A Tender Bridge

Quotes and Advice from Ashley Bryan:

  • “If you put art into the world, you will get beauty in return.”
  • If I can conjure up the joy of the voice of the book, then the child will want to read. Kids don’t want to be put on the spot. A kid can work with you if you give them time.
  • I hold the book as I speak the words so the kids know where the words come from.
  • I rejoice in the spirit of the oral tradition.
  • Kids need to know how the words will speak through them. This is different for everyone. Work cooperatively, and allow the child to ask you how to pronounce something. This will give them confidence when they perform a poem.
  • Poetry infuses fiction and non-fiction.
  • I hope that in the reading of the book you can hear the original storyteller.

Books and Poems Recited by Bryan:

  • There were many poems presented. These two I jotted down.
  • Black Bird (Folk tale picture book)
  • Nicki Giovanni’s “Why I like Chocolate.”

Ashley Bryan’s numerous awards and honors include the Coretta Scott King Award for Illustration, six Coretta Scott King Honors, the Arbuthnot Prize, a Fulbright Scholarship, and several honorary doctorates. He illustrated The Story of the Three Kingdoms, The Sun is So Quiet, Ho God Fix Jonah, and many others. He retold and illustrated many books of African folktales and six books of African American Spirituals. Mr. Bryan studied at The Cooper Union in New York and earned a degree of philosophy from Columbia University. He lives in Islesford, Maine.

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