Wednesday, February 27, 2008

"Thank you Miss Ginger!"

I'm a lucky person!I get to witness both the inner workings of making literature for children and seeing what that literature can do in the hands of a child! And I don't know which I like best- for the past five years I have had the fun of teaching ART to rural ranch kids and Native American kid,mostly Navajo, at Battle Rock Charter School in historical McElmo Canyon.
I'm also a freelance writer and aspiring freelance illustrator who is getting to know some very kind and cool illustrators-and one of the coolest and kindest is Ginger Nielson- who just donated a whole box full of her new book- "The Adventures of Cali" to my kindergarten through second graders.Written by Michele Lallouz Fisher, with wonderful "Ginger-esque" illustrations- she has such a distinct look- the story tracks the travel of a little caterpillar that is hiding in a delious tomato patch and found by a curious boy.
What makes these books really cool is they come with a little recorder- so the kids can have someone record the story and than they can read along listening to the device.
Anything, again I say anything, that gets these kids interested in reading is a good thing. As is true across the rural West,reading is a skill that is sometimes overlooked- and if a "gimmick" of a recorder- is used to get a kid in a lap of an adult reading- I'll do the happy dance.
The recorder, itself will be great for these kids as well- allowing them to listen to their own voices- Navajos, by their culture, can be very soft spoken- so sometimes it is hard to get these kids to talk much, but who doesn't like to hear the sound of their own voice!
So thank you, Miss Ginger, for your generosity- the kids loved the story and loved the illustration and thought it was pretty cool that I knew you! Some fuzzy caterpillars are coming your way- so watch your mailbox!!


  1. Julia!! You are so terrific to be teaching these wonderful children. Thank you for the gracious posts and for the encouragement you give to these children. I would like to give each one of them a great big HUG!!! and one for you too!

  2. Thank you JULIA for this wonderful photo and post. I think you are doing a great job working with the children, and they are learning from your gentle nature and artistic talent. It is plain to see that they enjoyed making these pictures. I would like to give each and every one of them a great big HUG!

  3. Julia, I enjoyed seeing your 'kids' and their 'Thank you' creations. I clicked on the picture and zoomed in so I could read each one. How thoughtful of you to post their 'Thank you' pictures. I'm sure it made Ginger smile.