Sunday, Sept. 11 is Grandparents Day. What a lovely idea for a holiday — setting aside a day for grandchildren to celebrate the special-ness of their grandparents, and the magic of the bond between them. No cards, candy, fancy food, flowers or gifts are required, just together time, full of sharing hugs and family stories.
One terrific idea for commemorating this very special day is the Grandparents Day Build-A-Book workshop. It’s offered on Sunday, Sept. 4 at the Phoenix Changing Hands Bookstore and on Sunday, Sept. 11 at the Tempe store. Two separate sessions are available on each date.
This free workshop is intended for kids ages 2-5 and a grandparent, parent or caregiver; and it’s another one of the wonderful early childhood literacy events developed by the excellent, effective partnership between Phoenix Public Library, First Things First, and Changing Hands Bookstore.
The event itself is the brainchild of Tom Leveen — parent, Phoenix Public Library early childhood specialist, Arizona State University instructor and author. Leveen, who leads many of PPL’s StoryTime presentations, also teaches in ASU’s “Your Novel Year” writing certificate program and has written seven young adult novels under Random House or Simon & Schuster imprints, with book No. 8 coming in March, and No. 9 not far behind. He is warm, funny and knows all about kids’ reading and writing and how to capture someone’s imagination on paper.
Each child will receive a blank, hardback book and plenty of crayons and stickers. Then, Leveen will teach the young participants how to choose a character, make up a plot, and put the parts of a story together. Adults will work with their co-authors/illustrators to create a sturdy, colorful, honest-to-goodness picture book, to keep or to give.
I’m guessing that each one of those very special creations will be treasured for a very long time.
If you go: Grandparents Day Build-A-Book spots are limited to 20 seats per session at this free event, and registration is required. Call 602-274-0067 or register online at changinghands.com. Sessions times: 10:30-11:30 a.m. or 1-2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 4 at Phoenix Changing Hands, 300 W. Camelback Road and 10:30-11:30 a.m. or 1-2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 11 at Tempe Changing Hands, 6428 S. McClintock Drive.