www. Wednesday – KidLit.TV

3

http://www.   Wednesday   – KidLit.TV

Hi everyone.

Most of you know one of my passions is writing.

*bet you couldn’t guess that. LAUGHING* 

I’m honored to be a part of the KidLit TV team.  For those of you who haven’t checked out their website, it is full of videos that are kid-friendly.

STORYMAKERS: Features authors (and kidlit champions) who share something about a book of theirs. It could be an interview, or a yummy recipe, or a craft, or sharing other titles, and on and on. It’s a great way for children to see the people who are behind-the-book.

READ OUT LOUD: Who doesn’t like story time????? So gather around and listen in as someone (author/illustrator/literacy champion) reads a story and shares the artwork inside the covers.

READ, SET, DRAW!: Time to drag out your pencils, pens, markers, or water colors! Budding artists can learn first-hand to draw from illustrators!!!! How cool is that?!?

Podcasts: Many of the episodes are available as podcasts! You can always listen to an episode!

There’s a tab for crafts and thinking outside-the-box! There’s also Phil’s Fast 5 episodes, Two-In-A-Teepee, and so much more.

Check out: KidLit.TV, but be prepared to stay for a while!

Until next time…
Happy writing!
~t


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www (dot) Wednesday – KidLit.TV

kidlit.tv

www (dot) Wednesday –
kidlit.tv

This website is one I refer not only to writers and illustrators, but to anyone who has children in their life… parents, grandparents, educators, media specialist, daycare facilities, and on and on I could go.

KidLit TV offers so much to everyone. #StoryMakers, hosted by Rocco Staino highlights authors and illustrators with an interview. #InsideScoop gives us a sneak peek at new books. #FieldTrip will take you on the scene to kidlit events. #ReadOutLoud has authors and illustrators reading their books. There is also the KidLitRADIO podcast that you can listen too. Not to mention arts, crafts, recipes… Need I say more?

Then add to that, their Facebook group page where you can interact with all involved. *bonus*

WHAT is KidLit TV?

We are a diverse group of parents, educators, librarians, kid lit creators, and award winning filmmakers all working together to bring great books to kids! Our mission is to create fun new ways to reinforce an appreciation of reading that children will carry with them for the rest of their lives.

The diverse KidLit TV team supports the ‘We Need Diverse Books’ and ‘Multicultural Children’s Book Day’ initiatives by encouraging the children’s literature community to create more books that reflect the diversity of our society.

Award winning website!

Unknown   Feedspot Top 100

 

#KidLitTV Supports Literacy!

KidLitOnEllenShow

 


<— CLICK ON THIS PICTURE
and watch the video.

#KidLitOnEllenShow is a great campaign that KidLit TV is behind. Why? Because kidlit matters!!! The ALAYMA (American Library Association Youth Media Awards) is our Oscars and used to be featured on national television, but no longer does. We know that The Ellen Show not only knows how to have a good time, but they also feature things that matter and are great about putting important topics out into the world.

Did you watch the video yet? Not only are the KidLit TV Team Members on board with this campaign, but many other people involved in the kidlit community are as well. Did you see some of your favorites in the video? I know I did.

Would you like to help spread the word? Maybe get Ellen Degeneres’ attention?!!!!!!!!? See THIS BLOG POST and you’ll find a link to make a suggestion to The Ellen Show. AND if you are on Twitter, you can RETWEET THIS POST!

KidLit TV also supports…

#WNDB
&
Multicultural Children’s Book Day!

Click on the picture to find out about this event that KidLit TV is a silver sponsor on.

Check  Out KidLit TV:

Visit their WEBSITE and see what all KidLit TV has to offer!

You can also find KidLit TV on:   YouTube   /   Facebook   /   Twitter   /   Pinterest   /   Instagram   /   kidlit.tv/newsletter

 

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Have you looked at the KidLit TV website?
Are you a member of their Facebook group?
What other websites would you like to see featured here?

