I’m Erin Dealey, and I write books for kids. I’m a teacher, presenter, rhymer, blogger, and proud Drama Mama.

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Kindergarten #tbt Show and Tell –part 15

September 7, 2017

It’s kindergarten #tbt Show and Tell again,

and today’s post is from #kidlit author Dashka Slater.

This Kinder kid grew up to write amazing books in many genres

and there are incredible new ones on the way!

Her picture books include:


(FSG, illus. Sydney Hanson)

Escargot’s voice is parfait, an airy blend of ego and need masterfully balanced in witty and well-turned sentences that leave plenty of room for audiences to get the joke…”

Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, starred review


(Dial Books/illus. Valeria Delcampo)

“A sophisticated romp.” — Publishers Weekly

“Humor and wordplay…sit alongside the danger.” — Kirkus Reviews

And check out this beautiful book–released this month:


(Beach Lane / illus. Terry Fan & Eric Fan)

An inquisitive fox sets off on a seafaring voyage with a crew of deer and pigeons in this enchanting tale of friendship and adventure.

Kirkus review here. 

THE ANTLERED SHIP is currently a  in Children’s Fox and wolf books on Amazon!

Here’s Dashka’s memory:

I came to kindergarten already knowing how to read, the byproduct of having spent the previous year traveling with my parents while my father was on sabbatical. Since I didn’t have other children to play with, my mother had decided to teach me to read and by the time I arrived in kindergarten, I’d had plenty of time to practice.

I was young for my grade — the result of having a late-November birthday — and having this one precocious skill meant that my schoolteachers thought I must be some sort of genius and treated me a bit like a performing seal.

I remember my kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Egan having me read a book to the rest of the class for story-time. It felt both wonderful and strange to sit in the teacher’s chair with the other children clustered around me on the floor. The chair was too big for me, and my feet didn’t reach the floor.

I liked Mrs. Egan quite a lot — she was young and glamorous seeming, with a very tall and fancy beehive hairdo — and I remember her being extremely nice. But I also remember feeling a bit peculiar about all the attention I was getting for being able to read, which would persist through first grade and would eventually make me fairly unpopular with the other children. It was a relief when everyone else caught up!

As parents and teachers, it’s good to remember that our amazing, precocious children, early readers, math whizkids, do not always immediately fit in with their age group.  

As much as we may have prepared them for academic success,

the social aspect is equally important. 

Keeping the dialog open between parent & teacher as well as parent & child can help to smooth this transition. 

To learn more about Dashka Slater go to dashkaslater.com and follow her on Twitter @DashkaSlater

I’m equally excited to share Dashka’s non-fiction narrative based on a true story (and a fabulous piece she wrote for the NYT magazine)

of two Oakland teenagers.


A True Story of Two Teenagers and the Crime That Changed Their Lives

“The text shifts from straightforward reporting to lyrical meditations, never veering into oversentimentality or simple platitudes. Readers are bound to come away with deep empathy for both Sasha and Richard. VERDICT Slater artfully unfolds a complex and layered tale about two teens whose lives intersect with painful consequences. This work will spark discussions about identity, community, and what it means to achieve justice.”

SLJ starred review

“With a journalist’s eye for overlooked details, Slater does a masterful job debunking the myths of the hate-crime monster and the African-American thug, probing the line between adolescent stupidity and irredeemable depravity. Few readers will traverse this exploration of gender identity, adolescent crime, and penal racism without having a few assumptions challenged. An outstanding book that links the diversity of creed and the impact of impulsive actions to themes of tolerance and forgiveness.”

Kirkus starred review

Using details gleaned from interviews, social media, surveillance video, public records, and other sources, Slater skillfully conveys the complexities of both young people’s lives and the courage and compassion of their families, friends, and advocates, while exploring the challenges and moral ambiguities of the criminal justice system. This painful story illuminates, cautions, and inspires.”

PW starred review

You can pre-order it here. 

To meet the other Kindergartners who have contributed to this Kindergarten 

SHOW & TELL series, start here.

Thank you to ALL who have helped K IS FOR KINDERGARTEN earn a ribbon too!

Children’s Humorous Poetry 


And check back next week to meet the kindergartner who grew up to be

#kidlit author (GLAM OPENING/Sparkle Spa series, plus adult novels like THE LIGHT WE LOST too!) and editor (SHE PERSISTED by Chelsea Clinton) 

Jill Santopolo.

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