Author Archives: Paula Green

Gecko Press are starting the Curiously Good Book Club – four days left on their Pledge Me campaign to meet the target

I love Gecko Books and think this is such a great idea I am going to support it with a pledge. Time is running out but if you also love the idea (see below) then you might be able to help too. You can give $10 because it all adds up.You can get rewards. Time is running out as they only have four days to reach their target!

 

Reading books as a young girl shaped me – and set me on a trail of wonderful experiences and discoveries as I grew into adult me.

Reading books matters so very very much. (especially poetry!!)

Go here to pledge me page.

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What is the Curiously Good Book Club?

We want to create a digital and real life community where people can share knowledge about great books for children (not just our books) and find creative ways to encourage children to love to read. The Curiously Good Book Club will include activities for kids, real people events and rich digital experience.

We would love to have storytelling sessions at the beach; workshops on how to be a good reader-alouder; give every child a tiny reading journal and I’m a Curiously Good Reader badge.

We want to collaborate with anyone and everyone, and to be loud about the joy and benefits of being a good reader.

Because one good book can kickstart every child into a lifetime love of reading.

 

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A sad loss: John McIntyre champion of children’s books in New Zealand RIP


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I was shocked and saddened to get this news. All of us in the children’s book world have much to mourn at the news of John’s death. He has flagged New Zealand books (and from across the globe) with such enthusiasm and expertise – in his vibrant and vital bookstore (with is wife Ruth), The Children’s Bookshop in Wellington, and in regular children’s book reviews with Kathryn Ryan on National Radio. His infectious love of books, and his support of New Zealand authors was tremendous. He will be sorely missed.

My thoughts and love go out to Ruth, family, friends and our children’s book communities.

 

Interview with Kathryn Ryan on National Radio a few weeks ago.

Every second Friday for 15 years, children’s bookseller John McIntyre has discussed the latest releases for children on RNZ.

But don’t call him a reviewer – “I’m a cheerleader”.

Two June Challenges: Poetry parcels and Joy Cowley’s Snake and Lizard

Welcome young poetry fans  – I am so so so so so busy this year I am a day late. I am thinking hard and writing hard about what poetry can do.  So that inspired my first challenge.

 

Challenge One:

 

Poems can do and play and puzzle with so many things.

Poems can sound as good as a song.

Poems can build lists and make pictures grow in your head.

Poems can whizz or go slow.

They might surprise or soothe or shock or challenge you. You might laugh

or frown or cry as you read.

They can be short or long like a letter or a huge birthday parcel.

 

Your challenge is to write a poem about:     Poetry – writing poems or reading poems .

 

What are poems like to you? What do you love about poems?

What do they remind you of? Where do you read them or write them?

Find some good VERBS for what a poem DOES.

Find some sizzling SIMILES.

 

Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com by 26th JUNE. I will post some favourites on JUNE 30th and have a copy of the book for one reader.

Include your name, age, year and name of school.

IMPORTANT: Put POEM POETRY challenge in the subject line of the email please.

 

 

Challenge Two

 

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I am a HUGE fan of Joy Cowley and Gavin Bishop and I especially love their Snake and Lizard books.

 

So on a very wet Sunday afternoon I gobbled up the new one: Helper and Helper.

 

Gavin’s illustrations are sheer beauty.

Joy’s stories are warm and wise and witty. Her sentences are like clear shiny streams.

 

Snake and Lizard are full to the brim with life and show us the power of friendship. Being friends is bumps and hills and new days and arguments and listening and kindness and discoveries.

When I read these stories I fill with warmth and good feelings and just want to write poems or even give stories a go.

 

a n o t h e r   c h a l l e n g e

I LOVE LOVE LOVE these stories so much I am challenging you to write a ‘Snake and Lizard’ poem (You can do more than one!). Read the book first to get inspired by the characters. Make up what happens. It can be something very small and curious.

I have the book to give to one young poet thanks to GECKO PRESS.

 

 Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com by 26th JUNE. I will post some favourites on JUNE 30th and have a copy of the book for one reader.

Include your name, age, year and name of school.

IMPORTANT:  Put SNAKE and LIZARD challenge in the subject line of the email please.

 

 

The April-May Challenge – some favourite Autumn poems

 

Lots of Autumn poems tumbled into my email box and it felt like it was full of Autumn flavours and colours. I liked the way you tried different things as you wrote. It was hard choosing but here is a selection of poems I enjoyed (and there were so many more!).

There are thoughtful poems and funny poems. Slender poems and fat poems.

I am sending Emily C a copy of The Letterbox Cat as I really liked the way she worked on an Autumn series and tried different things. I have posted just a few she sent me. I am also sending a copy to Matilda at Westmere School as her poem made me smile. I loved the way she explored the word ‘spread.’ That is exactly what poets do!

 

 

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Emily C, age 12, Year 8, Selwyn House School, Christchurch

 

 

Fiery, orange
leaves cover
the rich,
grass. A
monarch butterfly
flutters through
the morning air.

Emily C, age: 12, Year: 8, Selwyn House School, Christchurch

 

The cold
morning air
stings my
toes. An
old man
wanders through
the park
covered in
autumn leaves.

