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Parents' role in creating successful readers

Libby Limbrick-401Following recent news that New Zealand children's literacy scores have declined, Dr Libby Limbrick, chair of the Storylines Trust, and an expert in children's literacy, says that parents can play a major role in their children becoming capable readers and help reverse New Zealand’s distressing slip in the latest international literacy scores..
"The situation that about 27% of New Zealand children did not meet the 'intermediate benchmark' for reading, compared to an international median figure of 18 percent, is simply unacceptable," says Dr Limbrick.

Libby was interviewd on Radio Rhema following the results of a major international reading literacy study of 50 countries involving 319,000 children, in which New Zealand has dropped to 33rd, well behind the highest ranked nations the Russian Federation and Singapore, and significantly lower than other English-speaking nations (Australia, USA and England). You can hear the interview and her advice to parents here.

"It’s easy to say the reason is how children are being taught at school, but literacy learning is complex," says Dr Limbrick. "Many factors, such as language knowledge, engagement in reading, access to support and resources within and outside school, influence children’s achievement in reading. There is evidence that children are coming to school with lower levels of oral language and vocabulary and are reading less. Conversations between parents and children, storytelling and reading-to, prime sources of oral language development, are not occurring as frequently as in the past, possibly due partly to the pervasiveness of digital devices and ‘time-poor’ parents, as well as the economic struggles of many families represented in the survey."
The Storylines Children’s Literature Trust, set up in 2005 to promote engagement with reading, and good books for children, recommends that parents take  positive steps to help their children by:
Talking to your under-fives; this is the best preparation for coming to school with a head start (Meaning: put away your cellphones during family time)
Making time to share the books they bring home from school
Getting books from your local library – they’re free! –and reading them together
Reading bedtime stories nightly; through stories children !earn to love language, and become good readers
Keeping reading to your children as they go through primary school.

 
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Storylines Children's Literature Charitable Trust  promotes awareness of the importance of reading and books for all children and young adults; ensures children and young adults in New Zealand have access to high quality literature; and supports the writers and illustrators of literature for children and young adults in New Zealand. Read more

Storylines also operates as the New Zealand Section of IBBY (the International Board on Books for Young People).
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Recent Highlights

2017 Betty Gilderdale Award
Maureen Crisp is the winner of the 2017 Storylines Betty Gilderdale Award.
Maureen received her award and gave the Storylines Spring lecture on Monday 27 November 2017 in the Guest Room at the Southern Cross Garden Bar Restaurant in Wellington.
 
Read more about the Award here, or the full text of the Spring Lecture, which she presented at the award  ceremony, here.

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Storylines Hui
The Storylines National Children's Writers and Illustrators' Hui was held in early October. A rare opportunity for the children's literature community to network, learn and socialise together, it has been hailed as a real success and a tribute to the volunteer committee who organised it.
Read more about the hui here.
Read Tessa Duder's keynote address here.

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The Saturday evening banquet was just one highlight
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Congratulations Donovan Bixley

At the Arts Foundation's 2017 New Zealand Arts Awards, Children's book illustrator and author Donovan Bixley was named as the recipient of the Mallinson Rendel Illustrators Award. The Award is presented every two years to a children's book illustrator with published work of a high standard and includes a no-strings cash gift of $15,000 and a certificate designed by Sarah Maxey.
Donovan was interviewed on Radio New Zealand's This Way Up on Sunday 22 October. Listen to the interview here.
Read more about Donovan here.
 
Photo: Donovan Bixley

Donovan Bixley

Congratulations David Elliot and Melinda Szymanik

Not only did David Elliot's Snark: Being a true history of the expedition that discovered the Snark and the Jabberwock . . . and its tragic aftermath win the Margaret Mahy Book of the Year at the 2017 Children's Book Awards in August; he has also now been honoured as the sole New Zealand listing in the International Youth Library's White Ravens 2017 catalogue – an annual annual book catalogue of book recommendations in the field of international children’s and young adults literature. "Snark" was illustrated and written (after Lewis Carroll) by David and published by Otago University Press.

Melinda Szymanik’s picture book Fuzzy Doodle, illustrated by Donovan Bixley (published by Scholastic) has also been selected as a 2017 White Raven. You can read a review of Fuzzy Doodle here.

This year’s White Ravens catalogue contains 200 titles in 38 languages from 56 countries. The 200 short reviews are available in the White RavensDatabase on the IYLwebsite (www.ijb.de). The print catalogue is launched at the Frankfurt Book Fair 2017, held from 11-15 October.

The 200 short reviews are available in the White RavensDatabase on the IYLwebsite (www.ijb.de).

 
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Other Organisations
Storylines recommends you check out the websites for other organisations that also advocate for New Zealand writers and literature:

New Zealand Society of Authors

The New Zealand Society of Authors (PEN NZ Inc) Te Puni Kaituhi O Aotearoa is a professional organisation that represents writers in New Zealand. We support writers through advocacy and representation, an advisory service, professional development: mentorships, assessments and a biennial National Writers Forum. We supply information on the publishing industry and collate opportunities and administer prizes and awards. Read more.


Michael King Writers’ Centre Residencies 2018

The 2018 Michael King Writers Centre residencies have been announced.  Read more here.
The Centre provides an annual programme of residencies, with support from Creative New Zealand, at the historic Signalman’s Cottage on Takarunga Mt Victoria in Devonport, Auckland. Residents receive accommodation, the use of a studio and a generous stipend.
A 20 week residency, offered in partnership with the University of Auckland, is for an established author who will benefit from the academic environment. Shorter residencies are open to emerging, mid-career or established writers. In 2018 a Pasifika reseidnecy has been added, to support the development of Pacific writing.

New Zealand Book Awards

The New Zealand Book Awards Trust champions and honours New Zealand literature. Read the latest news about the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards, the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults, and the Phantom Billstickers National Poetry Day here.

New Zealand Book Council

The New Zealand Book Council supports the lifelong engagement of New Zealanders in reading, and promotes and nurtures New Zealand writers, writing and books. Read more.


National Library

National Library has valuable information about the Public Lending Right and how it can potentially benefit authors. Read more.


 
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
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  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.
  • Dressed up children at Christchurch Family Day 2010.

ABOUT US

The Storylines Trust and Foundation together comprise New Zealand's only national organisation working year-round specifically to promote children's and young adult literature through an annual Festival in six regions, author awards, publications, advocacy and other activities ... 

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Storylines welcomes support for all its activities and events. Whether as sponsors or as volunteers for Festival events or task groups, your contribution (large or small) towards helping children grow up to love books and stories will be hugely valued ...  
    
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