September 29, 2006 8:26 AM
Mommy Teach Me - make the most of the preschool years!
Here are the covers!
Remember, this is a different publisher with different designers - I have no idea whether these were done in-house or freelance. I hope someday I will be able to meet the designer to tell him or her how much I like the covers.
I think they're friendly and inviting and capture that kind of curriculum feel without being too formal. The photos of children and moms really work. I like the colors and coordination of the books. And I like how the design worked to get a lot of words into an easy-to-grasp format.
It is exciting and humbling to write the stuff inside and then see the whole thing come together because of the efforts of the rest of the team.
Remember, I am collecting pictures for inside the book - pictures of kids concentrating on things like Small Beginnings exercises (for those of you who have my old book) or manipulatives like lacing cards, stringing beans. Kids helping around the house. Kids helping younger siblings, too. Also kids on stepstools helping prepare dinner â€“ peeling carrots, scrubbing veggies, etc.
Remember to keep the background uncluttered and use the best camera you can find.
I would also love to have some shots of you moms working with your kids - teaching them to use exercises and manipulatives, working together on household chores, etc. In order to use the picture, I need it to be clear and well focused. Try to wear non-patterned clothes and keep things simple, uncluttered. I can't use pictures of anything that contradicts any principles I try to teach about teaching your kids.
See my description of how to use puzzles - or pegboards - as an example. It is very important when you teach your child to do a puzzle or pegboard that you set up the exercise to encourage left-to-right eye and hand movement. This is the basis for future success with reading. So no matter how good a picture is, I can't use it unless it follows the principles I've tried to share. You can find these in my first book Small Beginnings - which I only have two copies of, but there are used copies available at Amazon. And there are numerous blog entries here at MommyLife. Just pull up the entries under the categories (see that tab above?) Montessori, toddlers, preschoolers, homeschooling and you will be able to capture enough information to revolutionize your relationship with your preschooler and get him started on the path to a lifelong love of learning.
If any of you are using a moveable alphabet or magnetic letters to help your child form words, I would love to have pictures of them forming a list of three letter words on a table or refrigerator (with the magnetic letters) - with you helping or by themselves.
Although I wonâ€™t be able to use every picture, these are still wonderful pictures for you to have of your early life with your child. So often, we tend to take pictures when we are out doing something special â€“ and yet each moment at home doing the everyday things is special too. So your time setting up and taking some good shots of your kids at work will be well spent!
Finally, I just want to say how much I love my readers. Having a place to share all that God has taught me about being a mother â€“ the good, the bad, and the downright ugly â€“ is such a blessing. If, when you go to the categories I mentioned â€“ Montessori, preschoolers, toddlers, homeschooling â€“ you find there is enough good stuff there to make a difference in your life and your childâ€™s, would you please pass it on to other mothers? My aim is to reach as many mothers as I can with the message that these preschool years are full of potential and this period of mothering can be full of joy â€“ and I donâ€™t want to wait until next July when my books come out to start spreading the message.
How large of picture do you want? How many K max? I took one this morning that I think you might be able to use...
You're a blessing to us all, Barbara....
Posted by: suzanne | September 29, 2006 9:33 AM
The more K's the better - I can always compress them.
Posted by: barbara | September 29, 2006 10:00 AM
Now, those covers are fabulous- bright and inviting! Nothing controversial but very appealing. ;) Can't wait to read them!
Posted by: Elizabeth | September 29, 2006 11:08 AM
Congratulations! That must be very exciting!
Posted by: Dana | September 29, 2006 9:48 PM
I'm looking forward to the preschool book. There are so few people who don't do preschool here in the Northern Virginia area. I was just reasurring another Mom that it's OK not to do preschool. She's originally from Montana (it seems almsot all the locals have bought into the preschool thing) and said no one talked about it or stressed about it there.
We've lived all over, and I can say that this is about the worst for preschool pressure. There's pressure to do preschool, then there's pressure to be in the right preschool. It's kind of crazy.
Posted by: Elizabeth B | September 30, 2006 12:02 AM
Those covers are EXACTLY like "Montessori Play and Learn" by Lesley Britton. I had to go pull it off my shelf to check. Published by Crown?
Posted by: Jennie C. | September 30, 2006 9:34 AM
Silly question, but how do we get it to you? Email? other?
Posted by: Kim | September 30, 2006 10:16 PM
Jennie - YIKES!!!! I just looked up Britton's book at Amazon and you are so right! I'd never seen his book and though it was published in 1992, it's still in print and appears to sell pretty briskly. I have written my publisher to inform them. This is not good news at all.
I did not know of this book, but then again, I didn't research, but wrote from my own experience and education.
Here we go again with what may be a real cover problem. Please pray, y'all.
Kim - email attachment is fine for the pictures. Thanks!
Posted by: barbaracurtis | September 30, 2006 10:27 PM
Any word yet on the book covers?
Posted by: Jennie C. | October 4, 2006 6:20 PM
Jennie - I contacted my publishers immediately and they were like, "yes, they're similar. . . ." but didn't seem to be real motivated. So I sent them your comment verbatim and pointed out that though I'd never seen Mr. Britton's book, it was bound to have a lot of similarities since we are both Montessori teachers who want to teach people to use those techniques at home (though mine has a distinctly - but not overbearing -Christian perspective plus openness to applying Montessori prinicples to other types of manipulatives) and perhaps that might invite a lawsuit? I really don't know since I'm just an author.
Anyway, they have indicated that they will be pursuing some alternatives. They are in a bind because they are coming out with their catalog for potential book buyers and the cover appears in the catalog as a selling point.
I am disappointed, because I so liked the covers - but grateful to you Jennie for pointing out the problem - which definitely needs to be fixed. Also worried because I am not an artist and so have no ideas or vision - I'm just praying for a designer to come up with something good. Covers can make all the difference in the world.
So hoping you all will pray with me for a good, appealing and informative cover.
Posted by: barbara | October 5, 2006 1:02 PM