Resources Not Courses, Please!
My working partnership with Clare Trevelyan is based on completing on a series of contradictory curriculum design tasks, arising from her epic business vision which reads as a highly personal creative view of her place in the world as an author, parent and human being.
“I have a dream that family life for my child will be a collective of adventures in thinking, so it follows that my vision for a sustainable venture is creating a community of passionate people who empower you the parent, to crack open conversations between families, on life, on everything around your kitchen table…. using our beautiful resources for just ten minutes a day”
Oddly but thankfully, the vision seems to make sense to me. Nonetheless, curriculum-wise, I must navigate a highly differentiated path for a client who wants to create storybooks and learning experience for her parent audience which steer away from any sense of a parenting course. Instead, she wants online resources which parents can use in 10 minute blocks to meaningful share questions, conversations and media – texts, music, animations.
Here’s a 2 minute presentation I created to explain Clare’s vision:
Making Partnerships With A Writer Means Knowing The Writing.
Clare and I have been working together for five years.
The basis of our relationship began NOT with designing curriculum around her books but, as I learned to do in my teaching career, spending time coming to know how she created her books. In other words, I made it my business to understand her style and concepts in the most thorough way, so much so that I could offer her my editing skills, prior to her handing over her works to a professional editing service.
My writing skills and doctorate in the cultural history of the creative industries meant that I could begin a most interesting dialogue with my writer client about her values and beliefs, as well as her artistic raison d’etre.
Thus far, I’ve had the pleasure of seeing her complete two series for her preferred age group of middle school young readers
Thinking of resource creation pedagogically
I’m sure we have all seen the kinds of resources which publishers create for children’s authors. They’re most designed for use in the classroom to stimulate readers to pay closer attention to the text – word sleuths, crosswords, closed comprehension questions etc.