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

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#BLTBF – Meet E.M. Knowles

BLT-logo #BLTBF – Meet E. M. Knowles

Hello everyone. I wanted to introduce the authors who will be at Book Love & Taters Book Festival on October 31st.

Third up is E.M. Knowles, who sent in a video.

Thanks bunches, E.M.! LOVE the video!!!

ABOUT E.M. KNOWLES:

image

As a graduate of Columbia College with a B.A. in psychology and sociology, and as enraptured by current events as she is history, E.M. Knowles’ fiction leans to the cerebral and macabre. Her novels have been consecutive award winners with Diary of Mimosa Creek (NaNoWriMo 2012) Iona (2013), The Yawning Veil (2014).

image   image   wpid-veil.jpg   image

SHOW SOME LINKY LOVE:

Website

Facebook

Twitter

Thanks for stopping by everyone. Please visit the Books Love & Taters Book Festival website. AND if you are in the Ocilla, Georgia area, stop by October 31st. You’ll find all of us at the “MEET THE AUTHORS” booth.

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

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#BLTBF – Meet Kristofer M. Hanson

BLT-logo #BLTBF – Meet Kristofer M. Hanson

Hello everyone. I wanted to introduce the authors who will be at Book Love & Taters Book Festival on October 31st.

Second up is Kristofer M. Hanson.

Me:   Hi Kris. Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions.

Me:   What genres do you enjoy writing in?
Kris:   Fantasy and Science Fiction, ranging from YA to Mainstream

Me:   Can you tell us a little about your books?
Kris:   My first book is The Attuning, The Athran Saga, Book 1. I literally created Athran and the universe it resides in from the “celestial” ground up. The first book feels a little like high fantasy, as you meet Dwarves (don’t say that name to their face), see a form of Elf that is not an Elf (the Elffin), as well as other creatures such as the Orc-like Gralln and brutish Ogres. Then there is an element of steampunk mixed into the book as the people on the planet Athran have successfully combined their form of magic, elemental Mysticism, with different technologies. A white Mystic who manipulates air can fly an air barge, or a Red Mystic (fire) working with a Blue Mystic (water) can create a steam engine.

Once the world was created, I then asked myself, does a Dwarf or an Elf look into the stars and wonder what is up there? This is where elements of science fiction begin to bleed into the story. What if something from the stars came to them? What would happen to a fantasy world at odds with a science fiction world? Are the two truly separate, or can the fantasy be explained by science? Not to give too much away, but it has been more fun than I imagined writing this book.

I am currently 2/3 of the way done with Book 2, and look forward to finishing this series as a trilogy and pushing farther into this world and universe that I have crafted.

Me:   What made you decide to pursue writing professionally?
Kris:   I am a retired Disabled Veteran and Wounded Warrior, having served in the Air Force for 18 years. I have been creating this world for over a decade now, but the military has kept me thoroughly busy. Now that I am retired, it is time to share this story with the world and open people’s imaginations. 

Me:   What others genre(s) or subject(s) would you like to write?
Kris:   I don’t see myself writing in another genre, but I could see myself writing exclusively in either category, even though I prefer to mix the two together.

Me:   If you could meet one author, who would you choose and why?
Kris:   R.A. Salvatore and Robert Jordan are my biggest influences. I have already met Mr. Salvatore, so I would given a lot to see Mr. Jordan while he was still alive. Robert Jordan created a world and story that spanned over fifteen books, and I would just like to sit down over a nice cup of coffee and pick his brain about his characters and writing process.

Me:   For those of you who may not know, The Books Love & Taters Book Festival takes place during the Georgia Sweet Potato Festival in Ocilla, Georgia. This is my little town and it’s a big to-do around here. 😀 Every year, we take on a different theme. This year “There’s No Place Like Home” (The Wizard of OZ) was chosen.
My question to you is, who is your favorite Wizard of OZ character and why?
Kris:   Toto. A loyal dog and companion just along for the ride. He was brave and someone Dorothy could use to remind her of home.

