is the author of the Snickerdoodle storybook series. She is a former teacher with a background in early childhood education. An award-winning writer, her feature articles on education and women’s/family issues have appeared in Working Woman, American Education, Humanities Report, The Washington Post, and The Christian Science Monitor. She has contributed to Time-Life Books’ series on “Successful Parenting” and has ghostwritten and edited several consumer-oriented books. She was consultant for a project on educational technology developed by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Exceptional Children and has provided editorial support services to the American Counseling Association, the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development’s Educational Leadership magazine, School Library Media Activities Monthly magazine. Since 1995 she has been staff editor for the National Art Education Association in Reston, Virginia. Clare is a member of the Women’s National Book Association, the Publishers Marketing Association, the Association of Booksellers for Children, the National Storytelling Network, and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. She has been listed in Who’s Who of American Women. Clare lives in Fairfax, Virginia with her two cats, Matt & Mo.
Snickerdoodle! A Tall Tale about a Powerful Pee-Wee!
Snickerdoodle is a “timeless tall tale hero from American folklore” originally introduced by the author’s grandfather, Otis Ham, in the early 1900s. This tiny fellow who rides in a peanut is the nephew of Yankee Doodle and cousin of Polly Wolly Doodle. His message for “little guys” is that you do not need to be strong and tall, that “real power shines within you.” The message also includes the notion that kindness, friendliness, and humor can make peace, and that a pee-wee can be a superhero
In the Snickerdoodle package are three paperback books of the tiny guy’s adventures: Snickerdoodle! which introduces the hero and his peanut-butter powered peanut car/boat/plane as he captures robbers and saves the town parade; Snickerdoodle! And the Roller Skating Horse, in which he rescues a horse and helps it fulfill its desire to roller skate; and Snickerdoodle’s Star-Spangled Fourth, where he produces a star-spangled cat to substitute for the holiday fireworks. The stories are told in rhymed couplets.
A spiral bound My Snickerdoodle Doodle Book: Creative Writing and Drawing Adventures includes pages of drawings of the story characters suitable for coloring along with a challenge to the readers on an “Imagination Page” to “Imagine your own adventure, and draw or write your ideas here.” There are also other “games” and spurs to creative writing. The author provides additional suggestions and lesson plans for classroom teachers, and a CD on which the three stories are told by a folksy narrator, and six folk songs are sung to familiar tunes, with both the original and new lyrics–even a rap.
Rissing’s painted illustrations occupy the central portion of each page of the books. Naturalistic, but with a comic sense of exaggeration, her figures dominate the scenes with little contextual setting. The actions of the animals, some with human facial features, tend to simply replicate the words of the text leaving little room for additions. Some teachers may find much to do with this package. Note: Books are $3.50 each. 2005 (orig. 1975; 1979; 1980; 1999), Small Wonders Enterprises, $21.50. Ages 4 to 8. Reviewers: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz (Children’s Literature).
Celebrate the Power of the Little Guy to Make a Big Difference! 30 minute presentation geared for small groups (max: 25 children), preK – 2nd grade.
Program format is flexible and may include:
- Discussion with kids about “heroes;” telling the story in short form or reading aloud the rhyming storybook Snickerdoodle!; answering kids’ questions; and/or doing a rhythmic activity to “The Snickerdoodle Rap.”
- Telling kids about the character “Snickerdoodle” and his magic peanut-mobile; doing an art activity; doing a collaborative storytelling game.
- Reading aloud books in the “Snickerdoodle” series.
- Author will answer kids’ questions about career in writing/storytelling/publishing and encouraging kids’ to persistently pursue their own creative dreams.
- $150 for 1 presentation
- $250 for 2 back-to-back presentations
Travel expenses required if event is outside the DC Metro Area (over 75 miles). Fees negotiable for special events.
To learn more about Clare Grosgebauer and her publications please visit www.snickerdoodleforkids.com.