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New Hope-Solebury book project fosters student creativity


Second-graders at New Hope-Solebury Lower Elementary School are celebrating the culmination of hard work and determination with their very own published books.

Funded by a grant from the New Hope Solebury Educational Fund, second-graders began a project-based learning experience called, Get Published, a virtual writing platform designed to help students understand the real-life components of publishing a book. Working alongside New York Times best-selling author/illustrator Peter H. Reynolds, students were engaged in each step of the writing process from brainstorming ideas, developing characters, designing a publishing company logo and brand, storyboarding, drafting, editing and illustrating.

Students were more than halfway through the project when schools closed in March due to the pandemic.

“We were not hopeful that we could see the project through with the many challenges to getting the students set up on the platform at home,” said second-grade teacher Jennifer Loving. “This was such a disappointment as the students had worked so hard up to this point. We decided that it was really important, now more than ever, with the school closure that we find a way to give our students the opportunity to finish the project as this was another way for us to stay connected in a real-world authentic activity that fostered creativity. We coached parents virtually through the platform, held writing conferences with students and the hard work paid off.”

Over 80 second-graders received their published books delivered to their homes.

“The project truly took on a greater meaning with these difficult times and brought students, teachers, and families together in a meaningful real-life activity that fostered creativity, hard work and grit,” Loving said. “We are thankful to the NHS Ed Fund for funding this project and to our NH-S second-grade families who partnered with us to ensure that our students could ‘Get Published.’”