Sunday, May 11, 2014

The Mad Potter

The Mad Potter: George E. Ohr, Eccentric Genius, written by Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan, is a 2014 Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award Honor Book, as one of the most distinguished informational books for children.  It is also an Orbis Pictus Recommended Book for 2014.  The NCTE Orbis Pictus Award  was established in 1989 by the National Council for the Teachers of English for promoting and recognizing excellence in the writing of nonfiction for children.

George Ohr was a ceramics artist ahead of his time.  This 45-page biography is illustrated with period photographs of Ohr, his family, and Biloxi, Mississippi (where he lived), as well as brilliant color images of some of his (very) unusual works.  Various text fonts are also used for some quotes and captions to add further interest.

Due to the length and complexity of the text, the book is more appropriate for grades 4-8.  There is information at the end about the Ohr-O'Keefe Museum in Biloxi, how to evaluate and to make your own pots, and an extensive bibliography, end notes, and photo credits.

Greenberg and Jordan also teamed up on Ballet for Martha, which won the 2011 Orbis Pictus Award and was a Sibert Honor Book that year.

© Amanda Pape - 2014

[The Mad Potter is available on the lower level of the Dick Smith Library in the Curriculum Collection, call number EDUC NK4210 .O42 G74 2013,]

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