Happy Book Birthday, Katie Shaeffer!

Katie Shaeffer is too young to use the stove. Katie is also an avid collector. She has just one wish. One dream. One desire.  Katie wants to make golden brown, fluffy as a cloud, perfectly round PANCAKES all by herself.

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Enjoy this charming story and find out how Katie and her friend Baxter find a way to make Katie’s wish come true.

Katie Shaeffer Pancake Maker is written by Cynthia Mackey and illustrated by Paula Nasmith.

Available April 24th on Barnes and Noble and Amazon.com!

Relax and Read

I am pleased to announce that my first big book order arrived this week!  I now have a copy at the preschool; here’s a small fry enjoying Katie Shaeffer Pancake Maker at the end of the day.  It feels just amazing to see a child enjoying my book 🙂

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Katie Shaeffer Pancake Maker will be released April 24, 2017.  Order from Amazon.com or Barnes and Noble.

This charming story was written to instil confidence in emerging readers. Children will enjoy Katie’s pancake adventure and cheer for golden fluffy pancakes!

A Book Designed to Inspire

One of the many thoughts in my mind as I was writing Katie Shaeffer, Pancake Maker involved inspiration.  I love the way that picture books can inspire children’s play and I wanted to create a picture book that would inspire children to construct their own unique creations out of free reusable items that are readily available at home.

“Katie Shaeffer loved building things, she loved collecting things and most of all she loved pancakes.”img_2822

The story was written in part for myself as a preschool teacher, as I wanted a great picture book that could be a jumping off point for activities like this one.  I like to provide children with assorted sizes of cardboard boxes.  They use tape and scissors to construct a creation of their own choosing.

The learning opportunities here are so plentiful.  Children learn to use scissors and tape effectively.  This takes huge amounts of skill and focus for three and four year olds but they can do it.  Children develop confidence in their abilities as their fine motor skills improve.  Because the project is of a child’s own choosing, the child is highly motivated to complete the task and will spend more time working towards their goal.

I love this because it only requires scissors, tape and boxes.  Sometimes children like to paint their creations as well.  Some children have constructed creations and then taken them home to play with over and over again.  Just imagine how it would feel to be three or four years old and create your own toy!

I hope that Katie Shaeffer, Pancake Maker will inspire you and your children to construct unique creations from a panoply of recycled items just as Katie did in the story.

Katie Shaeffer, Pancake Maker will be available soon.  Check back here at my author website for updates!

Books About Pancakes

Katie Shaeffer Pancake Maker

When I decided to write “Katie Shaeffer, Pancake Maker” I felt I could not find the just right book about pancakes to read to my preschool class.  I was in search of a pancake book because I love to read a story and then extend the story somehow and making pancakes is a favourite activity for me to do with my preschool classes.  Cooking is a great way to demonstrate science in a practical way as the ingredients are combined and then heated.  Children can participate in an activity that is often done at home by only adults and the opportunities to smell and taste the pancakes are a bonus.

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I love the wordless book by Tomie de Paola, “Pancakes for Breakfast” but I was looking for a different type of book.  I’ve also enjoyed reading “Curious George Makes Pancakes” but at times, the book feels dated and some of the illustrations are a little small for the entire class to see.  And I’ve been reading these books for so many years.  In my mind it was time to write something original.

Interestingly, since learning more about writing for children, I have done some research on pancake books and found that ….surprise… there are quite a few other picture books out there!

When you look it up on amazon, there are 392 “pancake books” and yet only 13 “books about pancakes”.  Of course, there is “If You Give a Pig a Pancake” by Laura Numeroff and Felicia bond, and “Pancakes: An Interactive Recipe Book” by Lotta Nieminen and Megan Bennet.  The list goes on…

So what makes my book special?  I think it is special because it is written by an early childhood educator who has worked with young children for many years and wanted to create a book that will lend itself to the type of story extensions that are really valuable for young children.  I think it is special because it has a memorable repetitive rhyme that helps children participate in the story.  And that’s what we want.  We want them to chime in and experience the story as fully as possible.  I think it is also special because I can now say to my preschool class, my group of parents, my umbrella organization that oversees our preschools, my children’s former elementary schools and my former workplaces and co-workers: here’s a book you can read to your children that is written by someone local, with a connection to you. (For those who don’t know, I’m from Vancouver Island!)

