Category Archives: News

Tim Peake

Tim Peake to tour UK!

By | 4-6 years, 6-8 years, Events, News, Principia Space Diary | No Comments

Tim Peake

 

Tim Peake is heading off on his post-flight tour of the UK this month, visiting all four UK national capitals along with Leicester, Manchester, Salford and Glasgow. NASA astronaut and crewmate Tim Kopra will join Tim for the visits to Edinburgh, Belfast and London.

Tim will be giving presentations at each city, giving his first-hand account about life onboard the ISS and talking about the important science experiments he conducted during his mission.

As part of Tim’s Principia mission, the UK Space Agency has invested £3 million in the biggest education and outreach initiative ever undertaken for an ESA astronaut. Over a million young people have taken part including over 60,000 UK school children that participated in our Space Diary programme!

Schedule:

Cardiff: 13 October 2016

Leicester: 14 October 2016

Manchester: 15 October 2016

Glasgow: 16 October

Edinburgh: 17 October

Belfast: 18 October

London: 19 October

Find out further information on the venues and times here.

 

 

Curved House Kids are hiring enthusiastic teachers!

By | 4-6 years, 6-8 years, 8+ years, News, Principia Space Diary, Teaching Resources, Visual Literacy, Worksheets | No Comments

Curved House Kids are an energetic educational publisher with a focus on visual literacy and visual methodologies. We aim to make the art of communication achievable for all children, regardless of their skill level or circumstances. We take a democratic approach to learning and visual literacy is our secret weapon!

If this sounds like your kind of approach and you’re a practicing teacher in the UK, read on…

Teacher Ad SM1

This year we have run the Principia Space Diary programme in partnership with Lucy Hawking and Queen Mary University of London. This programme has been funded by the UK Space Agency as one of nine educational outreach projects associated with ESA Astronaut Tim Peake’s mission to the ISS. The programme has been a huge success, reaching over 60,000 primary-aged students across the UK, and we are now working to develop new resources and programmes that can be accessed in the classroom.

We are expanding our resources library for primary and early secondary students (Key Stages 1-3) to include more free, downloadable learning materials for teachers and we are looking for experienced educators to review our work and help us build a library of first-class materials. These materials will teach a wide range of subjects using visual methods, and always intersecting with literacy learning and visual literacy.

As a passionate and creative teacher, your job will be to review materials that we produce and help us to align these to the curriculum, making them as effective as possible for busy teachers. You will also attend our annual brainstorm in which you tell us what you think we should be producing and what we’re doing right and wrong. We’ll also show you new ideas and technologies that might improve your own work.

This is a freelance role at an agreed hourly rate and we offer plenty of flexibility to fit in around busy teaching schedules. All work, bar the annual brainstorm, is done remotely and with plenty of notice. We expect it would be around 10 hours per year initially, plus one day for the brainstorm. Expenses will be paid for those who need to travel. 

This call is currently open to all teachers in the UK and Ireland. We are keen to hear from KS1-3 teachers and welcome those with specialisms in particular areas. Our materials are not tied to the curriculum but they need to be complementary, so it is important that all applicants have an up-to-date knowledge of the curriculum.

Please click the link below to complete a very brief application form (it will only take 5 minutes) and we will contact you if we think you’d be a good fit. If you have any questions please feel free to email us at info@curvedhousekids.com.

Apply Now

 

Bologna Book Fair

Curved House Kids goes to Bologna Book Fair!

By | 4-6 years, 6-8 years, 8+ years, Blog, Events, News | No Comments

Going to Bologna I didn’t know what to expect. I knew of course children’s books and illustrators but I never imagined the magnitude of the fair. Before this I had only been in my country’s (Colombia) biggest fair the Bogotá Book Fair (Filbo) and in Canada I went to the Toronto Book Fair, both wonderful but very different in size and purpose.

When Kristen and I arrived we immediately felt the joyful energy of this Italian city and were surprised to see how dog-friendly it is. As we walked through it, in less than an hour, we spotted 40 dogs. We knew that this was the place to be.

