Choosing High Quality Children's Literature/Children's Book Authors/Grades K-2 Authors

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Ezra Jack Keats[edit]

by Sarah Eady

About the Author

Ezra Jack Keats was born Jacob Ezra Katz on March 11, 1916. He was the youngest child of Polish immigrants and did not change his name until after WWII (1948) when he found it difficult to get a job due to the anti-Semitic feelings. His older brother William had changed his name three years previously.
Ezra Jack Keats' first job was in a comic strip studio where he inked in the background to clean up the pictures. He was then drafted, and after returning home from war, went abroad to France to study art. Later, he illustrated book jackets including Silas Marner before publishing his first book, The Snowy Day. He wrote and illustrated The Snowy Day after reminiscing a day of snowball fights with his friends. The character Peter came from photographs he had in his files. While Ezra had needed to travel down South to illustrate books for others, his books were set in the inner city which he was very familiar with, having grown up in Manhattan. Ezra called Jack as a child, never married or had children, but once told a young girl during an interview, "The characters in my books are my children."
Ezra died of a heart attack May 6, 1983, at New York Hospital.
Ezra Jack Keats Award [1]
A Biography of Ezra Jack Keats [2]

Genres

Keats wrote mostly realistic fiction. Among these are: The Snowy Day, Apt. 3, Pet Show and Maggie and the Pirate. Most are based on an event Ezra recalled from his childhood. He also wrote two wordless books. One of the two, Skates, was very popular in Japan and is often attributed with instigating a fad in rollerskating there. He also wrote one legend based on an African American ballad. It is John Henry an American Legend.

Types of Characters

Ezra wrote mainly using minority characters. Almost all of his characters are children. Mostly, he placed them in the familiar settings of his childhood doing things that children of all races do. He photographed kids and then drew sketches before painting.

Illustration Styles

Not all of Ezra's books have the same style of artwork. A Snowy Day, a Caldecott Medal book, used collage with pieces of wallpaper cut out to make Peter's pajamas and blanket. The snowflakes were stamped on by cutting out erasers to look like snowflakes. He did this because no two snowflakes look alike. Some other books are watercolor (Maggie and the Pirate), acrylic (Apt. 3), acrylic with collage (Goggles!). Goggles also featured imitations of the drawings he did on his mother's kitchen table with his brother's homework ink. His mother was proud of them and refused to have her son scrub them off as his father suggested. She simply covered the table with the Sabbath cloth and showed off the drawings to her friends when they came over for tea. Ezra spent a couple of years in Paris studying art and painting in the streets. He sold several paintings of the scenery there during a time when many young artists were struggling to make ends meet. He was a very talented artist who stumbled onto a children's literature profession.
Will Ezra Keats have a U.S. postage stamp?[3]

Writing Style When Ezra wrote a picture book, he started with the pictures and added the words later. He often wrote with a narrator-like style intermixing with first person. The narrator tells the story background and then the characters speak directly.

