Every year we Shadow the Greenaway book awards with students in Guernsey. Within our schools we bring groups of students together to talk about the shortlist and encourage some students to post their thoughts on the CILIP website.
In our groups we try to guess who we think the winner will be and why. On the day that the real winner is announced we bring 4 students from each school together at the Guille-Allés Public Library for a celebration lunch. The students then split into groups to again discuss the books and have another vote; this allows us to have a Guernsey ‘winner’. We are given a gold envelope that contains the real winner and we then open it to reveal who has really won the Greenaway award.
The students really enjoy the whole process from reading the books to discussing what they like and don’t like about them and then choosing a winner. They especially look forward to the lunch when they get the opportunity to share their thoughts with students they have not met before.
Not many of my students were keen to post their thoughts about the books on the website so I began to think about what would encourage them to write more. Blogging book reviews is something that has started to become popular but it has been done before so what could I do that would be so different that they would want to write something?
I was recently talking about encouraging older students to read and look at picture books to Pippa Davies through a social networking site called scoop.it. We began to hatch a plan that would enable her students who are in Canada and follow the Chocolate Lily award
to talk to my students about both awards by blogging. We have made sure that all students have access to all the books and we hope that they will be inspired to talk to each other about them. We are going to finish this off with a virtual classroom where they will meet each other and talk about what they have done. Please follow and see the results.