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Website for April Pulley Sayre, Award-winning Children's Book Author
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By: April Sayre,
Raising my bowl of blueberries this morning to illustrator Steve Jenkins. Our book, Eat Like a Bear, which received three starred reviews, was named an ALA (American Library Association) Notable Book for 2014! It is a huge honor to be chosen for recognition by the ALA Notables Committee—especially in a year with such a great crop of books. By tradition, the list also includes winners from ALA award categories, too. Steve and I have three more projects in the works. Next up is Woodpecker Wham.
By: April Sayre,
See my interview with Kirkus Reviews.com Julie Danielson of Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast.
By: April Sayre,
Preschool teachers rock! This teacher’s joy lifts my spirits every time I watch the video. While signing Rah, Rah, Radishes and Go, Go, Grapes last year in Atlanta, I met this fabulous teacher who agreed to share how she gets the 4-year olds in her class to try foods. The video is on my youtube channel. Jeff and I have also posted some of our nature clips on our Sayre Nature Youtube Channel.
By: April Sayre,
“Sayre and Jenkins follow Vulture View (2007) with a similarly excellent study of brown bears that’s in equal parts poetic and enlightening.” -Kirkus, starred review.
ALA (American Library Association) Notable Book 2014
By: April Sayre,
Smiling. At its conference NSTA announced its Outstanding Science Trade Books and both Eat Like a Bear and Here Come the Humpbacks were on the list! Richie’s Picks reviewed Eat Like a Bear here. I blogged about common core and photography on INK this month. I was asked to be a picture book champion so during the last week of November my short blog about picture books will be on the www.picturebookmonth.com website. ”Here Comes the Humpbacks destined to be an early learner favorite” says Chicago Now. Hope they’re right. Are you folks enjoying this cool Fall weather? You’ll find me photographing leaves, leaves, leaves!
By: April Sayre,
I’m honored to be a Picture Book Champion this year. See the calendar, essays, and activities this robust group has planned for November, 2013: www.picturebookmonth.com
By: April Sayre,
All week long I will be trying to eat like a bear to celebrate, well of course, my new book with Steve Jenkins and Henry Holt Books for Young Readers: Eat Like a Bear! To follow my adventures, “Like” my facebook author page. Wait ’til I go for some moths, ants, and bison later this week. That should be interesting. Currently working on stems, berries, roots, and tubers.
SB&F (Science Books and Films) October issue gave Here Come the Humpbacks! a starred review and then a second star for being Editor’s Choice!
Event kits for this book are still available .
Explore and Download whale event kit here
Among my books, the most widely used one worldwide is ONE IS A SNAIL, TEN IS A CRAB. It’s been adapted for curricula from Australia to Canada. This book is classified as nonfiction although the text is nonfiction and the illustrations are actually fictional. (At least in my experience, crabs do not ride inner tubes.) It introduces a way of thinking that leads, apparently into algebra. It counts from 1-100. So, when I looked at the Common Core, I could see why this book has been embraced by the math community. Here are the standards that I could see immediately related to the book. A trained math teacher would likely find many more.
Yet there are ways math teachers can use lots of children’s books to complete Common Core.
- CCSS.Math.Content.K.OA.A.1 Represent addition and subtraction with objects, fingers, mental images, drawings1, sounds (e.g., claps), acting out situations, verbal explanations, expressions, or equations.
- CCSS.Math.Content.K.OA.A.2 Solve addition and subtraction word problems, and add and subtract within 10, e.g., by using objects or drawings to represent the problem.
- CCSS.Math.Content.K.OA.A.3 Decompose numbers less than or equal to 10 into pairs in more than one way, e.g., by using objects or drawings, and record each decomposition by a drawing or equation (e.g., 5 = 2 + 3 and 5 = 4 + 1).
CCSS.Math.Content.K.CC.A.1 Count to 100 by ones and by tens.
- CCSS.Math.Content.1.NBT.B.2a 10 can be thought of as a bundle of ten ones — called a “ten.”
- CCSS.Math.Content.1.NBT.B.2b The numbers from 11 to 19 are composed of a ten and one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, or nine ones.
- CCSS.Math.Content.1.NBT.B.2c The numbers 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90 refer to one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, or nine tens (and 0 ones).
CCSS.Math.Content.2.OA.A.1 Use addition and subtraction within 100 to solve one- and two-step word problems involving situations of adding to, taking from, putting together, taking apart, and comparing, with unknowns in all positions, e.g., by using drawings and equations with a symbol for the unknown number to represent the problem.1
Lesson Plan for One Is a Snail, Ten Is a Crab
Other activities related to One Is a Snail, Ten Is a Crab
One Is a Snail Worksheets
Studying seeds and plant life? Working on nutrition or ecology in preschool through second grade? I hope this will help. My newest book, Let’s Go Nuts! Seeds We Eat was released this week by my marvelous publisher, Beach Lane, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. It’s a chant but with lots of, should we say, chewy endmatter. Once I started working on this book even I was amazed by just how many foods we eat are made from seeds. Just check out the pantry. Corn. Wheat. Lentils. Almonds. Soy milk. Popcorn. Pumpkin seeds. I’m still eating some of the dried beans that made up the photos in the book. It was photographed at the South Bend Farmer’s Market, Bamber’s Superette, Saigon Market, and other local food spots, including Notre Dame University’s South Dining Hall!
