The perfect bedtime story

Nick Jr., Nickelodeon’s pre-school channel, has just launched a nationwide campaign, ‘Once Upon A Bedtime’, with TV presenter and actress Donna Air to encourage parents to spend more time telling bedtime stories to their children.

Whether it’s a story of fire-breathing dragons, princesses or aliens from outer space, Nick Jr. wants everyone with a great sense of imagination, from mums and dads to rush hour commuters, shopkeepers or firemen, to put pen to paper and write an original bedtime story for future generations to enjoy.

A panel of judges including Donna Air, renowned children’s author Michael Rosen and founder of NetMums Siobhan Freegard will go through all the entries to select one winner and two runners-up.  The three finalists will have their story turned into a short animation to be screened on Nick Jr. early next year, plus a special animation cell to take home.  The overall winner will also receive a creative writing weekend break and £250 of book vouchers.

Some of the nation’s best-loved children’s fiction originated from ordinary parents creating bedtime stories for their young family.  Author Kenneth Grahame originally told his Wind in the Willows stories to his four-year-old son before landing a publishing deal and Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and James and the Giant Peach began as bedtime stories for his daughters.

As a mother of a young child, Donna Air is helping Nick Jr. to find new stories for 21st century parents, stating, “It’s important for me to spend time reading stories with my daughter.  She loves being read to and most nights, before bed, I sit with her and tell her bedtime stories – from her favourite books as well as ones we make up together on the spot.  Story telling has become an important part of our evening routine – and is great for stretching both our imaginations.”

Andy Goodhand, Nick Jr.’s VP, Planning & Presentation Director, says, ‘Sharing bedtime stories has always been a really special way for parents to have fun joining in with their little ones. Nick Jr.’s ‘Once Upon a Bedtime’ campaign gives parents the opportunity to put pen to paper and create a story that their kids may one day pass onto children of their own.”

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