Terry Catasús Jennings has a talent for taking a simple concept and telling a great story. In her newest book Sounds of the Savanna, Terry takes readers to the African plains and shows them how important sound is to the animals that live in this habitat.
Get to know a little more about Terry’s writing:
How did you first become interested in writing, and writing for children’s picture books?
When I read Little Women by Louisa May Alcott as a very young girl, I knew I wanted to be a writer, just like Jo March. I believe though, that I would have ended up being a writer even if I hadn’t read the book. Stories are always rolling around in my head. Whenever something happens I like to report on it, like writing a newspaper story, in my head. I also like to figure out why people may have acted in a particular way, so I take what happens and I figure out a plot line that may have led them to their actions. Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? What I like best of all is figuring out the very best way to convey each message—the best words to use, how to form each sentence and that is especially important in a picture book. I love to use the rhythm of language when I write a picture book. It’s almost like writing a poem.
Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?
Read, read, read. Write, write, write. Look at the world with curiosity and try to figure out why things happen they way they do and why people act the way they do. Listen to people talk. Pay special attention to how they move. Capture a scene as if you were a movie camera and store it in your mind. You’ll use all those things that you have stored in your mind when you write your books.
You can read the full interview here!
But first here is a great roaring lion craft to go along with the book’s For Creative Minds section, check it out.
- You can use felt or paper (for our mask we used paper).
- You will need light brown, dark brown or black, A shade of red/pink, and white.
- Scissors and a pencil
- A large circle and small circular container for tracing
- A stick, for ours we used a pipe cleaner
- On tan paper use the large circle and trace three circles in a heart shape pattern. Connect the two top circles to the bottom and cut out your back portion.
- On the same paper trace two circles connect them together at the top to form a straight line and cut those out. For the nose of your lion.
- On the dark brown or black paper use the smaller circle and repeat step one. This will form your open mouth.
- Again on the dark paper cut a triangle for the nose and then round the edges
- On the pink paper use the bottom of the open mouth form and trace the lower portion of the tongue. Use your small circle to overlap and form the heart shape of the top of the tongue.
- On white paper cut two narrow triangles.
- Glue the dark mouth to the background, glue the tongue in place and then the teeth. Glue the triangle nose onto the tan nose, then glue that on top of your lion mouth.
- Tape or glue a stick to the back and you have your finished roaring lion!
Leave a comment and enter to win a copy of Sounds of the Savanna!