Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Charlotte S. Huck Children’s Literature Festival, Redlands, CA

Festival Poster created by Peter Brown
Last week I participated in the wonderful Charlotte Huck Children’s Literature Festival, held at the University of Redlands, in Redlands, California. It is named in honor of Charlotte S. Huck (1922-2005), who championed children’s literature throughout her long life and career. The festival brings educators, librarians, parents and students together with award-winning speakers and celebrates children's literature and the inspiration it brings to young readers.
Keynote speakers this year included illustrator Peter Brown, poet Rebecca Kai Dotlich, writer Marc Tyler Nobelman, novelist Avi, writer Jennifer Holm, and illustrator Lois Ehlert with editor Allyn Johnston.
Between the keynote speeches we had many choices of breakout sessions.  I presented a breakout session on Friday afternoon called From Polar Bears to Zebras: Nonfiction books as Springboards to Reading, a hands-on workshop featuring fun projects and classroom activities linked to my books. I thank Peggy Constantine for her assistance during my workshop and for introducing me. I thoroughly enjoyed going to several of the other breakout sessions. I went to Marilyn Carpenter's book review session, story telling with Adrien Lowery, and Kristine O'Connel George's and Deborah Kai Dotlich's poetry jar jamboree.  It was hard to choose! As a special treat during the conference, we were all entertained by singer/music teacher Emily Dale who had turned several of the authors’ picture books into songs.
At the book signing table at the Charlotte Huck Literature Festival
Participants in the conference had the opportunity to buy books and have them autographed during the festive (and delicious) reception before the Friday night dinner. Other California authors who also participated in this year’s conference were Erin Dealey, June Sobel, JaNay Wood-Brown and poet Kristine O'Connell George.
This was my second time at the Charlotte Huck Children's Literature Festival and I thoroughly enjoyed it once again. The success of the conference is due to Chair Marjorie Arnett and the hardworking Festival committee, whose members work tirelessly throughout the year to make sure everything runs smoothly. They are already at work on next year’s Festival, which will celebrate twenty years!

No comments: