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I love sharing my passion for writing and illustrating picture books about nature with students and teachers!
My K-5 presentations are tailored to your occasion, curriculum, and audience. They always integrate science, language arts and visual arts and fully support STEAM.
Showing visual props (and a PowerPoint program for larger groups), I convey every step of my bookmaking process, including:
- my extensive research to learn about my subjects with scientists at the Smithsonian Institution and elsewhere;
- the early mistakes I made in both my text and illustration drawings before experts corrected them, underscoring that we all make mistakes and the importance of thorough research;
- fascinating facts about plants and animals as I share from the many books I have created about these subjects;
- the countless manuscript drafts I write before settling on just the right words, using energetic verbs, vivid adjectives, alliteration and rhyme to enliven my text;
- asking students to act as “picture detectives” to notice the changes I made from one illustration sketch to the next, and why they think I made them. This is a dynamic exercise that actively involves them in my creative process and enhances their visual literacy and cognitive skills; and
- demonstrating to students that it takes patience, hard work and perseverance to create a book - or anything worthwhile in life – but that they can do it!
I end my program with a lively Q & A session and ask children for their book ideas.
Want to learn what teachers and students say about my school visits? Click on this Testimonials tab.
Book Signing: I am happy to autograph books, which the school can preorder. A book sale adds a wonderful dimension to my visit and reinforces what children have learned from my presentation. Click above for book ordering information and an order form that can be customized by your school.
Tech Requirements: an LCD projector and screen; a microphone (preferably a lapel type); a table for my props; and a room that can be darkened. I bring my own MAC laptop and adapter.