Just 4 weeks until we start the new school year: why not start it in style with some translated children’s books from around the world?
Throughout September, we’ll be blogging and tweeting about global books, international authors and illustrators, and the translators and publishers who bring them into English.
Here are a few ideas of how you could get involved and spread the word about #WorldKidLitMonth. How will you celebrate the diverse world of multicultural and outward-looking books?
1. Explore the latest #worldkidlit in English translation
Check out the translated titles that came out this year – the list is growing all the time with your feedback. Most are published by small independent presses, and many sell via their websites. Support your local library too! If they don’t have any of these books in stock, ask them to order some in.
2. Share what you read
You could post a quick pic and review on Twitter (with hashtag #worldkidlit), on Goodreads, Trip Fiction (a reviews site dedicated to readers who love to travel through books), Amazon. The kids could post their review on the noticeboard at your local library, in the school newspaper or bulletin. You (and your kids?) could even start your own #worldkidlit book reviews YouTube channel… Or send us a guest post for this blog.
3. Read your way around the world
Do you long for adventure? Dream of slowly touring around the world? Why not plan your own year-long Fantasy Round the World challenge: where would you go, and can you find a children’s book to read for each country you’re planning to visit vicariously? Or a picture book from each continent? For inspiration and ideas of books to dip into, see the countries tagged in our blog posts and lists, and check out Trip Fiction and the children’s book charity Outside in World for reviews listed by country. Hat tip to the amazing Ann Morgan, pioneer of the Reading The World challenge!
4. Wall-map of world kid lit
Decorate your kitchen/classroom/school library with this fantastic Read Around the World map for Key Stage 2 readers (middle grade/upper primary), shared for free by the tireless teacher-resource-makers Mr A, Mr C and Mr D.
Or make your own! Perhaps a map of European picture books (see Planet Picture Book for inspiration), or a global map of graphic novels, or a map of chapter books for a specific school year. We’re working on a map of this year’s translated picture book releases and will be tweeting it as soon as it’s presentable!
5. Top up for topics
Teachers, what subjects are you exploring with your students this term? Can we help you source translated children’s/YA fiction to give your students more context of your history/geography/social topic? Whether it’s the Vikings, the Romans, the Cold War, the Holocaust, or contemporary issues such as climate breakdown, diversity and equality, we can help you find diverse books that reflect other voices and societies, so we’re not always seeing the world from our own national perspective. Tweet us @worldkidlit and our partners-in-crime @GlobalLitinLibs and we can rustle up (/crowdsource) age-appropriate suggestions of translated books to add other perspectives to your students’ learning.
6. Book in a jar!
Back in April, we were keen to put the ‘world’ into World Book Day, and tweeted a series of book-in-a-jar representations of our favourite translated children’s books. Please @ us if you tweet your #bookinajar creations!
7. Befriend a bookseller … lobby a librarian …
If you have friends in bookish places, can you persuade them to set up a #worldkidlit display with a few translated titles? Point them in the direction of our lists of 2019 new releases, and 2018 and 2017… Any particular language prominent in your community? Tweet us for recommendations for translations, even from parts of the world we haven’t yet featured on the blog. We’re adding more all the time and always keen to grow the network of #kidlit lovers/world explorers!
8. Kidlit cookery!
Share your translated fiction loves and multicultural enthusiasm with your friends and family via the medium of baking. Or host a themed dinner night combined with translated storytelling. We need to do a blog post on #worldkidlit / cookery crossovers, but ones that come to mind include … the three cake recipes at the end of Kathrin Rohmann’s Apple Cake and Baklava, a sushi night in honour of the GLLI Translated YA winner, Japanese manga series, My Brother’s Husband, or towers of ice cream in celebration of Life as a Mini Hero. But whatever you’re cooking, don’t forget to invite your granny!