The Frankfurt Book Fair New York/German Book Office just announced it is kicking off a campaign to showcase new German children's books through an initiative called “Children’s Books on Tour: Kids recommend German Stories”. The program features YouTube videos of 21 bilingual children from German schools in New York recommending a children’s or young adult book from the catalog of titles.
“The goal for ‘Children’s Books on Tour’ is to bring attention to new German-language books so they could be translated and read by children all over the world,” said Riky Stock, Vice President, Frankfurt Book Fair New York. “We were looking for different ways to bring these stories to life and realized there is no more powerful way to share how engaging and entertaining these books are than by hearing from readers - the children - themselves.”
The books featured in the program were to be exhibited at international book fairs throughout the spring which have been cancelled or pivoted online. The 21 children who participated were from the German International School of New York, the German School of Monmouth County, and the German School New York.
“I was so proud of our students when I saw their videos,” said Ina Seow, Principal of the German School New York. “I received emails from parents right away who mentioned what a wonderful experience it was for their children and that they learned so much from it. All of the kids I talked to really enjoyed the books they read. One of them can’t wait for part two to come out.”
The children chose books from this list of new titles. While Seow noted that her students tend to prefer one language over the other, this program gave them the opportunity to incorporate both languages - reading in German and then presenting in English.
“It was a wonderful experience to have our kids participate,” said parent Oliver Henzler. “We always encourage the reading of books in our home. In this case it was coupled with a newly published book which gave them an extra incentive as well as to build the bridge from a German readership to an English speaking one. The kids also enjoyed the filming part and presenting their thoughts to a larger community.”
For publishers interested in the rights of these titles, check here for contact details of participating publishers.
This project has been made possible thanks to the support of the Consulate General of the Federal Republic of Germany New York.
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Frankfurter Buchmesse is the international publishing industry’s biggest trade fair – with over 7,450 exhibitors from 104 countries, more than 300,000 visitors, over 4,000 events and some 10,000 accredited journalists and bloggers in attendance. It is the most important international marketplace for content – from novels and children’s books to academic databases and stories for films, games and virtual reality experiences. Publishing professionals from around the world meet here with partners from the technology sector and from related creative and cultural industries, sparking new partnerships and business models. A strong conference programme ensures that Frankfurter Buchmesse is a major source of inspiration for content experts from around the world. Since 1976, the book fair has featured an annual Guest of Honour country, which showcases its book market, literature and culture to attendees in a variety of ways. Frankfurter Buchmesse organises the participation of German publishers at around 20 international book fairs and hosts trade events throughout the year in major international markets. Frankfurter Buchmesse is a subsidiary of the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels (German Publishers & Booksellers Association). https://www.buchmesse.de/en