Welcome back Toni Buzzeo and thank you for stopping by Kid Lit Frenzy as part of your blog tour.
Some thoughts from Toni: I love to write, especially children’s books, but I also love to teach. Over the years, I’ve taught writing to college, high school, and elementary school students as a college and high school English teacher and as an elementary school librarian, because no matter what age we are, we have something to say about things that are important to us!
My newest book, My Bibi Always Remembers, centers on two things that are so very important to me—elephants and family. I’ve been lucky enough to visit Kenya’s Amboseli National Park, famous for its African elephants, on two different trips.
And if I could, I’d return every year to see the beautiful elephant families in their natural habitat. I’ve drawn on my memories of those travel experiences and combined them with personal memories in my young life with my Grandma Mae.
I thought about our long walks together, about her devotion to me and my needs, about the love I felt for her at every turn—love that she reciprocated.
If I were back in the classroom or library and sharing My Bibi Always Remembers with students, I would follow a read-aloud with a writing activity. Each time Tembo wanders away from her family (she does that three times in the story),
she counts on one of the grownups in her family to rescue her and return her to the group. And, of course, they do. In order to write about those three events, I had to put myself in Tembo’s place, trying to imagine what I was doing that caused me to get lost, where I might be when I got lost, how I would feel when I was lost, and the details of my surroundings. I’d begin, then, by discussing each of these aspects of Tembo’s experience.
Then, I would challenge students to think of a time when they got lost or in some other way needed help from an adult in their family. Begin by asking them to think about the details of getting lost or into trouble that required help. Where were they? What did the place look like (include specific details of the environment)? What were they doing? How did they feel?
I would then invite them to write about the experience, answering the questions above, and ending by telling who in their family found or assisted them and how they felt about that.
Not only will this writing activity work well in the classroom or library, it’s a lovely topic for family writing too!
MY BIBI ALWAYS REMEMBERS
By Toni Buzzeo, Illustrated by Mike Wohnoutka
Disney Publishing Worldwide
ISBN: 978-1-4231-8385-3; Ages 3 – 5 Yrs; $16.99
On-Sale: September 2, 2014
About the Author/Illustrator:
Toni Buzzeo (www.tonibuzzeo.com) is a new grandmother as well as children's book author, reviewer, and retired school library media specialist. Her most recent books include Just Like My Papa, and Stay Close to Mama, and she won a Caldecott Honor for the New York Times best-selling picture book One Cool Friend. She divides her time between a colonial farmhouse in Buxton, Maine, and a home near the ocean in Sarasota, Florida.
Mike Wohnoutka (www.mikewohnoutka.com) grew up in Spicer, Minnesota and graduated from the Savannah College of Art and Design with a B.F.A. in illustration. He has published books with Random House, Dutton, Clarion, and Holiday House. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife and two children.
Check out the other stops in the blog tour:
Friday, August 29:
The Children’s Book Review – Author Guest Post
Saturday, August 30:
Momma Drama – Author/Illustrator Interview and Review
Sunday, August 31:
Book Rock Betty – Review and Signed Giveaway
Monday, September 1:
Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers – Author/Illustrator Guest Post and Review
Tuesday, September 2:
As They Grow Up – Review and Signed Giveaway
Wednesday, September 3:
Susan Heim on Parenting – Review and Signed Giveaway
Thursday, September 4:
Kid Lit Frenzy – Author Guest Post and Signed Giveaway
Friday, September 5:
Mundie Kids – Author/Illustrator Interview and Signed Giveaway
Saturday, September 6:
Noodling with Words – Review and Signed Giveaway
Sunday, September 7:
The Power of One Writer – Author Interview
Monday, September 8:
There’s a Book – Review and Signed Giveaway
Don't forget to enter to win a signed copy of My Bibl Always Remembers: To enter the giveaway you must be 13 years or older and have a US mailing address. Please complete the rafflecopter below.