Saturday, July 15, 2017

Hatching Chicks in Room 6 in Grinnell Magazine

My summer issue of Grinnell Magazine just arrived and it includes an announcement of my book Hatching Chicks in Room 6 in its Artist's and Scholars section--books and creative works by alumni of Grinnell College.
Thanks Grinnell!
The cover of the magazine features George Drake '56, one of Grinnell's outstanding presidents, among his many other roles at the college. We heard him speak at the 2017 50th Reunion of the Class of 1967.


Wednesday, July 12, 2017

MONTREAL: Three Days in May, Day 3–Musee des Beaux-Arts, Marc Chagall

Marc Chagall, Self Portrait, Musee des Beaux Arts, Montreal
Note: This is a repost of my 6/19/17 post on my travel blog The Intrepid Tourist. It seemed to fall in both categories--travel and art--so I thought it worth posting here as well! Enjoy!
On my third and last day in Montreal I headed to the Musee des Beaux Arts (Montreal Museum of Fine Arts), about thirty minutes from my hotel, on the other side of the city center. For part of the way I walked along Boulevard de Maisonnueve, past the tall buildings that are the business center of Montreal, many with fascinating installations of large public sculptures. I then cut over to Rue Sherbrooke, passing by the McGill University campus before arriving at the museum, actually a complex of buildings on both sides of the street.
Musee des Beaux-Arts, Main Entrance
The featured exhibition was Chagall: Colour and Music, a grand display of the life work of Marc Chagall with examples of his paintings, drawings, theater sets, costumes, stained glass, sculpture, ceramics, book illustrations and more. Room after room, filled with creations by this prolific artist, dazzled the eye, beginning with a movie about his early life in Russia and participation in the Yiddish Theater.
Theater backdrop
Music played throughout the exhibit, reinforcing the interconnectedness of sound, color, light and movement that infuses the work of Chagall. On the wall above his self portrait was this quote: “Everything you say is right. So guide my hand. Take the brush and, like the leader of an orchestra, carry me off to far an unknown realms.” Marc Chagall
Village scene
Themes from village life in rural Russia appear again and again in Chagall’s paintings, often with a figure playing a violin. In a display case in one of the rooms was a beautiful klesmer violin.
Costumes for The Firebird ballet, inspired by Hopi and Zuni Katsina dolls
Several rooms displayed mannekins with costumes Chagall had designed for plays and operas. My favorites were those he created for Stravinsky's Firebird ballet, inspired by the Katsina dolls of the American Southwest.
Stained glass--colors are created in layers
Another room displayed examples of Chagall's stained glass windows, documenting the process from idea to drawing to the finished glass.
Inuit sculpture, village scene--stone and whale bone
Because I had to catch a plane later that afternoon, the only permanent exhibit I was able to view in the museum was the display of Inuit Art, a small but fascinating collection of art by contemporary Canadian Native American artists. I wished I had more time to see the many other rooms in the museum with art from various historical periods.
The Chagall exhibit was on view January 28 to June 11, 2017.
On the street outside the museum a colorful design was being installed. Mount Royal is in the distance.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Egg-Citing Activities for Kids, Part 4: Cut-Out Hatching Chick Art Project

Here is a fun and easy activity you can do in conjunction with reading my new book, Hatching Chicks in Room 6. You can make a jaunty chick popping out of its egg with the following downloadable templates, some crayons, stickers and your imagination.
Print the chick design on yellow cardstock. (Directions are included on the printout.)

Print the egg design on white or cream cardstock.
After cutting the crack across the egg, you can slip the chick in and out.
Hint: It is easiest to cut in from the edge of the paper and then use tape to close the cut from the edge of the paper to the egg.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

ALA Annual Conference, Chicago: Book Signing at Charlesbridge

In the Charlesbridge booth at ALA with Editor Karen Boss
On Saturday and Sunday, June 24th and 25th, I attended the American Library Association annual conference in Chicago, Illinois, held at the huge McCormick Center in downtown Chicago. On Saturday I cruised the hundreds of booths in the exhibit hall looking at the new books, collecting posters and a few books, chatting with editors and promotion people, and meeting other authors. That evening I was pleased to meet up with author Dori Hillestad Butler, other authors, and librarians at the grand reception put on by the Junior Library Guild at the famous Chicago Art Institute. (Hatching Chicks in Room 6 was a JLG selection this year.) After refreshments we were invited to browse the galleries and I became reacquainted with some of the museum's most famous paintings including George Seurat's Sunday Afternoon on La Grande Jatte, Vincent Van Gogh's Bedroom at Arles and a number of Claude Monet's haystack paintings. I have fond memories of visiting the museum when I was in college and art school in Iowa (we rode to Chicago on the train) and haven't been back since, so it was a delight to visit again. The museum has grown enormously with several additional modern wings. Thanks to JLG for a lovely event!
On Sunday morning I signed Hatching Chicks in Room 6 in the Charlesbridge booth and was pleased with the number of people who stopped by and bought books. Many of them told me stories of hatching chicks both at home in their schools. Clearly, it is a popular project, not just in kindergarten, but in all grades. Thanks to everyone in the Charlesbridge booth for helping the signing go smoothly! I had a great ALA!

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Caroline Arnold Books at TeachingBooks.Net

I recently met (via email) Nick Glass, the founder and Executive Director of Teaching Books.net, through a mutual friend who noticed that both of us are graduates of Grinnell College in Iowa (not in the same year so we did not overlap). I hadn’t looked at the TeachingBooks site for a while and when I checked out my page I was pleased to discover that it lists seventeen of my books with a total of 75 resources, including five book guides and lesson plans. I learned that more than 33,000 schools use TeachingBooks to access materials about what they are reading. What a great resource for teachers and librarians! It is a subscription service, but you can get a taste of what it offers with a trial two week membership.
I look forward to stopping by the TeachingBooks booth at the American Library Association conference in Chicago, June 22-27, 2017.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

SAVE THE DATE! ALA Chicago: Signing in the Charlesbridge Booth, Sunday, June 25 at 10:00

SAVE THE DATE!
If you are going to be at the American Library Association Conference in Chicago, June 22-27, 2017, I will be signing my new book Hatching Chicks in Room 6 in Room 6 at the Charlesbridge booth #3522 on Sunday, June 25th at 10:00 a.m. Please stop by! I'd love to see you!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

HATCHING CHICKS IN ROOM 6 at the Pioneer Bookshop in Grinnell, Iowa

On my recent trip to Grinnell, Iowa, for a college reunion, I stopped in at the college bookstore, the Pioneer Bookshop, now located in historic downtown Grinnell, to show them my new book, Hatching Chicks in Room 6. I was delighted to discover that they had already ordered it and put it on the shelf. I then went down the street to the town library, in a beautiful large building, new since my last visit to Grinnell, and found out that they had also already ordered it for their collection. (The old library building is now used as an art gallery.) I had a nice chat with the children's librarian who told me that she loves using my books in her story hour. Perhaps I shouldn't be surprised that a book about eggs and hatching chicks is popular in a community surrounded by farms and which owes its history to a tradition of farming. It seems like the perfect place for my book.