If you’re running a group using comics with kids, a great way to find good new comics for them to read – and to get them actively engaged with thinking and talking about those comics critically – is to get involved with one of the comics awards programmes that involve young people in their judging process. There are couple of these in the UK that you might want to check out, for instance…
The Excelsior Award
The Excelsior Award is the only nationwide book award for graphic novels and manga – where kids aged 11-16 decide the winner by rating each book as they read it! Eight graphic novels are selected for the shortlist and it now attracts over two hundred and fifty schools and public libraries from all over the UK and Ireland! The overall goal of this scheme is to encourage reading amongst teenagers. However, its secondary target is to raise the profile of graphic novels and manga amongst school librarians and teachers. This storytelling medium has been a largely underused resource within education for many years. The Excelsior Award attempts to highlight some of the amazing books that are out there – books that fully deserve to be in our school libraries alongside regular fiction!
There is also the Excelsior Award Jr, for kids aged 8-11: http://www.excelsiorawardjunior.co.uk/
If you’d like to get your group involved in the Excelsior Award process, you can find out more information here: http://www.excelsioraward.co.uk/info.html – and about the Excelsior Award Jr here: http://www.excelsiorawardjunior.co.uk/info.html
The Young People’s Comic Award
Organised as part of the British Comic Awards, the Young People’s Comic Award is judged by young people and aims to celebrate the best in comics aimed at, and suitable for, a young audience. You can find a list of winners and nominees from previous years here: http://britishcomicawards.com/
And here’s a great video about the 2016 awards:
Judging is carried out by reading groups from schools, public libraries and Scouts and guides troops. If you’d like to get your group involved, you can find out more about how to get involved at the BCAs site, here: http://britishcomicawards.com/awards/young-peoples-comic-award/
Has your comic club made a comic? Why not get involved in the new Comic Swap run by Hannah Sackett and Lydia Wysocki, with Seven Stories: The National Centre for Children’s Books
Hannah and Lydia tell us how it works…
Comic Swap helps groups of children share comics they’ve made. Our first swap is now open!
How it works:
- You, as the adult responsible for a children’s comics-making group, send 6 copies of your comic to us at Seven Stories: The National Centre for Children’s Books.
- We add one copy of your comic to the Comic Swap library at Seven Stories.
- We shuffle the comics sent to us by the groups taking part in the swap.
- You wait excitedly by the letterbox to receive 5 comics made by other comic swap groups.
- You read your new comics!
The closing date for emailed permission forms is Friday 7th April 2017.
The closing date for posted comics to arrive at Seven Stories is Friday 14th April 2017.
Swapped comics will be posted out in May 2017.
Each comics swap group must be formed of multiple children and at least one responsible adult. Please do not send us any money: your group pays postage costs to send your comics to us, then we pay the postage to send you 5 new comics made by other groups.
Visit our blog for full details of how to get involved: https://comicswap.wordpress.com/about/
Don’t worry if you don’t have a comic to swap this time round – there will be more Comic Swaps to come, so start making those comics now!