Fall 2020 Virtual Programs

Whole Book Approach

Children in grades pre-K to 2 at Pembroke Elementary School, Ella Lewis School, Lubec Consolidated School and children in all grade levels at Charlotte Elementary School will participate in IRW's Whole Book Approach program, an exciting way to engage kids with picture books!

Using the Whole Book Approach and Visual Thinking Strategies, children will learn about the elements that make up a picture book, from the words, illustrations, cover, typography, end papers and more.

Fun, hands-on activities will accompany story time to promote deeper connections with the books, which have been carefully-selected for our partner schools.

No News is Good News with Ivy & Bean

Washington County students attending Beals Elementary School, Woodland Elementary School in Baileyville and Milbridge Elementary School, along with island students attended Deer Isle-Stonington Elementary School and Swan's Island Elementary School will participate in IRW's Ivy & Bean writing and art program.

Third and fourth graders will read the first chapter book in the Ivy & Bean series by Annie Barrows, illustrated by Sophie Blackall. Through regular Zoom sessions, Sophie Blackall will set kids on the path of creating their own newspaper and lay the groundwork of activities for budding journalists to gather information and make decisions about content and layout to create a collaborative finished product!

Newbery Medal Book Groups

Newbery Medal and Newbery Honor-winning authors Gary Schmidt, Clare Vanderpool and Lauren Wolk will work virtually with middle schoolers with a reading and writing program around their award-winning books. After reading and discussing their school's selected book, students will participate in Zoom sessions with the authors, during which they will answer questions about the books and their writing careers.

Whiting Village School will work with Gary Schmidt after reading Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy.

Moon Over Manifest is the selection for students at Beatrice Rafferty Elementary School who will then work with Clare.

Lauren Wolk's Wolf Hollow will be read and discussed by students at Beatrice Rafferty Elementary School, Charlotte Elementary School and Jonesport Elementary School.

MDIRSS 7th Grade Read

Seventh graders from all five Mount Desert Island Regional School System schools will read Abdi Nor Iftin's extraordinary memoir about his harrowing early life in Somalia and eventual emigration to the United States. Each school will meet virtually with the author, and complete projects and research around the book's historical elements and themes, using IRW's specially-designed book resources.


Students in grades 5-8 will strengthen their writing through our specially-designed WordCraft platform, by focusing on a different writing element each week.

WordCraft will involve in-class writing, and connecting with a published author through one-on-one virtual writing feedback and group coaching. Authors will include Dave Anderson, who will work with students at Beals Elementary School, Elizabeth Atkinson, who will work with students at Jonesport Elementary School, and Anica Mrose Rissi, who will work with students at Whiting Village School. 

Budding writers will share their work with peers across grade levels and schools, and we'll finish the end of the program with a celebration!