Thursday, January 24, 2013

Spotlight on Springboard Stories Issue 3 - Food!

Monkeying around with food in Springboard Stories Issue 3!
Once again we're extremely grateful that Springboard Stories have let us take a look at their fantastic packed-to-the-gills magazine, filled with brilliant ideas, discussion and stories.

This issue revolves around a subject very dear to my heart, food and creatures very dear to Charlotte's heart, monkeys!

Dipping in, there's a brilliant retelling of the ancient Chinese "Monkey" stories. For those of you who grew up in the 70s and 80s and can only remember "Monkey" as being that funny little guy who rode around on a cloud and biffed baddies with his stick, it'll be a revelation. Debjani Chaterjee's version of the story revolves around Monkey being extremely naughty while trying to worm his way into the King's royal fruit gardens. With illustrations once again by the very talented Walmesley Brothers (Simon and James), it's a great story to share with class before examining the various monkey-based activities that accompany this delightful little book.

Elsewhere in the magazine, there's plenty of mouthwatering morsels to enjoy. There are fab activities based around food with an eye on literacy and numeracy. Setting up a classroom cafe (that suitcase-based cafe is adorable, where can we get one?!) and writing menus, totting up bills are all good fun and stimulating for children (Charlotte enjoys this activity already at home, either setting up her cafe or her supermarket)

Look out Waitrose, you've got some competition!
One of the main reasons we like Springboard Stories' publication is that there are so many triggers for talking points. Not just with children but with other adults (particularly the wonderful book folk I am lucky enough to be in touch with on a daily basis). The Monkey legend was a particularly popular topic this week, examining the various ways the legend has been adapted and 'westernised' over the years -  from Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett's big budget West End stage production of "Monkey: Journey to the West" to the popular videogame adaptation of the legend (Enslaved by Ninja Theory).

It was great to see the 60s animated version getting mentioned, as this is probably one of the most powerful and faithful versions of the stories. There are sumptuous images from that version to enjoy throughout the magazine.

If you're a teacher, librarian or interested in child literacy, numeracy and of course wonderful wonderful books and you've yet to experience the sheer wealth of information and activity ideas on offer in Springboard Stories, drop by their website and check out their subscription rates and the wealth of free material they offer in addition to the magazine.

Charlotte's favourite bit: The brilliant Monkey story included with the magazine (I think it's because Monkey's more than a bit naughty in it really!)

Daddy's favourite bit: Some brilliant artwork spreads (Springboard's posters in every issue always end up on the wall or the pinboard!) and fantastic activity ideas. A metric ton of fabulous and inspirational activities. I just don't know how they manage to pack so much in!

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