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RHYTHM, WORDPLAY, AND CREATIVITY – POETRY FOR LITERACY & LANGUAGE AQUISITION
Newsletter / April 7, 2019

50 MUST-READ POETRY BOOKS FOR KIDS The rhythm, word play, and creativity in poetry books for kids make them the perfect companion to language acquisition and developing literacy skills. I remember as a child stealing poetry books off my mom’s bookshelves and performing the poems, relishing the way the words felt in my mouth. (Included in the list…) Jacqueline Woodson’s lyrical text (The Day You Begin) and Rafael López’s dazzling art reminds us that we all feel like outsiders sometimes-and how brave it is that we go forth anyway. And that sometimes, when we reach out and begin to share our stories, others will be happy to meet us halfway. READ MORE…   HOW POETRY CAN HELP KIDS GET TO COLLEGE K’myah is one of the students at Ann Visger Elementary School in River Rouge who participated in InsideOut Literary Arts’ In School Writer-in-Residence Program, in spring 2018. (Photo: Doug Coombe) Students in marginalized communities often struggle to relate to the people and texts they are asked to study; there is power in learning that highly-respected writers — such as Lucille Clifton, Francine J. Harris, Jamaal May and Naomi Shihab Nye — come from similar backgrounds and have used their own, unique…

American Association for the Advancement of Science Names Socially-Conscious ‘Iqbal and His Ingenious Idea’ Top Children’s Science Picture Book
Newsletter / January 27, 2019

WELLESLEY AUTHOR’S BOOK HAS KIDS COOKING WITH SOLAR POWER Wellesley author Elizabeth Suneby’s latest in a series of socially-conscious children’s book has just been recognized with an award from the American Association for the Advancement of Science as the top children’s science picture book. Iqbal and His Ingenious Idea: How a Science Project Helps One Family and the Planet, written by Elizabeth Suneby and illustrated by Rebecca Green, tells the story of a Bangladeshi boy who sets out to build a smoke-free solar cooker in light of the damage that cooking over indoor fire during the monsoon season is having on his family’s health. READ MORE… WILDLIFE COMES INSIDE FOR THIS YEAR’S EVERETT READS! PROGRAM “We have a solution,” she (Sy Montgomery) said. “It’s right in front of us. Each one of us can affect the solution — by what you buy, how you eat, what you drive, how you vote. “We owe those animals, to fight with every last bit of our strength for this glorious, green, vulnerable, sweet earth,” she said. READ MORE…   CHRISTOPHER MYERS’ MAKE ME A WORLD IMPRINT LAUNCHES THIS FALL “Discover a World Where Everything Is Possible,” the lead-in to the mission statement for Make…

‘WE ARE DISPLACED’ – MALALA CHAMPIONS GIRL REFUGEES EVERYWHERE
Newsletter / January 20, 2019

IN HER NEW BOOK, MALALA CHAMPIONS THE REFUGEE CAUSE Malala’s new book, We are Displaced, goes beyond just her story. She speaks about many others who are just as heroic as her, but will never know fame. She also touches upon an issue that may be unpopular, but which needs to be said: “Many people think refugees should feel only two things: gratitude to the countries that granted them asylum, and relief in safety. I don’t think most people understand the tangle of emotions that comes with leaving behind everything you know.” READ MORE… WE NEED DIVERSE BOOKS JUST ANNOUNCED THE 2019 WALTER DEAN MYERS AWARD WINNERS FOR OUTSTANDING CHILDREN’S LITERATURE The Walter Dean Myers Award, also known as “The Walter,” is named for prolific children’s and young adult author Walter Dean Myers — writer of classic children’s books including Monster — who was an early champion of diversity in children’s books. 2019 Walter Award, Teen Category: ‘The Poet X’ by Elizabeth Acevedo 2019 Walter Award, Younger Readers Category: ‘Ghost Boys’ by Jewell Parker Rhodes READ MORE…     ARTS REVIEW: CHILDREN’S BOOK ART RECALLS ROSA PARKS BUS INCIDENT IN ALABAMA In the dozens of children’s books he has illustrated, Floyd Cooper tells stories that are pertinent…