Emily C, age: 12, Year: 8, Selwyn House School, Christchurch

 

 

The Autumn Kitten

 

The autumn kitten

Leaves trails of fur,

Orange and red

Through green and brown.

The autumn kitten

Roams free in the world

Here and there, everywhere.

Avoiding all people

Here and there.

Darting through bushes

Pouncing on birds.

 

Teresa aged 8, St Andrews College, Christchurch

 

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Luella, age 10 Richmond Road School Samoan Unit

 

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Maisy T, age 9, Fendalton School, Christchurch

 

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Aaron K age:9  Fendalton Open-air School

 

 

 

 

A bundle of poems from Westmere School:

 

Autumn
Autumn
leaves fall
crunch, crunch, crunch.
Rake up all the leaves.
Cartwheels.
Bikes and shoes
rush through.
Autumn.

Sofia Age 10 LS6

 

Spreading
A tree spreads its branches
An apple spreads its seeds.
A person spreads their apple jam,
What more can you spread?

Matilda Age 9 LS6

 

Eating
I have a pumpkin on my bed.
My sister has carrots on her head.
My mum has feijoas in her bag.
My dad fed an apple to  his stag.
What an Autumn feast it could have been!

Matilda Age 9 LS6

 

Leaves and Trees

Green leaves
Crunchy leaves
Yellow leaves
Round leaves
Square leaves
Oval leaves
Small leaves
Sunset leaves
Big leaves
Giant leaves
Thin leaves
Thick leaves
Bush leaves
Long leaves
Short leaves
Brown trees
Large trees
Huge trees
Teeny tiny trees
Dead trees
Oak trees
Flame trees
Coconut trees
Apple trees
Gum trees
Feijoa trees
Lemon trees
Orange trees
Palm trees
Swamp trees
Grey trees
Leaves and trees!

Jasper Age 10 LS6 and Jamie Age 10 LS6

 

 

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Archie Age 10 LS6

 

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Indigo K and Rita P Both Age 10 LS7

The Gecko Challenge: the poems I picked to get a book thanks to Gecko Press

 

 

 

 

I so loved the last bundle of Gecko books I reviewed on the blog, I gave you two hidden challenges. Gecko Press very kindly sent me books for you! Thank you lovely Gecko Press.

Nobody did the Snake and Lizard one so I will do another for this book in my poetry challenges on June 1st. I ADORE this book so much.

I loved reading the poems that used a chapter title from the fabulous Bruno book. Great job! I am posting the fizzing rhyme poem by Te Piringa to get the book and a Highly Recommended rain poem by Danial because it builds such a sense-catching mood.

I am also sending The Lost Kitten to  Lucy for her poem using that title.  I love the ending Lucy.

 

 

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A Rainy Day

 

Rain drops

one by one

producing big deep puddles

 

The rain makes

my shoes soggy

when I walk around at school

 

The rain

creates a

calm day.

 

by Danial Ghobrial Age 10 yrs, Year 6, Russley School, Christchurch

 

 

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Lucy,  age 9, Fendalton School, Christchurch

 

 

 

Janet Newman reports on Poetry Writing for Children at Palmerston North Library

(This is just lovely! Congratulations to all the young poets who participated – Paula)
Seven children, aged nine and ten, came to Palmerston North library on a weekend in March to read and write poetry. We started by reading poems from The Letterbox Cat and other poems. Scott noticed that Paula had put a space in the word ‘goose-bumps’ in her poem “When I am Cold” and then substituted other animal names for ‘goose.’ Scott liked this technique and used it to write his own poem:

 

When I am Sad

 

When I am sad

I get tear drops.

 

When I am very sad

I get water drops.

 

When I am very very sad

I get rain drops.

 

When I am very very very sad

I get hail drops.

 

When I am very very very very sad

I get ice drops.

 

When I am very very very very very sad

I sit by myself and try to be happy.

 

 

Shani brought a poem she wrote at home and read it to us. We liked the way she turned the mouse simile into metaphors:

 

Rain Poem

 

The rain was like a little

mouse, quiet small and

grey. It pattered all

around the house

and then it went away.

 

It did not come. I

understand it found

an open window and

left tracks across the sill.

 

 

On Sunday, prompts such as ‘a word to describe the sky’ and ‘how you feel when the power goes off’ suggested lots of words and the children wrote them on the wall:

 

 

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In the photo, front to back: Madeleine, Scott, Katelyn, Eva, Callie.

 

We had a poetry challenge. It was to pick words from the wall and use them in poems starting with “I see,” “I remember” and “I imagine.” Here is Madeleine’s:

 

I see Golden brown Chips.

The salt on them is sour

like millions of tear drops.

The texture is unique, it’s

soft and luscious like clouds.

I can’t wait to

eat this then

Gulp Slurp

Into my tummy!

 

Here is Eilidh’s:

 

I imagine me and my friend

sitting around the fire, laughing

at old stories. The fire crackled

its smoke billowing into the

night sky.

 

It was getting cold and

dark, the scariest combination.

Something howled in the

distance, and we could

just make out the

silhouette in the light of the moon

of a creature sitting

atop the highest rock

howling into the night.

Spooky.

 

Thanks Callie, Eilidh, Eva, Katelyn, Madeleine, Scott and Shani. We had lots of fun.

Sean and Janet.