There is always something new at the Carle.
I say this all the time, because it’s true. Every visit there is ‘something’ that floors me – sets me off like a sparkler.
Marc Brown, author of the beloved “Arthur” books was a guest speaker – the first since Covid. These were the books my children grew up with. I still read them to children in my class. Little did I know there would be far more at the museum that day. It always happens that way. But, I’m getting ahead of myself.
Meeting an author who writes books that I know and love is a tonic for me. Big time.
Earlier, Marc Brown read aloud to the audience “Arthur’s Halloween”, certainly one of his most popular Arthur books.
I had my assistant teacher’s son’s treasured Arthur book with me, the same one. Jack is now 22, and he still considers this book his prized possession. I had the pleasure of telling that story to Marc when I got the book signed. Stories are everything.
Most of the characters in the Arthur books come from Marc’s childhood – his third grade class. He showed the audience the class photo, and we could see every character. It was crystal clear, and great fun to put a real face to Arthur’s friends.
He went to Russia with Laura Bush, promoting her literacy foundation. When Arthur became a TV show on PBS, guess who was instrumental in helping out? Fred Rogers! Of course the TV show ‘Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood’ set the standard. The two became close friends. That made my day!
Then, I was off to explore.
The current exhibit at the museum is Color | Joy | Eric Carle. I thought I had already seen most of his wonderful art. Wrong! The exhibit is, well, thrilling. It includes his art that has never been displayed before. I couldn’t stop looking.
There is art that inspires me to do the same with my class.
Yes, we can punch holes on paper and mount it onto foil!
We can glue tissue paper and then turn it into stars!
There is a remarkable work of art that brings “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” into another realm, blooming with joy.
Yes, a picture – art – is worth a thousand words.
The bookstore at the museum is THE best bookstore. Yes, I am picky. After reading aloud to children for over thirty decades, I know the best books. I always find a new and wonderful book at the museum, one that is often not found at the regular bookstores.
These are my new book finds. They are so, so good!
Thank you to the Eric Carle Museum for always inspiring me.
Oh, Jennie, you are so fortunate to have this so close to you! What an experience!
I am lucky, Ritu. For a children’s book lover, it is a dream come true.
oh, what a double wonderful experience!
I am so envious, Jennie. But I know you enjoy it enough for me as well.
I certainly do, Norah. 🙂
Thank you Jennie for sharing. I will do this with my grandchildren. Bright and beautiful.
Hooray!! And I haven’t even told you about the art room for children to pop in and create their own art. It is inspiring! And, the museum also has their own library, including every Caldecott winner, plus guest authors reading aloud their books.
Wow I can’t wait. Lovely!!!
What a wonderful place to spend a day at. I love the artwork and the books you picked up look amazing. I’m sure we´ll hear more about them.
Thank you, Darlene. Yes, you will hear more. I have a small pile of fabulous books that I need to write about. Soon!
A grand day out!
Great post, Jennie. People everywhere have a wonderful place like the Carle to educate and fascinate them – they only have to look for them!! So glad you had a good day out!
Yes, that is true. Thank you, GP.
A delightful day for you, and new books too! That’s a win-win!
Best wishes, Pete.
Yes, it is! Best to you, Pete.
sounds like a wonderful museum, and how lucky to meet Marc Brown. We always enjoyed reading the Arthur books to our kids. I liked learning that his characters were based off his third grade class. I also liked that there was a Fred Rogers connection!
And by the way, I did not realize you have been reading aloud for over 30 decades – that’s quite impressive 🙂
It was the best! When he put up the old black and white class photo, we could all see how his classmates turned into Arthur characters. And the Fred Rogers connection- wow!
Jim, this is my 37th (38th?) year at school. Lucky me! And reading aloud is as exciting and important as ever. Many thanks!
that must have been quite the presentation.
and I was remarking on your time spent teaching because you mentioned that you have been teaching for thirty decades – that would be 300 years! 🙂
Haha!! I said that? 😂
Thank you for taking us along on your latest visit to the Eric Carle Museum. I left with a smile!
I’m so glad you enjoyed it, Liz. A smile speaks volumes. 😀
Indeed it does!
What a fabulous visit, Jennie. A real inspiration for sure.
It was, John. Thank you!
Hurrah, hurrah!!! New ideas for making art with your class. New stories to share with us. Thank you for sharing your enthusiasm with us, Jennie!
My pleasure, Will. Yes, so many new hurrahs! 😀
This must have been so much fun, Jennie. Thanks for sharing.
It really was, Dan. It was the next best thing to a train museum. 🙂 We are in Virginia over Thanksgiving to see our son (it’s been two years) and his wonderful family. He is taking us to a museum of WWI and WWII aircraft, not far from Virginia Beach. I promise to take lots of photos!
Okay…I am now off to find you since I realize those Happiness Engineers have turned you into dust. I hate when they drop a blogger that I follow.
An amazing story, Jennie! Charlotte isn’t quite into Arthur books yet but my sister grew up reading them so I am familiar with them!
I am always looking for great books to read aloud to Charlotte! Thanks for the two new recommendations! 😀
Thanks so much, Jenn. My next few posts will be on good children’s books, which will be right up Charlotte’s alley.
To have a place that ‘sets you off like a sparkler’ is a huge gift, not to be taken lightly (as I know you don’t). If I can’t see this place for myself, then seeing it through your ‘sparkling’ eyes is the next best treat!
That is so nice, Laura. Thank you. As a musician, you know how it feels when you see and hear something played – live- that was always a favorite piece of music. It’s like magic! The same thing happens when I see the art – live- from beloved books that I read to children. It really does set me off like a sparkler.
I just finished writng a post about well, appreciating the simpicity and beautiful color of my art! I forgot how much Eric Carle as infulenced my work.
“Arthur books” were some of the first books my 2nd graders were reading independently. You have had some rich experiences with some fabulous authors, Jennie!
I’m glad the Arthur books and your 2nd graders were fond memories for you, Pete. Yes, I have had some rich experiences meeting authors. I’m so lucky! New England, especially western Massachusetts and Vermont, seems to have many authors.
Hi Jennie, thank you for sharing this lovely post!
I’m glad you enjoyed it, Charles!
Never been there but it looks wonderful!
Have you ever written your own children’s books? I am a teacher but dabbling in mostly coaching last few years because I am trying to make more time to write children’s books. 🤞🏽📚
Yes I have! Two in fact. I plug away at finding an agent (Query Tracker is excellent), mostly in the summer when I have more time.
What a wonderful experience! i would love to go.
I would have never known about this museum if it wasn’t for this post. But then I thought, wow … there could truly be a museum about anything! Wonderful!!!! Your passion comes through loud and clear. Well done … but then – WHOA …. you went to Russia with Laura Bush? The First Lady? Very impressive. 🙂
We learn so much from fellow bloggers. I think there truly is a museum for everything. Thank you, Frank. No, I didn’t go to Russia with Laura Bush (although that would have been wonderful), author Marc Brown did. I have heard about her literacy foundation.
Thanks for the clarification …. and maybe Mrs. Bush will ask you to go along next time.
Wouldn’t that be something!
What a fun day out and neat experience to meet that author too!
It was! Thank you, Deborah.
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Thank you, Michael!
Thanks for sharing your wonderful experiences at this me only by your recommendation known museum, Jennie! xx Michael
My pleasure, Michael!