Thursday, June 11, 2009

Review, Alphabet Soup, Winter 09 Edition

I reviewed the autumn edition of Alphabet Soup earlier this year. I was interested to see if the new winter edition of this magazine for "kids who love reading" would live up to its promise.

It certainly did! Editor Rebecca Newman has kept to the winning formula of interesting articles, stories, reviews, poetry, and publishing great examples of kids' own writing. Greg Mitchell's illustrations add fun and quirkiness to every page.

This third issue has the winners of the autumn writing competition. I particularly enjoyed the Under 9's winner, Tyron Torre's poem,
Goodbye, Goodbye, about watching his red balloon float away.
"I tried to grab
I let it go
Away, away I watched it blow."

Two new competitions have been announced, one for short story writers and one for illustrators to design the cover of the next issue. There's a great interview with Jo Oliver, author/illustrator of the picture book,
Pilgrim. Jo's answers are perfectly pitched at her audience of under twelves, and she gives fascinating insights into her processes as a creator. I also enjoyed my peek into the life of an Air Traffic Controller - Diarmuid Tyson.

Subscriptions are still $29.80 per annum, which I think is excellent value. For more information about subscribing competitions etc, see the
Alphabet Soup website.

After reading
Alphabet Soup for the second time, I stand by the conclusion of my first review: "Reading and writing are essential for children’s future success. It’s wonderful to see a magazine that encourages skills and enthusiasm for them. If you’re lucky enough to have an avid 6 - 12-year-old reader or writer in your family, consider adding Alphabet Soup to their diet!"

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