Me:   Whose qualities do you like the most and why:

Tinman – Heart
Lion – Bravery
Scarecrow – Brains
Dorothy – Dreamer
Kris:   Like any good zombie, I would go for more brains. What is bravery if you don’t have the brains to guide it? You just needlessly throw your life away because you are not smart enough to realize those fifty flying monkeys are probably a bit too much to handle without some help. Heart is great, but heart is just a battery for the brains. You could say that emotions and empathy come from the heart, but the are actually formed in the brain through a long life full of experiences. Dreams are where our brains go to play when we sleep. If we did not dream, we would literally go insane. Sorry folks, but the Scarecrow was onto something here. Perhaps he wanted more brains and intellect so he could finally finish his plan of taking over Oz.

“What are we going to tonight, Scarecrow?”

“The same thing we do every night, Lion, try and take over the world… of Oz!”

Me: Thanks bunches, Kris!  And that was too, too, tooooooooooo funny!!!

ABOUT KRISTOFER M. HANSON:

KrisAttuning2

Kristofer Hanson is an independent author who has just emerged on the fantasy and science fiction scene. He is also a retired, 18-year United States Air Force Veteran and Wounded Warrior. While serving his nation took up most of his time, he has finally had the opportunity to sit down and bring his stories to life. His time spent in the military heavily influences his writing, and he hopes his readers enjoy the adventures he takes them on. 

Attuning

SHOW SOME LINKY LOVE:

Thanks for stopping by everyone. Please visit the Books Love & Taters Book Festival website. AND if you are in the Ocilla, Georgia area, stop by October 31st. You’ll find all of us at the “MEET THE AUTHORS” booth.

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

 

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#BLTBF – Meet Raven Price

BLT-logo

#BLTBF – Meet Raven Price

Hello everyone. I wanted to introduce the authors who will be at Book Love & Taters Book Festival on October 31st.

First up is Raven Price.

Me:   Hi Raven. Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions.

Me:   What genres do you enjoy writing in?
Raven:   Fantasy / Romance

Me:   Can you tell us a little about your books?
Raven:   The are Christian Fiction with a supernatural, fantasy and romantic twist.

  1. The Plan
  2. The Conversion
  3. The Chosen

The Plan is my first book. It is a stand alone novel.
The Conversion & The Chosen are two of a trilogy I am working on that shows how God uses normal people to bring others into knowing his love while helping them find a loving relationship for themselves. I use a lot of supernatural events mixed with drama in this trilogy.

Me:   What made you decide to pursue writing professionally?
Raven:   In 2010, I was compelled to write my own story in a fictitious format after remembering how reading formed my beliefs and lifestyle.

Me:   What others genre(s) or subject(s) would you like to write?
Raven:   I’ve been told by a couple of reviewers that I have a tendency to write in several genres in one novel. So to answer your question, I don’t have another one I pretty much cover the basics other than erotica. My style covers romance, fantasy, drama, supernatural, science fiction, horror, crime, YA, and NA.

Me:   If you could meet one author, who would you choose and why?
Raven:   Nora Roberts. I like Nora, because she writes a lot like me. She even has a drama series under another name: JD Robb.

Me:   For those of you who may not know, The Books Love & Taters Book Festival takes place during the Georgia Sweet Potato Festival in Ocilla, Georgia. This is my little town and it’s a big to-do around here.   😀   Every year, we take on a different theme. This year “There’s No Place Like Home” (The Wizard of OZ) was chosen.
My question to you is, who is your favorite Wizard of OZ character and why?
Raven:   I like Dorothy. She is stubborn, driven to explore and loving all at the same time.

Me:  Whose qualities do you like the most and why:

  • Tinman – Heart
  • Lion – Bravery
  • Scarecrow – Brains
  • Dorothy – Dreamer

Raven: Dorothy. Dorothy is inquisitive. She hates evil and wants to rescue the innocent which leads her through a journey of self-discovery and moral values. She loves her aunt and unle and the men who work with them, but she is sadden when they want to side against her when an evil woman wants to destroy her dog. To stop injustice on her own, she flees only to be trapped in a supernatural event which throws her into a land where she has to grow. This journey will empower her and help others to overcome fears and brokenness.

