Recently I went to a reading by my brother at the Vermont College of Fine Arts and tagged along to dinner with him and the other presenting authors. We got into a discussion of what it means to be cool – everyone had a slightly different definition but, in general, it was agreed that someone cool has a coveted confidence, style, air, and/or outlook that sets them apart from a group.
Welcome to the Children's Literacy Foundation Blog
We’ve all seen famous figures standing up for what they believe in, making a difference, appearing powerful in their capacity to stand strong for a cause they support. But how can we pluck up the courage to face seemingly impossible obstacles and fight for justice?
Bristol, NH students squealed with delight as storyteller Duncan McDougall recounted the classic story of Sylvester and the Magic Pebble. Duncan jumped around and used funny voices to bring the beloved story to life. This was the first of many visits from CLiF’s 64 talented authors, illustrators, poets, and storytellers that Bristol Elementary School will get this year as part of their Year of the Book grant.
Last week, JFK Elementary School English Language Learners spent a beautiful fall day at the Clemmons Family Farm in Charlotte, VT, listening to stories, making bean pies, and learning about African American art and culture. This special field trip was a memorable experience for these kids, who come from all over the world and are part of the Winooski elementary school’s Newcomers program.
It often goes back to reading. Children and teens who read the most tend to become more successful in school than those who do not. They have better developed processing skills, stronger comprehension skills, and a higher level of vocabulary. This knowledge is used in all areas of learning.
CLiF Presenter author/illustrator Jason Chin shares during his presentations his process for creating and revising his picture books (you can watch this video on Jason’s presentation at JFK Elementary in Winooski, VT this summer). He shows kids the various drafts his work has gone through to become his non-fiction picture books.
Do you remember that scene in Field of Dreams where Annie stands up to a parent trying to ban one of her favorite books? It’s a powerful moment when Annie defends free speech and the right to learn. Though that memorable scene was filmed nearly 30 years ago, banning books still happens throughout the U.S.
I think the question I am asked most frequently by individuals, organizations and the media with respect to my children’s book series, Lady Lucy’s Quest, is this: Why would a former college president (and law professor) write children’s stories?
Sometimes the question reveals genuine curiosity, a desire to understand why I write these children’s books and why both writing them for and reading them to children have such meaning for me.