Books by Ezra Jack Keats

A Snowy Day
A Snowy Day is probably the most famous of his books. It is credited with being the first picture book to feature a minority protagonist without being stereotyped. It features Peter, a young black boy, going out into a snowy day and having fun. It is written for young children and is a great winter read. Any child living in locations where snow is prevalent can relate, and any child living where it doesn't will love the possibilities. While Keats is sometimes criticized for stereotyping Peter's mother, others say that she isn't. Her body type is similar to that of Keats' mother and her clothing style fits with the time period. She is such a minor character, that judging her by her personality or statements is impossible.
School Library Journal Review [4]
Preschool Education Review [5]
Peter's Chair
In this story about a new big brother, Peter sees his father taking all of his old things and painting them pink for the baby! Peter comes to realize that even though the chair is his, he can't fit in it anymore. He decides to share with the baby after spending the day being selfish. This is a story for every soon to be big brother or big sister and every parent expecting a second or third child. The collage on paint style is very typical of Ezra Jack Keats and the wallpaper samples that were selected are still viable today. Also featured in this book are Willie, Peter's mom and Peter's dad. It is a well-written book for young readers without racial stereotypes or an imposition of values. The reader is drawn into Peter's turmoil and left to decide for himself or herself whether Peter's parents are doing the right thing or not. When Peter decides that they are, the reader is drawn to feel relief that his day will end pleasantly.
Regards to the Man in the Moon
With just two references to Voyager III and an illustration of the twin towers, which could confuse young readers, this is a story of children using their imaginations to have fun. It is worth a minute of explanation. Louie (from Louie and Louie's Search) is a Hispanic character who leads the pack in opening their minds to new worlds. The illustrations are a great combination of collage, acrylic ink, and handmade marbled paper. The scenes in outer space look exactly as a child imagines it would be like, and leaves the reader feeling as if he could float right on out with the characters.
Goggles!
For the most part, the Illustrations in this book are acrylic. If you watch the orange fence in the background, there are copies of the drawings Jack Kats drew on his mother's dining room table with his brother's school ink. The story of Goggles! is set outside in the city. As the boys play near some piles of old junk, Peter (same character from A Snowy Day), finds some motorcycle goggles. A chase ensues as the big kids try to take the goggles, but Peter, Archie and Willie (the dog from Whistle for Willie) outsmart the big kids and return to Archie's front porch where they are safe. The plot is appropriate for the setting and the characters are believable. It's a story of children at play in a tough neighborhood.
John Henry An American Legend
John Henry is the story of a man who decides to prove that man is better than machine. With the wording of this legend, based on an African American ballad, the reader will feel the thrill of trying to beat the machine and will feel sadness when John Henry's life ends. Throughout the story the reader will become involved in John's life and feel his strength. In this version of John Henry there are wonderful illustrations, Keats' style will make you feel the characters are actually moving. The coloring and characters are drawn in a realistic style. When reading this legend, you will feel as though you are part of the era, unsure if man or machine will triumph.
Maggie and the Pirate
Keats leaves his element of inner city life and sets this story near a swamp. Maggie's cricket is stolen while she runs an errand for her mother. As she and her friends work to track down the thief, they are separated. Maggie discovers that the new kid stole her cricket cage because he is jealous that her father loves her enough to make something just for her, while his father spends no time with him at all. This book is about forgiveness, jealousy and friendship. Visit the kids' corner in the author's official website to enjoy this book online. [6]
Skates!
In this well done picture book featuring dogs who find roller skates, Keats included some onomatopoeia and a few words, but the story can be read without the words. Several dogs find some old skates in a trash can and decide to try them out. They begin a wild adventure of falls, twists, turns and thrill. As the dogs definitely decide to give up learning to skate, they find they don't have time to take the skates off before saving the kitten. They learn that they shouldn't give up. So, the saying if at first you don't succeed, try, try again is played out in this book.

Classroom Activities

This lesson is intended for second grade and will teach students to identify words from texts that appeal to the senses. (Ohio State Standard, Reading Applications: Literary Text)
Read Apt. 3 by Ezra Jack Keats aloud to the class, pausing for comprehension questions along the way. Examples: Page 2 How could the music be different each time Sam hears it? Students should make references to the player's mood changing like the rain making him feel sad and lonely. A warm spring day might make the player feel happy and alive. Page 12 Why are Sam and his little brother going door to door, down the hallway? Students should remember that Sam is trying to find the person playing the harmonica music.
Tell the students that this book contained some really good describing words and that they are going to do a hunt to find them. Explain that the ones you want them to look for are words that you use your senses for. Review that the five senses are seeing, hearing, tasting, touching, and smelling. List a few examples of each for the students. Tell them that a good word that describes seeing would be bright or dark. Ask the students to think of a few words that they would use to describe touching. Students should list words such as cold, sharp, soft, or rough. Go through the other senses until the students are able to correctly list words that appeal to the senses.
Explain to the students that you would like them to hunt down ten or more of these words from the story and sort them onto a provided chart by category. You should provide a chart with each of the five senses at the top, and lines dividing the senses.
Provide a copy of the text for each student or project it onto the board using an Elmo™. Assist the students in locating two or three examples from the text and charting them correctly before turning them loose with a partner or a small group. For below-level or English Language Learners read through the story again slowly allowing them to make note of the words as you read.
Students receive 1 point for each word (up to 10) that appeals to the senses. Students receive 1 point each for sorting the words correctly. Ten correct words each sorted correctly would be scored as 20/20. Ten words, nine sorted correctly would be scored as 19/20. Students are expected to score a minimum of 16/20 to show a mastery.
For a follow-up lesson, have students use words that appeal to their sense of sight by describing the illustrations in Apt. 3. Either add them to the chart or make a list together on the board. To tie this in with a writing lesson, have the students keep the chart in a writing folder and use some of these words or new words that they add to the chart as they write in their journals.
link to lessons from the University of North Carolina students [7]

