Our first book is live. It’s about a little dinosaur who annoys his mom. I wrote the words, and the brilliant Sarah Steenland drew all the pictures.
I’m late in releasing the education book I’ve been working on forever. That’s because the education book was a lot of pages. Kids books are way shorter, so we’re not late in releasing this–mostly because we never set a deadline.
“Don’t worry,” said my friend. “Nothing ever gets released on time.” It’s not like there’s a rush for people to get crankier about education reform.
For those of you who’ve been waiting for “Don’t Sniff the Glue: A Teacher’s Misadventure in Education Reform,” I hope you’ll be equally happy to read “Tiny T-Rex Tries.”
How did we go from education reform to dinosaurs?
The world’s lost its borders. It’s pretty amazing. Anyone, anywhere can do anything with anyone anytime.
I have students connecting with people and ideas from all over the world, like the time Manal al-Sharif tweeted us back. One day, a kid Skyped himself in from an airport while waiting for his plane because he didn’t want to miss class. Kids keep up with material while working co-op jobs. I love technology.
Kids can research anything online–they don’t have to travel to get books anymore. Books come to them. Google is like library meets pizza delivery. Kindle lets you decide what to read right now. I never would’ve imagined Kindles and iPads a million years ago when I was in high school scribbling notes on notecards. I never could have dreamed up Kindle let alone think I could write books available to anyone in the world on demand.
We can connect with anyone, anywhere, at any time.
Technology doesn’t only solve problems, it makes friends.
That’s how we got from education to dinosaurs because that’s how I met Sarah Steenland, illustrator and humorist extraordinaire. She’s Australian. In no other lifetime would I parter up with an Australian who floats around the universe on a houseboat unschooling her kids, but the internet is a magical thing. We hijacked a thread online one day and the rest is history.
Sarah’s amazing. She can turn anyone into a cartoon and post them faster than they can spell their own name. I know. It’s happened to me. They say never to make friends with bloggers and artists or you’ll end up somewhere public. It’s true. I don’t mind when Sarah draws me, though. I’m not very photogenic.
I love Sarah’s Green Gorilla Project which she uses teach her kids about the world. Her kids actually listen and participate in their lessons. Mine says, “Mommy, this isn’t about science. It’s about playing games,” when I try to do chemistry or make electrical circuits with him. If we switch gears, he’ll say, “Mom, I’m not going to write one of your stupid stories.” He’s onto me.
Sarah’s kids want to listen. Mine wrapped a snake around the milk in the fridge to get me for April Fool’s. Sarah must be cooler than me.
Someone once told me everyone thinks the other person is cooler than them, though. It might be true.
I remember being uncool in high school. I was a bad athlete. I got two trophies for basketball. One was “Most Determined.” That’s coach talk for “She sucks but tried so hard we had to give her something.” The second was “Coach’s Award.” That’s the award you get when you’re the only senior who isn’t co-captain but you were respectful.
I found out years later that while I was wishing to be an athlete, athletes were wishing they didn’t have to study.
Maybe that’s the way it is for all of us–we all want to be the other person when we should be happy with ourselves.
Anyway, I love working with Sarah–writing our first book together was super fun. The second is almost done, and the third will be cool, too.
Today, in honor of good friends, modern technology, and April Fool’s, our debut book “Tiny T-Rex Tries” is free on Amazon. Download it and tell us what you think!