At the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, creative minds get to show their work and their enthusiasm for their craft. Walking through the stands, we viewed books that have been published all over the world. Where the fair began there were halls filled with the artworks of the selected illustrators, each of them with their own distinguishing style. Germany as the country of honour had a special hall exhibiting their illustrators. Work from this country demonstrated different techniques, from laser cut to fine drawings in black and white, or other illustrations filled with elements and a variety of colors.

Hongchen Yu, China BCBF

Tsutomu Fujishima, Japan BCBF

Michiko Chapuis, Japan BCBF

The fair was huge and I had never been in one of this scale. It had stands for every country; sometimes publishers from a same nationality shared one but in most cases they had their own. As we explored the hallways of the Latin American countries, Chile caught our attention. They produce wonderfully crafted books with talented illustrators, as well as great ideas. The most wonderful surprise was meeting Argentinian publisher Diego Bianki from Pequeño editor, who publishes from the heart and has won prizes at the fair this year and last. Talking to him we saw the passion he has for his craft, which is clear in his books like Tree Book Tree. This is an amazing book that can be planted and a tree will grow out of it. To promote it, he used the motto: books come from trees, today a tree comes from a book.

chomp, chrostpoh niemann

There were also panels about a variety of topics. We had the chance to listen to some about enriched books and interactive book apps, and how this market has to work to make business model strategies get attention for what they are doing. Now publishers are also creating books with augmented reality. This is a new concept of books that isn’t being used in Colombia but it is a worthy tool that we should be pursuing and discovering. Its possibilities are endless.

The panels weren’t only about technology, and I was especially moved by one about refugees and children’s books. Panelists talked about how stories can help children understand why people leave their countries to live somewhere else and how this feels. It’s not just about understanding but about feeling and evoking emotion. This way real empathy is created and children can start building a better understanding with others. I left this panel with the feeling that these stories are needed all over the world and that they are helpful in all types of environments.

After the panels, we met Verena Pausder from Fox and Sheep, and illustrator Christoph Niemann who had great ideas and advice for Kristen.
I can’t end this blog without mentioning the lovely publishers from Ireland we met who adopted us into their group. They not only make amazing books and have creative initiatives, such as the
book clinic, but also have such warm hearts and are very friendly. They truly made this trip to Bologna even better. Children’s Books Ireland, O’Brien Press and Little Island now have a special place in our hearts.
Bologna Book Fair BCBF

Valeria De La Vega is a final year student at Pontificia Universidad Javeriana where she is studying Communications with an emphasis in Publishing. She is interning at the Curved House Kids to learn about publishing children’s books, help translate the books to Spanish and to assist with the development of visual literacy resources.

Y3 students countdown to Principia launch!

By | 4-6 years, 6-8 years, Blog, News, Teaching Resources, Visual Literacy | No Comments
Design your your own space suit principia space diary tim peake

Designing our own spacesuits

This blog has been written by Tim Bromwich’s Year 3 Class at Cooper and Jordan School, Aldridge

Today in Year 3 we have witnessed the most amazing thing!

We all sat together and experienced a once in a lifetime event. Tim Peake made history by becoming the first official British astronaut to go to the ISS.

Over the past few weeks we have learnt more about space through our Space Diaries, preparing ourselves to become astronauts, and watched many videos from aboard the International Space Station. The more we learnt about life in space, the more we couldn’t wait until lift off. This morning we were all extremely excited by the fact that we could see Major Peake blast off, all the way over in Baikonur Kazakhstan. We huddled together in Mrs BB’s classroom and watched the BBC coverage of the launch. We learnt so much from the presenters, from the training that astronauts undertake to the importance of their space suits.

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Creating our first meal in space

We eagerly waited for the countdown and as soon as the timer in the corner got to 10, we joined in with the countdown.

As the counter reached zero the whole of Year 3 cheered, along with people all around the world, as we watched the rockets propel Tim and his team towards space. We all felt overwhelmed with happiness as we saw the rocket successfully leave the launch pad, and were excited to find out more about what Tim would get up to.

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The launch countdown and our first creative writing exercise ‘8-minutes to space!’

