Apr 072014


Hansi and the IcemanHansi and the neighborhood children delight in gathering ice chips from the horse-drawn ice wagon as the iceman brings ice for Oma’s icebox. But when Hansi’s grandmother buys an electric refrigerator, he wonders about the changes ahead—no more ice for Oma’s icebox and no ice chips for Hansi and his sister Elizabeth.

Hansi and the Iceman is sure to spark memories for sharing across generations.


May 262012


    The Picture Man

     a One School—One Book selection

     paired with your school’spicture day.



Are you interested in a book that speaks to students across grade levels?

  • Touches the heart, engages curiosity about technology, and promises to bring a smile?
  • Supports K-5 Common Core and Essential Standards?
  • Links to social studies, language arts, writing, science, and art?
  • Blends simplicity and depth?
  • Would be an appropriate One School—One Book selection?

The Picture Man opens discussion and exploration that can be used in teaching required skills, from comparing/contrasting (picture man photos/school or studio photos) to integration of media (art and text).  It opens ideas for writing, sparks curiosity about culture and lifestyle as suggested by photographs, and even links to science and the study of light and lenses—numerous topics for students to research and share with classes.  (Find ideas for teachers on the Study Guide.)     

What is One School—One Book?

One School—One Book offers students within a school the opportunity to read the same book and share learning experiences across grade levels.  Lessons and activities are adapted to individual grades in keeping with Common Core’s graduated skill objectives.

Activities can involve multiple grade levels (Grade 5 and K reading together, dramatic presentation for other grades, visual displays of class projects in common areas, etc.).

One School—One Book can include a visit from the author, who can share behind-the-book insights, build on information in the book, and respond to students’ questions.

At the project ends, books could be given to the students or sold to students for a portion of the cost, thus providing seed money for the next year’s selection.

Why use The Picture Man for One School—One Book?

  • Most children enjoy getting school pictures and seeing themselves in other photos
  • The book includes simple poetic prose in the story (fiction) and more complex text in end notes (non-fiction).
  • It engages curiosity about inventions and photography.
  • It can be adapted easily to dramatic presentation and other written response.
  • It introduces numerous areas for research.
  • It links to studies across curriculum.
  • It can engage students and families in exploring personal and cultural stories.
  • Between June 1 and December 1, it can be purchased at much-reduced rates.
  • The author is willing to work with your school.

*A Suggestion:  Pair with school picture day.  Stir interest in the book by placing childhood photos of the staff on a bulletin board where students can guess who is who.

Sources of Funding for One School—One Book

  • Title I
  • Arts Council Teacher Project Grant
  • PTA
  • Community Businesses
  • Civic Organizations
  • Educational foundation grants
  • www.donorschoose.org


Special Offer from the author: 

Is your school interested in classroom sets or larger sets of books for a One School–One Book study?  If so, I can offer you  books for much reduced rates. Special Rate on The Picture Man $3.50 to $7.00, based on quantity (Retail hardcover, $16.95)Let’s discuss ways to work within your budget Read about Special Offers on all titles.


Special Book Rates for Schools

Addie Clawson
Dresses, Dreams
Jack Tales
Mama’s Wreaths
Orville Hicks
Picture Man
Walking Ribbon

To order books or plan an author visit, contact Julia Taylor Ebel


May 262012

I enjoy providing programs for schools, libraries, and community organizations.

School-wide author visits include multiple sessions that draw from my writing experience in keeping North Carolina stories in a variety of ways. Also, I can work with a class or a grade level as well as an entire school. (More under Workshops.)

Smaller-group sessions have many possibilities:

  • A poetry workshop with a class or grade
  • A look at NC stories with 4th grade
  • A session on NC mountain folklore (drawing from Jack Tales and Orville Hicks
  • A session on writing stories (and/or poems) from photographs (The Picture Man and Addie Clawson:  Appalachian Mail Carrier a starters)
  • A 4th-grade talk on drawing from NC resources, with examples from Mama’s Wreaths and Dresses, Dreams and Beadwood Leaves.
  • A look at strong women.  March is Women’s History Month;  Addie Clawson features a noteworthy NC woman– a role model of courage and determination in the face of odds.
  • A discussion on stories that look at anchoring self esteem (Addie ClawsonMama’s WreathsDresses, Dreams and Beadwood Leaves)

Teachers can include literature, language, writing, social studies, and even  math and science in lessons with my books.  (Study Guides under Downloads.)

Contact me to discuss programs.

Aug 172011

Creating Mama’s Wreaths with Joann Moretz was a joy as I witnessed family heritage and skill passed through generations. Likewise, sharing my newest book has been a exciting journey.

I visited libraries, bookstores, and schools in North Carolina’s Piedmont and mountains. I talked alongside wreath-making with a Delta Kappa Gamma chapter in the heart of wreath-making country, and I made wreaths at the Burke County Library, Bethania Mill, and Tom’s Creek Nursery in Farmer. I enjoyed talking about ginseng and calves with knowledgeable 3rd graders at Riverbend Elementary in Clyde, and I was wowed by the poetry of students at Waynesville Middle School and Meadowbrook Academy. At Blue Ridge Books, I learned about “candy roasters.” For the uninitiated, candy roasters are large sweet pumpkins. Look it up on Google!

Here are some images from a delightful visit with enthusiastic readers at Wilkesboro Elementary. Jack Tales and Mountain Yarns was their favorite of my books.









Check the Events page for dates, details, directions, and a list of events.