All of the pickle kids adore books.
Our kids have a good combination of book loving genes from both sides of the family, but I suspect their solid love of reading also has a lot to do with the fact that they’ve been read to from a very young age.
The girls were given gifts of books from family and friends before they were even born and I have very fond memories of their Aunty Sarah holding one tiny teeny baby at a time while she read to them when they first came home from hospital. Muski was included in story time from a very early age and even the smallest picklebum has been read to almost every night since he was two days old… well he listens, sometimes eats and sometimes sleeps through the girls reading their school readers and then me reading to them before bed.
There was never any doubt that our kids would be book lovers, which is great, because I think reading and enjoying books is hugely important for everyone!
So I have to confess I was quite excited to be contacted about the Babies Love Books Young Readers Program.
Funded by the Victorian State Government, The Young Readers Program aims to promote the importance of reading to young children and support families and the community to improve literacy outcomes for children. A ‘rhyme time’ booklet and DVD is given to families at a baby’s four month maternal and child heath visit and two year olds receive an Australian picture book. Recently major libraries around Melbourne hosted special events focussing on fun ways for parents to introduce reading to their young children and you can find information on other events at the State Library’s ‘What’s On’ page
I was particularly excited to see Alison Lester named as one of the Babies Love Books ambassadors. The pickle kids and I are huge fans of her work. And, it gets better… the Big girls and I were able to send Alison a list of interview questions! Here are her fabulous replies!
Izzy – My favourite book that you wrote is Magic Beach. Which one is your favourite book?
Alison – I love magic beach too. Its hard to choose a favourite, its like having to say which one of your kids you like the best.
Izzy – Do any of your books have fairies in them? Or do you think you might write a book about fairies sometime?
Alison – I’m not much of a fairy person, though I like the idea of being able to be very small and get inside things.
Izzy – I like your books because they have beautiful illustrations and they have good stories. How long does it take you to write a book?
Alison – It takes ages because I don’t sit at my desk very often. If I worked every day I could do a book in about 2 months.
Zoe – My favourite book of yours is Imagine. My favourite part is the snow, which is your favourite part?
Alison – I like underwater the best.
Zoe – I am learning to read some of your books on my own. Do you like to read your stories out loud?
Alison – Yes, often when I’m planning a book I say it out loud when I am running or riding my horse and it helps work the story out.
Zoe – I really like the pictures in your books. How do you make them?
Alison – Usually I draw with a 2B pencil on any old paper, lots of quick drawings to work it out, then I trace the best one on to watercolour paper, and ink it and paint it with watercolours
A big thank you to Alison Lester for taking the time to answer the girl’s questions (I think Izzy is taking a printed version of this blog post for show and tell on Friday!). Now off you go and read to your kids, even if they are only little, it’s important and fun!