Gran in her kitchen
Cooking up . . . You guessed it:
with Gran, Pa, and the making of Gran's yucky green jam. But Pa
wants rattler fritters or rattler pie. Will Gran ever make them
check out my Wild
US Critters for
cool facts about rattlesnakes,
and the US critters in my other books.
the "Programs for Various Grades," below.
Big change, whether it be
a move, a death, or a divorce, can affect children in many unpredictable
ways. So, after
reading the story to the children, I ask them questions from the
Q & A in the attached parent-teacher guide. Chatting like this
is very helpful, and helps children understand that BIG changes
can be dealt with if you talk about them and share.
* Do you think Ruthy got away
with too much bad stuff?
* Would your parents let you act
* Do you think she should have
asked her parents why they kmoved?
And more. . .
'Wild and Wonderful'
My 7 book series
is published by
Writers Exchange - E-Publishing.
These rhyming stories, about US and Aussie
are fun as well as eductional
*Don't Eat Platypus Stew
3 rhymes: Platypus Stew, Koala Capers
& Kooky Kookaburra.
- one story
*Never Say BOO To a Frilly includes
2 other rhymes: Rainbow Birds
& Tasmanian Devil Dance.
one story *Prairie
Dog's Play Day includes
2 other rhymes: Bald Eagle Rules
& The Stinker! *Mama Grizzly Bear -
one story *Squirrels
Can't Help Being Nuts -
a posy posy of three rhymes:
Nutty Squirrel, Kitty Kat & Bumblebee
As an Aussie
who has lived in Oregon for many years, I wanted to bring the critters
I remember enjoying as a child to children here in the USA. I would
like my school visits to be a time of fun learning for the kids in
your classrooms. I offer a series of rhyming books that will teach
your class about the weird and wonderful animals in Australia, as
well as fascinating critters from America. All my books are beautifully
illustrated, and each Australian animal story includes a glossary
that explains the fun Aussie words.
Kids today are
more computer savvy than many adults. They spend their time in front
of a computer, rather than curled up with a book.Encouraging
children to read fun, educational books on CD or Computer Download,
is much better than letting them watch cartoon rubbish on TV.
series of rhyming animal books is designed for fun and enjoyment -
kids also learn from them, and that's a plus. They love animal tales:
especially those about weird and wonderful animals from far-away places
Classes can learn about Kangaroos, Koalas and
Platypus etc, while on the computer at home, or at school. They
can also enjoy critters from the USA - Bumblebees, Skunks and Hummingbirds,
to name a few.
SET UP for my series of PBs about critters from the US
I arrive in every class
singing "Waltzing Matilda," wearing a swagman's (or hobo's)
bobbing, cork trimmed hat, carrying my swag on a stick over my shoulder,
and holding a billy for tea and a fryingpan for cooking. The reason
for this get-up is explained, along with a bunch of fun Aussie words
kids can try out on their friends and family.My
interactive PowerPoint Presentation, complete with animal
sounds, keeps children interested and learning about Australia and
the animals in my books - from the US and Australia.
** The presentation screen
shows all the books in FlipView mode: exactly like reading
from a real book - children hear the
pages as they turn! I also have "Rattlesnake Jam" downloaded
to the big screen. The same fun lessons work for both my 6 book
series on CD and download, and for the softcover book
for Various Grades:
3rd grade children:
As well as what is mentioned above, younger
children are encouraged to dive into my rhymes and discover the
secrets of many endearing American and Australian animal species,
plus the Aussie words used. There is a Q & Q time, and I read
from 2 of my books.
* K-1 is
a half hour program.
* Grades 2 and 3 is
three quarters of an hour.
& 5th Grades Older grades
enjoy all the fun mentioned above, plus a selection of neat writing
hints, and encouragement to use fresh adjectives and active and powerful
verbs in their stories. I also mention how I started writing, and
how the illustrators for my books were chosen. I love interacting
with children, and helping them discover the fun of writing rhyme.
I also read 2 stories from my book selection.
* 4th & 5th
grades are one hour programs.
I enjoy answering
questions about Aussie animals and the American critters in my books.
My well worn Australian map also shows many of their unique animals.
My collection of aboriginal artifacts,
map of Australia, and the Aussie words the children will have fun
using, are always a big hit.I
also bring a genuine coconut. I brought this back from a beach in
far Northern Queensland, Australia.
encourage children to visit the Down-Under
pages on my
website. These two pages offer lots of extra fun stuff about the animals
in my books. And there are links to other critter sites for kids who
are interested in learning more.
My website offers "SAFE SURFING" for
How I found the
right artists to illustrate my books makes a great story. Two of
the artists come from Turkey, and one speaks no English. WOW! Did
that cause problems! The other artists are scattered throughout
the US. The Internet, plus a wonderful on-line writer's list, played
a big part in my success as a writer.
I am happy to answer
questions about writing rhyme. Thank you for this opportunity to introduce
myself and my books. . .PleaseE-MAIL
ME ( mfinke
at frontier dot com ) if you would like further details about
I have done my
best to make sure my fee is reasonable, and does not break your school's
budget. My fees begin at $100. This is for a reading and lesson for
one class. If you want me to work with several classes, and different
grades, my fee will be higher, depending on the time involved and
the number of classes. If long distances are involved, I will ask
for travel and accomodation expenses.
I am always happy to chat with you about my
presentation, and consider anything extra you would like to add. Everything
is negotiable, including my fee -
about neat SCHOOL VISITS
I had the fun of
doing two sessions at this neat school. The librarian and teachers
were so supportive and interested in everything. I even got to sign
the Author's Wall. The morning session was for kindergarten
and grade one. The afternoon session was for kindergarten, grade one,
and some grade twos. These kids were such fun, and asked great questions.
The animal sounds I incorporated into my PowerPoint Presentation were
a big hit.
Young 4th and 5th Grades.
Had a great time
with these classes, reading my books, talking about Australia and
fun Aussie words. Older classes like this love a more in-depth look
at how my book series got to be published. They enjoyed hearing how
I found the book illustrators through my online writing list, and
that two of them came from far away Turkey. We also talked about the
craft of writing great books, and I answered some neat questions.
I hope to display some pictures of that day here soon.
Young Grade School
I visited Ewing
Young's K through 3rd grades, and had a ton of fun with them. Such
smart and attentive kids! Below are a couple of pictures.
with hobo hat, and swag on a stick...Screen
showing my Prairie Dog story
Read about another SCHOOL VISIT
This is me visiting
a 3rd grade writing class in Beaverton, Oregon. I'm holding up
a coconut my husband and I found on a beach in far northern Queensland,
the whiteboard (top left) are aboriginal bark paintings, a fire
stick, and a message stick. I made a personalized badge and bookmark
for each child, and worked with them on a fun lesson about finding
strong and active verbs, and great adjectives. The teacher requested
some sort of helpful lesson, as well as me reading from my rhyming
animal stories and talking about Australia.
The kids were
really interested and they asked lots of questions. That made
it great fun.
If you would like to know more about my
series of books, or purchase one or more of the books.