Children's book authored by BAC teacher

Year 2 teacher and children’s author Kris Wigglesworth used his own picture book to start a discussion with students in their Health unit this year.

Written while Kris was still at university, the picture book is now used as a teaching resource in Adventist schools around Australia, leading Primary-aged students on a journey of discovery about the effects of spending too much time behind screens. With the story taking place over a fictional week, Kris incrementally introduces research-based ideas to his readers. The Primary-aged character, Ava, makes simple changes based on what she learns.

As Ava comes to better understand the negative impact of overusing smartphones, tablets, gaming consoles, television, and computers, she spends less time doing these things. She feels fresher as she gets better quality sleep, she finds she can concentrate more easily and is surprised how her own imagination reawakens. She has more time to play outside, too, and when she goes for a walk with her friends on the weekend instead of watching a movie, her connections with them and her appreciation for nature grow, too!

Readers respond to the information in the story, really wanting things to turn out well for Ava. This opens a door for them to consider changes that might benefit their own lives.

Click on the following clip, which shows Kris reading excerpts of his book to his Year 2 class, who are still captured by the story after several readings. He also talks about how stories teach children about life. [BAC children's author and teacher Kris Wigglesworth talks about the power of story.]

Just recently, our other Year 2 teacher, Leanne Weir, entered a video submission about this Health unit. She taught it using Kris’s book as a stimulus for discussion, too. The video won first prize based on the large number of votes it attracted. Kris and Leanne were awarded $1000 to spend on teaching resources for their students. The two have allocated some of their prize money towards Science of Reading kits for their classrooms. Congratulations, Kris and Leanne!

See the winning video here.