Tag Archives: Laura Shovan

January 17

Writing Poetry with Children by Laura Shovan

Twenty-three years ago, I left my full-time position teaching high school English and applied for my dream job: Visiting poet-in-the-schools for my state arts council. Surprise! Being a visiting poet required different skills than those I’d been growing as a classroom educator. Over the years, I’ve worked with thousands of young poets in all types […]

September 23

Heading Back to School with Healthy Friendship Tools by Laura Shovan and Jessica Speer

“Healthy friendships feel safe and accepting.” This sentence, from the introduction of the new guidebook BFF or NRF? (Not Really Friends): A Girl’s Guide to Happy Friendships (Familius), jumped out at me. “Yes!” was my first reaction. And then, “I wish someone had told me this when I was in middle school.” BFF or NRF? […]

March 07

“My Brother Won’t Stop Hitting”: When Children Write about Abuse by Laura Shovan

My brother won’t stop hitting, it’s like thunder in the walls, my brother won’t stop hitting, it’s like pouring rain drops… I hold a child’s hand-written poem in my hands. The author – a long ago student from one of my poetry residencies – dated their writing March of 2005.  In ten lines, this elementary […]

March 21

An Invitation to a Community Poetry Project by Laura Shovan

Dear Educators and Parents, I am putting together a community poetry project for kids. Adults can play along too. For several years, I have run an annual poetry writing project. For one month, participants receive a daily writing prompt related to a theme. (In 2014 we wrote in response to Pantone paint colors; in 2019 […]

July 23

Cover Reveal for A Place at the Table by Saadia Faruqi and Laura Shovan

Laura: This book started with a question: What does it mean to be an American when your parent is an immigrant? It’s an identity I struggled with as a child. Was I more American and Jewish, like my father, or did I feel most at home in my mother’s British culture? First generation American kids […]

November 15

A Long Way to Go on Gun Violence by Laura Shovan

We woke up on Thursday morning to news of another mass shooting in America, this time at a California bar. It was college night. As the mom of two college students, I was shaken once again. It had only been eleven days since Jews were gunned down in their Pittsburgh synagogue. Twelve since a man […]

January 29

#BookExpedition: How a middle grade book group came together to read widely for themselves, their students, and each other.

When I spotted this Tweet from educator Mike Contuzzi, I was intrigued.     Educator reading groups were popping up on Twitter, but I had no idea how they worked. I replied to Mike (who has since left #BookExpedition), wondering what I’d signed up for.   Now a #BookExpedition veteran, I love the distance reading […]

October 13

Cover Reveal: Takedown by Laura Shovan

I’m thrilled to be revealing the cover of my next middle grade novel at Nerdy Book Club today! Writing this book was a big stretch for me. My first book, The Last Fifth Grade of Emerson Elementary, was a verse novel. Not only is Takedown written in prose, it’s a sports story.   My son had been wrestling […]