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(PDF) (DOC) (JPG)March 11, 2004

(Mahwah) – The wavy route to inspire a young child to accomplish can be more effective in the long run, than the speedway ‘do this!’ or ‘do that!’ approach,” says Dr. Judith Peck, professor of art education at Ramapo College of New Jersey. She is scheduling readings from her new book, Smart Starts in the Arts: Fostering Intelligence, Creativity and Serenity in the Early Years. She advises parents to stop for a moment to think of an imaginative route to accomplish their directive; often it not only is less abrasive but more effective, more fun, and a boost for childhood cognition and creativity.

Two children’s picture books from her new series, The Dr. Judith Picture Books, complement the creative suggestions included in Smart Starts. Runaway Piggy Bank is the story of a disgruntled pig tired of having his meal of coins shaken out. The Bright Blue Button and the Button-hole is the story of a loving button and button-hole separated when their home on a man’s vest becomes too tight. Both stories, written in delightful rhyme, have happy endings, and in combination with Smart Starts, encourage children to make up rhymes of their own.

A prolific writer, Peck is the author of two other just released books on the value of art activities for promoting intellectual skills and imaginative problem solving. The full color text, Art Activities for Mind and Imagination, offers engaging ideas for producing spontaneous drawings, paintings, collage and sculpture and includes information on the connection of artistic activity to recent brain research. Artistic Crafts: Inventive Creations with Cast-offs provides colorful ideas for using discarded and everyday materials in artistic ways: how to create movable figures, animals and objects; how to create wall hangings in fabric, wallpaper and leftover paper scraps; how to design plaster trivets from paper plates, and how to create puppets, scenery, stories and songs.

The author is available to give readings from each of these new books at libraries, school PTO/PTA meetings and community centers. She remains committed to the value of imaginative expression throughout life, but especially in childhood. A recognized sculptor, Peck believes, Children exhibit motivations similar to the professional artist: super imagination, a lot of physical energy and a burning need for self-expression. The time to use those inborn attributes to foster intellectual, emotional and creative growth is throughout the years of childhood.”

To arrange for the author to give a reading, email imaginationarts@optonline.net. Pecks’ books are available from Imagination Arts Publications, www.imagination-arts.com.

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Ramapo College of New Jersey is the state’s premier public liberal arts college and is committed to academic excellence through interdisciplinary and experiential learning, and international and intercultural understanding. The College is ranked #1 among New Jersey public institutions by College Choice, has been named one of the 50 Most Beautiful College Campuses in America by CondeNast Traveler, and is recognized as a top college by U.S. News & World Report, Kiplinger’s, Princeton Review and Money magazine, among others. Ramapo College is also distinguished as a Career Development College of Distinction by CollegesofDistinction.com, boasts the best campus housing in New Jersey on Niche.com, and is designated a “Military Friendly College” in Victoria Media’s Guide to Military Friendly Schools.

Established in 1969, Ramapo College offers bachelor’s degrees in the arts, business, data science, humanities, social sciences and the sciences, as well as in professional studies, which include business, education, nursing and social work. In addition, the College offers courses leading to teacher certification at the elementary and secondary levels, and offers graduate programs leading to master’s degrees in Accounting, Business Administration, Creative Music Technology, Data Science, Educational Technology, Educational Leadership, Nursing, Social Work and Special Education, as well as a post-master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice.

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