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Bookmaking Workshop Coming to SMS


On January 25, 2012 students and parents will have an opportunity to learn, hands on, the process of imagining, planning and creating a book via a 90-minute workshop conducted by authors Hans and Jennifer Hartvickson, creators of “Mister Lemur’s Train of Thought”. In the book, a cartoon character,  “Mister Lemur”, guides readers through 150 pages and 66 fun and subtly educational stories.

Designed to teach teamwork, time-management, communication and critical thinking, the evening workshop will be fun and collaborative for students and their parents. The event is free and open to the public, however, participants must register beforehand (to register, send an email request to khb @ The workshop will be held from 6:30-8pm in the Sunnyvale Middle School Multi-purpose room.

The Mister Lemur workshop will begin with a challenge: to conceive of and create an 8-page mini-book within the allocated 90 minutes. Given the timeline, teamwork will be critical! Hans and Jennifer will help teams assign roles (time-keeper, materials coordinator, scribe, and harmonizer) and make a plan. After a fun brainstorming exercise that yields the storyline, teams will head off to work; writers will meet with Hans to review plot and meter while artists will meet with Jen to discuss layout and design. With newfound knowledge in-hand, teams will reunite for the final 30 minutes to create their mini-book. The workshop will conclude with a “book fair” as the newly created books are put on display for all to see.

“Mister Lemur’s Train of Thought” contains illustrated, rhyming stories that are intended to be read aloud to 5-7 year olds and independently by 8-11 year olds. For more information about the book, please visit

Update: To view scanned versions of the mini books created by workshop participants, please go to:

Below are a few images from the 1/25 workshop:

Planning the page layout for "A Magical, Mysterious Tour".
Designing the cover for "A Day at the Beach".
Illustrating the cover of "The Stinky Cat".
An internal page from of "All in the Day of a Spartan".

Article by Kathy Besser

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