Friday, September 19, 2014

Massachusetts library events in September! I'll see you in Western and Eastern Mass!

Hey, Massachusetts friends! I'll be at two public libraries next week. 

This Tuesday at 3 PM I'll be at Newton Free Library to talk about comics and creativity. Book sales via Wellesley Books!

And on Thursday of next week, find me at Hubbard Library in Ludlow, MA at 6 PM!

See ya along the Mass Pike! 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

A great morning at the Library of Congress!

Bravo to the staff of the Young Readers Center at the Library of Congress! They bring DC-area students to that magnificent space & connect them with authors!

I had such a wonderful time. And with all events at the LOC, it was recorded and  will eventually be on their YouTube page. I'll give a shout when that happens!

A shout out to Rachael Walker, champion of literacy initiatives everywhere!

A shout out to Rachael Walker—a hero to literacy programs and general awesomeness. Rachael helped found Read Across America (and continues to consult with the program), she gave me key advice when School Lunch Hero Day was starting up and she works with publishers on creating educational materials for their books. If you're not using her Reading Rockets videos in your libraries and classrooms, you're really missing out. Rachael isn't one to want attention, but I am happy to give her plaudits, because she so deserves them. If you're ever looking for someone to consult on a reading initiative, create downloadable activities for an author website or a generous person in your life, look no further! 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A visit to NEA headquarters!

I had the great pleasure of visiting the headquarters of the National Education Association today in DC. I recorded PSAs for Read Across America and Education Support Professionals. I also had the honor of meeting the new president, Lily Ekelson GarcĂ­a. There are a number of things I love about her. Among them:
1) She got her start in the school cafeteria. 
2) She opposes standardized testing. 
3) In her office, she displays photos of every single classroom that she ever taught. 

United Through Reading

What an honor it was to help United Through Reading with their mission today. United Through Reading videotapes service men and women reading books to their children, and that DVD is then delivered to the child at home. United Through Reading has 200 stations worldwide—on ships deployed, in forward operating locations in places like Afghanistan, at military hospitals... I recorded PSAs about how important it is to read to your child—it creates such an important bond between parent and child. I'm lucky enough to read to my kids every night, and United Through Reading helps bridge the gap of separation for those who serve in our military.   Learn more at

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Lunch Lady lecture at the Library of Congress on Sept 17!

Hey, D.C.-area friends—on Wednesday, September 17 at 10:30 AM, I will be at the Young Readers Center at the Library of Congress. It will be a field trip for a local school, but the presentation is also open to the public. Book signing to follow at 11:30 AM.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Kids' Comics Exhibit in Las Vegas

“BAM! It’s a Picture Book: The Art Behind Graphic Novels,” is an exhibit curated by the NICCL that  features original art from graphic novels for young readers. It's traveling the country and is currently in Las Vegas! Look for art by Matthew Holm, Lincoln Peirce, Mark Crilley, Raina Telgemeier and me! The show will be up through Nov. 25 in the Historic Fifth Street School Mayor’s Gallery, 401 S. Fourth St. 
For more information, visit

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

My latest TED Talk! "Why Lunch Ladies are Heroes"

I am delighted to announce that the talk that I gave at TED@NYC has been curated to the main page of! I'm pinching myself to have made it to the main page of TED again. Please take a moment to watch, and learn about how School Lunch Hero Day was formed and the heroes that it celebrates!

Happy Back-to-School Season!

All of my very best,

Thursday, July 17, 2014

A painting of your pug!

 I like all dogs, but I'm really only interested in painting your pug. I've opened an Etsy shop called "Pugs by JJK" for the summer.


Saturday, July 12, 2014

TED@NYC recap

Earlier this week I had the great privilege of speaking at TED@NYC. (More than a thousand people applied, but only a little over twenty people were invited to speak.) All of the speakers were so incredibly inspiring, and I feel so fortunate to have met them. Some of the talks may go on to, other talks will land the speakers an invite to the big TED conference. It would be amazing if my talk on School Lunch Hero Day made it to so more people could hear my talk on gratitude. For the time being, I have no idea what the future will hold! But for now, you can read a recap of the evening on the TED blog here: 

Interesting fact: at TED@NYC each speaker was given a time cap for their talk that was, on average, five minutes. If you're wondering if that was a challenge, the answer would be yes. But it really helped me focus my message! 

You can find some great photos here:!

Photo from TED@NYC Talent Search, July 8, 2014, Joe's Pub, New York, NY. Photo: Ryan Lash/TED
Photo from TED@NYC Talent Search, July 8, 2014, Joe's Pub, New York, NY. Photo: Ryan Lash/TED

Friday, June 27, 2014

Great summer reading list by educator Mike Lewis!

Check out this fantastic summer reading list for middle grade by educator Mike Lewis  

Click here to download the PDF.

Nicely designed, too! I am honored to be included!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The winners of the Kids' Comics Revolution Awards have been announced!

Looking for a great list of kids' comics, approved by kids themselves? Check out who won the Kids' Comics Revolution Awards! I'm honored that Lunch Lady made the cut!