To make it even better, as the rockets ejected themselves from the craft, Tim turned to the camera gave a big thumbs up and a wave, then went back to concentrating on his flight checks. It felt like Tim was waving to us thousands of miles away in Aldridge.

We will all be rushing home tonight to turn on the television to see how Tim and the team have progressed, and cannot wait until we hear him talk from aboard the ISS.

What a fantastic morning for us all and the start of an awesome adventure for Tim and his crew.

Well done Tim!

Tim Bromwich’s Year 3 Class
Cooper and Jordan School, Aldridge

Principia Space Diary Primary Literacy Resources Curved House Kids Make Your Own Books 27th Lincoln Scouts

Scouts embark on a space journey

By | 4-6 years, 6-8 years, Blog, News, Teaching Resources, Visual Literacy | No Comments

DOFE LOGOI’m sure you can recall a time when someone asked, ‘Do you remember where you were when…’ usually followed by a major historic event. Imagine future dinner table conversations, when our young people are asked if they remember where they were when the first British astronaut went to the International Space Station under the Union flag, and they reply, ‘Remember it? I was part of it!

The young people in the 27th Lincoln Scout Group, with the support of Eagle Community Primary School, are headed for an out-of-this-world orbit whilst creating a lasting record of their involvement in the Principia Mission. As Major Tim Peake lives and works on the ISS, conducting scientific experiments like determining the ability of human life to survive, grow food, and undertake activities in microgravity conditions, we will be following along on Earth. Our group will imaginatively document their experiences in a unique Space Diary from Curved House Kids and the UK Space Agency Principia Mission outreach programme.

Lincoln ScoutsThis week all seventy of our young people (aged 6 to 14) and leaders started their diaries, putting themselves into the boots of a real astronaut, and living up to the scouting motto, to find out how prepared we would be for space. Watching the introduction video from Lucy Hawking and Dallas Campbell, we found out why it is so important to be fit and healthy for space. Then we completed an Astronaut Workout – jumping for space, stretching up to measure how tall we are, perfecting our balance and floating postures, as well as steadying our breathing to remain calm in our space suits. The young people used these results to consider and discuss the physical impact on our bodies from being in a weightless environment. Finally, we had a look at nutrition and the sort of food astronauts – past and present – would eat, and designed our own healthy meal in our diaries to be packed up for our mission.

 

Our own space journey began at the beginning of October, on a group camp titled ‘There’s No Place Like Space’ which coincided with the launch of International Space Week.

Imaginations were unleashed on our ‘Area 51’ camp area with its own mission control (camp/office), ISS (kitchen and mess tent) and briefings in the ‘air lock’. Young people became space cadets for the weekend, split into mixed section/mixed age teams named after pods on the ISS (Unity, Harmony, Destiny and Quest), to take part in activities that accumulated points in our own weekend space race.

Our space race challenges included scaling the climbing wall in ‘Planet Exploration’ and decorating souvenir neckerchiefs with space related designs for ‘Space Pennants’, as well as pitching and striking a tent as part of cadets’ survival needs. ‘Ignition’ found the young people building and igniting small fires to be the first team to boil water, and in ‘Rocket Launch’ they explosively launched decorated plastic bottles using a foot pump and hosepipe to create hydro pressure.
‘We Come in Peace’ – interacting with other life-forms at camp fire – was a huge success and a ‘Spaced Out’ quiet area was used by many of the young people under the umbrella canopy of a glowing solar system for a quiet few minutes and planetary discussion. Even our menu was given a celestial makeover with dishes such as Black Hole Breakfast, Gibbous Grub, Moon Rock Meatballs, Radiant Wraps and Cosmic Cocoa.

As with any structured learning, our Scouting programme sets out requirements for all ages, making a balance of activities that not only cover traditional outdoor pursuits but a full range of interests and activities. From learning the names of planets to making a scale model of the solar system, or from knowing what to look for in the night sky to building our own satellite dishes…it’s all part of the Scouting programme.

