Tag Archives | 4th to 8th grade

Guest Blogger: John Stephens

So I’ve been asked to talk about an element of writing my book, The Emerald Atlas, that I struggled with, and honestly, it’s hard to pick just one thing. I could talk about the number of times I pulled my hair out for imagining that I could write a mind-twisty time travel story. Or I could talk about the difficulty of working in a genre as well-established as children’s fantasy, a genre in which I would be using characters and tropes that readers had seen a thousand times before and it was my job to figure out how I was going to breath new life into those dusty conventions.
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Blog Tour: Trilby Kent

Stones for my Father is a book I had been meaning to write for a long time. My mother’s family is South African and I have always wanted to explore that part of my history. I was also interested in the Anglo-Boer War. To me, it is one of the most fascinating and overlooked conflicts of the twentieth century.
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Guest Blogger: Jeff Kinney

It was a challenge coming up with a title and a cover image for the fifth and final book in the “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” (Abrams) series. I always planned to call this book Rowley’s Revenge, so I sketched what I thought might make a good cover.
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Poetry Friday: June Jordan

In this audio clip you’ll hear Kathy Engel, friend of poet June Jordan, introduce and read from a collection of poems written by teens in Harlem, NYC in the 1960’s, entitled The Voice of the Children (Holt, Rinehart, & Winston,…
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Poetry Friday: Poems for two voices

Listen to this dramatic audio performance of “Grasshoppers” from Paul Fleischman’s book, Joyful Noise: Poems for Two Voices (HarperCollins, 1988). Have students perform poems from this book aloud, or challenge them to adapt favorite poems for a performance in two…
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Guest Blogger: Pam Muñoz Ryan

I always groan when people ask about my writing process, because what they are really asking is the more complicated question, “How does your mind work?” Even the word “process” confounds me. It implies a tidy, shrink-wrapped procedure. I wish it was that way–a specific set of steps to get me from that awful first draft to a polished manuscript, which is often thirty rewrites down the line. For me, writing isn’t precise. It is a messy evolution.
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Poetry Friday: Eloise Greenfield

I encourage you to find poetry in unexpected places—in places beyond books. For example, 80-year-old poet and author Eloise Greenfield reminded me that poetry can be found in rap music. In fact, Eloise found inspiration for her book Nathaniel Talking
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Guest Blogger: Ingrid Law

One of the wonderful things about stories is their ability to allow us to explore and make believe. Whether as a reader or a writer, stories give us the chance to try on different hats. To see things from a new or different perspective. Or to share a bit of our own perspective with others.
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