Edgecliff Year 2 teacher and Infants Coordinator, Miss Jennifer Kirby-Brown, recounts how a memorable Book Week ignited a passion of books and embraced School values.
The Children’s Book Council Australia (CBCA) Book Week is an annual event at Edgecliff, during which the School spends one whole week in August bringing boys, authors, illustrators and books together. This year’s celebration was a little different from those we’ve experienced in the past, but many of the boys agreed that it was one of the best. Although the CBCA postponed the 2020 Book Week to October, we held it at the usual time, having already arranged numerous author visits.
“This year’s celebration was a little different from those we’ve experienced in the past, but many of the boys agreed that it was one of the best.”
This year’s theme, ‘Curious Creatures, Wild Minds’, tied in perfectly with our School value, Curiosity, along with the amazing and often ‘wild’ minds of our youngest boys.
The Infants Department commenced each day with Rotational Reading, with staff sharing their favourite CBCA shortlisted picture book with our Kindergarten to Year 2 classes. Predictions were made, discussions held, questions raised and answers revealed, with the assistance of a class Curiosity Cube, which was filled with a variety of items and specific questions relating to each picture book.
Ursula Dubosarsky and Matt Cosgrove’s Book presentations were delivered via Zoom this year. Believe it or not, this allowed our guests to get ‘up close and personal’, giving boys a perfect view of books, props and particularly illustrations as they were guided through the drawing process. Boys relished the opportunity to stand in front of the Zoom camera, where they asked questions or showed their works of art to the authors and illustrator.
During the week, each boy designed his own curious creature using materials such as recyclables, Lego, playdough, drawings or even special apps. The creations were accompanied by recordings and then uploaded to the School’s Seesaw platform. After the boys had shared their posts with the class, they were used as a stimulus for an imaginative writing task.
Of course, Book Week at Edgecliff is not complete unless the boys have the opportunity to participate in the Library’s colouring, poster, model and Lego competitions, and plenty of time was spent browsing and making purchases at the Book Fair.
The Infants Book Character Parade was definitely the highlight; boys and teachers arrived at School dressed as either their favourite book character or some kind of curious creature. Under beautiful blue skies, each Infants class showcased their outfits whilst dancing to the catchy song Gotta Keep Reading, based on the Black-Eyed Peas’ song I’ve Gotta Feelin’.
With restrictions placed upon us, the Music Department organised some thoughtful movements to the song Have You Ever…? which reminds us that we can find inspiration, information and imagination, just by opening a book!