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More Book T-Shirts! March 1, 2013

Posted by ccbooks in Nerd Line.
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When I quit my full-time teaching job nearly a year ago and decided to become a freelancer, I decided that I needed more children’s book t-shirts. I already had a Mo Willems shirt, courtesy of the fantastic company Wonder Shirts. Then I found Out of Print Clothing, which specializes in shirts with book covers and there were so many more possibilities!

The thing is, when you’re a freelancer, you go into different classrooms all the time. With only 45-90 minutes a week to make an impression, it helps to have the students on your side from the first moment they look at you. Wearing a children’s book t-shirt helps, even with jaded middle-schoolers. They immediately say “Oh  remember that book!” and already they are a little more disposed to be nice to you, even if you are there to work with them on something they hate, like writing.

So many thanks to Out of Print, which provided me with various options for my working wardrobe. But now I’m starting to think ahead. While Harold, Charlotte and Pigeon may be immediately recognizable to my students today, there are so many more talented writers and illustrators whose work I would love to wear to class. Here are my top five contemporary books that I think should be put on t-shirts (either the cover or an illustration).

1. Lane Smith Abe Lincoln’s Dream. Really anything by Lane Smith.

2. Jon Klassen Extra Yarn or This is not my Hat. They won Caldecotts! What more reason do we need?

3. Erin Stead A Sick Day for Amos McGee. Ditto.

4. Adam Rex Chu’s Day. I need more adorable pandas on my t-shirts.

5. Jules Feiffer The Phantom Tollbooth. Ok, so this is an older classic. No matter. It’s my favorite book of all time practically and I want it on a t-shirt!

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