Category: Classroom Connections

How This Book Got Started

Kids and grown-ups alike are usually curious about how a book gets its start. Here’s half of what I have on my Oskar’s Voyage page (I have similar info on each book page): It was the best research of my entire life! Speaking of research, you know Melissa Stewart’s amazing

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How Does Oskar Feel?

One of my favorite things about books is how they prepare us to handle real life. I think illustrations, in particular, can be super helpful in promoting emotional awareness and helping kids learn how to decode facial expressions and body language. Here’s a downloadable activity sheet that illustrator Kayla Harren

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The Trip That Inspired the Book

The photos and videos I took on a 2019 voyage were absolutely the bedrock of the text and later the illustrations for Oskar’s Voyage. Here’s a montage of images from that amazing journey! And find more resources on my Oskar’s Voyage page! Oh, and if you’re in the Twin Cities,

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Oskar Is Loose in the World!

Whee! Oskar’s Voyage, my first book of 2024, published yesterday, so little Oskar is not only exploring a giant boat, but he’s also making his way around the world (hopefully). I am sososososo excited! The fantastic illustrator, Kayla Harren, and I are doing a FREE ZOOM for classrooms (or individual

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Helping Student Writers Deal with Feedback

Hi, teachers! We all know that to grow as a writer, you need feedback on your writing. But feedback’s a hard part of the writing process for many people–of all ages. Here’s how I think about feedback and rejection. If I’m writing to express myself creatively, and I get negative

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Good News for Finding Family, and Why It Matters

[Teachers, click here for info about a free Zoom about Oskar’s Voyage with me and illustrator Kayla Harren in March!] I’ve been thinking a lot about why I write and where I find affirmation for my writing. While I’d like to say that internal satisfaction is all I require, that’s

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Single-Session Author Visits for Poetry

[Teachers, click here for info about a free Zoom about Oskar’s Voyage with me and illustrator Kayla Harren in March!] Happy Valentine’s Day! Teachers, I’ve been somewhat stuck in the “contact with all students over multiple sessions” structure for my virtual visits, because that’s the structure of most of my

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Write an Equation Poem for Valentine’s Day

[Teachers, click here for info about a free Zoom about Oskar’s Voyage with me and illustrator Kayla Harren in March!] Teachers, here’s a fun writing activity you can do with your students, and it’s perfect for Valentine’s Day! These snappy poems are short enough to fit on a handmade card!

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