Teaching the World to Read
Thirty-five years ago Sunshine Books began in an old house in South Auckland with a small team, many of whom are still in the company today. We gathered some of the best authors and illustrators. We ran workshops. We analysed books that had made a difference to reading success. We looked at why some books didn’t work. We explored all aspects of what makes a book one that will help any child learn to read. We have recently published a 180-title decodable programme, reflecting the latest literacy research.
Sunshine Books launched with Sunshine Classics. Many millions of copies have sold around the world. They still offer the same benefits – carefully graded, great stories, engaging illustrations and the magic of a story, often with a twist. Over three generations of students have grown up with Sunshine Books. We have continued to add new fiction titles and quality non-fiction as well as providing the added value of online learning and activities. Our motto of Teaching the World to Read has been the inspiration at Sunshine Books.
When Sunshine was launched, there was no internet, no tablets or iPhones. The world has changed in which children – today termed “digital natives” – navigate with ease through increasingly sophisticated technology. Sunshine Books has had to grow through these exciting times – adapting to the technological age. Three generation of children have learnt to read using Sunshine resources – at first using our printed books (both fiction and non-fiction) and now on digital devices.
Dame Wendy Pye’s reputation for helping to develop literacy skills for young children has earned her awards including the first living women to be inducted into the Business Hall of Fame and she was awarded Dame Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to business and education. In 2006, Wendy was chosen as one of the 100 outstanding achievers from Australia for Education and Literacy.
There are many places where Sunshine Books can be found in the world. In China we have links with a major digital company that is responsible for marketing Sunshine stories into 800 million homes. We also help to train teachers in China through our partnership with the Foreign Language Teaching and Research Press. In South Africa there is an African Sunshine list in Zulu and English, while our decodable books are sold in South Africa under the title, African Sunshine Phonics. Partners in Cambodia are working hard to bring literacy skills in English through Sunshine digital packages. On the Pacific island of Vanuatu, Sunshine is available in French and English. Kindergartens in Singapore use Sunshine titles under the Reading Bee brand. Schools in Egypt and Turkey use the Sunshine Classics digital platform. In New Zealand and Australia thousands of children use our digital program, Sunshine Online, and our Decodables Programme to learn to read. We publish fiction and non-fiction titles in Te Reo Māori, Samoan and English. We also have a partnership with SPCA.