Comics In Your Curriculum: The Beginning

2008 marked the release of “Comics In Your Curriculum,” by Richard Jenkins and Debra Detamore, a book was six years in the making.

It was the year 2002. Richard Jenkins was working as a cartoonist and teaching artist. He was illustrating the Sky Ape graphic novels and working as a guest artist, teaching students the creative process of cartooning. Debra Detamore was teaching Gifted & Talented students in Moore, Oklahoma. She wrote a grant to have Richard come to her school and work with her students.

The co-authors Richard Jenkins & Debra Detamore

While Richard was teaching the students Debra watched and learned. She recognized that he had refined the cartooning process down to a set of clear simple steps. One that she felt like she could do on her own. “Richard, you should make a book of your lessons for teachers.” “Wow,” Richard responded. “That’s a good idea. But I’ve never written a book for teachers before.” He paused. “I’ll do it if you help me.” “”Sure!” she readily agreed. So their partnership was formed.

Excerpt from the book

For the next two years, Richard and Debra went through the process of creating their book. First writing detailed lesson plans for creating comics and stories. Next creating lesson plans integrating cartooning with math, language arts, science, social studies, and visual arts. Followed by connecting all of the lessons to the National Education Standards and creating the assessment rubrics. Then creating all of the drawing worksheets. Finally, in 2004 they began searching for a publisher.

Excerpt from the book

In 2005, they signed their contract with Pieces of Learning. They had some revisions for Richard and Debra, including the title. Their original title was “Comics In Your Classroom.” Kathy Balsamo at Pieces of Learning suggested the new title. The publisher then formatted the files for the print. And In 2008, “Comics In Your Curriculum” was released.

Book Cover

Their ultimate goal is for teachers to be able to take advantage of the rich educational potential within comics and the cartooning process. Richard and Debra both hope that teachers will find Comics In Your Curriculum an easy and helpful guide for integrating cartooning into their classroom.

To buy a copy of Comics In Your Curriculum click HERE.

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