“In hand with Alma”

Guestblogger this week is Cilla Nergårdh, marketing manager at Astrid Lindgren’s Näs in Vimmerby:

For over ten years, the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award has let us know and be inspired by some of the best authors in the world. For us at Astrid Lindgrens Näs, the place where Astrid Lindgren was born and where her writing begun, it felt like time to lift the prize in a new and challenging way and incorporate the children of Vimmerby in the celebration.

So we came up with the project “Hand in hand with Alma”. It is a project with several goals; to promote children´s reading, to give the prize-winner a chance to meet their Swedish readers and get something back from them, to inspire children to create in their own way, to spread the works of the prize-winner and to involve all of Vimmerby in celebrating the prize.

This year all children at the age of 10-11 years at Astrid Lindgren´s School will read Barbro Lindgren’s works. They will also interpret some of her books in drama and art. Finally they will meet Barbro Lindgren and show her their work and get the chance to ask her all their questions, tell her all their thoughts and hear her talk about her work.

Today we got a visit from the ALMA-jury. Jurymember Mats Kempe met 30 teachers from Astrid Lindgren´s School and introduced Barbro Lindgren´s writing. He talked about “The loving relationship (but oh, so complex)” in Barbro Lindgren´s writing. By reading from different books – he showed in an exciting way how Barbro Lindgren is exploring the relationship between people who are close but also the tension between testing borders and challenging fears and caretaking and responsibility. We all, teachers and parents, laughed in recognition when he said that reading Barbro Lindgren as a grown up is like riding a roller coaster.

Mats Kempe. Photo: Astrid Lindgren's Näs

Mats Kempe. Photo: Astrid Lindgren’s Näs

I have read almost all books by Barbro Lindgren, most of them I have read many times. When my children were small I read them again and experienced them in a new way – not as the child hungry for action, eager to conquer the world – but as a parent who´s responsibility it is to watch over small adventurers. Now I feel I have to read them all a third time as a mother of two teenagers on their way into adult life. I can hardly wait.

Cilla Nergårdh

Photo: Astrid Lindgren's Näs

Photo: Astrid Lindgren’s Näs

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