National Simultaneous Storytime 2017

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National Simultaneous Storytime is an annual campaign that aims to encourage more young Australians to read and enjoy books. Now in its 17th successful year, it is a colourful, vibrant, fun event that aims to promote the value of reading and literacy, using an Australian children's book that explores age-appropriate themes, and addresses key learning areas of the National Curriculum for Foundation to Year 6.


National Simultaneous Storytime is held annually by the Australian Library and Information Association. Every year a picture book, written and illustrated by an Australian author and illustrator is read simultaneously in libraries, schools, pre-schools, childcare centres, family homes, bookshops and many other places around the country.

By facilitating National Simultaneous Storytime, we aim to:

·         promote the value of reading and literacy;

·         promote the value and fun of books;

·         promote an Australian writer and publisher;

·         promote storytime activities in public libraries and communities around the country;

·         provide opportunities to involve parents, grandparents, the media and others to participate in and enjoy the occasion.

NSS receives positive media coverage, generates a great deal of community interest and is held annually as part of Library and Information Week.

In 2016 over 520,000 children at over 3,500 locations across Australia took part in National Simultaneous Storytime, reading the book I Got This Hat, written by Jol and kate Temple and illustrated by Jon Foye , enjoying a range of supporting educational activities, songs, games, dress ups and lots of fun. Have a look at some of the highlights from 2016.


This year NSS takes place on Wednesday 24 May at 11am (AEST) and we would love it if you could join us by sharing The Cow Tripped Over the Moon written by Tony Wilson and illustrated by Laura Wood.

Register to participate - it's free and we have some great activities and resources available to support your National Simultaneous Storytime event.

Everyone can join NSS - it doesn't matter whether you are a home school, a public library or even a university library! Invite a local school group into your workplace for an NSS morning tea, have some fun with your staff at an NSS morning tea or donate a copy of the book to your local library or childcare centre. There are endless ways to support NSS.

For more information about National Simultaneous Storytime, contact ALIA's Events team.

Registrations are now open! Please follow this link and the prompts to register.


We are delighted to announce that the 2017 National Simultaneous Storytime book is:

The Cow Tripped Over the Moon



Hey diddle diddle

You all know the riddle
A cow jumps over the moon...
But the moon is very high in the sky.

How many attempts will it take before Cow makes her famous high-flying leap?




Written By: Tony Wilson

Illustrated By: Laura Wood

Published By: Scholastic Australia

Hardback ISBN 9781743623534

Buy the book: Please visit your local bookseller to buy The Cow Tripped Over the Moon or click here to get a copy online.


Tony Wilson is an author and broadcaster who has been writing books for children for more than a decade. In 2016, the bestselling The Cow Tripped Over the Moon soared to 2016 CBCA Honour Book status, and other titles such as Grannysaurus Rex, Harry Highpants, The Princess and the Packet of Frozen Peas, The Emperor’s New Clothes Horse, and Emo the Emu are also favourites.

Tony lives in Melbourne with his four children and wife, Tamsin. Apart from writing for children, he’s also written novels for adults (Players, Making News), appeared regularly on radio (3RRR, ABC Local, SEN), started the speeches site ‘Speakola’ (, and directed a feature documentary, ‘The Galahs’ (, which premiered at the Melbourne International Film Festival in 2016.

National Simultaneous Storytime 2017 is made possible by the generous support of our partners:


 Eddie Perfect, storyteller for NSS2017 by Story Box Library

We (with thanks to Tony Wilson, Laura Wood, Scholastic Australia) have made a number of resources available to support your National Simultaneous Storytime event.

All artwork, downloads and digital presentations are licensed for use only in conjunction with NSS events and activities. Please see the permissions from the publisher below for more information.


Print graphics - FlyerLetterhead

The Cow Tripped Over the Moon themed activities - Find-a-word, Finger puppets

Web graphics - Book coverBannerEmail signatureTwitter cover, Facebook cover, Social media avatar, Social media tile

Ideas for your event 

Click here for great activity inspiration and ideas. It includes songs, rhymes, activity ideas and publicity information. 

Outside resources

The Cow Tripped Over the Moon website

Inspired by The Cow Tripped Over the Moon, The Patch Theatre Company will be producing a show in 2017 called ‘Yo Diddle Diddle’, and will be transforming Tony's rhyme and rhythm into a hip hop-infused production perfect for everyone aged 4 - 8. More information here.

Reviews: Kids' Book review, Honey Bee Books review, CBCA Reading Time review

Teachers' notes

Click here to view the Teachers' Notes


Digital presentations of the book will be emailed to all registered participants on Monday 22 May 2017, so please ensure that you register before then to receive all resources. Please note that digital presentations of the book will be available only until Friday 26 May 2017.

Watch the Scholastic website and catalogues for more support and fun ways to participate in this important event


We have a range of bright and fun merchandise for the promotion of your NSS event. 