References

Engel,Dean and Freedman, Florence B.(1995). Ezra Jack Keats a Biography with Illustrations, Silver Moon Press.
Alderson, Brian. (1994). Ezra Jack Keats Artist and Picture-Book Maker, Pelican Publishing Company.
Tunnell, Michael O. and Jacobb, James S. (2008). Children's Literature, Briefly (4th edition), Pearson Education Inc.
Russell, David L. (2009). Literature for Children: A Short Introduction (6th edition), Pearson Education Inc.

Mo Willems[edit]

by Devon Beattie


Biography


Mo Willems was born on February 11, 1968. Being raised in New Orleans, Willems graduated from the Isadore Newman School. After graduation, Willems left New Orleans to attend New York University's Tish School of the Arts. As soon as graduating, Willems was off again. This time he left New York to travel the world, and his career began. Willems recorded his travels with a daily cartoon. These cartoons would much later (May of 2006) turn into a book, You Can Never Find a Rickshaw When It Monsoons: The World On One Cartoon a Day.[8]After returning home to Brooklyn New York, Willems later married Cheryl Lynn Camp (1997). The couple currently resides with their family in Northampton Massachusetts.


Willems, upon returning to New York in 1993, landed his first big and highly successful job. Willems became a writer/animator on the popular hit children's program; "Sesame Street". While writing for the show (1993-2003), Willems grabbed six Emmy Awards! After putting down the "Sesame Street" writing pen, Willems created two of his own series: The Off Beats and Sheep in the Big City.


Following his days in the television world, Willems has become even more successful and famous. He is a well known author in children's literature. His work is loved by children and adults everywhere. He has received many awards: Caldecott Honor(s) (2004, 2005, and 2008), as well as, the Theodor Seuss Geisel Award (2008 and 2009). Currently Willems continues writing and illustrating fabulous pieces of children's literature from his Brooklyn New York studio. His latest work,a new series, "Cat the Cat". According to Willems: "My best book is my next one. I am always hoping to make my next book my best one". (For more of Willems quotes visit Good Reads: Mo Willems' Quotes. [9])


To learn more about Mo Willems, click to see an interview with the man himself: [10]


Genre of Literature


Willems is an extraordinary author of fiction in children's literature. He uses modern fantasy to grab the young audiences attention. He has created a unique style, giving animals human characteristics. Willems uses these animal characters while writing about problems/situations kids today can relate to. Some of his most famous book characters are: Pigeon, Elephant and Piggie, Mole Rat, and Trixie.


Illustration Style


Willems is very well known for his illustrations. He uses a fun and inviting cartoon style: letting his pictures accent his writing skills. Willems uses his "doodles" to inspire his writing. He has made many loved books using simple lines with little distracting background illustrations, allowing the reader to focus on the important ideas.


Book Series
Pigeon:


Willems created this fantasy series to connect with his young audience. The pigeon (the main character) takes on human characteristics to relate to problems children face in real life. The series cartoon illustrations are clean and appealing to his young readers. Willems most famous series is exciting and worth reading!


