Each year across Australia, The Children’s Book Council of Australia brings children and books together celebrating CBCA Children’s Book Week. This year’s book week starts next Monday and during this time schools, libraries, booksellers, authors, illustrators and families will celebrate Australian children’s literature with children’s book character parades and amazing displays.
This year’s theme is Escape to Everywhere and aims to allow children to be transported to a world of fantastical creatures or larger-than-life characters. Click through for the list of books that have been shortlisted here.
Let’s explore a few ways you can bring Book Week to life for your children.
Costumes and Make Believe
Dressing up as our favourite character for Book Week parades in Primary School and curling up at bedtime under the cover with a book and a torch are just two of our strongest memories of reading as a child in the Booko HQ. There is a vast variety of options and inspiration for dressing up over on Pinterest – here are some of our favourites…
The Cat in the Hat by Dr Seuss
This Dr. Seuss’ classic is a deliciously anarchic story of a giant cat in a hat whose unexpected arrival turns a dull, rainy day into a madcap adventure. It’s a favourite in many families.
Here are some fabulous ideas for a Cat in the Hat costumes.
Pippi Longstocking By Astrid Lindgren
A true children’s classic. Pippi Longstocking is nine years old. She has just moved into Villa Villekulla where she lives all by herself with a horse, a monkey, and a big suitcase full of gold coins. The grown-ups in the village try to make Pippi behave in ways that they think a little girl should, but Pippi has other plans. She would much rather spend her days arranging wild, exciting adventures to enjoy. Generations of children have fallen in love with Pippi Longstocking as readers are instantly charmed by her warmth and sense of fun.
Find great ideas fro Pippi costumes here.
Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White
An affectionate, sometimes bashful pig named Wilbur befriends a spider named Charlotte, who lives in the rafters above his pen. A prancing, playful bloke, Wilbur is devastated when he learns of the destiny that befalls all those of porcine persuasion. Determined to save her friend, Charlotte spins a web that reads “Some Pig,” convincing the farmer and surrounding community that Wilbur is no ordinary animal and should be saved. In this story of friendship, hardship, and the passing on into time, E.B. White reminds us to open our eyes to the wonder and miracle often found in the simplest of things.
We think these costumes sum up Charlotte’s Web delightfully.
The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt
Daywalt has created a colourful solution to a crayon-based crisis in this playful, imaginative story that will have children laughing and playing with their crayons in a whole new way.
Here are some amazing crayon inspired costumes.
Pig The Winner by Aaron Blabey
Pig was a Pug and I’m sorry to say, If he didn’t come first it would ruin his day. From award-winning creator of Pig the Pug comes a brand new tale about the world’s greediest pug. Pig the Pug is back and this time he is being a great big cheat. Pig will do anything to win, and, if he can’t, he throws great big tantrums. But when his latest attempt to beat his best friend, Trevor, backfires will Pig the Pug learn his lesson at last?
Click here for Pig The Pug face painting ideas.
91-Storey Treehouse by Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton
The 91-Storey Treehouse is the seventh book of Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton’s wacky treehouse adventures, where the laugh-out-loud story is told through a combination of text and fantastic cartoon-style illustrations.
Join Andy and Terry in their now 91-storey spectacular treehouse. They’ve added thirteen new levels, including the world’s most powerful whirlpool, a mashed-potato-and-gravy train and a human pinball machine. Why not try your luck on the spin-and-win prize wheel or hang out in a giant spider web (with a giant spider), or you can always get your fortune told by Madam Know-it-all or eat a submarine sandwich the size of an actual submarine while deciding whether or not to push the big red button . . .
Here are some great ideas for costumes for book week (we love the tree)
Listening / Library Activities
Hearing a story when you’re little is super exciting…especially for those that are not quite up to reading by themselves. Why not check out your local library and see what story time they have coming up.
This year the City of Melbourne has some great events for Book Week. Drop in to hunt for clues with Puss in Boots, pet detective, explore augmented reality at the East Melbourne Library with sessions for 3 to 5 year olds and 6 to 10 year olds, or you can also drop by one of the storytimes and escape into some of the stories shortlisted for the Book of the Year prize.
Be it a tea party with the children, or a bigger affair with their friends, story themed afternoon teas are wonderful.
Here are a few ideas for you…
Green Eggs and Ham by Dr Seuss
Imagine the squeals of delight and disgust when you offer your children a plate of green eggs, like these ones.
When Sam-I-am persists in pestering a grumpy grouch to eat a plate of green eggs and ham‚ perseverance wins the day‚ teaching us all that we cannot know what we like until we have tried it!
The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
This much-loved classic picture book follows the caterpillar’s week while he eats through a range of foods in preparation for his hibernation and subsequent appearance as a beautiful butterfly. Theming afternoon tea couldn’t be easier with these ideas…not to mention it’ll definitely encourage the children to eat their fruit!
Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
Greg Heffley finds himself thrust into a new year and a new school where undersize weaklings share the corridors with kids who are taller, meaner and already shaving. Desperate to prove his new found maturity, which only going up a grade can bring, Greg is happy to have his not-quite-so-cool sidekick, Rowley, along for the ride. But when Rowley’s star starts to rise, Greg tries to use his best friend’s popularity to his own advantage. Recorded in his diary with comic pictures and his very own words, this test of Greg and Rowley’s friendship unfolds with hilarious results.
Just look at this clever party.
Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
A mad hatter’s the party would be delightful to bring to life in your own dining room…perhaps no tea cup throwing though…we love these ideas.
When Alice follows the White Rabbit down a rabbit hole, she finds herself in an enchanted world, filled with creatures like the Mad Hatter, the disappearing Cheshire Cat, and the Queen of Hearts. Alice quickly finds out that nothing is as it seems in the wild world of Wonderland.
Colouring, gluing, and snipping are all lovely ways to bring books to life for children. For those more daring, you could always whip out the sewing machine…here’s a few that will definitely be a hit…
Ten Apples Up on Top by Dr Seuss
Ten Apples up on Top has been helping preschoolers learn to count and read simultaneously. Simple illustrations and even simpler rhymes make this apple-balancing competition between a dog, a tiger, and a lion a fun, easy place to practice sight words and phonics.
Luckily some very clever craft people have shared their ideas on Pinterest here.
We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen
Brave bear hunters go through grass, a river, mud, and other obstacles before the inevitable encounter with the bear forces a headlong retreat.
How sweet are these bear hunt crafts.
Corduroy by Don Freeman
This lovely picture book has always been a favourite in our house where a stuffed bear waiting hopefully in a toy department finds a home with a little girl. It’s endearing and beautifully illustrated.
These Corduroy activities are delightful.
Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling
Harry Potter thinks he is an ordinary boy until he is rescued by an owl, taken to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, learns to play Quidditch and does battle in a deadly duel. A wonderful wizardly good book which has inspired a gazillion craft ideas just like these.