The Music of Life: Bartolomeo Cristofori & the Invention of the Piano

In The Music of Life: Bartolomeo Cristofori & the Invention of the Piano,  award-winning biographer Elizabeth Rusch and two-time Caldecott Honor–recipient Marjorie Priceman team up to tell the inspiring story of the invention of the world’s most popular instrument. Bartolomeo Cristofori coaxes just the right sounds from the musical instruments he makes. Some of his keyboards…

Fizzopolis #3: Snoodles! bubbles over with belly burps-and belly laughs

“Carman’s wacky words and Sheesley’s loony artwork go together like soda pop and belches!” (Jim Benton, New York Times bestselling author of the Franny K. Stein and Dear Dumb Diary series) Bestselling author Patrick Carman and Emmy Award-winning illustrator Brian Sheesley will have fans of Big Nate and Timmy Failure bubbling over with laughter in…

The Best Illustrated Childrens Books

I have always loved picture books. Part of me realizes that I always will. Throughout the ages, children have been introduced to reading by means of texts bearing pictures as well as words, but it is only in recent years that critical distinctions have been drawn between books where the function of such pictures is…

Understanding Literature and the Child Reader

Anyone who writes down to children is simply wasting his time. You have to write up, not down. . . . Some writers for children deliberately avoid using words they think a child doesn’t know. This emasculates the prose and . . . bores the reader. . . . Children love words that give them…

A Magical Tale From Start To Finish!

“Toren has been through a LOT. With a brother in charge who cares little for the family, she is forced to grow up fast. Toren’s strength is evident from the beginning; her little bits of struggling and defiance are really HUGE leaps of inappropriate behavior where she comes from.” In Toren the Teller’s Tale by…

AXS CEO Troy McClain Featured at Special Needs Conference

Idaho Partnerships Conference on Human Services has a great featured speaker this fall: Troy McClain is the CEO of AXS , a full-service marketing, communications and business management firm focused on growing people and businesses to great heights. Their website says: Our annual conference is an opportunity to bring professionals, self-advocates and family members together…

Julia Vanishes Skillfully Blends Steampunk, Fantasy, Adventure and Magic

“Egan’s debut novel sparkles with storytelling that skillfully blends elements of steampunk, fantasy, adventure, and magic…A beautifully rendered world and an exquisite sense of timing ensure a page-turning experience.” – Publishers Weekly Julia has the unusual ability to be . . . unseen. Not invisible, exactly. Just beyond most people’s senses. It’s a dangerous trait in…

What Mastery-Based Learning Would Look Like in Idaho

As we discuss children’s literature, it is important to examine connections between learning with and through the written word and the policies that determine what goes on in classrooms. Superintendent of Public Instruction Sherri Ybarra  is working to help lawmakers “move from the notion or the concept of mastery-based education to the actual concrete view…

Winners…and Another Contest! — Writing for Kids (While Raising Them)

I got zapped with the flu two weeks ago. Really walloped me, like being endlessly pummeled with pillows at a sleepover party. Just when I thought I was getting better—PHHHHHHUMPT! Down I went. Cold compresses, hot tea, lukewarm toast. Sleepless nights, endless days. What a funk! Now I’m happy to be back in the land […]…