanks for the book show this week. Our children and staff really enjoyed their visit and were over the moon with their free gift." - Teacher.
Artwork created by Catherine
Rayner during her visit to
Middlesborough Central Library.
The Children's Bookshow had a very encouraging take-up from the schools local to each library, and the venues were well filled. As each author and illustrator talked, the children's attention was held in perfect rapture. Live drawing is a brilliant part of meeting with a professional illustrator, and Catherine Rayner amazed her audience by creating her well-loved character of Augustus, the Tiger who lost his smile, before their eyes.

Gifted storyteller, Daniel Morden, gave a gripping performance, introducing the many Greek Gods and Goddesses, explaining how the Trojan War began and acquainting the children with his latest book.

Alexis Deacon with drawings
created with suggestions from chidren.
Alexis Deacon welcomed suggestions from his audience to create unique creatures, inspired by his very famous and cute little alien character, Beegu, and entertained them with a selection of his beautifully illustrated picture books.

Jessica Souhami performed with her gorgeous, bright and bold picture books, telling the traditional tales that she captures so perfectly in her illustrations and text, explaining her techniques to create suspense and excitement.

These talented individuals each bring something special and different to inspire the next generation of readers, writers and artists, making these creative processes come to life for young audiences. 

Children listening avidly to a story with Jessica Souhami.

Jessica Souhami sharing
one of her picture books.

Children enjoying their free
books by Jessica Souhami.

A huge thank you to all the Libraries who hosted our events, to all the lovely library staff for helping to facilitate the sessions and for welcoming authors and schools, to the teachers for bringing their pupils along and, as ever, to the talented authors and illustrators for sharing your gifts with these young people. 

It's been a wonderful time and we now look forward to our annual Children's Bookshow at fantastic theatres throughout England this coming Autumn.

Keep in touch to hear details of our upcoming tour,
and on twitter