Author: Alexandria, VA
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Books: Author of more than 20 nonfiction children's books for National Geographic, including: Master George's People: Earth in the Hot Seat; Helen’s Eyes: A Photobiography of Annie Sullivan, Helen Keller’s Teacher; Genius: A Photobiography of Albert Einstein; American Heroes; Inventing the Future: A Photobiography of Thomas Alva Edison; Sea Monsters; Exploring Caves; Welcome to the World: A Keepsake Baby Book; and in the "Explore My World" series, Butterflies; Frogs; Clouds; Baby Animals.
Fee: $450 for one presentation, $600 for two presentations, and $1000 for four on the same day in the Washington, DC, area. Travel expenses added for out-of-town engagements.
Availability: Pre-K to middle school. Presentations generally run 30 to 40 minutes long, with 10 to 15 minutes for questions.
Features: 1.  Explore My World (for pre-K and primary grades) 
This fast-paced, lively, and playful program uses the Explore My World series as a springboard to encourage kids to learn about and marvel at the fascinating world of nature. Before the program ends, the kids and I will be singing like frogs, wriggling like caterpillars, or floating like clouds as we have fun exploring the world around us and picking up some pretty cool scientific facts along the way.

2.  Breathing Life into Biographies (for grades 3 to 8) 
Kids get the inside story on researching and writing a biography from the book author’s perspective, with an emphasis on ways to breathe life into a person’s story. I include examples from my own biographies of Annie Sullivan, Albert Einstein, and Thomas Edison, including some of the quirky facts about these people that fascinated me and found their way into my books. I talk about how I became an author, how I do my research, and how I approach the writing process. I also talk about the curious relationship that grows between me and the person I’m writing about. I conclude with tips for young writers and leave time for kids to ask questions about my books, writing, and the publishing process.

3. Looking for Heroes? (for grades 4 to 8)
Based on my book American Heroes. Through fun facts and stories, this program introduces kids to American heroes both famous and less well known. Together, the audience and I explore what it means to be a hero, and how our values determine who we see as heroes. I also talk about how I researched and wrote this book and how the 50 heroes in the book were selected.

4.  Who Were George Washington's "People"? (for children 10 and up, teens, and adults.)
George Washington called the enslaved men, women, and children at his Mount Vernon plantation his “people,” but by law they were his property. In this presentation, I talk about what life was like for Washington’s slaves and how their famous owner’s attitude toward slavery changed over his lifetime. I discuss what inspired me to write Master George's People, how I researched it, and the challenges of writing it. I also share a behind-the-scenes look at how the book was designed and illustrated.

Awards: Master George's People: Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People, New York Public Library 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing, Booklist’s Top 10 Black History Books for Youth list.

Helen’s Eyes: Best Books 2008 (School Library Journal), CCBC Choices 2009, VOYA 2008 Nonfiction Honor Book, Jefferson Cup Honor Book.

Earth in the Hot Seat:
2010 Green Earth Book Award

American Library Association Notable Book, Orbis Pictus Honor Book, Outstanding Science Trade Book for Young People , New York Public Library Books for the Teen Age, Notable Children’s Book of Jewish Content, ALA/Book Links Best New Books for Classroom.

Inventing the Future: American Library Association Notable Book, James Madison Book Award Honor Book, Outstanding Science Trade Book for Children, Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Young People, National Parenting Publications Silver Honor Award.



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