My congratulations to Kate Cosgrove, the gifted artist who illustrated THE DIRT BOOK. Many of you saw yesterday that Kate’s artwork for our book has been chosen by a jury for inclusion in this year’s 2021 Original Art Show in New York City. Here’s more about the exhibit and why it’s such an honor for Kate. Here’s some information from the website.
The premier showcase for illustrators and animators, the Society of Illustrators Annual Exhibition features over 400 pieces of the most outstanding works created throughout each year. Open to artists worldwide, thousands of entries are considered by a jury of professionals, which include renowned illustrators, art directors and designers. The Original Art is an annual exhibit created to showcase illustrations from the year’s best children’s books published in the U.S. For editors and art directors, it’s an inspiration and a treasure trove of talent to draw upon. For art students, it’s a marvelous opportunity to examine—up close—the work of the best in the field. And for the public, it’s a chance to appreciate the enormous range of creativity in children’s books and to see the printed pages alongside the original paintings, drawings, prints, and collages they represent.
Way to go, Kate! First we did AND THE BULLFROGS SING.
Now, THE DIRT BOOK.
Who knows what might wait for us down the road. I’m proud to be your partner.
I’ve just accepted, along with Tim Rasinski, a project to help revamp the early reading program for one of the twelve largest school districts in the nation. My part calls for writing seventy-five original poems suitable for the 40,000 K-2 students in the district. Final details are being formalized this week and I’ll begin work on Monday.
Although I’m delighted by the challenge and look forward to getting started, there’s a huge scheduling conflict. Tim and I, with Laura Robb, are supposed to be writing a new book for Teacher Created Materials right now, with a target deadline of December 15 and a pub date of early 2022. By squeezing in, more like shoehorning in, this new project, there’s no way to stick with the TCM schedule. The kind folks at TCM have graciously agreed to a several week delay in their plans.
So this has turned into my year to work on education books. I began on March 5 writing poems for the first of two books for Scholastic with Mary Jo Fresch and Tim, and finished last week. This week I’m getting in a few licks on the TCM book before shifting gears into the new project. The minute I finish with that, I’ll get back to the TCM book and hope to finish my part by the end of January. That will mean eleven straight months of writing poems for the classroom almost every weekday except when out of town or doing virtual visits.
There is no way this is going to happen without making more work time in the day so I’m making a hard decision to start Monday cutting blog posts to a minimum. Hopefully, it won’t take as long as expected to finish the last poem but at this early stage I’ll want to error on the side of being conservative.
Look for me on the blog when I have something I really want to say. I’ll try to keep up on Facebook but might fall behind in my responses there too. Sorry!
Laura and I created this book to help teachers work with students who are at least two grades behind in their reading level. My job was to write poems and texts to capture students’ interest at their intellectual/developmental level while using language accessible to them at their current reading level. Laura created wonderful plans and activities to encourage and reinforce efforts to reach for growth in reading. An earlier review included this: “One of the hardest parts of helping developing readers can be finding texts that support them. In this compendium of intermediate and middle grade reading lessons, Laura and David suggest one great text after another, making offering readers the practice they need to become stronger, more proficient readers even easier!”
New books suffered when they were introduced during the thick of the pandemic, and ours came out last September. Corwin is essentially reintroducing the book now. All the more reason why we appreciate Jennifer’s review and hope for additional reviews to come. The Amazon ratings so far are all 5 stars so we’re encouraged to think we’ll continue to find more and more teachers who can put our book to use. If you are in a position to pass this along to teacher and/or administrator friends, we will be in your debt. Thank you.
I’m happy to say that THE DIRT BOOK opened in the Number One spot yesterday among new releases in children’s environment and ecology books. I’m truly delighted and want to thank you for your help in getting us off to such a great start.
Kate Cosgrove illustrated THE DIRT BOOK beautifully, just as she did on AND THE BULLFROGS SING. Kate, it’s good so see you on Kathy’s feature today. I want to say again how much I love your work and hope we get a chance to partner again one of these days soon.