Our Voice: Celebrating the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Awards at Eric Carle Museum
Newsletter / October 28, 2018

OUR VOICE: ERIC CARLE MUSEUM SHOWCASES AFRICAN AMERICAN ARTISTS OF CHILDREN’S BOOKS The Coretta Scott King Book Awards seal was designed by artist Lev Mills in 1974. The emblem, with explanatory text, is part of “Our Voice: Celebrating the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Awards”, a new exhibit in the east gallery of the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst. Included in the exhibit are the works of Jane Addams illustrators and authors: Javaka Steptoe, Bryan Collier, Floyd Cooper, & Faith Ringgold and more. READ & SEE MORE…   MV PARENT U: FRANCISCO JIMENEZ, AUTHOR “THE TRANSFORMATIVE POWER OF EDUCATION” Author and educator Dr. Francisco Jiménez has been an agent for change in academia and public education for the last thirty years. He emigrated with his family from Mexico to California and as a child worked alongside his parents in the fields of California. READ MORE… The Circuit Francisco Jimenez 1998 Honor Book   WHERE ARE DIVERSE VOICES IN CHILDREN’S BOOKS? AUTHORS EXPLORE WHY THAT MATTERS “There’s a lack of awareness of the number of black authors and illustrators who are creating literature for children,” said Kelly Starling Lyons, a Raleigh children’s book author and one of the organizers of…

CREATE DANGEROUSLY, FOR PEOPLE WHO READ DANGEROUSLY: EDWIDGE DANTICAT
Newsletter / September 30, 2018

JANE ADDAMS CHILDREN’S BOOK AWARD CEREMONY FRIDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2018 AT 2:30 PM 777 UNITED NATIONS PLAZA FL 2 (44TH & 1ST) NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK A memorable afternoon of award presentation and responses by authors and illustrators. Meet and talk with the honored guests, including Award winners and honorees. Enjoy a reception and an opportunity for book signing after formal presentation of the awards. All the award books will be available for purchase. This event is free and open to all. Reservations are not needed. Can’t come to NYC? Follow the ceremony as it is live streamed from https://www.facebook.com/pg/janeaddamspeace/posts/ __________________________________ NEUSTADT LIT FEST BRINING AUTHOR EDWIDGE DANTICAT TO NORMAN Haitian-American author Edwidge Danticat is heading to Norman next month to participate in the 2018 Neustadt Lit Fest at the University of Oklahoma. The festival, which is held by the literary publication World Literature Today, is an opportunity for Normanites and literary fans to celebrate the work of authors, both renowned and up-and-coming. Danticat won the prestigious Neustadt International Prize for Literature in 2017. READ MORE… __________________________________ TURNING PAGES: MY LIFE STORY—INTERVIEW WITH ILLUSTRATOR LULU DELACRE Interview with author and illustrator Lulu Delacre and discussion questions. CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD PDF……

Lois Lowry sees childhood as exploratory, not idyllic.
Newsletter / September 2, 2018

LOIS LOWRY STILL THINKS KIDS NEED TO READ ABOUT TERRIBLE THINGS (AND SHE’S STILL RIGHT) There’s no heaviness, just certitude. Lois Lowry understands herself — a rare trait in a writer — which gives her an edge on understanding others…. She doesn’t think that the intrusion of ugly things — even death — ends childhood. She sees childhood as exploratory, not idyllic. READ MORE… _________________________________________ MOST DOWNLOADED PHOTOGRAPH IN THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS ARCHIVE COMES TO THE PIEDMONT TRIAD, AS REYNOLDA OPENS ‘DORTHEA LANGE’S AMERICA’ SEPT. 14 In “Dorothea Lange: The Photographer Who Found the Faces of the Depression,” Carole Boston Weatherford captures the spirit of Dorothea Lange with lyrical prose intended for children. Weatherford will read from her picture book biography and join in discussion with the audience. Enjoy music and hands-on activities while learning about “Dorothea Lange’s America.” READ MORE… _________________________________________ HOMEWORK QUESTIONS ON RACE, DRUGS, AND GUNS DRAW IRE FROM PARENTS A spokesperson for the school said in a statement, “The AF Brownsville Middle homework assignment drew directly from the text of Seedfolks – a widely acclaimed novel written by Newbery Medal winning author Paul Fleischman – that focuses on a diverse cast of characters, discusses racial themes, and…

