the reading hour event

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Next Thursday, 14 September, is the Australian Reading Hour. What is it, you ask? Well, you choose one hour of your day to snuggle up on the couch or run a deep bath or jump on the treadmill or sit under a tree, and read a book!

You can read it to yourself. You can read it to a child. The child could read it to you. Or someone could read a book to a teddy bear. The choices are endless!

To celebrate The Reading Hour, seven authorly friends and I--all SCBWI members--got together at Woden Library in Canberra (thanks, Pam and Sam!) for a wonderful event--two hours of stories with a bunch of fabulously engaged kids.

Things kicked off with Kerry Malone, reading two books, including her gorgeous You Can Do It, Joey!

Then it was me, asking everyone to raise a limb for how much they love books (thank you, Nicole!).

There also may or may not have been a rendition of We All Know Frogs Go La-de-da-de-dah...

Next up was Genevieve Hopkins who read her gorgeous book--The Adventures of William Brambleberry: Aviator Mouse.

Next was Amazing Grace Bryant with the funniest book, Tyrannosaurus Wrecks by Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen and Zachariah Qhora. It was hilarious!

You've just got to see how she says 'WRECKS!' I honestly wet myself during this reading. Wetting oneself is both good AND bad.

Next up was Stephanie Owen Reeder (and author of Amazing Grace! but not 'Bryant'), who brought along her gorgeous grandsons. She read from her brilliant books, Dance Like a Pirate and Feeling Fine. These got the kids moving!

A great video of Stephanie reading--how engaged were these kids??

Next was Cate Whittle with a totally clever and age-appropriate presi starring her irrepressible dragon, Trouble, from Trouble and the New Kid (a fantastic chapter book series for adventurous kids, ie: all kids).

The kids then went on a true adventure with a reading by Devon Sillett--The Leaky Story--awash with pirates and high seas!

To finish off two solid hours of story, Nicole Godwin handed out heart balloons and the kids played along, raising or lowering their balloons as Ella the elephant went through her heart-wrenching journey to find her mum. She also took us on a journey to Thailand, sharing slides of elephant sanctuaries. We learned a lot, including the fact that you can throw an entire pumpkin into an elephant's mouth and he will chomp it up like an apple, and he'll even gobble an entire banana tree!

Here is a shot of Nicole, SCBWI ACT Coordinator, and all round fab gal, Nicole Godwin, who organised this event and even put our book pages onscreen (thank you, Nicole!).

What an amazing event in celebration of The Reading Hour. Two hours zipped by in a flash, then we signed books and the kids snaffled some treats, from bookmarks to colouring pages and balloons and badges. It never fails to astound me how long kids--even very little kids--can sit and enjoy reading after reading.

Thank you to everyone who came along and making this event so special! I hope you'll join us on Thursday 14 September by reading for one hour.

Happy reading!

Devon and son, Cate, Kerry, Grace, Nicole, me, Genevieve and son

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