Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Kate the Great, Except When She's Not by Suzy Becker

Happy Wednesday! I hope you are having a GREAT day! I'm excited to welcome Suzy Becker to Watch. Connect. Read. to chat about her latest middle-grade novel, Kate the Great, Except When She's Not

I wrote the words in red, and Suzy wrote the words in black. Thank you, Suzy! 

Kate the Great, Except When She’s Not is about 260 pages long, but it has a lot of pictures. It’s about friendship (not popularity—I think 8, 9, 10 year olds don’t care so much about popularity, they just need at least one best friend), family, and let me think of another f-word… being funny, as a coping mechanism. 

Kate’s doodles are a great outlet. Speaking of coping, she uses humor to privately reframe situations, feel better about them, without hurting anybody else’s feelings. 

Download Kate the Great stickers
Eleanor Roosevelt and Albert Einstein are two inspirational characters who lived at the same time but never in the same place until they moved into Kate’s imagination and ended up in her book. Albert did write to Eleanor to ask her to speak with her husband about U.S. immigration laws during WWII.
My “Cartoon-Along” workshop is the most interactive assembly fun you can have with 250 kids and clipboards—everyone ends up with their own superheroes. 
The Francis W. Parker Charter Essential School is the charter school I helped start that I wish somebody had started for me when I was going into seventh grade, make that eighth. (I loved seventh grade, heartily disliked from 8th through 11th, no offense to my teachers.)

School libraries are where so many dreams are born, adopted, or found and I’m not sure whether great schools have great librarians or great librarians make schools great, but, in my school-visit (and my daughter’s) experience—there’s some sort of correlation.

Download this Wacky Word Game. 

Reading is what everything else (like sleeping, eating, writing, drawing, momming) is interrupting. Reading is what I’d rather be doing. Reading is always the carrot. It’s why I write. 

Mr. Schu, you should have asked me about How Youth Learn. It’s not a trailer—it’s a six minute whiteboard animation starring a student’s brain about how cognitive science can shape what goes on in the classroom. I think your people might like it. 

  Suzy Becker is best known for her international bestseller All I Need to Know I Learned from My Cat. Suzy is the author/illustrator of three other books for kids, one book for babies, and two books for grown ups. Kate the Great is her first chapter book. Suzy has also had other jobs: lemonade stand owner (age 7), greeting card company mogul (not the ski-kind), and she helped to start the Francis Parker Charter Essential School. She lives with her family in central Massachusetts.

Borrow Kate the Great, Except When She's Not from your school or public library. Whenever possible, please support independent bookshops. 

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