Thursday, November 22, 2012

Canadian Children's Book Centre AWARDS!!!

Last night, as the Co-Chair of the OLA Forest of Reading Programs, I had the incredible privilege of attending one of the most sought after, hottest ticketed events in Canada...
The Canadian Childrens' Book Centre AWARDS.
It was held @ the truly, ritzy, glitzy,  RITZ CARLTON HOTEL in downtown Toronto, sponsored by the TD Bank. It was an outstanding reception, well attended by all areas of Canadian Children's literary and publishing industry. We were served delicious hors d'oeuvres, and at several buffets feasted on a variety of dishes, from antipasto, to seafood crepes and a mouth watering surf 'n turf stir fry. With my Co-Chair Helen Kubiw, we had the honour of hobnobbing with well known, and new authors and illustrators. I had the chance to connect with Teacher-Librarians and book publisher and distributors.

A particularily delightful encounter was Montréal author/illustrator, Philippe Béha, who is the current winner of the Grade One Canadian Book give away. He is also currently on a Canada-wide promotional tour for the book, visiting schools and libraries from Newfoundland to British Columbia.

The Awards Ceremonies themselves were MC'd by vivacious host
Garvia Bailey, of Big City, Small World on CBC One.
The winners of each award gave some of the most gracious and articulate acceptance speeches in recent memory, as was pointed out by President and CEO of TD Bank, Mr. Tim Hockey. (Yes, we are quite impressed by the Canadianism of his name, so so appropriate for the evening's event!)

So, you need to find a fantastic book??? You have to check out all the books that were nominated at the CCBC website... and of course, below that, the winners. But in my Teacher-Librarian book,
they and we are all winners for these publications. Enjoy! and enjoy my pics!


Gianna and Helen - "Putting on the Ritz"!!!

Philippe Béha - "I've Lost My Cat"

Winner of the Grade One Book Give-Away

John Spray , President, Mantis Investigation Agency, Presenter

John Spray Mystery Award ($5,000)

Charlie’s Key   by Rob Mills (Peterborough, ON)
Orca Book Publishers


Monica Hughes Award for Science Fiction and Fantasy

What Happened to Serenity?  by P.J. Sarah Collins (Vancouver, BC), Red Deer Press

The Hangman in the Mirror by Kate Cayley (Toronto, ON) Annick Press

Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children's Non-Fiction ($10,000)

Presentors: Mr. Fleck & daughter Quinn Fleck

Loon  by Susan Vande Griek (Halifax, NS) Illustrated by Karen Reczuch (Acton, ON) Groundwood Books

Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award ($20,000)

Without You - Written and illustrated by Geneviève Côté

(Montreal, QC)   Kids Can Press

TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award ($30,000)

Sponsored by TD Bank Group

                  Stones for My Father

Written by Trilby Kent - Tundra Books

Helen, Gianna Shelagh Paterson - OLA President

Karen Reczuch (Acton, ON)

                Philippe Béha, Richard, Geneviève Côté

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

A New School Year, A New Job!!!

Welcome back to the Guardian Librarian site!

I am so thrilled to join the Adam Beck P.S. staff this fall in the Learning Commons as the IT/Informatique instructor!!! Each day, I am quickly finding my way more confidently around this huge facility. Administration, Staff and students have all been so helpful when I am lost or not sure of the routines. I hope all the years of training and experiences I bring to Adam Beck will benefit staff and students as the year progresses.

I'm looking forward to an exciting year of teaching both at Adam Beck P.S. and Chine Dr. P.S.
As you may have already noticed, I have updated the title to reflect my new job and responsibilities...
Going back to French Immersion milieu ... un grand plaisir... is such a great pleasure to use my French language skills once again on a daily basis.

First of all, a big thank you to all the OLA staff and volunteers (over 50!!!) who came out to the CNE this past summer to help us run the Blue Spruce Award Exhibit, 10th Anniversary of programming.
It was a thrill to be up close and personally viewing the original artwork that had been created for Canada's best illustrated picture books. Meeting Kari-Lynn Winters and Sean Cassidy was also a wonderful highlight of the programme. Many thanks to the CNE, Zis Parris, General Manager of Programming for coordinating the 75 feet of exhibit space for our programme. For my first posting, I will reflect on the amazing collection of authors and illustrators that made the OLA's Blue Spruce Award Reading Programme such a huge success. Check out my picture slideshow coming soon!
Enjoy... Au plaisir de la prochaine rencontre!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Blue Spruce 10th Anniversary @ the Canadian National Exhibition

10th Anniversary Blue Spruce™ Award Program Exhibit !!!!!!!

Join us at the CNE this summer!!!
Daily: Friday, August 17th - Monday, September 3rd
Open: 10 am - 10 pm
Booth 711, Arts, Crafts & Hobbies Pavilion
The Ontario Library Association and the CNE are proud to present this exhibit celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Blue Spruce Awards. The Blue Spruce Award is an annual award honouring the author/illustrator of the best picture book as chosen by Kindergarten to Grade 2 students from across the province. This exhibit will feature artwork from some of the 100 books nominated in the last 10 years, as well as interactive children’s crafts and a reading corner.