It completes the trio of books that includes Rah, Rah, Radishes: a Vegetable Chant and Go, Go, Grapes: a Fruit Chant. You’ll find lots of activities related to those first books here on my site. Do let me know about what you creative educators do with edible seeds! Here are a few seed resources to get you started.
Here’s a photo of me working on the final spread for the book. I used an old galley from Go, Go, Grapes to measure how big I needed my seed picture to be. By the way, no seeds were wasted. After the photo I slid the seeds into a bowl then while I watched TV I sorted all those seeds back into jars. No joke. Did that many, many times after photo shoots. Nothing wasted. Some leftover seeds were used by the fabulous Unity Gardens folks.
Let’s Go Nuts! Seeds We Eat is a chant which introduces children to beans, nuts, grains, and spice seeds. Endmatter explains why seeds don’t grow inside our stomachs, why seeds are such great food, and how seeds fit into biology, ecology, and culture. This book completes the trio of books that includes Rah, Rah, Radishes: A Vegetable Chant and Go, Go, Grapes: a Fruit Chant.
Eat Like a Bear, my book illustrated by Steve Jenkins and published by Henry Holt, just received a starred review in Publisher’s Weekly. Kirkus reviews also gave it a starred review. I’m excited that folks “get” this book. I was so pleased with every word, illustration, design choice on this project. It was a great team effort. Tilt the cover and check out the shiny ants. Notice the designer’s great backmatter fonts and layout. See a few pages on Henry Holt’s website. Okay, so I’m a little stoked about it. Guess what else thrills me: Steve Jenkins has signed on to illustrate my next three books with Henry Holt! Need I say more? Yes. Another Steve Jenkins book, one which he wrote, The Animal Book, received a starred review in PW this week. Go, Steve!
Good review of Turtle, Turtle, Watch Out! and related books in and Ocean Alive Section of Family magazine and also on the website of reviewer Meribeth Shank. Hooray! Nice to be in good company.
Here are some resources to help readers and teachers use my new book, Let’s Go Nuts! Seeds We Eat (Release date August 27, 2013, Beach Lane Books an imprint of Simon & Schuster). Hope you find edible seeds a a chewy, fun topic as I did!
Related Children’s Books and Reference Books
Alphabetical Seed Guide for Let’s Go Nuts
Memory Jogger Photos
Everyone is invited to download a free Whale Migration Game for classrooms, libraries, bookstores, and other mammal loving locales. The event kit encourages readers (ages 5-10) to imagine both the perils and delights of being a baby humpback on its first migration through the waters of the Atlantic Ocean. Explore and Download whale event kit here
When the new edition of my book, Turtle, Turtle, Watch Out! was created, there was a lionfish on the top left corner of the cover. My reaction: WHAAAA? I’ve been snorkeling the reefs in the Caribbean for about 20 years and I knew that was not a native fish. After a little research, though, I found out more about the lionfish invasion of the reefs. And I found out this fish is indeed widespread now. I thought having this fish on the cover would be a great teaching point. Kudos to the illustrator, Annie Patterson, for putting it there in the first place.
It’s a great jumping off point for students researching this issue. I just watched the tv entrepreneur show, Shark Tank, where Dave Johnson and Gary Groomes of Traditional Fisheries talked about the lionfish invasion of Atlantic reefs. Teachers, I think you might be able to develop some terrific research/conservation projects related to this issue. Perfect for common core and research. There are many logistical aspects to accomplishing what these folks are trying to do. Eat the fish that is eating the reefs! They made a great case on the show for this solution.
Booklist Online’s newsletter has a lovely article by Anastasia Suen that has some terrific ocean poetry books and includes Here Come the Humpbacks! as a book connection. Hurray!
School Library Journal’s Myra Zarnowksi, Marc Aronson, and Mary Ann Cappiello serve up some common core nonfiction mentor texts in an article. Here Come the Humpbacks is included, hooray! This year it’s been productive using the book with kids to get them writing. Apparently a lot of what I do in presentations and books ties in with common core. Educators are cluing me in on how how it all dovetails. Feel free to contact me and share your wisdom. I could use links to anything you do with my books or see in my books that ties in well with common core. I would like to share general common core/nonfiction resources with educators I meet at conferences, school visits, and so on. This year I’m speaking a lot at STEM events. The more quality books/resources that reach our children’s minds, the better! As always, INK, .inkrethinkblogspot.com is a font of inspiration for nonfiction and the writing process. I’m not blogging on there this year but did so in previous years.
