Let's teach our kids life's most magical lesson: how to be lucky
Did you realise luck can be learned? That we can teach it to our kids? Kind of amazing, right?
Hi, my name is James Hurman, and for the past couple of years I've been working with a fabulous illustrator called Juliet Burton on a special kids book.
The Boy and the Lemon is a rhyming story that teaches kids the secrets of being lucky.
The story behind our story
When my wife was pregnant with our first born, I read a book called The Luck Factor.
The author, Richard Wiseman, is a psychology professor who had studied lucky people (and unlucky people) and discovered that lucky people share a certain attitude and way of approaching life. And if you taught people that attitude, and got them to adopt it, they became more lucky.
I remember being blown away by the idea that luck could be learned - but also thinking, as a grown up, it’s really hard to change the way you are. But what if you could take those lessons and teach them to children?
As a parent it struck me that the most magical thing you could teach a child would be how to be lucky.
So The Boy and the Lemon works those scientific principles into a kids story about a boy called Jack, whose house is crushed by a giant lemon from outer space, and the adventures he goes on turning his luck around.
Imagine if we could teach every kid how to be lucky
Our mission isn’t just to get the book produced - but to help as many kids as possible, all over the world, learn the secrets of being lucky.
So this Kickstarter campaign is also a social enterprise.
For every book bought by backing our campaign, a second book will be donated to a school, library or less advantaged family.
In New Zealand, we are proud to partner with The Alan Duff Charitable Foundation (better known as Duffy Books in Homes) who will distribute the donated books to primary schools on their programme.
We’re based in Auckland, New Zealand, but our real ambition is to get the story to as many kids around the world as possible. If we raise enough money on Kickstarter we’ll be able to have the book translated and partner with book donation services all over the world to execute our social enterprise model in every country.
The book's done - now we need your help to get it to as many kids as possible
Over the past two years, I've written the story and Juliet has illustrated it. In March this year we had prototype books made, which we gave to parents and teachers to test out on their kids. Through that process, we learned a lot about how to make our story better, and the final book reflects those learnings - but overall the feedback was great:
“Fantastic! Loved it! Brilliantly told.” - Bridget, Mother of boys, 4 & 7
“Beautiful Book - love the concept of luck!” - Nicola, Early Childhood Educator
“I loved the story and especially the pictures fitting perfectly to the story.” - Celine, Au Pair to girls, 3, 5 & 7
We even sent the book to school - and Saffron Paddy of Balmoral Primary here in Auckland has been using the book in her class of 7-year-olds.
“At our school we do philosophy for children and I’m always looking for really good picture books to use with the kids. With The Boy and the Lemon, immediately the children saw the big ideas, they could really relate to the idea of something bad happening that parents see as really bad, whereas they can see the positive side, they see it from another point of view.” - Saffron, Teacher of Room 15, Balmoral Primary School
And we've been working with a world-class printing company on the production specifications.
We will produce a 25cm x 20cm landscape format hardcover book. The stock will be a delicious 100GSM eggshell textured matte stock. The pages are off-white, bringing a sense of warmth and texture to the reading experience. The cover will be a matte laminate with gloss detail. In short, it will be a beautifully produced book.
The donated books will be softcover, but printed on the same premium eggshell paper stock, and produced with just as much care.
Art Print Rewards
For willing backers, we will have Juliet's wonderful illustrations produced into A3 sized art prints. These will be professionally printed onto fine art stock, and signed by Juliet for those who choose the numbered and signed editions. Backers will be contacted if our funding goal is met, and given the choice of the following illustrations from the book:
A little about us
Juliet Burton is a professional illustrator/designer working in Auckland. She grew up in Hamilton and continued on to gain her honours degree from Massey University in Wellington. Currently Juliet is working for an advertising agency in Auckland.
She has previously freelanced for magazines particularly in the fashion realm but has had a wide range of clients including L’oreal Paris, Beau Coops and Red Bull. Earlier this year, Juliet’s illustrations featured as part of a major report to the Crown and Waikato River iwi.
Risks and challenges
Our book has been written, illustrated and tested on parents and kids. We have fully costed the printing with a large international printer. And we're experienced creative people who've produced books and many other creative campaigns and projects before. As with any Kickstarter, if we're wildly successful there may be some delays with fulfilment. But our project doesn't rest on any other unknowns.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)