Front Cover

Katie Shaeffer Pancake Maker will be published soon!  Keep visiting my author page for the upcoming release date!

Katie Shaeffer Synopsis

“Why won’t my Mom and Dad just trust me to use the stove?” Katie wonders.

Does Katie let that stop her? No!

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Join Katie and her friend Baxter in this fun story as they use a passion for collecting and building to find a way to realize Katie‛s pancake dream! This upbeat energetic tale with great potential for reading aloud will appeal to adults and young children alike. The book includes a predictable rhyme that will have children chiming in as the story unfolds. Children will celebrate with Katie and Baxter as their pancake dream becomes reality! Recipe included. Author: Cynthia Mackey Illustrator: Paula Nasmith

Cynthia Mackey has always loved children‛s literature. After years of teaching preschool and kindergarten, she is proud to have written her fi rst children‛s book, Katie Shaeffer, Pancake Maker. She lives on the west coast of British Columbia with her family and her piano where she faithfully continues her Saturday morning pancake tradition. http://www.authorcynthiamackey.com

Paula Nasmith has been making art her whole life and has always enjoyed illustration. Since an early age she‛s been interested children‛s literature and still enjoys picture books and classic children‛s stories. When she‛s not making art, you might find her ice skating or riding horses. She lives in Victoria, British Columbia with her two cats.

Release Date: To Be Announced

My goal? November 2016

Books About Pancakes

When I decided to write “Katie Shaeffer, Pancake Maker” I felt I could not find the just right book about pancakes to read to my preschool class.  I was in search of a pancake book because I love to read a story and then extend the story somehow and making pancakes is a favourite activity for me to do with my preschool classes.  Cooking is a great way to demonstrate science in a practical way as the ingredients are combined and then heated.  Children can participate in an activity that is often done at home by only adults and the opportunities to smell and taste the pancakes are a bonus.

cropped-10.jpg

I love the wordless book by Tomie de Paola, “Pancakes for Breakfast” but I was looking for a different type of book.  I’ve also enjoyed reading “Curious George Makes Pancakes” but at times, the book feels dated and some of the illustrations are a little small for the entire class to see.  And I’ve been reading these books for so many years.  In my mind it was time to write something original.

Interestingly, since learning more about writing for children, I have done some research on pancake books and found that ….surprise… there are quite a few other picture books out there!

When you look it up on amazon, there are 392 “pancake books” and yet only 13 “books about pancakes”.  Of course, there is “If You Give a Pig a Pancake” by Laura Numeroff and Felicia bond, and “Pancakes: An Interactive Recipe Book” by Lotta Nieminen and Megan Bennet.  The list goes on…

So what makes my book special?  I think it is special because it is written by an early childhood educator who has worked with young children for many years and wanted to create a book that will lend itself to the type of story extensions that are really valuable for young children.  I think it is special because it has a memorable repetitive rhyme that helps children participate in the story.  And that’s what we want.  We want them to chime in and experience the story as fully as possible.  I think it is also special because I can now say to my preschool class, my group of parents, my umbrella organization that oversees our preschools, my children’s former elementary schools and my former workplaces and co-workers: here’s a book you can read to your children that is written by someone local, with a connection to you. (For those who don’t know, I’m from Vancouver Island!)

Front Cover

There are reasons children will identify with Katie too.  Most children find waiting to be difficult.  So does Katie.  She loves pancakes and she wants to make them by herself now!  The last thing she wants to do is wait until she’s older.  And Katie loves building things but her creations don’t always work out as she has planned.

Katie Shaeffer Pancake Maker will be published soon!  Keep visiting my author page for the upcoming release date!