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Curious Creatures, Wild Minds at Taronga Zoo

Leave the ordinary behind and become Curious and Wild this Spring! We are celebrating Spring at Taronga Zoo Sydney, thanks to a grant gratefully received from Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund.

From September 29, join us here twice a week to hear from a bunch of Curious Creatives.

September 15, 2020 MEDIA RELEASE

Extinction is not an option!

This year has challenged us, but in this series of events the Children’s Book Council of Australia NSW Branch, with the incredible support of the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund and Taronga Zoo, is tackling these new opportunities to engage with our community head on.

By bringing children’s authors and illustrators into Taronga Zoo to ‘talk with the animals’ we are keeping alive and well - Our kids’ curiosity and creativity skills, our teachers’ and parents’ sanity, and our amazing community of creatives (authors and illustrators) and their publishers.

We welcome the media to engage with us so that we can all celebrate and support Australian stories and storytellers

Inspired by the theme for 2020 CBCA Book Week Curious Creatures, Wild Minds we have invited our authors and illustrators to explore both curiosity and creativity.

A sense of wonder is the perfect incentive for kids to both read and write.


Each year since 1945 the Children's Book Council of Australia (CBCA) has brought children and books together across Australia through CBCA Book Week. During this time schools and public libraries spend one glorious week celebrating books and Australian children's authors and illustrators. The Week is launched at an event announcing our esteemed Awards, the Australian Children’s Book of the Year Awards (OCTOBER 16, 2020). Since 1945 these Awards have celebrated the growth of a quality children’s book industry and supported their creatives. So important, we believe, for our children to continue to have Australian story voices in their lives. Extinction is not an option!

Sami Bayly on air September 29 Abbie Mitchell on air October 1

September 2, 2020 Update

Talking to the animals ... Just got a whole lot more real!

Thanks to the wonderful support of the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund, CBCA NSW is thrilled to announce we have an awesome group of creatives to beam to you across the ether directly from Taronga Zoo in Sydney. They will be getting up close with Zoo carers and curious creatures… from the Binturong to the Bongo!

During the lead up to CBCA Book Week, the CBCA Book of the Year Announcement and into CBCA Book Week itself, CBCA NSW feel we must offer students, their carers at home, their teachers in schools, and our community of librarians, an optimistic opportunity to have their “wild minds” released. Our creatives will be inspiring while demonstrating how curiosity and creativity can inform reading broadly and writing with purpose and flair.

Watch out for announcements on our Facebook and website (links) so you can join us online here and be part of the fun, so lock in the following dates:

Tuesday September 29 Sami Bayly Thursday October 1 Abbie Mitchell

Tuesday October 6 Lesley Gibbes

Thursday October 8 Charmaine Ledden -Lewis

Tuesday October 13 Liz Anelli

Thursday Oct 15 Sue Whiting

August 2020 Update

We’re busy working with the supportive Education Unit at Taronga to form a program of visits from creators of books for kids across six weeks in the lead up to our Kids Book of the Year Announcement and the launch of CBCA Book Week at the zoo. Our program will run from September 4 through to the end of Book Week on October 23.

We are working hard, utilising all our positive, curious and wild powers to create live events at the zoo, we have everything crossed— so stay close and we will keep you up-to-date throughout August with invitations to come along.

Regardless of the challenges circling our community, we’re inviting six of our creatives, writers and illustrators, to channel all their ‘Dr Dolittle’ skills and chat with some lucky curious creatures at the Zoo alongside their wild carers. We will be recording these and making them available to all! Here on this page. Our goal is to celebrate curious thinking and wild imaginings and the role they play in reading and writing.

We sincerely hope all our stories coming to you throughout this program will inspire you to create your own wild events this Spring. We know curiosity and wild creative thinking are at the heart of all good stories…


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