It’s not all science though; the Principia Mission has given us opportunities to explore humanity itself. Last week we prepared for a Remembrance Sunday parade, taking time to remember the servicemen, women and animals who have given their lives and those who continue to risk theirs. We also reflected on what symbols might be fitting to represent the many humans and animals who went into space, giving their lives to progress the space programme for mankind. We will display these symbols and take time to remember them all during our meeting on 28th January, the NASA Day of Remembrance.

During a ‘Top Secret’ briefing, the group was told of their involvement in the Principia Rocket Science project with RHS Gardening for Schools. We are so excited to know that Tim will be looking after rocket seeds on the ISS that will be making their way to us in Spring 2016, to grow and add our results into the national database.

27th Lincoln Scouts 5We’ll be enhancing our Space Diary use with Principia materials such as Mission X: Train like an Astronaut and Heston Blumenthal’s Design a Space Dinner as resources for diet, healthy eating, exercise, gardening and scientist/experiment badge work, whilst completing the 250 mile Space to Earth challenge during our hikes and expeditions. Our Scout programme links perfectly with the Space Diary chapters to inspire another generation into scouting, science and space exploration.

On camp, we had a ‘Scouts’ Own’ time allocated for reflection and spiritual thought. We talked about Tim, his hard work and perseverance, just two of the many positive qualities that have led to his incredible mission. We also thought about Rick Mastracchio, a NASA engineer whose applications to be an astronaut were repeatedly knocked back. Rick did finally make it to space nine years after his first application, because he refused to give up on his dream. We became confident of opportunities still to come, hopeful that whatever our dreams, whatever we already know, there is always something new to be found if we are brave enough to go and look for it, while recognising that it will take boundless enthusiasm and determination to get us there.

“If you work hard, aim high and follow your dreams then you can achieve what you set out to do.” Tim Peake, November 2015

Anything worth having may not be achieved in one giant leap, but through many small steps. It is reputed to be lonely up in space but we are going to have tremendous company taking our first mission steps, proudly alongside our very own rocket man, Tim Peake, using our Principia Space Diaries.

 

 

Ellie Compton
Beaver Section Leader
27th Lincoln Scout Group

Astronaut Tim Peake with Principia Space Diary by Kristen Harrison, Lucy Hawking, Peter McOwan and Ben Hawkes

Principia Space Diary to reach 30,000 UK schoolchildren

By | 4-6 years, 6-8 years, Blog, News, Visual Literacy | No Comments

Space Diary Logo We are thrilled to announce that the UK Space Agency/ESA have extended funding of the Principia Space Diary project, doubling the number of UK primary school students who will receive copies of the book. That’s twice as many space apprentices, and twice as much fun!

We launched the Principia Space Diary in October with the aim of registering 15,000 UK school kids. One month later we are celebrating sign-ups for 30,000 children to participate in this project. What an amazing response from schools across the UK who have shown such enthusiasm for this and other Principia projects.

Sign up for the Principia Space Diary project

For those not yet familiar with Principia, this is the name for British ESA astronaut Tim Peake’s mission to the International Space Station. Tim launches on 15th December and has worked closely with the UK Space Agency, ESERO Schools Network and the ESA to develop a range of educational outreach programmes to engage children and young people. Find out more and get involved here: http://principia.org.uk/

Our own Principia project is the Principia Mission Space Diary that allows primary-aged children to document Tim’s journey and work their way through a space apprenticeship. Schools who signed up before today will receive printed books, delivered to them before Tim’s launch on the 15th December.

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Anyone who registers from today onwards (including schools, home educators, community clubs, after-school programmes etc) will automatically register for the online version of the programme, giving you exclusive access to the book in PDF form to download and print yourself.

This is a STEM-literacy project written by author Lucy Hawking and Professor Peter McOwan from Queen Mary University of London. It presents complex ideas is a simple, visual way and is designed to strengthen science, literacy, visual literacy and numeracy skills; expose children to the breadth of careers in the space science sector; help them learn about themselves; and make sure they have fun. Feel free to contact the publisher, Kristen Harrison (kristen@thecurvedhouse.com), if you’d like more detail about our methodology.

If you haven’t already signed up, visit principiaspacediary.org.

