Wednesday, September 13, 2023

We're Almost Halfway Through World Kid Lit Month 2023!

Time flies! We’re almost halfway through #WorldKidLitMonth 2023! More and more people and organisations are joining in, and it’s brilliant to see #WorldKidLitMonth on social media, in the news, in the press, on the radio. If you’re new to World Kid Lit Month, we recommend jumping into our website and having a good nosy around. When something catches your attention, keep going, follow the links and see where it takes you. Enjoy!

Here’s a quick run through of our blog posts so far this month!

WKL team: However old you are, this is the month to explore the world by the kid lit express. Children’s and YA books are for everyone, and we can think of no better way to explore the world beyond our borders and beyond our own language.
Paula Holmes: I always find it interesting what brings joy. For me, maps have that gift. Any type, atlases, historical maps, folded maps, huge maps on floors. I am extremely partial to ones in books. Maybe my love of maps comes from a childhood of seeing the world through library books.  A map in a book, whether based on fact or fiction, brings incredible excitement as it puts me into the story, I am the navigator! A map can tell a story of a journey between two kingdoms, demonstrate the topography of a small city that was devastated by a tsunami, or describe the story of one intersection in Seoul, South Korea through generations of tailors. 

Georgia Wall: I have a vivid memory of Mrs. Mills, my owl-like primary school teacher, telling me in Reception class that the first time you hold a book you should always take time to sniff it out and maybe, secretly, taste it. What a fun, wonderful way to encourage everyone to try picking up a book! In this post I wanted to share a few of my favourite stories that also appeal to a range of senses and I hope, readers: books that invite you to pronounce words in a different language, that encourage you to grab a crayon or come up with your own creative response; books that beg to be touched and smelled and devoured over and over. If you’re also a book-smeller I hope you’ll find something you love!

Jackie Friedman Mighdoll: My kids love math – numbers, patterns, logic, coding! Since they were little, I’ve looked for stories that naturally include math concepts. There are plenty of counting books out there, but we’ve found the best math books do more than just count. They provide a variety of ways to engage young listeners and make them think – about the numbers and more. Today I highlight one classic and two new math picture books from Japan, Norway, and India.

Ayo Oyeku: Africa is not a country. It's a continent comprised of over fifty countries blessed with different languages, landscapes, rivers, national treasures, cultures, traditions, and shades of brown and black. In the popular tale of the blind men and an elephant, we are treated to a funny yet riveting story of how each blind man described the elephant based on which part they touched. Africa, often times, is like the proverbial elephant. In this review, we will be taking a journey across East, West and South Africa. Leaning on beautifully told and generously crafted stories for children. With the eye of the protagonist, we will explore what childhood means to children across Africa.

Charlotte Graver: Discussing topics such as war, conflict and societal upheaval with children can be difficult, with many opting to tell their children as little as possible to preserve their innocence and others choosing to ignore the topic all together. Whilst each approach should be respected, the problem with allowing this topic to become a taboo is that it does not reflect contemporary society wherein the effects of war are ever present. // It is therefore a good idea to gently introduce the topic to children from a young age, and literature can be the perfect vehicle to help achieve this. From autobiographically reflecting upon the events of war to hypothetically outlining its causes, books can help guide us in raising such a complex topic.

12 Sept: Girl Power!
Catherine Leung: My daughter has always enjoyed reading stories with strong female characters, even from a very young age, and one of her early favourites was the story of Chinese legendary folk heroine Mulan, who she admired in a picture book long before ever watching the Disney film. Even before she could read, she looked at the pictures so much the pages are now all falling out! // Strong female protagonists – whether they challenge stereotypes, are powerful, dreamy, funny, clumsy, flawed, independent thinkers, or possess an unusual talent – all have the power to inspire the next generation of readers as soon as they are old enough to hold a book!

Pinned to the top of the blog throughout the year is:

The 2023 List: Children’s and YA Books in Translation

WKL team: Here at Project World Kid Lit, we keep track of published translations for young readers. Here’s the 2023 list. // We compile this list to help readers find translated children’s & young adult books from around the world, whether it’s for a school or family reading project, or to celebrate #WorldKidLitMonth in September. It's arranged by publisher. // This year, so far, we know of over 200 books translated into English from 26 languages: Arabic, Bengali, Catalan, Chinese, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Hebrew, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latvian, Lithuanian, Norwegian, Portuguese, Russian, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish, Ukrainian, and Vietnamese. // If you know of any titles we’re missing, please send us the details. (We’re looking for children’s and YA titles publishing in 2023, that were translated into English from any language, anywhere).

This is the second of four posts by the World Kid Lit team this September! Read all four posts!

It’s September! Welcome to World Kid Lit Month!

We're Almost Halfway Through World Kid Lit Month 2023!

A World of Ways to Explore World Literature for Young Readers

World Kid Lit Month 2023 - September is such a full month!

Helen Wang is a UK-based translator of children's literature from Chinese to English. Her best known translation is the novel Bronze and Sunflower by Cao Wenxuan, winner of the Hans Christian Andersen Award, 2016. She runs the blog Chinese Books for Young Readers.







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