Celebrating Dr. Seuss with Truffula Trees!

March 2nd was Dr. Seuss’s birthday, and what better way to celebrate than with a bit of Truffula Tree making!

Truffula Trees

Truffula Trees

They’re easy to make if you want to play along at home. Even the students in Year One had a go (with a little help from the Library Monitors!)

  • Step 1. Wrap the wool around your fingers. You can change colours or use multi-coloured wool like I have. The more you wrap, the thicker your tree will look  … but there’s a catch, the more wool you use, the longer your tree will take to complete.


Loop the Wool Around Your Fingers

Loop the Wool Around Your Fingers

  • Step 2. Slide the wool off your fingers and tie it in the middle. Make sure you use a firm grip and loop the wool around several times.


Tie Your Wool Bundle

Truffula Tree Tie Your Wool Bundle

  • Step 3. Use a hot glue gun to secure your wool bundle to a straw.


Secure your Wool Bundle

Secure your Wool Bundle

  • Step 4. Snip all the loops of wool open.
Truffula Tree Cut the Loops Open

Cut the Loops Open


  • Step 5. You need to separate or split each and every piece of wool. This is the most time consuming part of your tree, but the results will be worth it. 🙂
Truffula Tree Separate Each Strand

Separate Each Strand of Wool


Finished Truffula Trees

Finished Truffula Trees

West Australian Kids love Aussie books!

The West Australian Young Readers’ Book Award (WAYRBA) shortlist for 2016 has been announced, with just over half of the 58 books on the three shortlists coming from Australian authors/illustrators.

What this says about Australian books.

Although books nominated by young readers must meet the eligibility criteria (see below) they are not restricted to nominate books by Australian authors.  This demonstrates that West Australian kids love Aussie books and that here in Australia, we have a children’s publishing industry to be proud of!

What is WAYRBA?

Launched in 1980, WAYRBA is the longest running Children’s Choice Book Award in Australia. Each year the young readers of Western Australian are invited to send in nominations for books they would like considered for the shortlist. From February  to September, young readers all around the state vote for the books they have read.  After collating all the votes, the winners in each category are announced in November.

My 2016 WAYRBA Display

My 2016 WAYRBA Display

Qualifying criteria is applied by the WAYRBA Committee after children have nominated.

  • The book must have been published in the previous five years and be commercially available within Western Australia.
  • Only one title from an author may be included on a shortlist, however, as there are three shortlists, this does not exclude another title from the same author appearing on a different shortlist.
  • Each book can only appear on a shortlist once, and cannot be nominated in subsequent years.
  • If the book is part of a series it must be able to be read as a stand-alone book (either as the first book in the series, or a series that is not impacted by strict reading order.)
  • The author must be living.
WAYRBA Display 2016

WAYRBA Display 2016

Why are Children’s Choice Awards so Important?

Children’s Choice Awards offer an alternative to the some of the other prestigious, and much celebrated awards, where both the shortlists, and eventual winner are selected by adults. Children’s Choice Awards celebrate those books that children and teens love to read. Access to books selected by other young readers can also be a critical influence towards convincing reluctant readers to pick up a book.

“I have won three Hoffman awards at the WA Young Reader Book Awards and the trophies hold pride of place on my sideboard. I am so proud of them. The main reason is that these awards are chosen by the actual readers, the kids I wrote the books for, so that makes them special and the very best thing to win. Finding out you have appealed to a whole load of readers and written something that they liked, is a huge reward after all the doubt and uncertainty and self-doubt during the long haul of creating a manuscript. I hope the WAYRBA continues for many years, or as long as I keep writing at least.”
Norman Jorgensen, West Australian Award Winning Author

Another Book Nerd Moment when Mandy and I presented Norman and James with their trophies for The Last Viking Returns. WAYRBA AGM 2016

Another Book Nerd Moment when Mandy and I presented Norman and James with their trophies. WAYRBA AGM 2016

You can view the 2016  WAYRBA shortlists here

Older Readers’     Younger Readers’     Picture Books