A couple of years ago I met a lady called Sarah Stuffins.  Sarah won't mind me saying (I hope) that she is a bit of a chidren's books nut......I think that is why we get on well!  Sarah is the chair of my local branch of the Federation of Children's Book Groups (FCBG) and has just handed over the role of National chair to another fantastic lady called Jane Etheridge.
And so my journey with the FCBG began.  To start with I joined as a family so that my girls would have the chance to vote for the Children's Book Award (Red House Book Award as it was called then.)  They borrowed bundles of age appropriate books from the Federation and graded them from A - Best book I have ever read and I am going to read it until the pages start to fall out, through to E - aaaarggghhh, bury it in the garden, fling it from a cliff, just never let me see it again!!!
My children enjoyed the process immensely and loved the knowledge that the votes they were submitting really counted.
I then set up a library club at school with the support of our librarian.  We meet twice a week and vote for hundreds of different newly published children's books.  It is a great opportunity to keep up to date with what is being published and for the children to find new favourites and show their appreciation.
Last weekend saw the end of the 2015 voting process as the winners were announced at a ceremony in London.  As a school we were invited to attend with 5 members of the library club as well as my own 2 girls.  What a day it was !!  The children met authors and illustrators who where kind enough to chat with them and sign their books.  We sat on a table with Polly Ho-Yen and Korky Paul and the children even awarded a couple of the prizes.  It was a day they will never forget and it is thanks to the FCBG that they were able to take part in such a rewarding experience.
For more info on the FCBG and how to get involved go to www.fcbg.org.uk