The Treasury Interviews: Room 2 at Wainui Beach School interviews Bill Nagelkerke

Bio about Room 2 at Wainui Beach School

Wainui Beach School is across the road from Wainui Beach in Gisborne. In Room 2 we have 28 kids. We are a mixed Year 5 & 6 class of girls and boys. In Room 2 we like to be individual and have the freedom to travel our own learning paths. We are sporty, like the challenge of learning that allows us to work towards our potential. Learning is important to us and we really like having lots of fun and having time to laugh with each other. Room 2 kids are respectful, responsible and kind – we are the best.

Written by Cruz and Adrienne

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Bill Nagelkerke

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Bill Nagelkerke is an author who was born in 1958 in Wellington, New Zealand. He grew up reading lots of books and has said that as a child books were his friends. This love of books has lead to him working as a librarian, and an author who has written his own poems, several stories, and plays in school journals that we have read at school. He has also published his own books and translated books from Dutch into English.

Written by Yula, Cruz and Ava

The Interview:

How do you get the ideas to write books that kids will like? Who inspires you to write and why? (Sophie and Ella)

Ideas are everywhere.

They come

from earth and fire

water, air

from life

from dreams

from things that are

from things that seem

from light and dark

from night and day

from people met along the way.

Everywhere . . .


Why do you translate books from other languages? You were born in NZ – how/where did you learn to speak, read and write the Dutch language and be so good that you can translate books? (Jack K)

When I was very young

My Dad and Mum

Spoke Dutch to me, and so

I grew to know

The pathways of the language.

Eight years ago

I read a lot of books

In Dutch

(I was a competition judge).

They helped improve my navigation skills.

My parents came here

On a track

Through sea and ocean.

Translating books is like


The journey back.


How old were you when you wrote your first story or poem that was published? What made you decide to have a career as an author? (Georgia)

I’ve always loved to read

All kinds of stories.

And writers must,

In order to be writers,

Be readers


Published story

Was at age sixteen, printed

In a local paper.

It wasn’t very good

But made me want to carry on

To be a writer

You must write.


You have won a few awards for your writing. How does this make you feel and why? (Finn & Tigher)

Awards are like the icing on a cake,

And the cake itself.

Lush rewards, both

Tasting great.

But then you get right back to work,

On a diet of

Vegetables, protein

And carbohydrate.

What is the worst thing about being a writer? (Louis)

Sometimes writing is hard labour.

You go cross-eyed looking at a screen,

Or piece of paper.

You sit so long

Your legs scream out:

‘Take us for a walk!’

Do you have a favourite poem that you have written? Why is it your favourite? Who is your favourite poem writer – why? (Jovan)

I always hope

the next poem that I write

will be my best

and it will be the one

that does not fade

like that line of Andrew Marvell’s



green thought

in a green shade

What a fabulous interview Room 2 and Bill. Room 2: I love the way you shared the jobs round and all did different things. You must have a very inspiring teacher. I loved the artist’s impression of the author and the photos of you at the beach being inspired to write your poems. I am very excited I am going to meet you all on the Hot Spot Poetry Tour. And I Ioved the way Bill made his answers into little poems. It was a treat to read and share this indeed! Thank you! Bill has five delicious poems in A Treasury of NZ Poems for Children.

0790311607-1 9781442528406 9781869437480 0790308924 0195555635

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