Taan’s Moon charming readers province wide

  • Aug. 28, 2015 5:00 a.m.

By Evelyn von AlmassyHaida Gwaii ObserverIt’s far more successful than anyone immagined.Copies of local children’s book Taan’s Moon are soon going be distributed to 20,000 families-roughly 60 per cent of all B.C. kindergarten students-through the Welcome to Kindergarten Program.Taan’s Moon features photographic reproductions of felt works of art created by 70 Haida Gwaii students under the guidance of local artist Kiki van der Heiden. The pieces were inspired by a poem by local author Alison Gear. “A lot of heart and a lot of legs went into that book. We couldn’t be more proud,” Tonya Martin, one of the publishers of the book with McKellar and Martin Publishing Group said. “It really is a community; the book hugged the people into it. It is a very tactile book, 10 by 10, so it could be held up and seen from the back of the classroom. It was a labour of love.” Ms. Gear based this story on one version of the Haida Moon cycle. It follows Taan (which means “bear” in the Haida language) as she experiences the wonder of the unfolding seasons. There was a soft launch of the book on Haida Gwaii Nov. 23, 2014 and was officially released in Dec. 2014. Now Kidsbooks in Vancouver is a huge supporter of the book as well, and it was also featured on CBC radio’s B.C. Almanac “Read Local B.C.” program in April 2015. Author Richard Van Camp wrote in the foreword: “Welcome to Taan’s Moons, one of the most beautiful books I have ever witnessed.”Since its publishing, Taan’s Moon has been translated into Inuktituk at a school in Nunavut, was selected as one of the Top 15 titles of the Association of Book Publishers of B.C.’s program, B.C. Passages Books, and is now available at gift stores on B.C. Ferries and at Airports throughout the province. Taan’s Moons is also being used by the Networks of Inquiry and Innovation in B.C. schools, and through this program is being introduced to educators in South Africa and New Zealand. The Canoe He Called Lootas by Amanda Reid-Stevens, and illustrated by Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas, and B is for Basketball, written by the teachers and students of Haida Gwaii and illustrated by Judy Hilgemann, were also published by the McKellar and Martin Publishing Group.

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