Jean Marzollo

Children's Author and Illustrator
Author of I SPY

Posts tagged California Academy of Sciences

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Pierre the Penguin is Turning 29 This Week!

Pierre the Penguin, the real penguin featured in my 2010 non-fiction picture book (see above), is turning 29 this week!  How do I know this birthday fact?  I learned it while Skyping recently with a 1st grade class at the Briggs School in Lake Hopatcong, NJ. How did Rebecca Reichel, the teacher, and the kids in her class know this birthday fact?  They learned it from the Penguin Blog at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, CA.   

And so it goes in the digital world.  While some of us may worry about problems this new world may cause for young children, it is also worthwhile to stop for a moment and consider how first graders can learn meaningful and developmentally appropriate scientific facts from the internet and how they can communicate those scientific facts through the internet to people like me. Maybe the internet will encourage more kids to become scientists!

Filed under Pierre the Penguin Penguins Jean Marzollo California Academy of Sciences

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Teacher Uses “Pierre the Penguin” to Discuss Bullying in Kindergarten

Penguins are studied in lots of kindergartens at this wintery time of year. Recently, I was told that a kindergarten teacher in New York City reports that she is using my non-fiction picture book Pierre the Penguin to talk about bullying with her kindergartners.  In this true story illustrated by Laura Regan and published by Sleeping Bear Press, a real scientist at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco discovers that Pierre, one of the penguins in the aquarium, has lost his feathers.

The other penguins begin to bully Pierre.  They never did that before, but now he looks different so they are afraid of him.  How do they make fun of him? They bray at him, sounding like donkeys!  These are African penguins, and, as you can see by the lack of snow and ice in the picture, they don’t live in cold climates.  The lesson we can learn from these penguins?  The penguins were scared of Pierre because now he was different.Sometimes people make fun of others who are different from them. Differences can scare people.  Sometimes the reason people bully other people is that they are scared.

The story of Pierre the Penguin has a happy ending.  Pam Schaller, the scientist, helped Pierre grow his feathers back.  How?  Read the book!  
You can also watch these penguins  online at:

Photos (c) Sleeping Bear Press

Filed under Jean Marzollo Pierre the Penguin Sleeping Bear Press anti-bullying bullying penguins California Academy of Sciences Laura Regan