Me:   Thanks bunches, Raven!!!!

ABOUT RAVEN PRICE:

Red-Raven

Raven Price is a wife, mother and grandmother who writes Christian Fiction. Along with writing, she works for her church and engages people on social media.  With three books published, she also writes a blog twice a month called Author Talk Interview to help other authors get promoted.

 The Plan      The Conversion      The Chosen

SHOW SOME LINKY LOVE:

Thanks for stopping by everyone. Please visit the Books Love & Taters Book Festival website. AND if you are in the Ocilla, Georgia area, stop by October 31st. You’ll find all of us at the “MEET THE AUTHORS” booth.

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

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Newsletter sign up page.
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www… KidLit.TV

KidLitHeader

 

Helping authors, illustrators, educators, and parents explore the world of children’s literature.

www… KidLit.TV

Several months ago, I highlighted the then soon-to-be-launched website called, KidLit.TV.
(You can review the post, ~ HERE ~.)

Since KidLit.TV’s launch, it has been amazing how the kidlit community has gotten involved with this project. Julie Gribble, founder and president, saw a need for a resource website dedicated to educating people with video. Video is one of the largest way people can market, educate, and gain interest in a product.

Julie started the KidLit. TV Facebook Group Page and encourages people to post their own videos, as well as videos they find beneficial to them as long as it pertains to KidLit. She also asks people who post their own videos to share software, techniques, and tips with the group. This way everyone can learn and improve. The KidLit.TV Facebook Group is now over 1,000 members and is very active.

In November 2014, Julie launched the KidLit.TV website. When you go over there, be prepared to spend some time. There  is a wealth of videos to watch and learn from. You can find everything from book trailers to how-tos, from behind the scenes to exclusive videos produced by NYMW, called StoryMakers, hosted by Rocco Staino.

KidLit.TV also has launched a NEWSLETTER. Where they send updates, highlight events, and share information involving kidlit.

Last month, KidLit.TV Pinterest boards were launched with a party.  There are a variety of boards for you to look through connected to great information and videos! They already have over 250 followers there.

As you can see, KidLit.TV is expanding and gaining recognition in the children’s genre fields.

CBC had this to say:

cbc-logo

KidLit TV is an exciting and informative destination for authors, illustrators, teachers, publishers, and anyone with a passion for children’s literature. — Children’s Book Council

KidLit.TV continues to share videos to help the community learn and grow. Feel free to join the KidLit.TV Facebook group, follow them on Pinterest, and subscribe to their newsletter.

 

ABOUT JULIE GRIBBLE:

JulieGribble

Julie Gribble is the president of New York Media Works which creates and produces works for children and the children’s literature community in both the United States and Great Britain. She founded KidLit TV to help authors and illustrators broaden their audience by using new technologies to complement and promote their work. KidLit TV is a resource for kid lit creators, industry insiders, booksellers, librarians, teachers, and parents.

Julie is an award-winning writer, screenwriter, filmmaker, and producer. Her charming picture book, Bubblegum Princess, is based on a true story about Kate Middletown and was released on the day the royal baby, who we now know as Prince George, arrived.  Copies of the book have been donated to underprivileged children in the US and to children’s hospices in the UK.

In addition to producing KidLit TV’s original show StoryMakers, Julie is one of the co-producers for Who Killed Nelson Nutmeg, a feature film shot in Dorset, England with Bonnie Wright of Harry Potter fame. Julie sits on the Children’s Committee of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts: BAFTA-NY.

