Sunday, April 22, 2012

anna alter authors as mentors

What can Ruby do with her old red shoe? Use it as a planter for pansies! In this “green” craft book, children can appreciate that recycling is a part of everyday life, and with a little creativity, exciting projects are only a few steps away. Turn a worn flip-flop into an art stamp, a ripped shower curtain into an apron, and an old T-shirt into a pillow. These activities are just a few of the many crafts to be explored.  With easy-to-follow step-by-step instructions, this interactive book will challenge kids to come up with clever recycling ideas of their own.
For several years my students and I have worked with a wonderful children's author & illustrator,

     Her name is:  My Photo   Anna Alter :click here to-visit her blog

She has written and illustrated many books for kids.
Her life involves a lot of drawing, a lot of daydreaming, and on a good day a lot of painting bunnies.
My classes have had such wonderful experiences with  Anna & her Skype sessions.
She showed the students many of her books and went through the writing process. She allowed the students time for a Q&A then explained how she gets inspired to write, and what happens step by step with her books until, and including when they get published.
One of our favorite stories (there are SO many) is What Can You Do with an Old Red Shoe?
I have used  lots of  her ideas for demonstrating reuse to the little ones in a simple, low-key, creative way. Visit the free stuff page for coloring pages, activity sheets, and a curriculum guide for download. here
For a few years in a row this tied perfectly into my classroom activities especially during earth day, and authors apprentice day (a day where students read aloud published pieces to parents)!
One year we actually SKYPED with her, while the parents and principal were present, the students in my class wrote & shared their own versions of things they would recycle.
Amazingly enough Anna published a few of their pieces on her blog! 
Here is one from my student Maggie:
Anna wrote this :

Happy Earth Week!

I often completely forget to take pictures when I do school visits, so I don't have much to show from my adventures on Boston's North Shore last week. But I did recently receive an awesome package from a school where I did a Skype visit. They did an author study and had each student write a project just like the reuse activities in What Can You Do with an Old Red Shoe?. To celebrate Earth Week I'll posting some of my favorites all week!

This one I love for a number of reasons. Most importantly what a great idea! When the sleeves fall off my next sweater I will definitely stick them on my cat. Also I find the author bio quite charming.

All pictures and info courtesy of anna alter's site! ( you have to check it out)

1 comment:

Lori said...

What a great book this is to springboard kids to writing about reusing things! I can only imagine how creative some of them get with their ideas- love it!
Conversations in Literacy