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ALEX STRICK has taught (EFL) and worked in children's play/youthwork. She has considerable experience of working directly with disabled children and managing projects seeking to develop equality and inclusion. She has also worked in the children's book world for much of the past fifteen years. At Booktrust, she managed programmes like Bookstart and Children's Book Week, was deputy executive director and regularly reviewed children's books for the Guardian. She is now a consultant to Booktruston all aspects of disability and diversity, as well as working with various other agencies and charities (she is co-founder of Outside In, the UK organisation dedicated to exploring books from around the world). She is regularly asked to talk at events and conferences and has been commissioned to design and deliver training courses for writers, illustrators and publishers on accessible and inclusive books, both in the UK and internationally. ROS ASQUITH has been a Guardian cartoonist for 20 years, and has written and illustrated over 70 books for young people, including the bestseller The Great Big Book of Families, with Mary Hoffman, the Teenage Worrier series, Letters from an Alien Schoolboy-which was shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize- and her debut picture story book It s Not Fairy. Ros lives in north London with her husband and two sons. For more information about Ros, visit her website: www.rosasquith.co.uk SEAN STOCKDALE is an ex-teacher who is now Communications Manager for NASEN. He has extensive experience of working with disabled children and promoting equality and inclusion.
Selected by Fiona Noble in Bookseller Children's Previews: Picture Books for June. 'A lively, fun story promoting inclusivity and a positive portrayal of children enjoying sport with and without disabilities.' Recommended in an article about dyslexia: 'Shows a very positive and non-specific scene in which a thoroughly diverse and inclusive class of children is practising handwriting, with no direct mention of dyslexia.' 'I was utterly thrilled to see a whole cast of disabled children included naturally within a beautiful, accessible and funny mainstream picture book, relevant to all ages. We shall definitely be buying copies for our school library.' 'The children and adults are just being themselves, not set apart in any way, and this is how disability should be shown in children' s books and so rarely is. Inclusivity should be just that, so usual as to be un-noticeable... a special book.' 'The two authors, working through Booktrust and NASEN, have long been proponents of inclusivity in children' s books, and in this story have produced the ideal. The illustrations are bright and happy pictures of kids being kids and enjoying life to the full. A special book.' ` Could this be the perfect inclusive book? . . . A celebration of fun activity, showing us how a diverse mix of people make Max' s reality (and his dreams) all the more vibrant and interesting, and it sends out the message that the same is true for all of us.' 'What a wealth of opportunity for all children and a book that will go down really well in the classroom as teachers can use both as a good story book and also as a real resource for inclusion and disabilities as part of everyday life... published by Frances Lincoln. As publishers, they are amazing at delivering books that are both great reads and meet the needs of our diverse and rich culture.' ` It's a book which should make us stop and think about inclusion, as well as being a fun story about a very imaginative little boy. Colourful illustrations by Ros Asquith capture the spirit of the book.' ` At once fun, inclusive of all and full of imagination. It is a picture book that champions diversity without making an issue of the subject. It is subtle, pervasive, clever, intelligent and much more. . . . In creating Max the Champion the team have played a small part in changing the landscape of attitudes towards disability.' ` Ros Asquith' s ebullient illustrations capture Max' s irrepressible energy in this warm hearted, inclusive picture book.' 'A good book . . . for promoting inclusion and positive attitudes towards those with disabilities.' The book shows children with and without disabilities enjoying sport together in an attractive and funny mainstream picture book. 'A really important book that belongs in every primary library, particularly after the great success of the paralympics last summer. It will encourage that interest in children and add greatly to the acceptance of disability.' 'Apart from Max' s sheer enjoyment as he goes through his day with nothing but sport on his mind, nothing much happens. But that' s fine. We want to see those ` different' children behaving just like everyone else. We shouldn' t need a special book to do so. But we do. Here it is.' "an exciting and inclusive story." "What this book is, is a celebration of fun activity, showing us how a diverse mix of people make Max' s reality (and his dreams) all the more vibrant and interesting, and it sends out the message that the same is true for all of us." "This book features forms of disability never before included in books, subtly and without reference." "Ros Asquith' s ebullient illustrations capture Max' s irrepressible energy in this warm hearted, Recommended in an article about dyslexia: 'Shows a very positive and non-specific scene in which a thoroughly diverse and inclusive class of children is practising handwriting, with no direct mention of dyslexia.' "This book features forms of disability never before included in books, subtly and without reference." "Ros Asquith's ebullient illustrations capture Max's irrepressible energy in this warm hearted, inclusive picture book."