 

KidLit.TV LINKS:

Website: www.kidlit.tv

Facebook Group Page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/KidLitTV/

Pinterest Boards: http://www.pinterest.com/KidLitTV/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/KidLitTV

Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/NYMediaWorks

Exclusive videos for subscribers: http://kidlit.tv/newsletter

Julie on Twitter: @JulieGribbleNYC

 

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Let us know what you think about KidLit.TV.
Is there someone you would like to see highlighted on StoryMakers?
Is there a video technique you would like to learn about or share?
What other things would you like to see for kidlit in a video?

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

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Newsletter sign-up page.
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Feature Friday: ReFoReMo hosted by Carrie Charley Brown

ReFoReMo2ReFoReMo
Reading for Research Month

We know we love to write. We know we need to learn to write well to be published. So how do we go about to learning? There are classes we can take. Webinars we can watch. Speakers to listen to.

Another great way to learn?  R-E-A-D! Yes, read! By submersing yourself into your genre, you will see what works and what doesn’t. Read the classics to see what has carried them this far. Read the mid-list to see what can make you stay steady. Read the newly published to see what is on the pulse of publishing and how your writing can fit in.

By reading a combination of publishing years you can begin to see the patterns of publishing. Things that are considered ‘classics’ wouldn’t be published now. Stories that are coming out this year might not have been published 10 years ago. Use the current books as mentor text. You will see word count, topics, and trends that are similar and will help direct you to better writing.

Carrie Charley Brown came up with a genius of a plan to help writers collaborate together and learn from each other with mentoring texts. Her and I were talking the other day, and she graciously answered some of my questions:

 

Q1: Name of writing challenge?

Reading for Research Month, or ReFoReMo

Q2: Do you have a website?

Of course!  You can find more information at:

http://www.carriecharleybrown.com/reforemo

Q3: Date of sign-ups?

February 15-March 1

Q4: Date writing challenge runs?

March 1-31

Q5: Why did you come up with this challenge?

I’ve grown as a writer by participating in challenges such as PiBoIdMo, the 12 x 12 Picture Book Challenge, and ReviMo. At the same time, I read a lot of picture books as research tools and I wanted to share that inspiration with others.  

Q6: What do you hope people will gain from this challenge?

Guest author-educators will allow us to step into their shoes as they use picture books as tools. My hope is that picture book writers will gain a deeper understanding of how to use mentor texts to grow as writers. I also hope the consistent practice of reading picture books will immerse them into the form they write.

Q7: What else would you like to include?

Sometimes people don’t realize that fiction takes research, too. I write mainly picture book fiction and could not imagine writing without first understanding what is constantly being released in our market. Writers need to stick together and share. ReFoReMo will allow us to be there for one another in both fiction and nonfiction.

 

About:

IMG_2318

 

Carrie Charley Brown

Carrie Charley Brown juggles ideas every day as a children’s writer, teacher, blogger, and mom. She is the founder of the 2015 ReFoReMo Challenge, or Reading for Research Month. You can learn more about Carrie’s writing journey, her KidLit Services, ReFoReMo, and many other amazing authors and resources, at her blogsite Carrie On… Together!

 

Thanks Carrie!
I am also honored to be one of the Author-Educators for the challenge.   🙂

Hope you all will join us. Click on the link, banner, or ~ HERE~ to take you over there.

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Let me know what you think about this post.
Have you read any great picture books lately?
Do you know of any writing challenges you would like to see featured here?

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

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tidbits related to the kidlit industry. Click  ~HERE~  to be directed to my
Newsletter sign-up page.
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Feature Friday: ReviMo with Meg Miller

ReviMo-logo12-10-2

I WILL REVISE!

Here we are… A NEW YEAR!

Do you have a manuscript or a couple or a few or several manuscripts that need some serious revising?
But that feels like work?
You rather play with the shiny NEW idea?

Pish! Posh! Roll up your sleeves and lets let some red ink fly!

I’m challenging you! Yes, YOU! to submit this year. B-u-u-u-u-u-u-u-t you have to get those crappy first drafts into shape! What better way than to participate in a writing challenge?

