I’m honored to be a Picture Book Champion this year. See the calendar, essays, and activities this robust group has planned for November, 2013: www.picturebookmonth.com
It’s been such a busy year that I’m only now getting around to reporting on some of the terrific places I’ve visited. In February I was greeted by giant sea turtles at Essex Elementary in VT, where I met a kindred spirit, librarian Carol Scrimgeour.
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If Common Core is about encouraging inquiry, the people we should be consulting are trained librarians: the masters of guided, deep inquiry. Susan Raben at Lyon is a master librarian and clear communicator: she should be teaching thousands of educators nationwide about inquiry. Rachel Davidson, at Henking, is a new tech guru who taught me tons about QR codes and how to get kids creating content and truly interacting with the web, not just imbibing it mindlessly. Hey, administrators nationwide…need help with common core? Go look for the experienced, trained librarians you’ve been undervaluing and laying off. (Thankfully, not these two, whose administrators know they rock.) Librarians are the ones who know how to get kids thinking more deeply about text and content! And these were just two librarians/inquiry masters i met last week while doing school visits in Glenview, IL. This week I’m in schools again; who knows who I might meet.
Just received a first copy of my new book, Touch a Butterfly: Wildlife Gardening With Kids. It’s published by Roost Books; they have a free downloadable chapter pdf. The book ships on April 23rd. Preorder from your local bookseller. Here’s an early review in Foreword Magazine. Thanks to the CCBC there’s a fab list of children’s books to pair with your outdoor nature studies: CCBC Let’s Go Outside! List. I just returned from a terrific Young Author’s visit in Wolcott, IN and a now off to VA to visit four schools. See some of you there!
If you want to know who I am and what I do, NAEYC’s Young Children magazine November 2012 issues has what’s probably my best interview yet: www.naeyc.org/yc/files/yc/file/201211/MeetTheAuthor.pdf
Last Fall I spoke at the national conference of NAEYC, in the Meet the Authors session, which featured Mem Fox and James Dean, creator/illustrator of Pete the Cat. Yes, I know, MEM FOX! Wow, her voice is enthralling.
I just returned from a great weekend speaking at the Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library where they are celebrating 100 years and the young authors in their community. The educators and authors were so inspiring! Back home I found that Here Come the Humpbacks is in the major review arenas such as Kirkus. A few blogs are popping up, such as one on Nonfiction Detectives. Touch a Butterfly: Wildlife Gardening For Kids, which will be released April 23rd, has a very thorough review in ForeWord Reviews. I’ll be traveling widely for school talks and young author conferences the rest of March and all of April 2013. I look forward to seeing many of you on my travels.
Just returned from co-presenting “Read Aloud Wow” with Isabel Baker at NAEYC’s national leadership conference. This Sat, June 23rd, I’ll be signing at the South Bend Farmer’s Market 9am-12. Here’s where I’ll be presenting at conferences the next few months:
June 21st, 2012 ALL WRITE CONFERENCE, Warsaw, IN 3 breakouts
Sept 22, 2012 ALSC NATIONAL INSTITUTE, Indianapolis, IN , Closing General Session
Sept 23, 2012 INDIANA STATE READING Conf, Indianapolis, IN
Oct 4-6, 2012 YOUTH LITERATURE FESTIVAL, Champaign, IL school visits and Sat festival talks
Nov 7-10, 2012, NAEYC NATIONAL CONFERENCE, Atlanta, GA, speaking at Friday author session with Mem Fox and Peter Reynolds.
For privacy, and because the talks aren’t open to the public, I don’t post my school visit schedule. But I’m speaking at 23 schools in VT, IN, IL, and VA in Feb, March, April 2013 so if you are an educator and want to drop in on a talk, you can email me to ask if there’s something near you.
I had the pleasure of visiting Pioneer Elementary in March. Wow, the art teacher was a burst of creativity, working on such incredible projects with the kids. Many other teachers were doing amazing work, as well. See some of it below! Click on each photo to see it in greater detail.
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