April 30, 2009

Today's the Day!

Happy El día de los niños /El día de los libros, Children's Day / Book Day! Wishing you all a day of Bookjoy!

April 29, 2009

Día in the Blogisphere

We're thrilled to see Día mentioned in various blogs about children's literature and literacy. Thank you to the bloggers for supporting and spreading the word about Dia.

Imagínense Libros is one part of ¡Imagínense!, a multifaceted program combining current research and practice to assist librarians, teachers, and other educators in meeting the literacy needs of Latino children and adolescents. The brand new blog is written by Dr. Jamie Campbell Naidoo, the director and founder of ¡Imagínense!. There's lots of resources and book reviews will become a regular feature.

The Latin Baby Book Club is celebrating Día all week so click the link and read several posts including music and book reviews; book-centric activities; and give-aways.

Bookmark, the First Book blog, has a summary of Día events.

Thanks to the Reading Tub for the links.


April 28, 2009

NPR airs Día segment

The NPR program,Latino USA, features a segment about Día on this week's program. They asked listeners to send in stories about their experiences with books, libraries, teachers, or learning. Click here to read and listen to great stories about librarians as rockstars, family literacy nights,and changing lives. When you open the link, scroll down the page until you reach the Día photo.

April 23, 2009

Día’s First Song and Book Fiesta’s History

In Día’s early days, my friend, Jeanette Larson, an early Día supporter then at the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, mentioned that we needed some materials to help promote the Día concept. She offered to produce a booklet and to promote Día on the Web. (This was before my Web days. I was amazed.) Jeannette also said, “Pat, you should write a song for Día that we could include in the booklet.” Jim, Jeanette’s husband, designed the booklet’s purple cover and a page of bookmarks that could be cut out or duplicated. The booklet was produced in March 1998 and was distributed at the Texas Library Association conference that year.

In March 1999, I visited Westminster College in New Wilmington, PA. My faculty host, Dr. Charlene Endrizzi, wanted the student orchestra to play the song before my presentation on campus and to have students sing it when I visited Neshannock Elementary in New Castle, PA but there was no written music. Belinda Boone, who worked with Jeanette Larson at the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, said “Oh, I know a tune that will work with the words Pat has written.” Charlene asked Jay Broker, then an adjunct music professor at Westminster College, to listen to Belinda sing the song over the phone. As she sang, Jay wrote the music! You can hear the familiar tune (though at too fast a tempo) on my website.

Many years later, I was having lunch with Adriana Dominguez, an editor at HarperCollins, and we talked about ideas for a Día book. Adriana was interested in a story that was connected to the library. Because I had already written Tómas and the Library Lady, I wasn’t sure another book about the library was the best idea for a book about Día.

“I do have this Día song,” I said. Adriana, a fine editor, championed the publication of Book Fiesta! Celebrate Children’s Day/Book Day; Celebremos El día de los niños/El día de los libros and worked enthusiastically with me and Rafael López to develop the book. We decided on a bilingual book, and I also expanded the text.

I hope the words to Book Fiesta! will be set to music, maybe various versions. We’d love to have the music available on my web site and welcome your good ideas.

April 22, 2009

Exciting Día News!

Wow! ALSC now has over 400 Día events registered at their Día web page. We encourage all Día event organizers to post their events at the Día Celebrations page on the ALA website.

The Día countdown is 8 days!

April 21, 2009

Día News

April is a busy literacy month. I had the good fortune to attend the ever-exciting Texas Library Association (TLA) conference recently in Houston. It is so gratifying to hear the growing interest in serving Latino students and families. Even I’m amazed that 1 in 4 children under 5 is now Latino. Librarians made me smile with their interest in my BOOK FIESTA written specifically for Día. Though many librarians and teachers don’t speak Spanish and admit they feel a bit intimidated at trying another language, their desire to help their students helps them dive in, ask the students for help or invite older students, peers or families in to assist. So many librarians would say, “Oh I want my children to learn Spanish,” or “I want my grandbabies to learn Spanish.”

I soon leave for Detroit, Durham and Greensboro to participate in their Día celebrations. More than 385 libraries and schools have registered their Día events at www.ala.org/dia! A young reporter from Greensboro asked me the excellent question, ”What makes Día different other literacy celebrations?” Here’s my answer.

Since literacy is essential in our democracy, Día which means “day” in Spanish, is a call to action. Día emphasizes daily commitments to:
• the importance of children,
• linking all children to books, languages and cultures,
• the importance of children’s books that reflect our national diversity,
• and to parents and families as partners with libraries and schools in the literacy process of sharing bookjoy.

Día culminates in annual celebrations of these daily commitments across the country on or near April 30th, community book fiestas. 2009 is its 13th anniversary.

Enjoy sharing bookjoy! Pat

April 14, 2009

NoveList Interview

In the recent issue of NoveList School News,edited by Julie Corsaro, Pat discusses the evolution of Día, as well as Book Fiesta!, her new bilingual picture book commemoration. Read the interview here.

April 10, 2009

Share a Story/ Shape a Future

Back in March, a group of Kidlitosphere bloggers presented a week long online literacy event called Share a Story/ Shape a Future. In addition to a Literacy Resource Kit, (available as a pdf) there's now also a dedicated blog. Check it often for useful information and links.
(Logo created by Elizabeth Dulemba.)

April 3, 2009

Abundant April

April is a month full of celebrations – we celebrate the earth, national parks and jazz; humor, penguins and pet owners. And, of course, poetry and literacy -- April is National Poetry Month and April 30th is El dia di los ninos, el dia de los libros/ Children’s Day, Book Day. Pat is thrilled to participate in two events sponsored by Kidlitosphere bloggers honoring National Poetry Month. Greg K at Gotta Book has created 30 Poets/30 Days where each day during April he’ll post a previously unpublished poem by a different poet. Over at The Miss Rumphius Effect, there’ll be interviews with poets every day. Pat is scheduled on April 30 for both blogs.

There’s a full description of these poetry related events and more at Miss Rumphius.

April 2, 2009

Mark Your Calendars

. . . for this great upcoming conference! Jointly sponsored by the University of South Carolina and the University of Alabama, the Second Annual Celebration of Latino Children's Literature Conferencewill be held in Columbia, S.C. on April 24-25, 2009. Dr. Sonia Nieto is the keynote speaker; authors and illustrators Lulu Delacre, Lućia González and Maya Christina Gonzalez will present workshops and there will be a community and family Dia program. For more information, click here.

Thanks to NoveList School News for the link.

April 1, 2009

Bookjoy Alert!

I am so excited that María Hinojosa, host of NPR’s Latino USA, and her staff are helping us spread the good word about Día and about the importance of books and libraries.

“To any and all book lovers who have a good story to tell about how a book or librarian infused a child's life with joy or purpose. NPR's Latino USA is planning a feature to air before El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children's Day/ Book Day) in April that will share some of these stories about the power of books.

Do you have a story or can you help us find one? We are in search of all voices: young, old, in Spanish, Somali or any language. Write to us and tell us the story, and we may call you up for an interview. Others will be included on our web site.

We are especially interested in stories about Latino and immigrant children. Or in the kids themselves if they'd like!"

Please send them to Katie Davis(KDavisDC@aol.com)

Help us find stories and help us spread bookjoy by insuring that Día is being celebrated this April in your community. Reminder: Día celebrations are a great time to talk about Summer Reading Clubs.