My interview with Ellie Peterson.

Welcome to #ChatWithThePBLady

Today I’m chatting with Ellie Peterson about her upcoming book SCHOOL IS WHEREVER I AM.

๐Ÿ“š What energizes you?

Kids! It’s why I love what I do as picturebook creator and teacher. Their energy is infectious.

๐Ÿ“š If you were singing karaoke, what song would you choose?

I Feel the Earth Move by Carole King

๐Ÿ“š What’s your favorite day of the year?

The first day of summer break. After 21 years of teaching, there’s nothing finer than that first day of sweet freedom.

๐Ÿ“š What’s your favorite thing to do outdoors?

Take a hike.

๐Ÿ“š Now, let’s talk about SCHOOL IS WHEREVER I AM. Can you tell us about this wonderful book?

The story follows a young boy as he reflects on what school is and what school can be. His musings take us from the classroom, to field trips, to experiences with his grandparents, and into the great outdoors.

๐Ÿ“š Did your experience teaching STEM help inspire this book?

Absolutely! It was the experience of my students throughout the pandemic that inspired me to write it. They came back to our virtual classroom with reports of bread baking, bird watching, long walks, new books… The lessons they learned through their own creativity and resourcefulness reminded me that school was not confined to my classroom.

๐Ÿ“š Why is this book perfect for curious young minds? What are some ideas and inspiration they will find in this book?

SCHOOL IS WHEREVER I AM reinforces for kids that curiosity and an open mind are all that are need for learning to take place. Their musings, failures, and explorations may not feel like the lessons from a classroom, but contribute to their understanding of the world and themselves nevertheless.

๐Ÿ“š Do you feel this book can inspire teachers and parents? If so, how?

My hope is that this book reassures teachers and parents that children learn valuable lessons, even when we don’t impose our own educational goals, skills, and objectives. And often, it’s those lessons outside of typical educational environments in which children make their most meaningful learning.

๐Ÿ“š Is there anything else you’d like to share about your book?

The front and back endpapers show the contents of the main character, Liam’s backpack. I think kids will get a kick out of comparing them and the items he collected along the way.

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