With her bright smile, colorful clothing, and generous smile, Oge Mora looks as if she might have just walked out of the pages of one of her own gorgeous picture books. As I told Oge, our conversation left me feeling truly uplifted and I think it is because, much like her picture books do, Oge's words encouraged me to re-examine my own experiences with a lens of gratitude.
Oge is a star on the rise, with her debut, “Thank You, Omu” earning a Caldecott Honor and the Coretta Scott King John Steptoe New Talent Award. In that work, as well as in her book, “Saturday,” Oge draws attention to the small pleasures, bits of magic in ordinary moments, that so often go unnoticed or underappreciated. In her work as a collage artist, especially in her recent collaboration, “I’m From,” with Gary R. Gray Jr., Oge takes bits and pieces of scrap material and shows us their beauty when all put together. Much like her stories, we are shown that small things are what make the big things, like a Saturday spent with a loved one, or the enticing aroma of an old family recipe.
In this episode, Oge tells us about the community support that built the foundation for her career, the art school epiphany that shifted her perspective from shame to pride, and why she wants her books to feel like a cup of hot cocoa. If you're looking for a moment of joy, you have found the right episode.
For Oge’s reading challenge, Story Collage, she encourages us to check out some of her favorite books that use her signature art form, collage. Her selections range from classics to more recent fare, and all are excellent choices. Beanstack clients, you will find this reading challenge ready to activate on your site and to share with your community.
We once again featured Alli Buffington, an elementary librarian in the Santa Rosa County District Schools, for this episode. Alli had too much to share for one show. :) This time, she talks about the importance of choice in reading (and in setting up Beanstack reading challenges).
Listen to the full episode, "The Things We Know: Oge Mora on Finding the Magic in the Everyday” on Apple, Google, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. Like what you hear? Please leave a 5-star review, subscribe, and share with someone who will enjoy it!
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