CAROLE BOSTON WEATHERFORD TELLS THE STORY OF AMAZING GRACE
Newsletter / August 12, 2018

JOHN NEWTON’S SONG OF PRAYER You’ve sung the words countless times. You’ve heard the song in many places. But did you know the true story of the classic hymn? Most people haven’t, but in “How Sweet the Sound,” author Carole Boston Weatherford tells it with couplets more powerful than a storm at sea; indeed, this book is little more than a poem written in descriptive style, but sparsely, which lends more weight to each careful word. READ MORE… ___________________________________________ NOTABLE AUTHORS AND ILLUSTRATORS HIGHLIGHT THE IMPORTANCE OF REPRESENTATION Many contemporary children’s books are both mirrors and windows, showing children the connections among all people.  (Andy Ryan / Getty Images) “Collaborating with Salva Dut to write ALong Walk to Water provided me with a window in a way that I never could have imagined — not just for me but for the young readers of the book, who have subsequently reached out to communities in South Sudan. Those readers have gone from looking in the window to leaping right through it!” — Linda Sue Park, Author of A Long Walk to Water READ MORE… ___________________________________________ ‘UNDOCUMENTED’ IS A PICTURE BOOK THAT’S NOT JUST FOR KIDS There are millions of undocumented workers in…

Award Winning Author Sy Montgomery Writes Science that Excites
Newsletter / July 29, 2018

SCIENCE BOOKS THAT EXCITE I narrow that AP biology list down to my five favourite books….. The Soul of an Octopus by Sy Montgomery – This is one of my personal favourites on the list because it shows both the fascinating life of a sea creature that we once considered to be “low life.” READ MORE… _________________________________________ DAV PILKEY, RICK BRAGG HEADLINE 2018 BOOKMARKS LINEUP THAT EXCELS IN VARIETY, DIVERSITY Carole Boston Weatherford will read and discuss “Dorothea Lange: The Photographer Who Found the Faces of the Depression” in a family event with music and hands-on activities at Reynolda House Museum of American Art; READ MORE… _________________________________________ “WRITERS ON WRITING” RADIO SHOW: INTERVIEW WITH JACQUELINE WOODSON Dr. Greene and Woodson will discuss a range of issues, including Woodson’s latest book, themes in her books, young adult and children’s literature, social responsibility of the writer, the need for more diverse books and the need for teachers to promote books by writers of color in their classrooms and to specify to students the nature of such books. READ MORE… _________________________________________ BEFORE SHE WAS HARRIET: KIRKUS REVIEW A memorable, lyrical reverse-chronological walk through the life of an American icon. In free verse, Cline-Ransome narrates the…

DIVERSITY AND RESILIENCE IN CHILDREN’S STORIES
Newsletter / June 17, 2018

ALL PIKES PEAK READS RELEASES 2018 BOOK TITLES Diversity and resilience. Those are the themes at the heart of this year’s Pikes Peak Library District’s All Pikes Peak Reads. The short story collection “Flying Lessons” features tales from award-winning authors, such as Kwame Alexander, Meg Medina, Tim Tingle and Jacqueline Woodson. READ MORE….. ____________________________________________ COLLEGE TOWN: AUTHOR INSTITUTE FEATURES WINNERS                   June 25-29 are the dates for Worcester State University’s 18th annual Author Institute, a children’s literature conference for teachers and others. This year’s conference will feature recent recipients of the Caldecott and Newbery book awards: Javaka Steptoe, author and illustrator of the 2017 Caldecott winner, “Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat,” and Lauren Wolk, author of 2017 Newbery winner “Wolf Hollow.” READ MORE…   _____________________________________________ GERMANTOWN’S NEA BIG READ TO FEATURE ‘THE NAMESAKE’ “The Namesake” focuses on two generations of a Bengali-American family living in Massachusetts and their experience as immigrants to struggle to assimilate while not losing their identity. Events will include arts and crafts and theater productions involving “The Namesake” and its themes. Other events — including an appearance by Mitali Perkins, author of “You Bring…