Newsletter, January 2001

Welcome to the January issue of our newsletter. If you'd like to have each issue delivered to your email address you can sign-up for a subscription.

In This Issue You'll Find:

Newbery News

cover art

Hooray! Richard Peck is the recipient of the Newbery Award this year for his delightful book A Year Down Yonder (Dial, 2000 ISBN 0803725183. Order Info.). Readers of A Long Way from Chicago (Dial, 1999 ISBN 0803722907. Order Info.).will be pleased to know that we haven't seen the last of Grandma Dowdel. She's back in A Year Down Yonder, indomitable as ever with her wisdom and unique sense of justice, offering readers from fourth grade up chuckles and surprises at every turn.

It's the 1930s and Grandma lives in downstate, rural Illinois. Actually she does more than live there; she rules there. In the earlier book her home was haven and respite for both of her grandchildren every summer. Now, Joey is working in a CCC camp so it is Mary Alice who comes to Grandma Dowdel's alone to spend a year while their parents manage life in considerably straitened circumstances in Chicago. The prospect of a whole year in Grandma's domain is somewhat daunting to the young teenager. Getting used to the kids and customs in the tiny country school are only one of the many adjustments Mary Alice must make but we know Grandma will lend a hand. We're just not sure, and Mary Alice is not at all sure, that things will get better or worse when Grandma gets involved.

Life is never dull and things have a way of working out, however. Grandma Dowdel wouldn't be pleased to hear us say that she has a heart of gold, not because she doesn't have one but because she'd like to think she hid it better and because she'd never use such a trite expression. Peck has given us one of literature's best eccentrics and prospective readers should be prepared for belly laughs and tears in A Year Down Yonder.

You can find out more about the Newbery Awards and Caldecott awards.

Workshop News

I've Read the Book, Now What? Workshops for Teachers of grades 2-6 by Carol Hurst:

  • - use literature across the curriculum
  • - connect your reading program to content areas
  • - motivate your readers
  • - complement your reading program with meaningful activities
  • - enhance comprehension through conversation
  • - use a variety of genre
  • - storytell and read aloud as powerful extensions of literature
  • March 6, 2001 - New Jersey
    • Holiday Parsipanny
    • 707 Route 46 East
    • Parsippany, NJ
  • April 3, 2001 - Connecticut
    • Ramada Inn- Capitol Hill
    • 440 Asylum Street
    • Hartford, CT
  • May 8, 2001 - Massachusetts
    • Holiday Inn Springfield
    • 711 Dwight Street
    • Springfield, MA
To register call Literacy Corner at 877-346-9737

While we're at it here are the rest of Carol's upcoming workshops:

  • February 6, 2001 - Adams Friendship, Wisconsin Teacher Inservice.
  • April 29, 2001 - Preconvention Institute. IRA, New Orleans, LA.
  • June 27, 2001 - Literature Conference. New Ulm, Minnesota.
  • July 20, 2001 - Literature Conference. Orange County, California.
  • July 25, 2001 - Early Childhood Institute. Dallas, Texas.

For more information on any of these write to Carol Hurst at For more information on Carol Hurst and her work in schools and conferences see Carol Otis Hurst Consulting.


Related Areas of Carol Hurst's Children's Literature Site