This is your chance to create a lasting memory of Tim’s historical journey.

Calling Awesome Teachers: Be Part of a Unique Space Mission

By | 6-8 years, Blog, News | No Comments

We’re going into space! Well, sort of…

In December 2015, British astronaut extraordinaire Tim Peake will really journey to space for a 6-month mission on the International Space Station (ISS). As part of Tim’s “Principia” mission, the UK Space Agency have awarded £140,000 in funding to 9 education and outreach projects and we are one of them. OMG! Galactic news!

Together with Lucy Hawking and QMUL’s Professor Peter McOwan, we are producing a Space Diary that will be sent out for free to 15,000 UK primary school children. The Space Diary is packed with activities and challenges that allow the help Tim on his mission – from preparing to be an astronaut, to experiments in space, to navigating space debris for a safe return to earth.

Calling awesome teachers…

We are looking for a small group of 4-6 teachers (in England, Ireland, Scotland and Northern Ireland) to form our testing team. We will need about 5 hours of time between now and the end of October to review the content of our book, our teaching notes and give us feedback on some adhoc questions. All this is to make sure this project is the best it can be for the 500 teachers and 15,000 students who will take part. In return we will credit you in the book; we will make sure your class is one of the 500 schools to receive free books; we will feature you and your school on our blog (if you want to be featured) and your class will get to cyber-meet author extraordinaire Lucy Hawking via a Skype visit to your school.

Will you join our teacher team? To join the crew, email our project coordinator Lucie Stevens at info@thecurvedhouse.com by 28th September.

And for more info, read the full press release announcing the Principia funding on the UK Space Agency website.

Curved House Kids and House of Illustration announce a new partnership

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Islington families invited to create their own stories with House of Illustration and Curved House Kids

Curved House Kids and House of Illustration today announce a new partnership, offering Islington families the chance to publish their own book in an empowering series of workshops, entitled “Our Cally Stories”.

Run as part of Islington Council’s Word15 festival, the 8-week programme will offer hands-on training in understanding visual and written literacy, as well as offering local families unique access to those working in creative sectors.

Commencing today, 23 April 2015, the workshops will be held in Holloway Library, Paradise Park Children’s Centre run by Islington Play Association and House of Illustration’s new Clore Studio at its gallery in King’s Cross.

The programme will map out a typical book development workflow, led and supported by an established author, illustrator and publisher. Young children and their parents will go through the process of planning, writing, editing, illustrating and publishing a professional quality book. Themes will be selected by participants, allowing them to create their own unique stories, and finished books will be produced and shared through local libraries.

House of Illustration and Curved House Kids have come together because of a shared focus on visual literacy, and on using visual tools to empower people to communicate fully in a modern world. This is a guiding principle for the programme, as Kristen Harrison, Publisher at Curved House Kids, explains: “We live in an increasingly visual world, and for the many who struggle with text-based literacy visuals can be extremely effective at breaking down their barriers to reading. We’re thrilled to join forces with House of Illustration, who already have an exceptional education and outreach programme, to provide Islington families with the tools they need to create and share their own stories. ”

The final book will be launched at House of Illustration, at 2 Granary Square in King’s Cross on Thursday 18 June.

NOTE TO EDITORS

About Curved House Kids (www.curvedhousekids.com)

Curved-House-Kids-Logo-BlueThe Curved House Kids produce books and downloadable learning materials, and run workshops that inspire primary aged children to read, write and see the world. Curved House Kids projects are based around the idea that visual tools and visual literacy skills can greatly improve a child’s ability to learn and that by making children part of the creative process we cement their learning (and their love for reading and storytelling) from an early age. We recognise that the world around us is now highly visual, digital and interactive and our methods engage with children the way children are engaging with the world.

About House of Illustration (www.houseofillustration.org. uk)

logoHouse of Illustration opened the UK’s first gallery dedicated solely to the art of illustration in summer 2014. Through changing exhibitions, events, courses, workshops and competitions it aims to reach audiences of all ages to learn about, participate in and enjoy illustration in all its forms. Our education department has been running since 2009; we have delivered over 40 projects in schools with high indexes of deprivation. Now equipped with a Clore Studio, we hold regular workshops for families, primary & secondary schools and adults. All workshops are delivered by professional illustrators and aim to empower participants of all ages and abilities with new skills, increased confidence, opportunities for creativity and enhanced visual literacy.

