Sharon Gardner published her 1st Children's book, Max's Tree.
Sharon, a retired elementary school teacher, came up with the idea of Max's Tree as a way to teach her grandson about the seasons. The book revolves around a huge tree which grows in Max's front yard, and how not just the tree, but various animals, transform with the seasons.
Sharon is the 2nd VP and Membership Chair of the IOTA Chapter of DKG/NJ.
Brianna Sullivan, the illustrator, is an award winning freelance artist who specializes in lifestyle portraiture. Brianna is the granddaughter of IOTA Treasurer, Denise McDermott.
Congratulations to Shannon Pizzuta, Iota Chapter, who has been featured in a news article: https://thesunpapers.com/2021/05/24/deptford-teacher-provides-schools-with-little-libraries/?amp&fbclid=IwAR3MdTfHlrf6DiUtp6eTeZNHSSy4OqEVI8zyaDeNlj3ZZhpRSmuUbLQ9lUs
Last summer Shannon Pizzuta applied for eight grants, one for each school in the Deptford Township district.
She ordered books from Scholastic’s website and organized them by grade level in her living room to provide the schools with little libraries, book nooks that are the result of a nationwide book sharing program.
Read the whole article to find out more. Yay, Shannon!
ota member, Kimberly Dickstein Hughes, is on the cover of the Spring 2021 edition of Real Woman. There is a great article about her that starts on page 37. Use the link below to access the magazine.
As crazy as 2020 has been, Jameelah Wright, Alpha Chapter, was determined to find the silver linings, whether big or small. So, in March, when school buildings closed due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, and she and her team of teachers had to figure out a way to teach prekindergarten students virtually, she had an idea. Since her school (teachers and families) was already connected schoolwide on ClassDojo, it would be a seamless transition from in-person to virtual instruction. Crisis averted. As a student in Montclair State University’s Teacher Education and Teacher Development program, her classes also shifted to an online format, so not a single beat was missed in the pursuit of her doctoral degree.
That same month, Jameelah learned that she would be awarded a fellowship from the alumnae organization of her alma mater, Douglass College, Rutgers University. The Julia Baxter Bates Fellowship was named for the first Black student admitted into Douglass College, and Jameelah was truly humbled and honored to obtain it. Also, as result of receiving the fellowship, she was featured in the alumnae organization’s digital newsletter. A few weeks later, in April, she learned that she would also be awarded a scholarship from the Pi Lambda Theta honor society.
Also in April, Jameelah received word that a proposal she submitted for a webinar for the Council of Professional Recognition (CDA Council) had been accepted, and that she would be facilitating Finding Our Voices: Awakening the Inner Advocates and Activists in ECE Teachers in August. In the midst of all the madness on top of a global pandemic, such as the racial unrest and political strife, it was the small wins that gave Jameelah hope and kept stress and anxiety at bay. Towards the end of summer, she learned that a book she had contributed to, The New Teacher’s Guide to Overcoming Common Challenges, would be out in October. In October Jameelah opened an email from the American Educational Research Association (AERA) informing her that her paper “Drawing Conclusions about Writing in Preschool” had been accepted for presentation at the 2021 national conference. And in November, Jameelah was notified by the university that she passed her qualifying exams and was officially a doctoral candidate! She is looking forward to more small wins and silver linings in the new year.
Congratulations to Jamie Grookett, Iota Chapter, author of the short story “Fine Is For Sugar.”
She has been named the Across the Margin, winner of Best of Fiction 2020 at Across the Margin.
Keep writing, Jamie!
Faith Brody, Iota Chapter, is a Scholarship recipient to attend the ALSC virtual institute in the Fall.
She is the winner of $500.00 FILL (Foundation for Impact on Literacy & Learning) grant – Oaklyn Public Schools.
Way to go, Faith!
Congratulations to Claire Swanson, Alpha Chapter, who has been appointed to the International Leadership Development Committee by Becky Sadowski. Claire has been on the Communications Committee and she has been the chair of the Membership Committee for the last biennium. She is a past state president here in New Jersey!
Irene Maskaly was just invited to serve as a member of the 2020-2024 Arts and Humanities Jury for DKG International!
The Arts & Humanities Jury is entrusted with the coordination and fulfillment of The DKG Gallery of Fine Arts, an online publication and display of DKG members’ creative works. The online Gallery includes Literary Efforts; Two and Three Dimensional Art; Performance Art; Photography; and Crafts. The Jury invites expressions of creativity that are commensurate with the Society’s Purposes. Due to the diversity of Society membership, content of a religious, political or patriotic nature may be inadmissible. Selection will be based on originality, authenticity, coherence, accessibility, clarity and aspects relevant to specific sub-categories as specified in the judging criteria.
Suzanne Diszler, Gamma Chapter, was recently notified that she is one of four recipients of a $10,000 Delta Kappa Gamma International Scholarship to pursue a doctoral degree. Congratulations, Suzanne!
This just in from Jane:
I submitted a proposal for a workshop, and it was accepted. I will be repeating the one I gave at the state convention a few years ago : Two Trains- Friendship and Gratitude. I won't know until mid-March when I will be giving it, but I will let you know.