ENTER:

Meg Miller

Hi, Meg!
Thanks for stopping by ‘a writers blog by Tracey M. Cox’ and sharing your writing challenge! Here are some Q&A Meg and I had the other day and I wanted to share:

Q1: Name of writing challenge?
A: ReviMo 2015

Q2: Do you have a website?
A: http://www.megmillerwrites.blogspot.com/p/revimo-2015.html

Q3: Date of sign-ups?
A: Last day to sign up 1/11/2015 at 10 pm cst

Q4: Date writing challenge runs?
A: January 11-17, 2015

Q5: Why did you come up with this challenge?
A: In 2013, I had just completed Paula Yoo’s NaPiBoWriWee; I was gearing up to do to Tara Lazar’s PiBoIdMo; and I’d been writing a rough draft monthly for Julie Hedlund’s 12×12 Challenge. I thought, I need to revise all these (crappy, oh so crappy) stories, *Lightbulb* there should be a revision challenge!! So… after coming up with a name for it, inspired by the other great challenges, I set to planning. And in January 2014, I hosted the first ReviMo with help from inspiring guest bloggers and generous sponsors. There have also been many Pre-ReviMo and Petite ReviMo with great posts from writers.
I had a thought at one point that surely there was no new way to talk about revising, but every time I receive someone’s post I am amazed at how our unique perspectives bring a new and fresh take on revising! Which gives me hope for writing, there are new picture book ideas, you just need a fresh perspective!

Q6: What do you hope people will gain from this challenge?
A: I get writer’s block occasionally and I know it’s because I start taking myself and (add stuffy accent here) *my writing* WAY too seriously. I’d like ReviMo to inspire people to play with revisions. This quote from Anne Lamott captures the thought perfectly: “So go ahead and make big scrawls and mistakes. Use up lots of paper. Perfectionism is a mean, frozen form of idealism, while messes are the artist’s true friend.”

Q7: What else would you like to include?
A: Check out our wonderful guest bloggers for ReviMo 2015:
http://megmillerwrites.blogspot.com/p/revimo-2015-guest-bloggers.html
And not only that, but our lovely sponsors have donated some fabulous prizes: http://megmillerwrites.blogspot.com/p/blog-page_7.html
AND (can this get any better??) if you are a ReviMo participant you are eligible for these special offers: http://megmillerwrites.blogspot.com/p/revimo-2015-special-offers.html

 

Thanks Meg!!!
How awesome is that! Not only do you get some of your work closer to submission-ready material, you also have a chance at some amazing prizes. I have already signed up!

Click on the logo above or ~ HERE ~ to sign up for Meg’s ReviMo challenge. You have 2 more days to get in!!!!

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Let me know what you think of writing challenges.
Are you going to participate in ReviMo?
What are some challenges you are going to participate in this year?
Are there some you would like to see highlighted here?

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

*     Did you enjoy this post? Feel free to LIKE, SHARE, and COMMENT ON THIS POST.
Easy, peasy buttons found  below.
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industry. Click  ~HERE~  to be directed to my Newsletter sign-up page.

Teacher Guides + Common Core = Common Ground guided by Marcie Colleen

TEACHER GUIDES + COMMON CORE = COMMON GROUND
GUIDED BY MARCIE COLLEEN

 

Hello everyone.

I have been wanting to address a subject that has been giving numerous writers, and parents, some trouble. I think it is in the understanding of the topic really. COMMON CORE has come to your local schools. While a lot of heated debates have happened, I have sat down and began to study it. Really dig deep, and try to understand it. While it can be overwhelming, I think it can be a good thing.

I asked one of my colleagues, Marcie Colleen, if she would answer a few questions about Common Core. I wanted to pass it along to my readers so they can benefit too. Marcie is so generous as you will see below. So, take a deep breath and lets look, really look, at Common Core and find out how it can be beneficial.

PLUS, for my writing friends, how adding a Teacher Guide (a/k/a Lesson Plan) can help your book become Common Core friendly, and hopefully get your book into more children’s hands.

