E67 Unpacking the OLA Forest of Reading nominees for 2021

By Alanna King

The Ontario Library Association Forest of Reading is “Canada’s largest recreational reading program! This initiative of the Ontario Library Association (OLA) offers ten reading programs to encourage a love of reading in people of all ages. The Forest helps celebrate Canadian books, publishers, authors and illustrators. More than 270,000 readers participate annually from their school and/or public library. All Canadians are invited to participate via their local public library, school library, or individually.”

This timely episode explores the nominations for 2021 in all of the trees so if you want to see the full lists, check these out: https://accessola.com/forest/award-nominated-lists/

The Forest of Reading comes under a scrutiny as we apply our #ownvoices lens to each of the lists. Are the lists representative of the diversity of our students? As members of the education community and also representatives of the selection committees, we bring a lot of experience to this conversation.

Shoutouts to Lisa Lewis and Deb Dundas.

For more information on the challenges of diversity of Canadian publishing, check out this Treasure Mountain Canada paper by Deb Dundas called “Who do we see in kids’ books? Star survey provides insight into diversity of Canadian publishers and the characters they develop”