BEA 2013 – Part 2

 

Book Expo America - New York City

This morning, I had a lovely comment from blogger I didn’t know.

Blogging etiquette demanded that I go and visit her blog.

I am SO glad I did.

BermudaOnion is an awesome writer who blogs about books, movies and food. She just attended the BEA (Book Expo America) in New York City and her post about it made me feel I was right there with her, rubbing shoulders with well-known authors and enjoying the amazing food that is one of the highlights of any trip to the Big Apple.

I had to share this post and hope you will visit her blog to read this and also Part 1 of her BEA adventure.

 

BEA 2013 – Part 2.

Stellar photo courtesy of: http://photography.nationalgeographic.com/wallpaper/photography/photo-tips/color-palette-simply-beautiful-photos/new-york-skyline-richardson/

 

Emma’s Elephant: Picture Book Review and Activity

Emma's Elephant: Picture Book Reivew and ActivityI’m adding another wonderful story to the  Perfect Picture Book resource list that author Susanna Leonard Hill is building on her blog. For more wonderful reviews from authors, educators and others who contributed today, please go here.

Emma's Elephant: Picture Book Review and ActivityPlease let me share some good news first! Starting now, the price of the Kindle Edition of Show Me How! will be ONLY $2.99 for the ENTIRE SUMMER. I wanted to make it more available to parents, teachers, VBS, summer playground groups and homeschooling families. This is a SUBSTANTIAL discount off the regular $9.99 price. The activities (100 crafts and 100 recipes and 100 picture book summaries) will definitely help provide fun and educational projects for the kids.

 

 

 

In the spotlight today is another one of the treasures I scooped up in Singapore at the Asian Festival of Children’s Content.

Emma's Elephant: Picture Book Review and Activity

Emma’s Elephant

Written by David Seow

Illustrated by Enrico Sallustio

Publisher: Bonnie Books (2013)

Ages: 3 and up

Themes:

Friendship, animal conservation, family, overcoming fears

Opening Lines:

“Hello, I’m Emma and I have an elephant. Her name is Ella. She has one long trunk, two floppy ears, four big feet, one tiny tail. And she is invisible! But if she likes you, she’ll let you see her. Can you see her?”

Synopsis:

Ella, a young elephant is so scared by hunters that she becomes invisible, except if she likes and trusts you. She seeks help from a little girl named Emma. Emma joins the elephant on a journey to see if they can make the jungle a safer place for all of the animals.

Why  I like this book:

  • Great read-aloud
  • Wonderful message of hope and family togetherness
  • Bold, bright illustrations
  • I attended the book launch for Emma’s Elephant at the 2013 Asian Festival of Children’s Content in Singapore and had a chance to chat with the author, David Seow, and the illustrator, Enrico Sallustio. They both signed my copy of Emma’s Elephant (which I will be giving to my new grand-daughter, Sophie) and it was a pleasure to chat with this talented multi-published duo.

Emma's Elephant: Picture Book Review and Activity

David Seow on the left, Enrico Sallustio on the right and happy me behind them.

How a parent can use this book:

  • Lovely read-aloud
  • Talk about animals in the wild and how we can protect them and their habitats
  • Take a trip to a zoo to see some of the animals mentioned
  • Talk about how Ella reacted when she was afraid…how do you feel when you are afraid? What do you do?
  • If you make the craft, your child can role play with her elephant.

Related Activities:

PAPER PLATE ELEPHANT

Emma's Elephant: Picture Book Review and Activity

  • I love simple crafts for kids.
  • Paper plates are inexpensive and easy to work with.
  • This one is painted…but you can use markers or crayons.
  • Cut pieces of construction paper or material scraps for the legs, trunk, tail, ear and eye and glue in place.
  • Just a few minutes of your time, participating with your child…that’s all it takes…the long-term rewards are amazing!

You can connect with the author and illustrator.

Bonnie Books Publisher

David Seow’s Website and Blog

David Seow’s Facebook

Enrico Sallustio’s Website

Enrico Sallustio on Goodreads

To Write Or Not To Write: Letters To My Kids

Should You Write to Your Kids?

In honor of Father’s Day (which is next Sunday, June 16), I was asked to contribute to Bob Brody’s Letters to My Kids blog.

Bob is passionate about encouraging parents to write letters to their kids to share family stories…this helps kids gain a sense of self-worth and a stronger parent-child bond.