 

 

I’m wanting to give my readers more information on the Common Core. It can be confusing when you first begin to look into it. How would you explain it to someone who has no knowledge?

I’d actually beg to differ. It’s not the Common Core that is confusing, it’s the emotionally charged opinions that are plaguing our media that are hard to decipher. When so many people are speaking out about their feelings, it can be difficult to make sense of it for ourselves.

Therefore, here are 3 helpful resources to help YOU make sense of the CCSS for YOU!

  • School Library Journal 6-part webcast series about the Common Core. This series is FREE and very helpful, especially Part One: Getting Real with Marc Aronson and Sue Bartle. Although they are geared toward professionals in the education world, they will give you a good overview on what the CCSS entail and how educators are “unpacking” the standards for themselves. You can find the entire series here. http://www.slj.com/webcasts/commoncore/#_
  • The Common Core State Standards. It’s always best to go right to the source. These standards are not rocket science, but they can be overwhelming. Look at the tables which include each standard by grade level. Limit your focus by standard and grade level so that it is easiest to digest. They can be found, in detail, at http://www.corestandards.org/

Unfortunately, there are really no shortcuts. If you want to be a part of the conversation, these resources will help you.

To better understand, let’s look closely at a few of the standards.

Excerpt from Grade 3 Reading: Literature Standards

Key Ideas and Details

1. Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for the answers.

2. Recount stories, including fables, folktales, and myths from diverse cultures; determine the central message, lesson, or moral and explain how it is conveyed through key details in the text.

3. Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.

Craft and Structure

4. Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, distinguishing literal from nonliteral language.

5. Refer to parts of stories, dramas, and poems when writing or speaking about a text, using terms such as chapter, scene, and stanza; describe how each successive part builds on earlier sections.

6. Distinguish their own point of view from that of the narrator or those of the characters.

7. Explain how specific aspects of a text’s illustrations contribute to what is conveyed by the words in a story (e.g., create mood, emphasize aspects of a character or setting).

In isolation it becomes clearer that:

  • The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) are a set of benchmarks which focus on the development of essential skills at the most appropriate age and development stage for students.
  • They are skill-based, not test-driven, and in theory will prepare students better for life post-school.
  • They also allow teachers to be unique in their approaches to instruction, not dictating what is to be taught or how. The focus is on results, not means.
  • They are not rocket science or really that confusing.
  • Every book can be Common Core compliant.

 

I wanted to ask you also to explain why is good to offer Teacher Guides.

A Teacher’s Guide is

  • A tool for teachers to use to gain immediate access into your book and adapt it quickly and easily for classroom use.
  • Aligns your book to the current curriculum and curriculum standards (state standards, as well as the Common Core)
  • A marketing tool which promotes you within the educational environment and helps you garner more school and library visits.

But to answer your question, I want to tell a story. I was recently hired by Adriana Brad Schanen to create a Teacher’s Guide for her debut middle grade novel Quinny & Hopper (Disney Hyperion, 2014). Fast forward to Adriana’s first school visit to a bunch of 4th grade classes. In addition to presenting to the classes, Adriana gave each teacher a copy of the Teacher’s Guide. By the end of the day, the teachers were raving about how comprehensive the guide was. They loved how many options and avenues into the book it provided. In fact, the teachers decided that perhaps next year they would forgo the usual Superfudge unit and instead teach Quinny & Hopper!!!

Teachers are busy. They are overworked. They are spread thin. The easier you can make it for them to use your book in the classroom the better your chances. Of course they have been teaching Superfudge. There are a zillion lesson plans and activities for free on the web on how to bring Superfudge into the classroom. A Teacher’s Guide can help you “compete”.

 

When should you think about teacher guides?

Truthfully? Once your book is finished. Just like I wouldn’t want a teacher to “teach to the test”, a writer shouldn’t write to a Teacher’s Guide. Once your book is finished you can start to think about its life outside.