  1. Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! In his first pigeon book Willems uses this persistent little bird to talk to the reader. The bus driver needs to leave the bus for a moment and gives the readers strict instructions, "Don't let the pigeon drive the bus!" While the driver is gone the ornery pigeon tries to convince the readers it is o.k. to let him drive the bus. He wants to do it, and is very convincing! See what School library has to share about the book:[11].
  2. Don't Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late! Here we find the pigeon back at it again. Pigeon is trying to fool the reader into believing it is o.k. for him to stay up late. Willems uses the pushy bird to connect to the readers desires to stay up late themselves. As the reader becomes the one in charge the pigeon tries all the tricks trying to stay up late. For more information on this book go to Amazon[12].
  3. The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog! Willems uses this tale to introduce another character. We meet an adorable little duckling who proves to be a challenge for the pigeon. Willems reaches out to the readers "me" attitude. He lets us look at the selfish side of the pigeon, making his character more believable. The pigeon becomes annoyed with his new bird friend, as the duckling tries to trick him into sharing a hot dog. Read more about The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog at Book List book reviews: [13].
  4. The Pigeon Has Feelings, Too! In the fourth book of Willems pigeon series, he uses the character to demonstrate a wide range of emotions. This book is only a "smidgen" of a pigeon: Willems used a board book style gearing towards infant to preschool range. The book's theme identifies both different emotions, and possible causes of different feelings. Further information is available at Committee for Children [14].
  5. The Pigeon Loves Things That Go! Another board book, Willems uses a favorite character to explore modes of transportation. The pigeon explores a bus, train, and airplane. Willems threw in his humor ending with a surprise return of the "hot dog"! Read more about both The Pigeon Has Feelings and The Pigeon Loves Things That Go! at Amazon book reviews [15].
  6. The Pigeon Wants a Puppy! Willems makes this theme enjoyable for both child and parent. Pigeon insists he is ready to have a pet; he wants a puppy! He wants a puppy NOW. Pigeon pleads for a puppy with the promise he will take good care of his pet all by himself. Pigeon is ready for a big responsibility; or is he? Willems uses pigeons character to discuss the difficult tasks of pet responsibilities. To read more about pigeon and his puppy visit the DC Public Library Book Review(s) [16].


Elephant and Piggie:


In Willems second series, he stays true to his young audience. Each simple story is for early readers, and portrays Willems humor. He uses both characters, Elephant and Piggie, to connect to his young readers. The series has 11 books: Today I will Fly!, My Friend is Sad, There is Bird on Your Head!, I Am Invited to a Party!, I Will Surprise my Friend!, I Love My New Toy!, Are You Ready to Play Outside?, Watch Me Throw the Ball!, Pigs Make Me Sneeze!, Elephants Cannot Dance!, and I Am Going! All books in the series use cartooning and bold colors to appeal to children.


Other Popular Books


  1. The Naked Mole Rat: Willems takes a new look at an old theme: feeling different. He uses the mole character to connect to young children and the difficult feelings of being different. The mole is ashamed of liking to wear clothes. He is the only mole in his community who enjoys getting dressed. Willems sticks with his humorous writing style and simple cartoon illustrations. If you would like learn more about this lovable mole, visit Amazon [17].
  2. Knuffle Bunny: A Cautious Tale: Willems uses a different writing and illustration style in this book. Trixie, a human character, and her father take a day outing to the local laundromat. The day seems to be going well until Trixie's favorite stuffed bunny, Knuffle Bunny, goes missing! This creates pure chaos for both Trixie and dad. The illustrations are unique. Willems used black and white photos for the backdrop to his brightly cartooned characters. This gives the reader the ability to focus on the characters and their actions. If you would like to read more go to Amazon [18].
  3. Knuffle Bunny Too: A Case of Mistaken Identity: Trixie and Knuffle Bunny are back and a little older. Trixie is off to school were Knuffle Bunny gets mixed up. Now Trixie is stuck with something new, and she is not happy about it. Willems uses the same humorous writing and unique illustrations. Black and white photos are the backdrop to our colorful cartoon characters. If you would like to read and see parent pointers visit the article on Common Sense Media [19].


