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Hello Teachers :-)
from Mary Newell DePalma!


100th day

Celebrate the 100th Day of School

by reading Happy 100th Day!

See my Bookpage interview!

Read my blog post about writing a picture book.

Beginning Forestry for Young Learners: curriculum guide

A Grand Old Tree

This illustration is from my book
A Grand Old Tree.


Curriculum guides

I hope you find these guides useful as starting places for classroom activities/discussions. Click the book title to see the guides for:

A Grand Old Tree
My Chair
The Nutcracker Doll
Rembrandt's Hat

The Strange Egg
Bow-Wow Wiggle-Waggle

School Visits

My school visits encourage students to be active participants: writers, illustrators, readers and viewers.

The skills students are learning in their classroom are the same ones I use to create picture books. I encourage students to use these skills to tell their own unique stories.
My lively and interactive presentations last about 50 minutes. We begin with a Visual Thinking Strategies exercise to get students observing and talking. I introduce the idea of visual language. We brainstorm, consider kinds of research, and I demonstrate how a story comes to life with a drawing session. Then I talk about the process of editing.

The students then participate in a call and response story time. Presentations can be customized to suit your curriculum preferences.

Usually I speak to small groups, so I bring visual aids that are appropriate to a classroom-size setting. Please let me know if I will be speaking to an auditorium-sized crowd and I will present a powerpoint presentation. Your school will have to provide the equipment to run the presentation. Thanks!

Generally, my fees are $500 for a half-day of presentations, $1000 for a full day. I am located in Boston, MA, so travel expenses must be added if your school is located outside the Boston area. I prefer to schedule visits on Mondays or Tuesdays.

Email my school visit coordinator, Mary McDonough, for more information and/or to schedule a visit for your school!



Paper Doll Activity Sheet (best on stiff paper).
A ballerina with various costumes.
Design some costumes yourself!

Uh-Oh! Puppets and Coloring Pages
Color and construct puppets with these patterns and act out your own story.

Perfect Gift Coloring Pages
Color in these action scenes and add your own word bubbles.

Mythical Beast Marionette Theatre
Decorate and assemble a marionette theatre with these marionette patterns and your own box.




Read a description
of one of my library visits
in Talking Writing


The Nutcracker Doll



Consider a booksigning to defray the cost of the school visit.
Contact your local independent bookseller to order books:

click to find an independent bookstore near you

Find an Author

Find an author in your state who visits schools. I'm in Massachusetts. Kim Norman has made a list of authors who visit schools, by state: authorvisitsbystate.com

Another list, from Kirsten Cappy at Curious City -- Authorvisits.com

An author directory from the New England Society of Children's Book Writers and illustrators: www.nescbwi.org/connections/

Another MA Directory is:
South Eastern MA Regional Library System Performer's Directory

Information about authors and Authors who visit schools from the Drury University School of Education:
USA Writes 4 Kids



Will your students be taking a field trip to see The Nutcracker ballet? Think about scheduling a school visit before the performance so that we can talk about students their age who perform in the ballet! This is the subject of my book The Nutcracker Doll.



Seeds can be silly! click this link to see more.





See more springtime pictures here

I have posted photos of trees in different seasons, seeds, and other interesting things I have seen in the Arnold Arboretum,which is near my home in Boston.My daily walks there inspired my book A Grand Old Tree.

In April, I saw a frog!



I posted three pictures of trees covered with snow here. What do the snow covered trees remind you of? lace? vanilla frosting? It is sort of like looking at clouds, they have such interesting shapes!




In February, I noticed a flock of robins in the Arboretum. This one is in a crab apple tree that still had leftover crab apples on it from last fall. See more pictures of robins here. More birds in the spring photos here!



Now It Is Winter, by Eileen Spinelli, (illustrated by me), has been selected for the Bank Street College Best Children's Books of the Year 2005! More about this distinction here.



My Chair, by Betsy James, (illustrated by me), is included in the 2004 edition of Children's Books 2004, One Hundred Titles for Reading and Sharing, a list of books recommended by librarians at the NYPL!



Visit my facebook page to see photos of school visits and children's art inspired by my books. It is where I post all of the latest news and events!

Mary Newell DePalma on Facebook.