About the Word Festival

imgresThe Word festival celebrates the transformative power of words through a one year programme of high quality, commissioned arts activities, events and learning opportunities that encourage residents across Islington to develop enjoyment in reading, writing and freedom of expression. The festival is a partnership initiative between Inslington Council’s Library and Heritage Services, Arts Services, All Change and Free Word. Word 2015 will take place between 25 May and 19 June, 2015.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION AND ENQUIRIES

Kristen Harrison
Curved House Kids
+49 176 876 02770
kristen@thecurvedhouse.com
Twitter: @curvedhousekids

Emily Jost
House of Illustration
+44 203 696 2024
emily.jost@ houseofillustration.org.uk
Twitter: @illustrationHQ

imagine festival southbank curved house kids

Imagine Festival at the Southbank Centre 2015

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We’re back from a week in London where we took part in the annual Imagine Festival at the Southbank Centre. As part of the ‘Everybody Into Books’ event, organised by Inclusive Minds, we set up a book-making station and had kids help us illustrate and write our books. And this year we also got them to turn us (and themselves) into their favourite characters – everything from hairy monsters to floating mermaids. We made over 20 books throughout the day and are now creating ebooks and uploading them to our Kids Library for you to view and download for free!

This was a special day for books. Inclusive Minds are committed to ensuring all children can access books and see themselves in stories and this event brought together organisations, like ours, that see inclusion as a priority rather than an afterthought. The organisers, Beth and Alex, assembled a panel that included some incredible, smart and articulate young people who openly discussed their experiences growing up in mixed race families and as transgender teens. They pointed out that few, if any, books published in the commercial sector reflect their own experiences and this invisibility can lead to feelings of profound isolation during childhood and adolescence.

Also on the panel was one of our idols, Charlie and Lola creator Lauren Child, who talked about her own approach and that rather than try to introduce diversity for its own sake, she tries to reflect real life and narratives that all children can relate to.

We came away from this day feeling completely energised by the insights of those who spoke, the creativity and enthusiasm of the kids who came and created books with us, and the potential we have to ensure diverse representations of people and circumstances in the characters and stories we create for kids. Until 2016 when we can Imagine again!

curved house kids visual literacy fun palace

Five Gems from our first Fun Palace

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On October 4th and 5th, Curved House Kids took over a corner of one of our favourite local bookshops, Shakespeare and Sons and turned it into our very own (and Berlin’s very first) Fun Palace. But what’s a Fun Palace? In short, it’s a free space where kids and adults can have fun connecting art and science through games, storytelling and drawing. Fun Palaces is a UK based (but global) initiative based on an original idea from the legendary playwright, Joan Littlewood and transported into the 21st century by Stella Duffy and Sarah Jane Rawlings.

We had a wonderful weekend in our Fun Palace and were delighted to see so many faces, old and young. We discovered Berlin kids know how to put the FUN in Fun Palace, and that their parents can give us a run for our money with singing and dancing along.

For those of you that coudn’t make it, here are five ‘Fun Palace gems’ to give you a peek into what last weekend was like:

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1. Rap and Rock(s) definitely go together

Kitty the Crystalizer rapped her heart out with her band, The Rocks. Big shout out to Mini-Metamorphic, a band member of The Rocks who managed to play it mega-cool and sleep through his moment in the spotlight.

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2. Learning is it’s own language

Language is no barrier when you’re learning about sound waves and making music.  Take eight cups of water, a few German numbers, a poster and some eager volunteers and we had a room full of mini-Mozarts in the making.

3. Breaking the rules is best!

Curved House Kids author Chester Travis’ Picture Poetry session really set the kids imaginations alight. After listening to Chester’s ferocious animal sounds and identifying them, our Fun Palace visitors could create their own mixed-up creations taking the best bits from our animal components. ‘Kick’ was a colorful huge animal that made a mix between a roar and a hiss.

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4. The future is bright…

Our Fun Palace mural was a chance for kids to respond to speculative questions about the future. One of them – “show me a world that has never existed” – was enough to get one visitor suggesting “a machine that allows you to learn everything while you sleep”. We are pretty much convinced the kid who came up with this will be a professor one day.

FunPalace-40

5. …Especially when you come together

Learning is not just about thinking, it’s also about doing and collaborating, and seeing parents and adults getting stuck in and helping their children add to our mural, write raps, dance for our morning warmups and create their own planets for our Saturday planet parade was an inspiring reminder that the Fun Palace isn’t just an idea for kids.

Thank you to Chester Travis, Megan Archer and Timothy Armstrong for sharing your artistic skills and creativity with us and the kids! And a special thanks to photographer Alice Connew for taking so many wonderful Snaps.

Visit the Curved House Kids Facebook Page to see more pics from the event.

curved house kids fun palaces

Berlin’s First Fun Palace: Free Festival of Art and Science

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Calling all creative kids! On the 4th and 5th of October, for one weekend only, Curved House Kids will set up a Fun Palace at Shakespeare and Sons bookshop.

What’s a Fun Palace? A Fun Palace is a free and creative space, where kids and adults alike can explore activities around art and science. We’ll be filling the weekend with all kinds of engaging and inspiring activities that bring science to life. With sessions looking at space, geology, chemistry, paleontology (dinosaurs!) and the animal kingdom, visitors to the Berlin Fun Palace will be able to explore their favourite subjects through storytelling, songs and games. Join authors, illustrators and artists including Megan Archer, Chester Travis, Kristen Harrison, Alice Connew and Jenna Stout for a fun-packed weekend creating Berlin’s first Fun Palace.

Activities include:

  • Meet the Illustrator: Learn about space, the solar system and gravity with illustrator Megan Archer, whose book Up, Up in to Space! is published by Curved House Kids.
  • Meet the Author: Chester Travis, author of My Summer Snowman, shares his poetry-writing skills while teaching us about the animal kingdom.
  • Rock n’ Roll: A rockin’ game where music meets geology!
  • Dinosaur Doodles: How would you draw a Sordes Pilosus? Or a T-Rex? This drawing game is the ultimate challenge for dinosaur fans!
  • Add your drawing to our “Imagine a Future” mural inspired by author extraordinaire, Lucy Hawking! In one of her videos, Lucy asks: “Can you imagine a future noone else has thought of?”.
  • Splashing Sounds: Learn how to make music with water and sound waves.
  • Planets on Parade: Make your own planet mask and join our planet parade!

This Berlin Fun Palace is one of many Fun Palaces happening in the UK and around the world on 3rd and 4th October, 2014. Over 100 Fun Palaces have been devised to celebrate theatre director Joan Littlewood’s centenary and her vision of creating fun and engaging spaces for anyone to access. Fun Palaces is a campaign for culture that everyone can join – combining arts and sciences, welcoming and free, at the heart of local communities across the world.

When and Where?

11am – 4pm on Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th October
Shakespeare and Sons Bookshop and Bagel Cafe, Warschauerstrasse 74, 10243 Berlin
Cost: Free

A full programme of events will be published on the Curved House Kids website w/c 22nd September.

About Curved House Kids

Founded by Kristen Harrison in 2013, Curved House Kids is a Berlin-based publishing house that develops books and learning materials that integrate visual literacy into the teaching of core reading and writing skills. Our work tackles the reasons kids may not be reading, whether it be learning difficulties, additional needs, lack of confidence, or the ubiquitous distractions of digital technologies. By allowing kids to make their own books we empower them to be part of the creative process and encourage them to form a life-long bond with books and storytelling.

About Fun Palaces

In 1961, UK theatre director Joan Littlewood and architect Cedric Price conceived the Fun Palace as a ‘laboratory of fun’, ‘a university of the streets’. It was to be a temporary and movable home to the arts and sciences that would welcome children and adults alike. This wasn’t possible in 1961; it’s very possible now.