Visit Mo Willems page to see his complete book lists! [20]


Using Response Journals and Willems to "Make Connections" In the Classroom


There are many ways to use Mo Willems' books while teaching young students. In my kindergarten classroom I introduce his books while teaching the helpful reading strategy: "making connections". We start the week by looking at Willems first book: Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus. While reading the story aloud, we discuss Willem's writing style as an author. We talk about his ability to draw the audience into the book. The bus driver is asking us, the reader, to watch the bus. The pigeon tries to convince us to let him drive; but he really really wants to! After we finish reading the story, we start talking about pigeons feelings, everyone always telling him "NO". I then explain we are going to learn a new reading strategy: a "text to self" connection (Kindergarten Ohio Reading Process: Strategies and Comprehension Standard: #6 Compare information in texts using prior knowledge and experience). We are going to make a connection with our character: pigeon. That means we are going to think of a time when we felt the same way as he did, sometime when everybody told us "NO". At this point students write in their response journal. They write about a time when they really wanted to do something and everyone told them "NO". What did they want to do and how did they feel when everyone told them no? I then look at the journals and respond to each student. (Kindergarten Ohio Writing Process Standard #1: Generate writing ideas through discussions with others. #2: Choose a topic for writing. #3: Determine an audience.)


Each day we would look at one of Willems books. All of his books are easy for kids to make a "text to self" connection. I find that having students write in a response journal gives each of them a chance to tell their own story. They even get to hear a personal response from the teacher: helping classroom rapport.


Each day the student understanding would be assessed by reading response journals. The teacher can determine understanding connections as well as writing on topic for the generated audience (YOU) through each student's writing.


References
All links listed above were used in creating this article on Mo Willems. Wikipedia was also used in creating the biography [21].

Jan Brett[edit]

by Tara Williams
About the Author[22]

Jan Brett was born December 1, 1949 in Hingham, Massachusetts. Her father George was a sales engineer. She knew from a very early age that she wanted to be a picture book illustrator. She spent may hours reading and drawing as a child. Her mother, Jean, inspired her creativity and was a source of encouragement. After graduating High School, Jan went to Colby Jounior College. After a year, she went to study at the Boston Museum School of Fine Arts. Jan married Daniel Bowler on February 27, 1970. The two divorced nine years later but did have one daughter together named Lia.

In 1978, Jan began her career as an illustrator with Woodland Crossings, a book written by Stephen Krensky. She illustrated that book under the name Jan Brett Bowler. She has illustrated many picture books for Eve Bunting as well. Traveling is a definite inspiration to Jan's work. She visits many countries, where she researches the architecture and costumes that appear in her work. In 1981, Jan created her first entirely self-generated work, Fritz and the Beautiful Horses. On August 18, 19890, Jan married Joseph Hearn, a member of the Boston Symphony. She has a pet hedgehog named Buffy.


Illustration Styles

Jan Brett is a best-selling American author/illustrator for children's books. Her books are known to be colorful, detailed depictions of a wide variety of animals and human cultures. She often uses illustrated borders to help readers predict what will happen later in the story. Her editor originally discouraged her from using borders, but later realized how they served a purpose beyond just being decorative. Her most well known titles include The Hat, The Mitten, The Three Snow Bears and Gingerbread Baby.


:Books by Jan Brett

The Hat

This children's book takes you through a winter wonderland. Hedgie the Hedgehog gets his nose stuck on a sock that has fallen off a clothesline. The use of the panels shows the reader the disappearing clothes from the line as Hedgie shows other animals along the way his new hat.

The Mitten

This children's book begins with a young boy named Nicki wanting his grandma to make him some white mittens. She thinks he will lose them. When he does lose one in the snow, a few woodland creatures make use of it. When Nicki finds it its no quite the same. Side panels are also used in this book that reveal pieces of what is to come.

The Three Snow Bears

This children's book is a nice twist on Goldilocks and the Three Bears using side panels to enhance the reader again. This story follows an Inuit girl(Goldilocks)through the Artic. Aloo-ki comes upon three polar bears igloo and tries a there things out until she finds things that are just right.

Gingerbread Baby

Mattie doesn't wait exactly eight minutes to check on the gingerbread. When he opens the oven early the gingerbread baby runs out. No one seems able to catch him as he runs all over the place. Finally, Mattie outsmarts the Gingerbread Baby who happily goes into his gingerbread house Mattie made for him.