Six months prior to the date of publication is usually sufficient start the process of creating a Teacher’s Guide.

 

What if your story is fiction, can you still incorporate teacher’s guides?

Absolutely! In fact, out of the 33 Teacher’s Guides I have created for clients, only 3 of them have been for non-fiction titles. To check them out, all of my guides are available for free download on my website at http://www.thisismarciecolleen.com.

You’d be surprised what academic goodies can be pulled out of a fiction story. After all, isn’t The Very Hungry Caterpillar a great springboard for learning about food choices, the life cycle of a butterfly and metamorphosis?

 

Thank you so much, Marcie. You really have gone above and beyond.

 

 

MARCIE COLLEEN

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Education Consultant, Marcie Colleen, is a former classroom teacher and curriculum creator turned Picture Book writer. Her Teacher’s Guides, which align picture books and middle grade novels with the Common Core and other state mandated standards, have been praised by both teachers and librarians. Her Teacher’s Guide for Picture Book Month, Why Picture Books Belong in Our Classrooms, validates the use of picture books across EVERY curriculum and provides teachers with a hands on approach to adapt any picture book for educational use. Her work with Picture Book Month has been recognized by School Library Journal and the Children’s Book Council. Marcie is also an Education Strategist, providing one-on-one consultation guiding authors and illustrators to best position their books for school visits and classroom use. Visit her at www.thisismarciecolleen.com to discover how Marcie can help you navigate the world of children’s literature and education.

 

 

I hope that give you all some stepping stones to begin the journey of understanding Common Core and how books, with Teacher Guides, can play a vital role in children’s education.

Happy writing/reading everyone!
~t

 

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Tuesday Tips: Get Back to Your Roots. WHY Do You Write?

pencils

 

Getting Back to Your Roots
WHY Do You Write?

Have you ever been asked this question:

Why do you write?

Or more importantly, have you ever asked yourself that?

A fellow writer, Debbie LaCroix, posed this question to herself on her blog and it got me to thinking.

WHY do I write?

For me it is a number of things:

  1. My love of stories since I was a child.
    My papa told me stories all the time. I’m sure most of you have heard of Goldilocks and the Three Bears, or Jack and the Beanstalk, or The Three Pigs, want me to keep on??? BUT you might not have heard of The Three Frogs or The Three Lightning Bugs. Those were my Papa’s stories, those were the ones that I began my writing journey with. (If they do sound familiar, it is because THIS is where Ribbert and Liddil came to be.)
  2. Ideas and concepts that come into mind.
    I find that little things, ordinary things, things taken for granted will turn into an adventure in my head. Then I discover characters and characteristics, and twists with turns, and then -hopefully- the happy ending. It is amazing how many ideas surround us, if we only take the time to listen, look, feel.
  3. Wanting to make a difference.
    The Pen Is Mightier Than The Sword.
    Y-E-S! Words can heal, can cut, can reach out, can silence, can make us feel deeper than we ever thought we could. I can’t tell you the times I have shed tears over a character or rooted them on into victory. There are times when I can’t sleep after reading something. There have been times when I would sneak off into my closet to turn the light on because I couldn’t put the book down in the middle of the night.
    Words, books, let us know we are not alone and can close the gap.
  4. The voices in my head won’t hush.
    I admit it. Yes, writers are the only people who can say we hear voices in our head and NOT have people worried about us.
  5. It is like breathing. If I tried to stop, I would die inside.
    This is the most profound statement I can make. I don’t choose to write words, the words have chosen me. People have callings… to be a doctor/nurse, to be a policeman, or a teacher. I have a calling to be a writer and it is my job to do it properly.

Those are some of my reasons. At least the first 5 that came into mind. It won’t be the same for everyone, but then again everyone has their own story to tell.
What are yours?

 

:::Leave me a comment:::

Let me hear WHY you write. Or follow up with your own blog post. Link this post to it and we can follow the journeys of different writers. Don’t forget to visit Debbie’s blog!

 

Happy writing!
~t

 

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