I received an email recently confirming the delivery of our comprehensive Early Years book order- totalling over five thousand books- for our youngest Wellingtonians. I feel really excited about having created such a personalised list, and this made me reflect eagerly on all the wonderful reading opportunities our new pupils will experience.
The book order was created with lots of passion, commitment and joy. Simon Sinek, a well-noted motivational speaker, defines ‘passion’ as “Working hard for something we love”. I feel his definition is fitting!
It was particularly lovely creating the booklist with Sharon Wan, Deputy Head of Early Years, where we were able to share our love of books, favourite authors and well tested (and much loved) titles with each other. Books tend to form a significant part of one’s identity, and we both reminisced about how books influenced our childhoods. I remember my love of animals was fostered by Beatrix Potter, through books like: The Tale of Peter Rabbit, Two Bad Mice, and The Tale of Tom Kitten.
Guji-Guji, by Chen Zhiyuan
Some of the authors that make up our early years’ collection include ‘Eric Carle, Mem Fox, Nick Sharratt, Karen Katz, Aaron Blabey and Kes Gray. Pleasingly, quite a few of these books are available in both English and Chinese. Through sharing with Sharon, I discovered a new picture book called Guji-Guji, written by Chen Zhiyuan. It’s a delightful story that touches on loyalty and family. I also shared a favourite book of mine: Swimmy, by Leo Leonii. Through its creative illustrations and clever use of language, this little book conveys the power of teamwork.
Swimmy, by Leo Leonii
Throughout my career I have often been approached by families about how they can help children to develop a love of reading; in other words, for children to be intrinsically motivated to want to read. In my next post, I hope to share a list of ways to encourage a love of reading at home with very young children.