Here is the link for the Father’s Day post: http://letterstomykidsdotorg.wordpress.com/2013/06/10/fathers-day-guest-columnist-vivian-kirkfield-never-enough-but-always-plenty/

I also participated on Bob’s blog for Mother’s Day and wrote a letter to my children about my own mother: http://letterstomykidsdotorg.wordpress.com/2013/05/24/guest-columnist-vivian-kirkfield-the-grandmother-you-hardly-knew/

When and what should parents write letters to their kids?

  • On holidays or special occasions
  • Anytime
  • To share your own childhood experiences
  • To share things that happened when they were very young
  • To relate interesting family stories
  • To say I’m sorry
  • To congratulate them on an accomplishment or goal reached

Many years ago, when my children were very young and they wanted to give me a gift for a birthday or other special time, I would tell them, “Write me a love letter!” Those letters and cards that they made themselves are still tucked away carefully and treasured by me. When your children give you a gift like that, it will outlast any box of candy, bouquet of flowers or trinket they might find at the store.

Sunday Post: Perspective…#2013AFCC…Traveling Around the World

Jake at Time after Time has a Sunday Post Challenge…a recent theme was PERSPECTIVE.

Sunday Post: Perspective...#2013AFCC...Traveling Around the World

Night-time in Singapore! What a perspective! Don’t you want to be there?

Traveling definitely gives a person a whole new perspective on the world.

My trip to the 2013 Asian Festival of Children’s Content was my first international trip ever. I connected in Tokyo and was impressed with the extreme cleanliness and calm atmosphere. I found the same conditions at Singapore Airport…it was beautiful! (Sad to say that connecting through Houston Airport on my way back home was not as pleasant…in fact, it was appalling) I got my luggage, followed the signs (in both English and Chinese) and was greeted at the exit door by a lovely lady who indicated which taxi was for me. The driver put my bag in the trunk and took me to my hotel. He was courteous and friendly and his cab was so clean.

Although I didn’t get to see much of Singapore because the conference was so filled with activities and sessions, I know I will return. The people of Singapore are welcoming and kind, the city is beautiful, the hotel I stayed at  (Hotel Grand Pacific) was all you could hope for…robe and slippers provided and all the amenities like hair products and sewing kit as well as a dental kit (yes, a toothbrush and little tube of toothpaste) and shaving kit (razor and little tube of shaving cream) provided fresh EVERY day! The hotel staff were attentive and  Continue reading

Talking to Kids about War: Ships in the Field

Today is Friday – I have a children’s book to review to add to the  Perfect Picture Book resource list that author Susanna Leonard Hill is building on her blog. For more wonderful reviews from authors, educators and others who contributed today, please go here

My picture book pick today is another one of the treasures I scooped up in Singapore last week at the Asian Festival of Children’s Content.

Talking to kids about war: Ships in the Field

Ships in the Field

Written by Susanna Gervay

Illustrated by Anna Pignataro

Publisher: Ford Street Publishers – Melbourne, Australia (2012)

Ages: 5 and up

Themes:

Family togetherness, immigrants, war, hope

Opening Lines:

“Every night, Brownie and I wait for Papa to come home.” Continue reading

#2013AFCC – A Picture Book is Worth a Thousand Words

#2013AFCC - A Picture Book is Worth a Thousand Words

Today I’d like to share the presentation I did for the Parents Forum at the Asian Festival of Children’s Content in Singapore last week.

My goal was to give parents an overview of how picture books can be used as tools to

  • build self-esteem
  • develop literacy skills
  • strengthen the parent-child connection

With summer right around the corner, children will be looking for things to do. If you have preschoolers, kindergarteners or kids in the first or second grade, picture books can be a life-saver.

I mentioned that parents make a big investment in their children:

  • FOOD
  • SHELTER
  • LOVE
  • EDUCATION

Did you know that Money Magazine did a study in 2011 that showed it costs over  Continue reading

Why Attend a SCBWI Conference? #2013AFCC

Why Attend an SCBWI Conference #2013afcc

Why attend a SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) conference?

I’ve been writing picture book stories since I was a kid.

But it’s only been in the last couple of years that I have seriously pursued the craft of writing.

I joined Julie Hedlund’s 12×12 and Tara Lazar’s PiBoIdMo.

I participated in Susanna Hill’s various writing prompts and contests.

I even took the plunge and joined TWO critique groups whose members are all 12x12ers…a local one and an online international one (love you all, guys!).

Every month I would read about different SCBWI conferences that people in this kidlit community had attended.

New York, Los Angeles…from coast-to-coast, writers and illustrators were sharing how fantastic it was to connect with others in the field. They gave peeks inside the educational sessions.  They urged people to GO!

So, I did! Last week I took a leap of faith and boarded a plane for Continue reading