from The Society of Authors regarding The Educational Writers' Award accessed 12/11/10
ALCS and the Society of Authors created this award in 2008 to ‘celebrate educational writing that inspires creativity and encourages students to read widely and build up their understanding of a subject beyond the requirements of exam specifications’. It is the only UK Award that focuses on educational non-fiction. It is made annually for an outstanding example of traditionally published single volume work, with or without illustration, for the specified age group. The age group alternates each year; this year’s focus was on works for 12 – 18 year olds and in 2011 the focus returns to works for 5 – 11 year olds.
2010 12-18-year olds
Bill Bryson A Really Short History of Nearly Everything
Ben Crystal for Shakespeare on Toast
John Farndon for Do You Think You’re Clever?
Liz Strachan for A Slice of Pi
The 2009 Award - for the 5-11 age group - was won by the ‘disgustingly good’ Gooey, Chewy, Rumble, Plop Book by Steve Alton, Nick Sharratt and Sally Symes (Bodley Head), seeing off strong competition from four other shortlisted books.
The award was presented at the All Party Writers Group Christmas Reception, hosted by Janet Anderson MP in the House of Commons, on 2nd December. Award judge Ali Barne spoke on behalf of the judging panel which had spent many hours choosing the shortlist from a total of 66 entries before deciding the winner. Barne read citations for all five short-listed books before making the announcement. She spoke of the importance of this award and its unique nature – it is the only UK award to focus on educational non-fiction that enhances learning outside of the essential curriculum. Barne also spoke of the aspirations of the award – to encourage the publication of educational books that both inspire learning and encourage creativity in young readers. Janet Anderson MP presented the winning trio with a cheque for £2000.
The 2009 judges were Ali Barne, Pamela Girdwood and Anthony Haynes.
The four other shortlisted titles were:
How to Make Manga Characters by Katy Coope (Collins Big Cat)
Chocolate – The Bean that Conquered the World by Vivian French, ill. Paul Howard (Walker)
Tail-End Charlie by Mick Manning & Brita Granström (Frances Lincoln)
Archie’s War – My Scrapbook of the First World War by Marcia Williams (Walker)
The winner of the inaugural Educational Writers' Award was Ian Gilbert for The Little Book of Thunks: 260 Questions to Make your Brain Go Ouch! (Crown House Publishing).
Gilbert received his cheque for £2,000 from Dr Ian Gibson MP at a reception at the Stationers' Hall, London. The award was for a non-fiction book published in 2006 and 2007 that enhanced teaching and learning for 12 to 18 year-olds.
The judges described Gilbert's book as "a completely original book to get all ages stretching their imaginations, thinking, discussing cogently and debating… a valuable tool for the teacher”.
The three other shortlisted titles were:
Simon Basher & Adrian Dingle for The Periodic Table – Elements with Style! (Kingfisher)
Tish Farrell for Write Your Own Adventure Stories (Ticktock Media)
Glenn Murphy for Why Is Snot Green?