All prices include GST and postage. Members are entitled to discounted prices on merchandise orders so please log-in to purchase at the member price.

Please allow at least 5 working days (metropolitan areas) and 10 working days (regional areas) for delivery of items. Orders placed after 10 May 2017 cannot be guaranteed to arrive in time for NSS 2017.

Please visit your local bookseller to buy The Cow Tripped Over the Moon or click here to get a copy online.

Click here to help find your local bookshop!




  • Surry Hills Library is hosting NSS2017 with the guest reader Lee Lin Chin. Please visit the website for more information.


  • Join the National Library and astrophysicist, Nobel laureate and Vice-Chancellor of the Australian National University Brian Schmidt as he reads this year's book The Cow Tripped Over The Moon. Click here for more information.


  • Visit Toowoomba Region Libraries and find out where NSS event is happening near you! Cr Taylor is the special reader at City Library. Click here for more information


  • Watch Mitcham Library Service staff perform 'The Cow Tripped Over the Moon' from here


  • Whitehorse Manningham Libraries are excited to announce they have secured Alan Brough as their guest storyteller for National Simultaneous Storytime 2017 at Nunawading Library. All details on their website here
  • Enjoy fabulous Story Theatre by Robin at Inglewood Library Agency. Please visit the website for more information.
  • Special National Simultaneous Storytime sessions will be held at Bendigo, Castlemaine, Gisborne, Kangaroo Flat, Kyneton, Romsey and Woodend Libraries. Check out the website for more information.


  • LINC Tasmania will be participating in National Simultaneous Storytime 2017 with a reading by the guest storyteller, Rosalie Martin, Tasmanian Australian of the Year, and a puppet show. Please visit the website for more details.


Scholastic Australia have given the following permissions for National Simultaneous Storytime 2017:

On all occasions the below permissions will only be limited to the date of the event and to publicity surrounding the event:

  • Permission for participating organisations to present a translation of the book during the event with the condition that the translation is not printed or distributed and is used for the event only
  • Permission for participating organisations to present a dramatisation of the book with the condition that the presentation occurs only in connection with the event
  • Permission for participating organisations to have an interpreter translate and read the book in another language with the condition that the presentation occurs only in connection with the event
  • Permission for participating organisations to use an image of the book cover for NSS 2017 promotion
  • Permission for participating organisation to use the digital presentations of the book provided by ALIA for NSS 2017 storytelling. Please note that digital presentations of the book will be available only until Friday 26 May 2017.

Text of the book can be used in the following ways:

  • Presented as a readers' theatre
  • Presented as a storytelling
  • Presented as a puppet show
  • Translated for multicultural storytimes
  • Inspiration for activity sheets and lesson plans

For any other use of the book in conjunction with National Simultaneous Storytime 2017 please contact ALIA's Events team.

The first National Simultaneous Storytime was held during Library and Information Week 2001. From 2002 - 2007 NSS took place during National Literacy and Numeracy Week. In 2008, due to popular demand NSS returned to Library and Information Week with great success and continues to attract a wide audience from around Australia.

2016 was our biggest and most successful NSS to date with 520,000 participants at over 3,500 locations.

  • 2016 - I Got This Hat by Kate and Jol Temple and Illustrated by Jon Foye
  • 2015 – The Brothers Quibble by Aaron Blabey
  • 2014 – Too Many Elephants in this House by Ursula Dubosarsky and illustrated by Andrew Joyner
  • 2013 -The Wrong Book by Nick Bland
  • 2012 -The Very Cranky Bear by Nick Bland
  • 2011 - Feathers for Phoebe by Rod Clement
  • 2010 - Little White Dogs Can't Jump by Bruce Whatley and Rosie Smith and illustrated by Bruce Whatley
  • 2009 - Pete the Sheep by Jackie French and illustrated by Bruce Whatley
  • 2008 - Arthur written by Amanda Graham and illustrated by Donna Gynell
  • 2007 - The Magic Hat written by Mem Fox and Illustrated by Tricia Tusa
  • 2006 - Good night, Me by Andrew Daddo and illustrated by Emma Quay
  • 2005 - Wombat Stew by Marcia K Vaughan and Pamela Lofts
  • 2004 - Muddled-up Farm written by Mike Dumbleton and illustrated by Jobi Murphy
  • 2003 - I don't want to go to school written by Christine Harris and illustrated by Craig Smith  
  • 2002 - Mrs Wilkinson's Chooks by Leone Peguero and Mike Spoor
  • 2001 - Edward the Emu written by Sheena Knowles and illustrated by Rod Clement


Check out the 2017 highlights for National Simultaneous Storytime.

We love hearing about your NSS event, so please send your stories, photos and videos to or join the conversation on social media using the hashtag #NSS2017.