Co-directed by author Stella Duffy and Sarah Jane Rawlings, Fun Palace takes the best of that never-built 1960s vision and bring it into the 21st century in a weekend of events, locally curated and attended – linked nationally and internationally, virtually and actually. On 4 & 5 October 2014 there will be hundreds of local, pop-up Fun Palaces across the globe, each one based on the needs and wants of that community, all part of the national network of Fun Palaces.

For more information, please visit:

http://funpalaces.co.uk/

http://curvedhousekids.com/

For further enquiries, please contact:

Kristen Harrison

kristen@thecurvedhouse.com

+49 176 876 02770

chester travis at Shakespeare and sons

Chester Travis entertains the BeSmart Academy, Berlin

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Back in December we ran a competition to get kids drawing the cover of My Summer Snowman by New Zealand author Chester Travis. The comp was won by 5-year-old Lilly (then 4) who produced this wonderful drawing that really impressed our judge, illustrator Ben Hawkes.

My Summer Snowman Chester Travis The Curved House Kids

Lilly, aged 4

Lilly’s prize was an author visit by the wonderful kiwi native Chester Travis. We held the event at Shakespeare and Sons in Berlin and Lily bought along her classmates to be entertained and inspired by Chester’s reading. The kids got to illustrate their own page from a book and all took home a copy of one of our books.

Thanks BeSmart academy for a great morning and congrats again to Lilly, keep drawing!

international children's book day

Free Shipping today only to Celebrate International Children’s Book Day

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international children's book dayWhoa! It’s International Children’s Book Day and we are celebrating. Our authors and illustrators are visiting schools in London and Berlin today to make some collaborative books with kids. Meanwhile, over in our shop we are offering FREE SHIPPING anywhere in the world for today only AND we will choose one lucky customer to win one of our hand-printed Pillow Books. How very awesome!

Just in time for Easter so you can pick up some of our Make-Your-Own books to keep the kids busy over the holidays.

Free shipping today only

Visit the Curved House Shop and use this discount code at the checkout:

DISCOUNT CODE:  ICBD2014

Remember this is for today only.

Teachers ahoy!

Are you a teacher looking for something to do with your kids today? Here’s our Pirate Power poem that you can download, print and get your kids to illustrate. Don’t forget to upload some pictures to our Kids Gallery – we’d love to see what the kids come up with!

Wishing you all a very happy International Children’s Book Day.

illustrate your own book with curved house kids

Click to Download Pirate PowEnjoy and a very happy International Children’s Book Day to you

 

Primary Literacy Workshops Curved House Kids Make Your Own Books

4-year-old Lilly wins our My Summer Snowman illustration competition

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Drum roll please….

The winner of our My Summer Snowman cover illustration competition is… LILLY. Lilly is just 4 years old and her illustration shows a special something when it comes to drawing. Our super dooper judge, Ben Hawkes, said this about Lilly’s drawing:

“BOOOM! My favourite, not only is the snowman/woman walking but there is a castle and a really well drawn tent. Colours are fab and looking at it makes me happy.”

Well done Lilly, you did a great job and we can’t wait to see what else you draw for us!

Lilly has won 20 copies of any of our books for her friends or classmates plus a visit from the awesome author of My Summer Snowman, Chester Travis.

We don’t officially have runners up in this competition but Judge Ben also asked us to acknowledge his other favourites. MIRA (8) and ALFRED (6) came a very close second:

“MIRA – a beautiful snowman and wonderful collage, I love the tree and the arms of the snowman. The carrot is fab, I am slightly jealous!”

“ALFRED – I love this, beautifully drawn snowman and I love the green hat and very beautifully draw face.”

Thank you to all the creative kids who entered their work into our first ever drawing competition. There will be lots more to come so keep your pencils sharp and your imaginations wild!

About our judge

Ben Hawkes is the talented illustrator of Grandma’s Jungle Party. He has also illustrated for Random House, M&S, Ribena and many others AND he has just finished illustrating a brand new reading App, Hip Hop Hen. Check out his work here: http://benhawkes.co.uk/