________________ CM . . . . Volume XII Number 12 . . . . February 17, 2006


A Birthday Calendar: A Perpetual Record of Birthdays & Other Special Days Featuring Art from Canadian Children's Books.

Canadian Children's Book Centre.
Toronto, ON: Canadian Children's Book Centre (order on-line at www.bookcentre.ca), n.d.
1 calendar, spiral bound, $9.95.

All ages.

Review by Dave Jenkinson.

**** /4

What's that? Your husband/wife, brother/sister, aunts/uncles, cousins, best friends, etc. keep forgetting your birthday/wedding anniversary or other significant annual events? Or are you the one that does the forgetting? Well, now the Canadian Children's Book Centre has the answer to your problem (or at least part of it) in the form of what it calls a “Birthday Calendar.” Like a “regular” calendar, the Birthday Calendar has the usual 12 months, but what makes it different is that the days of the month on the calendar are not connected to specific days of the week. Beside each day of the month, there is a space in which you can write the name of the person and what it is you are trying to recall (birthday, wedding anniversary, etc.). After you have filled in the names and annual events you need to recall, then as you turn over each month, there they are in front of you. Unlike other calendars, this one is not dated after a year and discarded, but it can continue to be used forever (or until completely filled and a second one is needed).

internal art

     The picture portion of the calendar consists of a dozen full-colour reproductions of illustrations taken from Canadian children's books. Each monthly illustration fits the season. For example, December sees a quartet of children making snow pigs, the illustration coming from Phoebe Gillman's Jillian Jiggs and the Great Big Snow while May finds a young child from Eugenie Fernandes' One More Pet picking up a fledgling bird that has fallen from its nest.

     With its low price, A Birthday Calendar is not just an economical home purchase, but it makes an excellent and highly appreciated gift item for friends and family members (plus a terrific end of the year thank-you gift for your child's teacher). Providing an about-to-be son or daughter-in-law with A Birthday Calendar that already contains all the important “new” in-law family dates is a thoughtful gesture.

internal art

     Open, the A Birthday Calendar is 41 cm. long x 20.5 cm. wide (or 16 ins. x 8 ins.) with the illustration and the date portion each taking up half the calendar's full length. By purchasing a second calendar and then taking it apart, you could drymount and laminate or frame the 41 cm. x 41 cm. (8" x 8") illustrations and then use them for classroom, library or home decorations, or you could give them as gifts at baby showers.

     Public libraries should consider making a bulk purchase of A Birthday Calendar and then selling it calendar as another way of promoting the reading of Canadian children's books.

     An essential purchase.


Highly Recommended.

Dave Jenkinson, who lives in Winnipeg, MB, is CM's editor.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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