Annie and the Wild Animals

This children's book begins with Annie looking for her cat. She puts corn cakes out on the edge of the woods for her. Each morning she wakes to find a different animal and the corn cakes gone. Annie runs out of corn cakes and still isn't happy with the other untamable animals. Taffy the cat finally comes home with three baby kittens.

The Umbrella

This children's book is set in a rainforest.A young boy named Carlos walks into the rainforest with his umbrella to look for animals. When he leaves his umbrella at the bottom of a fig tree that he climbs up, animals begin to congregate in it.

Classroom Activities
References

[23] [24]

Denise Fleming[edit]

By: Becky Randolph

About the Author

Author's Homepage [25]

    Denise Fleming was born in Toledo, Ohio on January 30, 1950.  Denise was an only child for five years then came her sister Rochelle.  Her father Frank was a furniture maker and her mother Inez was always active in the local theater.  Denise’s parents always encourage her love to create things.  Fleming participated in art classes starting in third grade. While growing up she had lots of kids to play with in the neighborhood. They all enjoyed playing and sleeping outdoors, riding their bikes, using cardboard boxes to create towns and acting out stories together. She received good grades in school but often teachers complained that she was messy and too talkative. She attended Kendall School of Art and Design in Michigan.  Fleming continues to live in Toledo with her husband David and daughter Indigo and their family dog, as well as, several cats.  She has a passion for nature, the outdoors and animals, which shows in all of her books.  Some of her favorite hobbies are planting gardens for wildlife and building things with her husband.  Her favorite foods are S’mores, tomatoes with basil, corn on the cob and lemonade.  

Genres Most all of Flemings books are realistic fiction. Her inspiration is often based on her passion for the outdoors. Several of her books are about nature. She often watches birds, insects and other creatures experience life and then writes about them.

Types of Characters Fleming writes most of her books around characters that are animals or insects and she places them usually in a nature type setting. She enjoys telling the story of the creatures she spends hours viewing.

Illustrations Style Art has always been Fleming’s passion. Currently, she creates all of her illustrations using a paper making method, which she calls pulp painting. She admits it is often time consuming and a lot of work but it is almost like a therapy for her. She enjoys it so much that she would not trade it for the world. The method requires a mixture of water and brightly-colored but small cotton fibers. She even uses common items like coffee grounds, pine needles or dried leaves to create different textures.

Books by Denise Fleming

In the Tall, Tall Grass A simple tale of nature told from a caterpillar’s point of view. Fleming uses collage like illustrations to create childlike drawings. The rhyming text will keep the youngest readers wanting to read this story over and over again. [26]


      In the Small, Small Pond

Fleming again uses her signature pulp painting to create vibrant colored pages that take the reader through the seasons of life in a freshwater pond. [27]


Barnyard Banter

Enjoy life on the farm in this easy reader. Fleming uses rhyming words to show animals in their natural settings. Kids will love imitating the animal’s sounds throughout the story. Fleming uses the full page to her advantage to create bold colors along with black typeface to move across the page. Readers will love following the white goose through the pages and sometimes wondering where it is. [28]


Where Once There Was a Wood A simple ecology lesson for young readers. This book shows a wooded area that was once thriving with living creatures. Along came a housing development that changes how these creatures are used to living. Fleming uses earth tones with amazing color and textures to show the contrast between the wooded area and the housing development. A great way to introduce students to the importance of saving areas for animals to live their lives.[29]


Buster Buster is happily living his life with owner Brown Shoes. He has all the things he loves: his own bowl, a big back yard and Brown Shoes always takes him to the park. However, one day Brown Shoes brings home Betty, a new cat. Buster is terrified of cats and runs away. On his adventure he gets lost and can not find his way back home. You will have to read this story to find out who saves the day. Fleming uses her pulp painting to create realistic personalities for the characters. This book is also a good introduction to chapter books for young readers. [30]


Buster and the Cowboy Camp

This story is the sequel to Buster. Brown Shoes is going away for the weekend so he sends his dog Buster to Cowboy Camp. Experiencing a bit of separation anxiety Buster is excited to find that cowboy camp is actually enjoyable. Fleming adds a touch of humor with her western touch. Her famous pulp painting is at its best, showing how Buster is safe and sound until his arrival back home. [31]


Activity for In a Small, Small Pond

Objective: Students will recognize that plants and animals are living things that grow, reproduce, and need food, air and water to live. Students will identify characters and setting.


