Tag: kidlit

David Carruthers and Princess Leia

Hi folks,

This is one of those strange days where I spend most of my time at school watching a book talk. We even go back tonight to do book swap.ūüėä

I’ve only seen two book talks in my life but three’s the charm with this guy. He has kid participation off to a tee and is so encouraging.

He kept talking about doing what you love despite the push backs and he was so active doing basketball tricks, card tricks and role play.

Have you heard of ‘There’s a T-Rex in My Bathtub’ that’s one of his.



I squeezed some art in around the talks:

I can’t find him on Twitter and he was too busy to get to talk to him but he said he was leaving his social media links with teachers.

Anyway he is a great pioneer of following your dreams so keep dreaming and doing folks.

Happy creating!

Fire Engine Lighthouse

WIN_20150326_165640Fire Engine Lighthouse

I added a¬†mischievous dog and a pie to the poem so my original picture didn’t work anymore. I did add a dog to it using Corel Draw but as you can see neither dog is anything to shout home about. I think the original lighthouse below is better though. What to do?

fire enginedog

Pie woof!

@CathM_Johnson  CatherinePoet (Tumblr and Instagram)


PPBF The Duck Who Played the Kazoo

untitled (15)I¬†can’t remember where I discovered this cute picture book but I hope it’s new to PPBF.

The Duck Who Played the Kazoo written by Amy E. Sklansky and illustrated by Tiphanie Beeke.

Publisher: Haughton Mifflin Harcourt

Suitable for: 4-8 years old.

Themes/Topics: Lonely, friendship.


There once was a duck who loved the kazoo. He played: La ditty, da ditty zu zu.


A hurricane blows through the duck’s lake blowing away all the other ducks. He is left all alone playing his kazoo. He stays there through winter but then leaves his lake in search of companionship.


You could make some paper ducks and even a paper lake. Flap some cardboard around for the hurricane and try and get all but one ducks off the lake. Make some paper snow for winter and then have the duck fly to find the others.

I was so attracted to this book by the illustrations. The watercolors are lovely and in my favorite blues and greens for water and trees. It such a sweet story too.

Join in the groundhog day celebrations on a special Phyllis birthday¬†by joining in Susanna’s contest. All you have to do is¬†write a poem about Phyllis. Details here. While you’re over there browse through today’s perfect picture book selection.

Have a great day!



A Shiver of Sharks

pirateparrotbadge2_zps86e9fe59Ahoy there me hearties! I¬†have longed to read this¬†‘ere app of Julie Hedlund’s. The time be ‘ere at last.


It’s a strange thing that made this ‘ere possible. Me swab mate, Phil had enough air miles to get a free iPad mini. Now Yee can’t store much on a mini but I had to snap up a Shiver of Sharks.

I love me some flamingoes and seahorses and the kids thought the shark bit was cool as pirate booty. It is so fab I’m hoping there’s space for A Troup is a Group of Monkeys but they will probably stock it up with games now.

I can’t recommend this app highly enough and I hope one day to have the skills to do something like this myself.

Strange coincidence that our friend Beth Stilborn interviewed Julie this week. It’s a brilliant interview, check it out ‘ere. (I don’t know what all this pirate talk is about, there’s narry a pirate innit. I blame the parrot.)

Have a great day me hearties!




#MoP15 Day 2: Orchestroni



For¬†Day 2 of #MoP I fancied doing a play on words. I have a draft of a picture of a recorder with notes coming out and a bunch of fun rhyming words. I decided the sea was full of macaroni. It could be a lot longer, so this is a starting point… perhaps.


If your boat becomes lost in a sea of macaroni,

You shall find your way to shore with serenades of orchestroni.


Not really sure of the meter yet either. So fun to do MoP with friends. Check out Robyn’s beautiful haiku from yesterday.



Clown Train for my upcoming book. #clowns #circus #art #poetry #kidlit


The Curious Demise of a Contrary Cat

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Just¬†pretend it’s Halloween still ūüėȬ†The Curious Demise of a Contrary Cat is too good no to share! Written by Lynne Berry and illustrated by Luke LaMarca.




Witch is making a spell and keeps expecting cat to fetch all the ingredients. Cat has no interest in fetching anything so witch hatches a clever plan to get her own back.

Activities: Get kids to role play the story and take turns being the cat and the witch. Which do they prefer and why?

I loved this book it was so much fun and had lots of repetition which always makes for a great picture book. The limited colour scheme was quite funky too.

Check out this cat’s laugh it’s hilarious!

There are¬†more perfect picture books at Susanna Hill’s amazing¬†library of picture books.

Have a great weekend!



Sympathize with Silliness – a poem

Happy Poetry Friday and thanks for all your kind wishes. I’m glad to be over the worst now (thanks to pain relief and antibiotics) and have a silly poem for you today.

Hop on over to the blog of my talented friend Julie to see how she illustrated the title. It will be so interesting to see if matches the poem too.

Sympathize with Silliness

Fly so high on a carousel and climb up made up towers.
Dress as a cartoon character that gives you super powers.
No matter where you’re coming from.
No matter what you’re doing.
It’s always wise to sympathize with silliness while mooing.

Catherine Johnson, 2014.

Poetry Friday is hosted by Violet Nesdoley today, so head on over for more poems to enjoy. Happy Friday!


Oh Teresa!


What a week it has been for my lovely friend Teresa. She had her 50th birthday and got an agent. Woohoo! Let’s pop some streamers, there’s been too much cake eating ūüėČ Teresa is regular in the kidlit community, she is in 12×12, Writing for Children WANA group with myself, Lynn, Yvette (who has just started blogging < go follow her ;)) Robyn, Kat, Candilynn and a bunch of others.

Here's a little video to celebrate:

and Sylvia Liu did a great post all about it here.

Let the good times roll!

It’s Victoria Day here on Monday so I’ll post Tuesday. Have a good one!


Giant Pork Chop


I’m a giant pork chop
Left my shopping in the shop.
Snort worth crying
But no more buying.
Just a roll in the mud
Chewing cud, being good.

Catherine Johnson, 2014.

What a pavlova of a morning. All’s well that ends well. Got me stuff! p.s. Can’t believe how common it is for people to steal from Walmart. Naughty, naughty. *snort*