And the Winner is….

Today we announced the winner of the Book of the Year Awards.  The children were excited to hear that the winner of The Early Childhood category went to The Swap.  This was a popular choice with the grade twos so they were happy with the judges decision.

Here at Oatlands, we have our own awards ceremony.  We had a clear favourite with four out of the six grades voting for it.  Here are our Oatlands winners…..

2R and 2L's Favourite

2R, 2L, 2C and 2M’sFavourite

2K's Favourite

2K’s Favourite

2H's Favourite

2H’s Favourite





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The Swap by Jan Ormerod


When a baby is born, little brothers and sisters are not always enthusiastic about the new arrival.  Such is the case with Caroline Crocodile. Her baby brother is smelly, dribbles, is no fun and takes up all the room on his mum’s lap.  So, one day, while waiting for her mum to come back from the hat shop, Caroline decides to swap her baby brother at the baby shop nearby.  The shop assistant obliges, offering Caroline a cuddly panda baby instead.  Caroline is delighted.  She takes the panda to brunch but he ends up eating the bamboo table and chairs.  Caroline takes the panda back to the shop and trades him for a baby elephant.  However, the elephant proves to be ‘too squirty’ for Caroline so she makes another trip back to the baby shop.  Things continue to go awry for Caroline when she finally realises something special about her real baby brother.

The grade twos were totally immersed in this story and could relate to the emotions that poor old Caroline was experiencing.  They understood why Caroline took action in the way she did but were very relieved when she decided to keep her baby brother.

This is  a warm, funny book with divine, retro like illustrations.  I think it will poll very well in the votes next week.


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The Fearsome, Frightening, Ferocious Box by Frances Watts and David Legge

Our shortlisted book for this week was a hit with the grade 2’s today.
fearsome box
At first your eyes will not believe,
Such terrors they can scarce conceive,
But come, look closely; you will see
Horrific creatures just like me.
Open the box, if you dare,
But danger lies within; Beware!

This is a clever, fun, original and visually beautiful book. The grade twos loved the suspense, looking for all of the hidden animals and the very unexpected and funny ending. It is sure to become one of our all time favourites.

After sharing the story we drew pictures of an animal we would like to see hiding in the box….




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Parachute by Danny Parker

This weeks shortlisted book is Parachute by Danny Parker and Matt Ottley….



Toby is an anxious child.  He takes his parachute everywhere with him just in case he falls.  Terrors surround him everywhere he goes and he finds comfort in his safety net, until one day he uses it to help someone else and he learns that he can be brave on his own.

This is a sweet story that can be used as a tool to discuss fears and uncertainties with children.  We talked about all the things we relied on when we were younger to reassure us and make us feel secure.  A lot of us had security blankets, affectionately called ‘blankies’.  Some of us had teddies or special toys.  Dummies were even mentioned. It was comforting to share some of the insecurities we had as young children and to also see that we do outgrow these fears over time.

After sharing the stories we re created one of the pages in the book using crayons and water colours….

Photo 22-08-2014 9 20 38 am


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Silver Buttons by Bob Graham

The shortlisted book for this week is Silver Buttons by Bob Graham.
silver buttons

This is a beautiful book that teaches our children that life is not just about us and what we are doing at any given time and that we are all part of something bigger.

From the publisher:

At 9.59 on Thursday morning, Jodie draws a duck.  Just as she is about to add one final silver button to the duck’s boots, her little brother takes his first step.  At this exact same moment, a man buys bread, a soldier leaves home, a baby is being born… Here is a book, a story, a philosophy so simply told and yet – in true Bob Graham style – so rich with emotion and meaning.  It is in the smallest details that we sense the greatest significance and can see the big picture.  From his glorious urban skyscapes to the tender portrayal of a falling feather or the tying of a shoelace or a dog’s joy in scratching his back, Bob lets us in on a world view conveyed with humanity, compassion and affection.

It is not a straightforward narrative and it did require a fair bit of explanation and discussion, however, it is a great book to help children gain an understanding of human connections and connectedness.

After sharing the story we coloured in our own ducks, adding the silver buttons, all the while thinking about everything else that might be happening in our wider community and the world around us…..



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