“I am so delighted to be able to combine my love for picture books with my love for telling a story to create Jamal and Me.”
My name is Carol Franks-Randall, and I have spent over 35 years as a teacher, special education administrator, elementary principal, School Superintendent and college professor in New York. During that time I worked with and taught children across the learning continuum. My husband Robert and I have four children between us and have six grandchildren. We relocated to Maryland’s Eastern Shore and I’ve continued my love for books and literacy development as a community volunteer. I am an avid reader and like to surround myself with books, books and more books.
During my very active professional and personal life, I always had a particular love for picture books. Over the years I have amassed a rather large collection and aspired to write one someday. I always enjoyed read-alouds and took every opportunity to read to young children as a parent, grandparent and educator. When I was an Elementary Principal, I started a Principal’s Book Club so my students and I could have a chance to talk about books.
After retirement, I began writing Jamal and Me, which was inspired by experiences I had during my professional life. I think that children’s literature, particularly picture books can be used to illustrate and illuminate social/emotional issues that plague our schools and greater community. My hope is that Jamal and Me will serve to remind its readers that moving children out of their learning environment the minute they “step out of line” may not be the answer. Admittedly there are behaviors that are unsafe and demand dramatic action, but those are rare. Throughout my experience, I have learned that more often than not, solutions to behavioral issues can be found when the adults work collaboratively and place the focus on the student. I hope that Jamal and Me demonstrates that message for its young readers as well as for the adults who read it aloud.
Jamal and Me and Playground Heroes are now available on amazon.com.