The 2018 New Zealand Book Council Lecture was delivered by author Joy Cowley at Te Papa yesterday evening.
In her engaging talk The Power of Story, Cowley reflected on a remarkable career and lifetime’s experience of inspiring children to read.
Recalling her own childhood reading journey, and that of her four children, she expressed her lifelong mission to inspire children, especially reluctant readers, to develop a love for books.
Her books, of which there are more than 600, are read in classrooms around the world and she has visited children, parents and teachers everywhere from Iceland to Brunei to share her stories and learn new ones.
“My heart remains with the young children who are struggling readers, the children for whom a book is a closed secret, the children who see other children in a book but never themselves,” Cowley said.
“As often as we open a book, we live new lives in new landscapes. This is what I want for every child.”
The Power of Story includes practical advice for anyone who works with children and a call to action for parents, teachers, publishers and writers everywhere, and especially in New Zealand.
Book Council CEO Jo Cribb says it is an honour to have Cowley deliver this year’s lecture.
“Joy is a national treasure and her messages for us as parents and the wider community are important ones.
“At the Book Council we are dedicated to ensuring children, especially boys, read for pleasure and we are working on a number of programmes to spread the joy of reading.”
The Power of Story can be downloaded in PDF format here. A recording will also soon be available.
Members of the New Zealand Book Council will receive the lecture as an exclusive published book.