Plan: First picture walk with students then go back and read the story to them. Have several pictures available for students to color and cut out. (tadpoles, geese, dragonflies, turtles, frogs, minnows, water bugs, fish, ducks, raccoons, beavers, etc.) Allow time for students to create a mural of a pond habitat.

Follow Up: After the mural is created have the students go back and label and even write descriptions of their animals on index cards or sentence strips.

Eric Carle[edit]

By: Brittney Smith

About the Author Eric Carle was born in Syracuse, New York, in the year 1929. He later on graduated from the prestigious art school, the Akademie der bildenden Künste. He then moved back to New York and became an art director of an advertising agency thanks to Bill Martin Jr. He asked Carle to illustrate one of his books. The creations of Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle became Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you see? This book was a big success for younger children. Carle's illustrating are a collage technique, using hand-painted papers, which he cuts and layers to form bright and cheerful images (http://www.eric-carle.com/bio.html). He has an understanding of children and he has a understanding for what they want to learn. Most of his books talk about nature. All of his books each have a little message to teach children about the little things in life. Eric is known for his popular book, The Very Hungry Caterpillar that has sold 30 million copies. This popular book has been translated into 45 different languages. This book was published in 1969.Carle has two grown children, which are a son and a daughter. He spends lots of time with his wife at their home in Florida and also in the hills of North Carolina.


Eric Carle Website- [[32]]


Types of Characters The types of characters that Eric Carle has in his books are all different type of nature insects, for example, The Very Quiet Cricket, The Very Lonely Firefly, etc.

The Very Quiet Cricket For this very quiet cricket he walks along trying to make friends and talk to different insects. One day he finally finds another cricket and they are able to make a beautiful sound together. This book is for younger children that love his amazing illustrations. This book teaches younger children that it is okay to go through life and be quiet, but sooner or later you will find that someone to make that special noise with.

The Very Lonely Firefly This young children's book was about a firefly that was trying to get through life finding other firefly. Finally, one night after many distractions he found other firefly. My favorite part of this young children's book is the end when the firefly gets to the rest of his friends. Eric Carle makes all the fireflies light up like real firefly's would. Children love that atmosphere of interaction with the book.

The Very Clumsy Click Beetle This children's book was about a young clumsy bettle trying to learn how to flip over and land on his feet. He tried so hard but he didn't know how to do it. Finally after he practiced over and over again he learned to flip over on his feet. This book teaches children not to give up on something that they want. If you work hard at something, you will achieve the goal.

The Very Busy Spider A very busy spider was on a farm trying to build her spider web. All the animals wanted the spider to stop building the web and go with them. But she didn't talk to the animals and kept on building the web. Finally it was done and the spider was very tired and went to bed. This children's book was interesting because you could feel the pictures, the pictures were 3-D in the book.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar This book is Eric Carle's most popular book. It is about a caterpillar that goes along and eats many different things during the week. Then the caterpillar doesn't feel good and goes into a cocoon and turns into a very beautiful butterfly! This book is my favorite children's book.

The Grouchy Ladybug The Grouchy Ladybug was about a ladybug that didn't say "Thank you" or "Please", it wouldn't share, and thought that it was bigger and better than everyone else. The ladybug was always ready to start a fight instead of being polite. This book gets the children to explore different aspects of life and understand that it is not nice to be grouchy and make sure you always say "please" and "thank you".


Professional Review on Eric Carle- [33]

Classroom Activity For my classroom activity we are going to identify and discuss the sequence of events in informational text. The standard that I am using is: Reading Applications: Informational, Technical and Persuasive Text and the grade this activity is for is Kindergarten. What I am going to do with my children is pick a book by Eric Carle, The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I am going to get some pictures printed out of the book and the children and I are going to talk about the events that have happened in the book and put them in order. The children and I will be doing this activity in small group so that they understand what it means to identify and discuss the sequence of events in the text. The way that I will assess the children is I will be working one on one with them and I will know if they understand what we are discussing.