Photo: The Farm Team by Bill Slavin

Canadian National Exhibition - Home
Come join me and many volunteers from OLA, to see the ORIGINAL whimsical water colour paintings of Bill Slavin, finely sculpted, colourful bas-relief images from Barbara Reid's "Subway Mouse" and "Perfect Snow",  Bruno St-Aubin's capricious and funny illustration from "The Hockey Sweater", Stéphane Jorisch's stylized "Suki's Kimono" and Jeremy Tankard bold graphics in "Boo Hoo Bird".... just to name a few!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

La Belle Provence! Québec City

Bonjour mes amis! Last week, my principal, two other staff members and I had the pleasure of accompanying our Grade 7 and 8's to do a bus tour of Québec City. Ten hours on a bus, albeit a brand 3 month new Luxury Coach Bus, is still a very, very long bus ride! We picked up our very enthusiastic born and raised in Québec guide, Mathieu, at the Pickering GO Station. I also did this trip with our students 2 years ago, and I was amazed at how quickly the actual drive passed, with talks and rules recited by Mathieu, music and movies to hold our attention or not, I was equally surprised at how slowly the 2 days of touring seemed to go, as we packed each of those two days with more site seeing than I would do in a week. I had the feeling that days were much longer.

Removed from my Learning Commons Library and Computer Lab, I was reminded the importance of getting in touch with the real places and people of the world, and how much learning goes on:
@ Musée du Fort, where one of our male students exclaimed, "That is one the best history lessons I ever had. That's how I learn best!" Models of land, battles, slide show of armies, navies...
Always impressive, is being able to talk in French, non-stop to everyone you meet. Here's a quick list of the great places we visited:

  • Ste-Anne de Beaupré Cathédrale
  • Chez Marie Patisserie et l'érable
  • Les Chutes Montmorency
  • Soirée au Manoir Montmorency
  • Buffet breakfast and return to Toronto... pics to be posted tomorrow!!!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Creative Writing - Name Generator

Are you experiencing writers' block? Do you need help to get those creative ideas flowing??
Check out this site! ( and I'm sure there are more out there like this!)

Seventh Sanctum

Creative Generation of names, characters and other interesting story stuff

The Grade 7-8 class came in to the Learning Commons today and we worked on creative short story writing. The students were getting frustrated trying to create names for their evil characters. I jokingly said to the class teacher, "I should buy a copy of Baby Names book for our collection." She looked quizzically at me then said, "Baby names for evil characters? Like Lucifer? Who names their baby Lucifer?"
So that got me thinking... even though I NEVER do this... I confess... I GOOGLED!
and this terrific site came up that actually instantly generates all kind of neat names and even...
character descriptions!

We gave 3 catagories in the Evil Name Generator : Clever/Sneaky, Death affinity and Oozing/slimy

Our request rendered 20 hilariously wicked names for our Hero/Anti-Hero stories:
Evilbrood The Interred
Mindsneak The Mouldering
Muckdrip The Cunning
Muckspawn The Slimy
Necrodrip The Deadly
Necromind The Cadaverous
Oozewit The Ghoul
Rotsludge The Cunning
Shroudpus The Sly
Slimescum The Clever
Smartsludge The Sly
Sneakbone The Ghoul

Then we wanted a Science-Fiction Government Generator:
Commonwealth of Territories, Cosmic Regency of Constellations, 
Electorate of Galaxies, Feudal Worlds, Suns' Monarchy

Okay writers... can't wait to read all about it...
Tell us what happens to Muckspawn the Slimy in the Cosmic Regency of Constellations

Forest of Reading 2012 WINNERS & HONOUR BOOKS

My Co-Chair, Helen Kubiw writes a brilliant blog about Canadian Children's Literature.
Last week she wrote up a great post with the WINNERS & HONOUR book titles
from this year's Forest of Reading votes from across Ontario.
Visit her site to get great reviews on Kid's CanLit!!!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Blue Spruce 10th Anniversary Exhibit

Have you noticed the new look to my blog?? Look closely, those are images from the Blue Spruce nominees over the past 10 years that you see along the sides of the screen!

One item I forgot to mention and depict was the Original Artwork Exhibit of the Blue Spruce 10th Anniversary.  It has long been a dream I had to see our wonderful Canadian illustrators of Children's Books show their original artwork in a public Gallery.

OLA has partnered with the Canadian National Exhibition to put 65 artist/illustrators works on exhibit this summer from August 17th to September 3rd in the Arts, Crafts and Hobbies Pavalion. This also represents the 100 books that were nominated in the first 10 years. This exhibit had it's first stop at the Festival of Trees at Harbourfront last week. Students, teachers and librarians were excited to see the original work that was used to make the picture books.

The final run will be this summer. Will post more once the show is finalized on the walls and in the booth. For now... you get a glimpse as I have set it as the background for the blog. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 17, 2012


Gianna and Helen Kubiw, Chairs of the Forest of Reading!

For more information and 2012 Lists of Nominated Authors, please check the OLA website:

Meredith Tutching, Marie-Louise Gay, Ashley Spires - Beautiful!

 Christine and Geoffry from Authors @ Harbourfront
                    Shelagh Paterson!!!





Alyxandra Harvey                                                                                            AWESOME!!!
Suave and debonaire....  
MC for the day!


DAY TWO - SILVER BIRCH AWARDS - Express, Fiction, Non-Fiction

A library book opens the door to visit anywhere in the world

A library book opens the door to visit anywhere in the world
Lago di Como, Lombardia, Italia