Raising Readers Presents…The Bugliest Bug

June 3, 2012

“Shake it up high. Shake it down low,” said picture book illustrator, Scott Nash as the families in the audience shook out their hands, “How does that feel? Loose? Tingly?” Nash was showing those that gathered at the Raising Readers Presents event at the Children’s Museum of Maine how he loosens up his hands to get ready to draw. And draw he did.

First Nash drew Damselfly Dilly from his picture book The Bugliest Bug, a book that has appeared in two different Raising Readers anthologies for Maine’s five-year-olds. Then Nash drew a grinning T-Rex from another anthology story, Saturday Night at the Dinosaur Stomp. Nash’s attentive audience reminded Nash to draw in the dinosaur teeth and one child announced that the teeth looked just like ‘w’s. Many at the event knew these picture books illustrated by Scott Nash and also his intrepid crocodile characters from Snow Day and Rainy Day (which have also appeared in past five-year-old anthologies).

Beside Scott Nash on the Raising Readers stage was pediatrician Dr. Brian Youth from Maine Medical Partners in Westbrook, who like the kids, is a fan of Scott Nash’s books. Not only has Dr. Youth handed out Raising Readers books to his young patients for over a decade, but he has also served on the Raising Readers book selection committee for more than 8 of those years. Currently, Dr. Youth also serves as a clinical advisor to the program.

Dr. Youth welcomed families to the event and talked about what a pleasure it was to hand a child a book in his office and to talk with parents about the importance of reading aloud.

“Reading to our children,” Dr. Youth said, “builds healthy brains by introducing new words, images, and experiences. Children who are read to often pick up reading more quickly when they enter school and do better in school overall.”

A two-year-old from the audience declared again and again to Dr. Youth that, “I like books!” Other children demonstrated their love of books by excitedly turning the pages of Raising Readers books as they waited for the program to start. Dr. Youth also shared his personal favorite picture books, The Little Engine That Could and Seven Silly Eaters.

When Dr. Youth introduced Scott Nash, one girl could not clap with the others (as she had recently fallen out of a tree she had climbed). Nash declared it the best possible way to break an arm (if one had to break an arm) and encouraged her to climb her next tree as soon as her arm healed. The girl did shake her other hand to get her hand ready for drawing, though, and after just one wing was drawn on the paper, she shouted out, “Damselfly Dilly!” Nash asked her how she possibly guessed that Dilly was the subject of the drawing. Her father responded that The Bugliest Bug was her favorite book at bedtime.

Here’s to books at bedtime for us all (and a little drawing and tree climbing when we can fit it in)!

Don’t miss the final event in our Raising Readers Presents series!

August 17th, 6:00 & 7:00 pm
Children’s Discovery Museum – 171 Capitol Street, Augusta
Featuring: picture book author and illustrator, Melissa Sweet and her book, Baby Bear’s Big Dreams.



Raising Readers Presents…

March 6, 2012

Raising Readers is pleased to announce the new event series, Raising Readers Presents!

Instead of the two annual events at The Maine Discovery Museum (Bangor, Maine) and the Children’s Museum and Theatre of Maine (Portland, Maine), Raising Readers will be hosting seven events in the new Raising Readers Presents event format in 2012.

We hope families will join us at the following events celebrating the picture books in the Raising Readers anthology, Maine Stories for Maine Children: A Raising Readers Collection and celebrating the pediatricians that give those anthologies to five-year-olds at their well-child visits.

Friday, 4/6/12
6:00 PM & 7:00 PM
Children’s Museum and Theatre of Maine
Portland, Maine

Author Amy MacDonald presents her picture book, Cousin Ruth’s Tooth with Pediatrician Dr. Christopher Pezzullo and pediatricians from University Health Care for Kids.

Saturday, 04/28/12
11:30 am & 12:30 pm
Maine Discovery Museum
Bangor, ME

Picture book creators Ann and John Hassett present their book, Too Many Frogs! with pediatrician Dr. Colette Sabbagh of Husson Pediatrics.

Friday, 5/11/12
5:30 & 7:30 PM
The Maine Discovery Museum
Bangor, Maine

Illustrator Melissa Sweet presents her picture book, Baby Bear’s Big Dreams with pediatrician Dr. Pat Nobel.

Saturday, 5/19/12
2:30 & 3:30 PM
Children’s Museum and Theatre of Maine
Portland, Maine

Author/illustrator Scott Magoon presents his picture book, Hugo and Miles in I’ve Painted Everything  with Pediatrician Dr. Lynne Tetreault of Maine Medical Partners Saco Pediatrics.

Friday, 6/1/12
6:00 PM & 7:00 PM
Children’s Museum and Theatre of Maine
Portland, Maine

Illustrator Scott Nash presents his picture book, The Bugliest Bug with Pediatrician Dr. Brian Youth, Maine Medical Partners Westbrook Pediatrics.

