New Zealand Kids' Words Worth Thousands
MEDIA RELEASE For immediate use, 12 November 2009
New Zealand Kids' Words Worth
With the country’s first and largest Wordbank officially closed for business, New Zealand Book Month, ASB and children’s authors from across the country are delighted at how Kiwi kids have put pen to paper to express their appreciation for the worth of our New Zealand words.
Nearly 3,000 ASB Wordbank entries were received from children aged 5-13 years, and from every part of New Zealand. Kiwi kids were asked to write a letter to their favourite Kiwi author, telling them why they love their books and stories, and then post or drop their words into their nearest ASB branch.
The winner in the 5-7 years of age category was Isla Thompson of Mt Eden, Auckland, writing about Auckland based author Jennifer Beck’s The Choosing Day. Runner up was Brian Kim of Sunnynook, Auckland, writing about Rats by Christchurch based author and illustrator Gavin Bishop.
The winner in the 8-10 years of age category was Joe Perry of Napier, writing about Jennifer Beck’s The Bantam and the Soldier. Runner up was Devan Ngataaria Hammond of Papamoa writing about Maurice Gee’s Under the Mountain.
The winner in the 11-13 years of age category was Cheyenne Kumeroa of Palmerston North writing about Kingi McKinnon’s story Hohepa’s Goodbye from Huia Short Stories Vol 1. Runner up was Lucas Netana-Rakete of Royal Oak, Auckland, writing about Footrot Flats: They’ve put custard with my bone! (my compliments to the chef) by Murray Ball. The judges in this 11-13 age category particularly noted the fantastic standard of entries from Auckland’s Royal Oak Intermediate School and have recommended the school for a special commendation and prize.
ASB is delighted to have been involved with New Zealand Book Month, providing school children with the opportunity to read more Kiwi books and share their views about those books with the authors.
ASB's Chief Community Partnership Officer, Linley Wood says “ASB has a long history of partnering with New Zealand schools and school children to help improve their literacy and educational outcomes. This is just one way we can encourage children in the communities in which we operate to read more and express their views about what they are reading. It is great to see so many Kiwi kids getting involved and our ASB people have loved talking to the children coming into the branches to drop off their ASB Wordbank entries.”
All six winners and runners up of the ASB Wordbank will be invited to behind the scenes visits to Auckland Zoo and the set of the television show Shortland Street, and a ride in a restored Hot Rod car.
Schools and local libraries are winners too with the best performing ASB Wordbank branches receiving an author visit and a pack of books, which they can choose to donate to a local school or library. The winning ASB branches are in Hokitika, Helensville, Warkworth, The Palms – Shirley (Christchurch) and Point Chevalier.
Director of New Zealand Book Month Michele Powles is thrilled with the outcomes from the competition. “Kids genuinely wanted to let authors know what they thought of their stories, and for authors it’s the best feedback possible. It’s fantastic to be partnering with an organisation like ASB who has such a strong profile in local schools and communities. This provided the national reach we needed to make this promotion a success.”