Have you accidentally (or on purpose) memorized parts of Let’s Go Nuts! Seeds We Eat? (Beach Lane, August, 2013)
Below are two photos with seeds arranged in the format of parts of the seed chant.
Try out your memory. “Read” these photos by identifying the seeds and saying the seed chant out loud to help you figure out the seeds that you find hard to recognize! You can click on the photo for a much larger version to examine.
Say the chant, identify the seeds.
For my book, Let’s Go Nuts: Seeds We Eat, release date August 27, 2013, Beach Lane Books
Books for Younger Readers
Aston, Dianna Hutts., and Sylvia Long. A Seed Is Sleepy. San Francisco: Chronicle, 2007. Print.
DePaola, Tomie. The Popcorn Book. New York: Holiday House, 1978. Print.
Dodge, Abigail Johnson. Around the World Cookbook. New York: Dk, 2008. Print.
Heller, Ruth. The Reason for a Flower. New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1983.
Jordan, Helene J., and Loretta Krupinski. How a Seed Grows. New York: HarperCollins, 1992. Print.
Krauss, Ruth, and Crockett Johnson. The Carrot Seed;. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1945. Print.
Macken, JoAnn Early, and Pamela Paparone. Flip, Float, Fly: Seeds on the Move. New York: Holiday House, 2008.
Schaefer, Lola M., and Lindsay Barrett George. Pick, Pull, Snap!: Where Once a Flower Bloomed. New York: Greenwillow, 2003. Print.
Books Used For Reference (Highly Recommended for Older Readers)
Ashworth, Suzanne, Kent Whealy, and Arllys Adelmann. Seed to Seed: Seed Saving and Growing Techniques for Vegetable Gardeners. White River Junction, VT: Chelsea Green, 2002.
Capon, Brian. Botany for Gardeners: An Introduction and Guide. Portland, Or.: Timber Press, 1990. E-book.
Dragonwagon, Crescent. BEAN BY BEAN: More Than 175 Recipes for Fresh Beans, Dried Beans, Cool Beans, Hot Beans, Savory Beans, Even Sweet Beans!: Workman Pub, 2012. Print.
McGee, Harold. On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen. New York: Scribner, 2004. Print.
It’s been such a busy year that I’m only now getting around to reporting on some of the terrific places I’ve visited. In February I was greeted by giant sea turtles at Essex Elementary in VT, where I met a kindred spirit, librarian Carol Scrimgeour. We could have talked together for days and days! I also got to meet Anne Ferguson, originator of the trademarked StoryWalk concept. Somebody give this woman a grant! She’s already doing so much on a thrifty New England budget of birthday money and small donations but seriously, she’s getting families outdoors all over the state. They are walking, reading together, and enjoying the outdoors. She lends the trails to communities. Here she’s made one out of Rah, Rah, Radishes. She’s even written to Michelle Obama to put one such trail in the White House Vegetable Garden. Wouldn’t that be the coolest thing ever?
I loved how Carol helped the young kids understand how I was getting to their school!
Full sized three dimensional turtles, made of paper, stuffed for roundness, and signed by all the kids, led me to the library. I only wish I could have fit a turtle in my bag to take home!
Carol had a special connection with sea turtles and helped kids think about them through her display and a special fossilized turtle bone!
Here I am (on left) with Anne Ferguson of StoryWalk and extraordinary librarian Carol Scrimgeour. We are holding a story trail made from Rah, Rah, Radishes.
This school, with it wonderful staff and joyful, inquisitive kids, thrilled me, dare I say, to my bones! No, this is not my bone. It’s a turtle bone, folks!
My new book Touch a Butterfly: Wildlife Gardening With Kids is featured on the National Wildlife Federation website. They are some of the best educators in the field of wildlife gardening and have been spreading the message for years. So it’s an honor to be on their blog.
Let’s Go Nuts! Seeds We Eat, which is being released in August by Beach Lane is reviewed in the renowned journal Kirkus. At the risk of overusing exclamation points, I say: Hooray!
It’s here! April 23rd release. If you like what you hear in my talks or read in my children’s books, this is the next step. Touch a Butterfly: Wildlife Gardening With Kids is perhaps my most personal book with a traditional publisher. Yes, it’s geared to parents and families, but I think some of my student fans, 5th grade and up, would like sections of it because in it I share not just wildlife gardening and family stories, but also how to approach/study wildlife at close range. It’s a heartfelt sharing of so much of what Jeff and I have learned in wildlife gardening/wildlife observation over the years. Reviewers seem to be getting the joy and spirit of the book so…whew! I’m so glad. And many families and educators shared photos of their kids enjoying nature and totally uplifted the project, making it a community effort. Roost Books has a free pdf of a chapter for free download here. Michelle Cusolito has a related blog post/author interview on her site Polliwog On Safari.
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In my namesake month, I’m mostly on the road doing school visits in spots like the one pictured here. The educators and children are so energizing! Thanks for celebrating my birthday with me, too.