A Sunshine Coast speech pathologist and first- time author has used the Christmas classic “The Night Before Christmas” as the inspiration for a new Christmas picture book with a truly Australian feel.
Having worked in education for almost twenty years, Bryan Ward has a strong interest in developing children’s communication skills through talking and stories.
“To encourage children to read you need to engage them in something they can relate to and Australian kids love a breach Christmas, so I started there,” Bryan, who also illustrated the book, said.
“Then I though to myself, what would happen if Santa crash-landed on the beach outside my holiday apartment and how we would go about helping Santa solve the problem?”
Bryan said from that starting point, and using the famous “The Night Before Christmas” as inspiration, he set about writing a book that would encourage imagination and help promote language development.
“Books can help children become familiar with the patterns and rhythms of our language, with the ability to identify and generate rhyming words being key pre-literacy skills that children need to take with them into prep and school.
“For that reason, every page of this story features rhythm and rhyme – which also makes for great fun.”
“Books can teach children about things they haven’t seen or done yet, feeding their imaginations while also introducing them to important life skills like co-operation, which I have explored using other children and Australia’s iconic lifesavers in the story to help Santa out of his predicament.”
“Santa’s Beach Christmas”, which is suitable for children from pre-prep age and into the early years of school, also contains great bonus material about “The Night Before Christmas”, some history about Santa Claus and Saint Nicholas, as well as other activities to encourage language development through words that explore the senses.
“Santa’s Beach Christmas” is available from www.thewritestuffinoz.blogspot.com at just $18 plus postage. They will also be available at the Buderim Mamma’s Market on Friday 16th December at Buderim War Memorial Hall from 5pm to 9pm.