A Treasury of Tales from Maine

June 22, 2011

Children’s books by Maine authors and illustrators for Maine kids. Doesn’t get any better that that! Raising Readers has been fortunate indeed to work with some terrific authors/illustrators and their publishers to create six special anthologies to give to five year olds at their well child visits.

While the collections are only available through the program, a special arrangement allows for a copy of each collection to be sent to all public libraries in Maine. The latest anthology, A Treasury of Tales from Maine, hit libraries in May.

This year’s collection features five incredible stories:

Dance with Me by Charles R. Smith, Jr. Illustrated by Noah Z. Jones.
One Frog Sang by Shirley Parenteau. Illustrated by Cynthia Jabar
The Bugliest Bug by Carol Diggory Shields. Illustrated by Scott Nash
In the Wild by David Elliottt. Illustrated by Holly Meade
The Circus Ship by Chris Van Dusen. Illustrations by Chris Van Dusen, too.

While you’re at the library, look for the other Raising Readers collections:

Raising Readers: A Collection of Stories from Maine
Raising Readers: 5 Stories from Maine
Raising Readers: Stories for Maine Children
Raising Readers: Five Stories for Maine Children
Books from Maine: A Raising Readers Collection

We’re hard at work on the seventh anthology. Watch this blog for an opportunity to help us name #7. Titles for the fifth and sixth came from blog and Facebook suggestions.

Special thanks to the authors and illustrators and publishers that help make these unique  collections possible.

And a Very Happy Birthday in Portland

November 16, 2010

500 readers and readers-to-be came through the front doors of the Children’s Museum and Theater of Maine in Portland to celebrate Raising Readers 10th Birthday.  They were greeted at the door by Raising Readers and MaineHealth staff and given birthday crowns and birthday books.

The birthday books were signed or stamped at each Raising Readers station in the museum.   The stations featured the books, authors, and illustrators that make up the Raising Readers’ latest anthology for 5-year-olds in their program, Books from Maine: A Raising Readers Collection.

Here picture book author Amy MacDonald signs a reader’s birthday book…

…and reads for her book, Little Beaver & the Echo.

Here Scott Nash signs a child’s Raising Readers anthology…

…and illustrates a child’s birthday book.

Here dinosaur footprints and red raptors lead the way to Lynn Plourde’s picture book Dino Pets

…where readers meet author Lynn Plourde herself.

Here children meet Miss Rumphius from Barbara Cooney’s book…

…and toss blueberries into Blueberries for Sal’s bucket.

And finally readers went to visit the Raising Readers’ doctors who talked with families about the importance of reading aloud EVERY day and modeled the Raising Readers program by giving each child a picture book.

A grand celebration and a very Happy Birthday for Raising Readers.  Thanks to everyone that helped out and everyone that came to celebrate!

A Very Happy Birthday in Bangor

October 13, 2010

With over 1.3 million books given to Maine children, Raising Readers celebrated their 10th Birthday at the Maine Discovery Museum in Bangor, Maine.

Almost 300 readers and readers-to-be turned out to tumble through the museum looking for the books, authors, and illustrators that make up the Raising Readers’ latest anthology for 5-year-olds in their program, Books from Maine: A Raising Readers Collection.

The Maine Discovery Museum staff were wonderful hosts  for the event.  As their incredible museum is designed for exploration, we built our birthday celebration around that theme.  Each child was given a birthday book encouraging them to go find five stations featuring the five books.

Authors, Amy MacDonald and Lynn Plourde and illustrator, Scott Nash were the swell surprises at three of these stations. The three picture book creators greeted each child, signed their birthday book, and talked with them about books and reading.

In addition to these sweet interactions, there were playful, visual tributes to the books to help children make those crucial connections between their world and the world of books.

Scott Nash was set against a backdrop that looked like the opening page of his book, Camping Day.

Amy MacDonald was surrounded by pine trees, beavers, otters, and turtles to celebrate her book, Little Beaver and the Echo.

Lynn Plourde was surrounded by inflatable dinosaurs and a blow-up of a scene from the book to resemble her picture book, Dino Pets.

The book Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney was featured in the Rumphius themed room in the museum where they were greeted by an actress playing Miss Rumphius.

And finally, Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey was represented by a young bear bearing a bucket of blueberries.

The final destination of the night was the museum’s doctor office display where Dr. Colette Sabbagh handed out Raising Readers books to model the distribution point of 1.3 million books given to Maine kids by Raising Readers.

We look forward to our next celebration in Portland on November 5th!

Raising Readers Book Celebration Bangor!

September 13, 2010

Raising Readers Book Celebration

Friday, September 24, 2010
5:00 PM – 7:00 PM (ongoing)
Maine Discovery Museum
74 Main St., Bangor, ME
Free Admission
Info: (207) 541-7531

Raising Readers celebrates the collection of books given to Maine children this year through doctor’s offices with readings and activities by children’s book authors and illustrators, Amy MacDonald, Scott Nash, and Lynn Plourde.