Q. What links: animal food chains; the intricacies of maths; the First World War; the wonders of our world; mindblowing facts about outer space?
A. They’re all subjects of books on the 2015 ALCS Educational Writers Award shortlist.
These five books have been chosen as outstanding examples of non-fiction for 5 to 11 year olds. The winner receives £2,000 and will be announced at the All Party Writers Group Winter Reception at the House of Commons on Tuesday 1 December.
WHO EATS WHO?
TERESA HEAPY (AUTHOR), REBECCA ELLIOTT (ILLUSTRATOR)(Publisher: Oxford University Press)
Our judges said: The beautiful combination of photos and illustrations, together with simple clear text explain the food chain in a straightforward yet engaging way. A hugely enjoyable book to explore with children, which encourages them to want to read for pleasure.
MARVELLOUS MATHSJONATHAN LITTON (AUTHOR), THOMAS FLINTHAM (ILLUSTRATOR)(Publisher: Templar)
Our judges said: A wonderfully colourful and interactive way to investigate mathematical concepts, from shapes and probabilities to number sequences. The visual approach is perfect for young children, making maths fun, exciting and accessible.
DEAR JELLY: FAMILY LETTERS FROM THE FIRST WORLD WARSARAH RIDLEY
(Publisher: Franklin Watts)
Our judges said: A very poignant and moving insight into the lives of a family during the First World War, told through letters sent home to their sisters from two brothers serving on the Western Front, along with background explanations. It brings alive the events of the period for young children – in an accessible way
SPACE RECORD BREAKERSANNE ROONEY
(Publisher: Carlton Kids)
Our judges said: Packed with fun and digestible nuggets of information about our universe, this fresh approach to the topic of space has an attractive design, large images and clearly explained chunks of information about the solar system and space exploration. The final frontier comes to life!
ATLAS OF ADVENTURESRACHEL WILLIAMS (AUTHOR), LUCY LETHERLAND (ILLUSTRATOR)
(Publisher: Wide Eyed Editions, Aurum Press)
Our judges said: Offering an interactive experience you won’t find on the internet, this is a beautifully designed, durable, large-format book packed full of vibrant colour and fascinating information and activities about people, wildlife and places around the world – from natural wonders to fun festivals.
The Educational Writers’ Award was established in 2008 by the Authors’ Licensing & Collecting Society (ALCS) and the Society of Authors in order 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.
The 2015 Award focused on books for 5-11 year olds, published in 2013 and 2014.
This year’s judges are school librarian Caroline Gosden; headteacher Michael Schumm; and author Cath Senker.