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Author-Illustrator Jason Chin Visits SFX

posted Jun 2, 2016, 8:32 AM by Saint Francis Xavier School Information   [ updated Jun 2, 2016, 8:48 AM ]

      A new crop of young writers and readers at St. Francis Xavier School were treated recently  to a  return visit to SFX from children’s book author/illustrator  Jason Chin.  Chin, who lives in Vermont,  has written and illustrated a half dozen non-fiction picture books on many diverse topics such as redwoods, coral reefs, the Galapagos Islands, gravity and the water cycle.    A book about the Grand Canyon will be published next year.   Mr. Chin’s books blend imaginative stories with non-fiction content and consistently earn starred reviews and high praise from major review journals.

Students in grades K-4  read and studied one of Mr. Chin’s  books in depth over the last month.   Each class created a special project based on one of his books.  Mr. Chin’s other books were introduced and discussed in library classes.  On the day of his visit, Mr. Chin   presented to the students how he  researches his wide-ranging topics and how the creation of one of his books evolves.  Chin’s research often involves a “site visit” to specific geographical locations around the globe to sketch and learn more first-hand about his topic.  Back home in his Vermont studio, he then sets to work writing and illustrating with many, many revisions to his book dummies before beginning the final art.  His books usually take at least a year to produce.    Chin ended his presentations with some on-the-spot, interactive drawing with his young audience.   

Mr. Chin speaks to his creative philosophy:


I want my books to both educate and to entertain, and I have found that stories are the perfect medium for achieving these two purposes. . . .  No matter the story, I always want it to capture the reader's imagination and to make them wonder. . . . When kids read my books, I really hope that the book takes them on a journey and that when they come back, they'll have picked up some science along the way.

  There was time for plenty of questions students had formulated prior to his visit. After lunch Mr. Chin visited the Grades 1-3 classrooms to see their research and art projects.

 The visit was organized by School Librarian, Kathleen Finn, in collaboration with the Grade K-4 teachers and sponsored by a longtime SFX School supporter with a special love for the library and literacy programs at the school.  


Jason Chin talks about coral reefs with third graders


First graders sing "Gravity" to Jason Chin

Jason Chin reads Water is Water with kindergardners