May 21st, 2020

Bookshow at Home with Viviane Schwarz

Welcome to week four of The Children's Bookshow at Home. The charming picture book How to Find Gold by author and illustrator Viviane Schwarz is our focus this week. Find out a bit about Viv, and listen to her reading the story. Then you can spend some time exploring the activities. You can sign up to our newsletter here, or follow us on twitter @ChildrensBkShow. Our activities should appeal to all kinds of readers, writers and artists, so everyone can get involved.

Book of the Week: How to Find Gold

Anna wants to go looking for gold, but her best friend Crocodile thinks finding some might be a bit trickier than she thinks. Their adventure takes them to the depths of the ocean, with gorgeous detailed illustrations and brilliant conversations between Anna and Crocodile about all the challenges they must face in their hunt for treasure!

Author in focus

Viviane was born in Germany and now lives and works in Croydon, South London. As a child she spent a lot of time inventing and making things with her family. She says:

'I don't remember a time in which I did not want to make books, I hardly remember a time where I wasn't making books. As soon as I could make traces on paper, I started folding that paper in half, stacking it up. It's what I do.'

Viviane's other books include How to Be On The Moon, How to Put an Octopus to Bed, I am Henry Finch, Is There a Cat in This Book, and A Place to Call Home.

Watch Viviane read How to Find Gold

Viviane Activities!

Create a Story Quest

Viviane Schwarz has created a sequel to this book called How to be on the Moon. Can you create a new ‘How to…’ quest for Anna and Crocodile? You could present your story in any format you wish – maybe a picture book, a story map, a cartoon strip or simply tell your story out loud with sound effects, like Viviane used in her reading.

If you want to make a picture book you can use the following guidelines to help you:

Start by folding 3 sheets of A4 paper in half to make a 10 page booklet. Use the pictures to tell the story as well as the words.

Create a Treasure Hunt

Why not make your own treasure map?
In the story, Crocodile tells Anna that gold is always hidden or buried. Can you hide some golden treasure somewhere at home – inside or outside? Once you have found a good hiding place, draw a map to help someone else to find it. It could be a map of the whole house or garden, or maybe just of one room. Draw some picture clues on your map and don’t forget to mark the spot with a red X!

Let your imagination run wild and add some interesting and creative elements to your map. Which obstacles might get in the way of finding the treasure? Perhaps you could include a spooky forest, some magnificent mountains, or choppy, shark-infested seas? Then you can have some fun creating and navigating these obstacles around your house!

Make a Card Game

Download these instructions to make a game that Viviane created called Button Dance. It's great fun for all the family!

Download Button Dance

We'd love to see your story quests, treasure maps and card games! To send us your work to display in our gallery use the link below, or upload to twitter with the hashtag #BookshowAtHome. You might also like to send us a video of you reading your work.

Email us your work for our gallery


You can find out lots more about Viviane Schwarz at her brilliant website. She has also recently created a book about staying at home with Sally Nichols, *Staying Home*, that is free to download.

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