After stumbling across this post about Neil Gaiman's wonderful "Instructions" being turned into a picture book (available in 2010!), I immediately decided that we should plan an in-depth Neil Gaiman author study at some point in the very near future. He is, after all, one of my favorite authors and the kids enjoyed Coraline so much (both the book and the movie), I suspect they'll love his other work as well. Fortunately, because he's such a prolific writer, there's no dearth of material to explore, and I expect we shall have lots of fun with this!

I am tentatively planning a month-long study (likely in October, so that we can include "Odd and the Frost Giants") in which we'll read one of his novels, "The Graveyard Book", and one of his picture books each week - we'll also be listening to him read his work, which is truly a marvelous experience! Lastly, I'll include a few short stories from M is for Magic. We may wrap up the month with another viewing of Coraline, this time in 3D. :-) Stardust would be another fabulous option, though I think I'll be saving it for a fairy tale unit later in the year.

Already, I'm imagining all of the potential 'rabbit trails' that might be inspired by this study - at the very least, a unit on fairy tales (I believe I'll borrow this idea and use "Instructions" as an introduction to our fairy tale unit). Browsing the author's blog led me to this post about "Grimble" by Sir Clement Freud, republished in Noisy Outlaws, Unfriendly Blobs and Some Other Things... - this looks like a book the boys would love! Oh, and an Edward Gorey study would also be so. much. fun! Perhaps later in the year we could explore Lewis Carroll (just in time for the release of Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, which I'm oh-so-anxiously awaiting), and Edward Lear. Hmm...the "literary nonsense" genre, actually. I could have entirely too much fun with this!

Thus far, I haven't come up with any wonderfully creative art projects to tie in to our study (I'm working on it!), though I did enjoy this mural project inspired by "The Graveyard Book." Here are some other resources I've collected:

About the Author

Works by the Author

Children's Novels:
Picture Books:

Short Stories:


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