I’m not sure that I have ever read so many books in my life

Hannah ThomsonHannah Thomson is a Learning Resource Centre Manager at Foxford School and Community Arts College. She blogs here about her role as a judge for the 2014 Carnegie & Kate Greenaway Children’s Book Awards.

What a relief to now be able to talk about the long listed books, I thought that I might actually pop with excitement! This is my second year as a judge and what an experience it has been! I’m not sure that I have ever read so many books in my life… I’m always with my head in a book, but the reading list was staggeringly long and, hand on heart, I read every single one before we descended into our judging huddle to make our final cuts.

What I have treasured most from my experience so far is the opportunity to work with some local primary schools, forging links between them and the secondary school that I work for. Watching the children work with some of the Greenaway books to create wall displays, poetry and pictures, seeing their excitement and the way that stories and pictures make such an impact on them – they really do feed their imaginations!

It’s a privilege to work with such a wide range of young people, and incredibly rewarding to hear about (and see) the positive reading experiences that are taking place as a result of the Carnegie and Greenaway awards. Really fun, creative reading experiences!

Words and pictures have always coloured my world and I share this with students every day, but I also try to encourage them to be interesting and exciting individuals. When I think of all the fantastic characters and stories that they’ll meet and absorb through the shadowing process – both from reading the books and meeting each other, I can’t help but be enthusiastic.

I love my job and feel incredibly fortunate to be involved.

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