Monday, March 3, 2014


Authors often immerse themselves in research to learn all they can about the topics they write about in their stories. I actually have rocks in my head. Metamorphic, Igneous, and Sedimentary rocks have been filling my thoughts since my new picture book These Rocks Count! will begin rolling out to libraries and bookstores this month, just in time to celebrate spring.

In researching rocks for this new picture book, I spoke to many wonderful scientists including geologists, seismologists, and volcanologists. They helped me learn how much rocks count in our world. I wouldn’t be able to type this blog entry without rocks, which are used to make parts for computers like the one I'm using right now. Rocks are used to make many items we use every day, such as telephones, televisions, and even toothpaste! 

Examples of Story Rocks
Rocks can be used to inspire writing ideas.
STORY ROCKS is a fun way to spark creativity and to celebrate springtime.

1. Go on a classroom hike around school and find small rocks to paint. If that’s not possible, inexpensive bags of decorative small, smooth pebbles can be found at most craft stores.
2. Wash rocks and let them dry.
3. Give students one to five rocks each.
3. Use markers or paint to create a different image on rocks: a person, place, or thing such as the examples in the "Story Rocks" photo.
4. What story can students tell with their painted rocks? Encourage students to expand and elaborate to build a strong foundation for a mountain of a story.
5. Students can trade rocks to help more story ideas. 
5. Write stories.
Have fun! All story ideas ROCK! 

Educators guides for These Rocks Count! and all of my books are available on my website at

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