Iraqi children turn a new page

nbruce writes "Iraqi children turn a new page; A youth publisher moves away from propaganda.
By Ashraf Khalil is a story in today’s Christian Science Monitor (Feb. 11) as noted by Joanne Jacobs education blog.

“Shafik al-Mahdi, the Cultural House's new director, remains upbeat about his mission. On the day the Monitor visited, he had just received the handwritten manuscript for the first new book of the post-Hussein era. It's called "Nur and the Rainbow," and carries a message promoting diversity and unity.

It's about Iraq with all its colors: the Kurd, the Arab, Turkmen, Shiite, Sunni," he says.

The biggest challenge, he says, will be to sow in his young readers an appreciation and an understanding of democratic systems, political participation, and their rights and responsibilities as citizens.�. Read the full story.


Books for Children scheme

Margaret Cook of the Age writes: The Labor move to provide all babies with books has found widespread support among educators and librarians, writes Margaret Cook.
LEARNING does not begin on a child's first day at school - it begins on the first day of life, according to Labor leader Mark Latham.
Mr Latham, a keen reader to his young sons, Oliver and Isaac, recently promised that a Labor government would give storybooks to all new babies under an $80 million early childhood development scheme. He also wants to establish a program to teach parents "how and what to read" to children, create reading ambassadors by asking celebrities, sports stars and community leaders to read to children, and establish a Read Aloud Week.
But how positive are these proposals?


Family hit with library bill after theft

A policy which allows children to take out up to 35 library items at a time has come under attack after a stolen library card resulted in a Mapua family being billed nearly $500 for lost books.

A library spokesman is defending the policy, insisting the family is legally responsible for the missing books and must pay the bill.
Full Story from


Imagination Library drive underway

A drive is underway to establish an Imagination Library that would supply a free book each month for Union County children from birth to five years of age.

Malinda Beauchamp, who heads the Community Education program for the Union County Public School District, is spearheading the drive and spoke about the program at a recent Morganfield Lions Club meeting.

Beauchamp said she is in hopes of Union County becoming only the second school district in the state of Kentucky to establish such a library. The library has been established in Henderson County.
Full Story


Sharing the love of books with the younger generation

Nice story from Pleasanton CA that reports on "booklegging."
It's the library outreach program that sends volunteers into classrooms to introduce kids to the wonder of books. Children have their interest piqued by hearing only a portion of a story...and have to get to the library to find out "what happens next."


Children Send Flat Stanley on Vacation

Eilir Rowan writes "I read about this in the Press and Sun-Bulletin's

Flat Stanley is a boy from the 1964 book by the same name who learns to embrace his difference--being flat--by making the most of it. Taking the book as inspiration, librarians and students are helping him travel the world by mailing him all over. Templates of the character can be downloaded from the Flat Stanley Project and given or sent to others, who then continue his journey by mail, keep a log, send pictures, etc. It's a variation on the 'garden gnome' theme that really captures kids' imaginations as they track where their Stanleys have gone."


Two kids collect 4,000 books

Nice Story From Canada where Unable to imagine a world without reading, two Grade 6 pupils in London have collected 4,000 books for Ontario's First Nations communities. Avid readers Tim Ebbs and Brent Greenway spearheaded the book drive at Westmount public school two weeks ago in response to a public request from Lt.-Gov. James Bartleman, who recently toured Northern Ontario.
"I love books. I read all the time. I don't know how you can live without reading," said Ebbs yesterday, standing amid tables scattered with books at Westmount.


Books ignite imagination

You can't take a television screen to bed, but you can take a book to bed. Agree or disagree, the philosophy behind the statement remains unchanged. Along with it, the fact that most children today will, at any given moment, choose to ogle at a screen, be it TV or computer, than take the pain to read through the series of the Mallory Towers , charts out how reading is losing out to television. Once again a debate between the book and the screen — and once again there are no answers, only suggestions.

More From The Times Of India.

"The parents would rather have their children reading course books than story books. There needs to be an attempt to refocus on the importance of the space that can only be filled by fantastical tales and the flight of imagination,"


Illinois Guv proposes book-a-month for kids

Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich is proposing that the state provide each child with a book every month from birth to age five. The Governor is quoted as saying, "I’d much rather see us spend money on books for kids and encouraging parents to read to their kids than some of the things that we waste money on."

Story in the Chicago Sun-Times. The article in the registration-required-so-I-avoid-linking-to-it-when-I-can Chicago Tribune also mentions that the proposal targets families who tend not to use their public libraries.


The challenging task of getting children to cherish books

A nice Piece From The Akron Beacon Journal covers educators who toil daily to make reading fun. They use innovative methods to try to instill a love of books in students.

"I love children and have a passion for them, especially for low-income children,'' Wilson said. ``My heart goes out to parents who don't know how to teach their children to read. I believe children should be read to."



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