it's time to upgrade my website, so things are a bit chaotic right now... hopefully, I'll be through in a couple of days (well, make that weeks)
An Early Interest in Teaching
My interest in writing children’s books began as an elementary school teacher. My first teaching job was in an alternative school. I was the head teacher responsible for the curriculum of students in grades 1-6, a curriculum that focused on immersion in the arts.
Several years later I moved to the public schools and I taught second grade for five years. I used the same arts immersion approach, which emphasized a literature-based reading program. As a result, I was exposed to and read a lot of children’s picture books early in my career.
It was in this environment that I developed an interest in the picture book as an art form. I also moved out of the elementary school classroom and went back to school.
My First Book
I studied reading and language arts with an emphasis on children’s literature. After completing my doctorate I accepted a faculty position at National-Louis University in Chicago, where I continue to teach. I also began submitting my work to publishers in a more systematic and serious manner. Two years later I sold my first picture book manuscript, Night Is Coming, to Dutton Children’s Books.
Now, almost two decades later, I have twenty books for children to my credit. I continue to write on a daily basis, both books for children and articles for teachers about the writing process. As my writing and teaching have developed over the years, so too have the opportunities to visit schools and libraries as a published author. Offering author programs is a large part of who I am as a teacher and a writer. I enjoy immensely telling stories and talking about my writing experiences with children, teachers, and parents.
The World Is My Classroom
During my professional career I have taught a wide range of students, from young children to career-minded adults, but my real "classroom" is the world around me. I think that's why I write. Writing enables me to explore any and all facets of the world around me. But it's also why I continue to teach. In many ways, teaching is just another form of writing (you just don't put everything down on paper). And, now, my teaching takes many forms: an author presentation at an elementary school, a storytelling session at a public library, a writing workshop in a college classroom.
Need information about my books or school programs,
please contact me at email@example.com or call me at 773.784.4832