IT’S ALL ABOUT . . . MARVELOUS PET IDEAS IN MAY
The Children's Book Academy Blog
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5d ago
Canva image  ​ by Melissa Stoller Where I live, May is National Pet Month! What a wonderful time to celebrate all the pets in our lives. This month, spend some time thinking about how to celebrate all types of pets, real and imaginary, and how you can infuse pets into your story ideas.   Here are a few prompts to get you started: ​ ​1)    If you have a pet in your life, study your pet in detail. Research the type of pet, and notice their habits, likes and dislikes, and distinct personality traits. Include some details in a story!  2)    If yo ..read more
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Nurturing Social Awareness by Dr. Debra Collins
The Children's Book Academy Blog
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2w ago
When I was a child, two different ice cream trucks regularly visited my neighborhood. We eagerly gobbled goodies from both, but we announced their arrivals differently. Truck A sparked shrieks of delight. Truck B set off a singsong ditty among us that rhymed the name of the brand with phrases proclaiming this ice cream tasted bad and made us sick. I joined in, never questioning how the song came about.   One day, as Truck B arrived, I was alone on the porch when the other children in the neighborhood started singing. As the scene unfolded before me, suddenly I saw and heard it through th ..read more
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Honoring National Poetry Month: Celebrating The Powerful Poets of Children's Literature
The Children's Book Academy Blog
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3w ago
As April unfolds its petals, it brings the sweet fragrance of National Poetry Month, a time to celebrate the beauty and power of verse. In the vibrant landscape of children's literature, poetry holds a special place, weaving tales of imagination, emotion, and culture. This month, let's shine a light on three extraordinary poets whose voices enrich the world of KidLit. Nikki Grimes With a pen dipped in the ink of empathy and understanding, Nikki Grimes mesmerizes readers with her poignant verses. Her numerous awards, including the Coretta Scott King Award and the ALA Notable Book recognition ..read more
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IT’S ALL ABOUT . . . APRIL SHOWERS OF IDEAS
The Children's Book Academy Blog
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1M ago
by Melissa Stoller As the saying goes, “April showers bring May flowers.” Where I live, that is holding true as it has been a bit soggy! But on the bright side . . . flowers are blooming and the cherry blossoms are beautiful!   This month, it can also rain down ideas! Here are some prompts to help you cultivate your stories:                                       Image from Canva ​1)    Visit a botanical garden – perhaps bring a sketch pad and draw the flowers and trees you n ..read more
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Why Social Emotional Learning Rocks Theory and Practice by Dr. Debra Collins
The Children's Book Academy Blog
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1M ago
The Theory ​Social-emotional learning, often abbreviated as SEL, has become increasingly important in picture books as a way to address the various challenges and pressures that children encounter today. According to the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL), SEL involves equipping both young people and adults with the necessary knowledge, skills, and attitudes to foster healthy identities, manage emotions, achieve personal and collective goals, demonstrate empathy, build supportive relationships, and make responsible decisions (casel.org). SEL was important befor ..read more
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This Book Makes Me Think About: CAPE by Kevin Johnson and Kitt Thomas
The Children's Book Academy Blog
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1M ago
​Written by the talented Kevin Johnson and brought to life with illustrations by the incomparable Kitt Thomas, "Cape" is a story that hits close to home. It speaks to the depth of our hearts and the strength we find in the midst of loss. In "Cape," we meet a young child grappling with the profound sorrow of losing a cherished loved one. Clutching onto his superhero cape, he seeks solace from the onslaught of memories and emotions that threaten to overwhelm him. But as we all know, memories don't play fair. They persist no matter how much you resist. Our young hero tries to block and push t ..read more
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IT'S ALL ABOUT  . . . TIME FOR IDEAS
The Children's Book Academy Blog
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2M ago
by Melissa Stoller Where I live, we just moved the clocks forward an hour for Daylight Savings Time. That means we “lost” an hour on Sunday morning. I started thinking about the notion of “time” and how we can incorporate time into ideas this March.  Here are a few prompts to try:  1. Write a story about the passage of time. Maybe it’s a story using sunrise to sunset as a structure. Or perhaps it’s using the days of the week or months of the year. Or even the seasons. Show the reader how time has passed.  2. Think of a story about “losing time.” It could be about bedtime ..read more
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IT’S ALL ABOUT . . . FINDING HEARTFELT IDEAS IN FEBRUARY!
The Children's Book Academy Blog
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3M ago
​By Melissa Stoller ​   February is a wonderful time to reflect on friendship and love. Valentine’s Day falls squarely in the middle of the month, perhaps bringing cards, candies, flowers, and special sentiments. This holiday can help you generate heartfelt ideas.  Canva Image ​ Here are a few prompts you can use for inspiration this season.  1) Check out cards at a card shop. Or write you own greetings. Notice themes that resonate with you. Can you imagine characters delivering any of the messages? Maybe the cards will spark a first line or story plot. 2) View online im ..read more
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Crafting Creative Resolutions
The Children's Book Academy Blog
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4M ago
As we embrace the new year, it's the perfect time for picture book writers to reflect on their writing journey and set meaningful resolutions. Whether you're a seasoned author or just starting your picture book adventure, the beginning of the year offers everyone a fresh canvas to explore new ideas and hone your craft. However, the task of resolutions can prove daunting. Here are a few suggestions to get you started.  Set Clear Writing Goals Begin the year by establishing clear and achievable writing goals. Consider setting targets for the number of manuscripts you aim to complete, subm ..read more
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IT’S ALL ABOUT . . . NEW IDEAS IN THE NEW YEAR!
The Children's Book Academy Blog
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4M ago
​By Melissa Stoller   Cheers to 2024! It’s a new year - time to discover, catch, and cultivate new ideas!   Here are a few prompts to help you gather ideas that you can turn into stories and books.  ​ Canva Image ​ ​1) Write about a new year custom or ritual that you enjoyed as a child, or celebrate now as an adult. Think about the tastes, smells, sights, and sounds of your celebrations. Include some sensory details in your story.  2) Look at the holiday cards you sent or received last month. Notice the emotions and settings in the photos or messages. Perhaps a title ..read more
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