I am interning for teaching 10 weeks in general ed and 10 weeks in special ed. I will utilize your creativity into my classroom as much as possible. I love your work and my favorite book is How to Be an Explorer of the World. Thank you for wonderful outlook of the world.
I teach K-5 art and would love to share Wreck This Journal with my kids! They have seen mine and can’t get enough!
I am checking you out via a recommendation from Facebook.
thanks so much for thinking of us teachers. i am so inspired by your work and my illustration class has never been the same since i met your book. :)
Hi Keri, I’d love to have the teacher packet for my middle school and high school students at the international School of Verona, Italy where I teach Art and Art History. I’m probably the only Canadian using your art materials in Italy and am a full supporter of your books. A packet could really help me out in the programming of my classes, which we will do until Sept. 12 when school starts here. Ciao and hope you can send it to me!!!
i am ordering a copy of this book today!
i downloaded your free teacher info/idea pages!
i like your idea of a classroom book and a book that travels!
thank you for sharing a part of yourself! for free!
this is my 1st year to teach.
i will be ART to the students @ Hastings High School.
i am the old/new teacher! bwah~hah~ha
i want my students in Art 1 and Painting
to have a sketchbook.
i want them to experiment in it.
i want them to fill up their first one & if they do….
i will gift them with their 2nd!
shhhh~ this is a secret!
ART~journaling, with no rules
is a wonder-full way to set creativity free.
When I saw this opportunity to get copies of your Teacher Packet and Wreck This Journal for the entire class I had to write to you! I have been teaching 5th grade now for 4 years and believe this is my calling, however, at the end of each year I always reflect back on what I could have done better. Teaching Math is my strength. I’ve always been good with numbers. I love to read and I consider myself a good writer, but passing on that love of reading and especially writing can be very difficult and my reflections always bring me back to how I can improve those areas. And then here I am on your website (I’ve been a loyal follower of you since I was introduced to Living Out Loud) and what better way to get a child to love to write then to include a no rules journaling with a creative edge. I would also look forward to having a hard copy of your Teacher Packet and just getting all the new ideas I can from it!
Thanks for sharing your creativity with teachers so that we can pass it on to the future generations!
School started on Tuesday here in Scotland–yes, I know, as a Newfoundlander, I’ll never get used to going back to school in mid-August—argh!
So today I asked my hew class (Primary Fours, that is, Grade Threes) to make a postcard of their summer holidays to share with their classmates. Five minutes in, one little chap was on the verge of tears and refusing to write anything because “I can’t spell.” Such is the culture of perfection that pervades this particular school—a culture which I do my best to subvert and wreck because nothing is more stultifying, especially for children, than expectations of perfection. I show them how to keep writing by sounding out the words. I encourage them never to let themselves get stuck because of what they can’t do, but to find ways around whatever is blocking them. It’s like your best piece of creative advice: do something else. Do it your way. Keep doing it, and don’t let anything stop you when you find your way. My little chap finished the session with a page full of writing and a huge smile on his face.
I also use blank “thinking books” with my class to focus on creative challenges so I’d love to introduce them to the principles and processes of journal wrecking. I know they’d love it!
I am an art museum educator, so I do not technically have a “class” of students that I teach. However, I just thought I would mention that when I did my student teaching about 3 years ago, I used “How to Be an Explorer of the World” with my high school students to come up with thematic photography projects. I still use it as an inspiration when I explore, discuss, and make things with mini-observers in a preschool outreach program that I manage.
I think I have an immediate and huge need for your book…because today I met my new students and there was a lovely girl, who has voluntarily picked my 2 year art course ( in high school). We started our first task BUT after 60 minutes she had completely empty paper. She just repeated heartbreaking convincingly and inconsolably “I cant’draw”. Then her classmates told that she had been like that for years. I felt powerless…2 year course, at least I have time with her. Then after work, maybe because of happy coincidence or even destiny itself , my comic artist friend had linked your webpage for me because she thought I could get inspired of Wreck this Journal and I really did!! I felt wrecking (and your other ideas) could be excellent hard core medicine for many (critical teenager) students and also absolutely fun and exceptional thing in school environment. I would be really happy to have your books, so I could learn about them and try to help my pupil wreck her creativity locks. (And for the sake of my poor English, I would love to have your books also and get new Finnish fans for you ;)) ps. After stressful working day…can I also wreck couple of page…feeling addictive already! Terkut Suomesta! (= Greetings from Finland!)
First, thank you so much for sharing your fantastic ideas with us – they are so inspiring!
I’m an englishteacher in Denmark teaching students in 5th grade. I have tried some of your ideas from your book ‘How to be an explorer of the world’ in the danish lessons – and the students loved it! Now it would be a perfect opportunity for me to show the students how to wreck a journal with passion and enthusiasm in the english lessons – still learning english, PERFECT :)
I remember first seeing “Wreck this Journal” in a classmates hands while in college. You could see his excitement, but also how it encouraged a, use to be shy, person to reach out and connect with other people. I was thrilled to look at your teachers addition for your journal. I teach a special education group of Junior English who walk into my room with a dread of any kind of writing or reading they might be assigned because they know that is their area of struggle. I love the idea of incorporating “Wreck this Journal” in the classroom to free up the box each of my students so often approach writing with. The journal would be a perfect way to “bend the rules” of writing, have some fun, but also WRITE!! I would love the chance to get copies of your book for my students. If this chance passes up I’ll be saving to get myself a set. What a great idea!
I love your books, of course. I introduced THIS IS NOT A BOOK to my library classes and it blew their minds last year! I would love to have a set of your books for one of my classes. I will be doing library lessons from THIS IS NOT A BOOK again, and would love to incorporate writing exercises from WRECK THIS JOURNAL. I see so many children who have lost the inner love of reading and writing they had as children. I do believe the spark is still there…we just have to find it and nurture it. Your books are amazing!!
I came to your site in the hopes that I could find something that I could borrow to use in my classroom this semester. It’s like kismet that you posted your course packet a few days ago.
I just accepted a job at Rio Grande University (in Ohio), and I have the task of proving to my faculty that students can learn through creativity and expression. Right now, we are choking on standards and testing requirements that have faculty stuck teaching skills and drills. My goal this semester is to use Wreck this Journal to prove (to my colleagues) that students learn BEST when engaged, interested, and curious.
Since students are required to purchase a pricey ($45+) textbook package, they don’t have the funds to buy their own journals. Your teacher packet gives me a way to still utilize your writing methods within my course (and my rural students’ limited budgets).
You are my creative hero!
N.B. My own Journal is wrecked beautifully. It helped me keep my sanity as I wrote my dissertation. I finally filled the journal and I just defended my dissertation on August 9th. I can’t wait for my students to experience this great project!
I teach NYC children and art teachers as well as those interesting in using art to teach childhood and adolescent education. I love your books, recommend them, and would enjoy incorporating more of your activities in my classes with teachers and with little ones!
Dear Keri –
I teach K-8 Art at two schools in Bisbee, AZ — a small, diverse, semi-rural border community. Despite the many socio-economic challenges my students face, they remain interesting, positive, creative little individuals. Thank you for the “Wreck This” Packet – I will be using it with my middle school students this fall to inspire them as we prepare for the Second Annual Altered Books Auction. (A local art gallery hosts this event as a fundraiser for the local public library.) Old books are inexpensive and easy to find, which helps, as I haven’t had a budget for art supplies in three years. Last year, my students sold 2 of the books they created at this auction! It was a great experience for them to collectively create something for a good cause within the community while learning about transforming objects, extending a theme, and manipulating paper. As a bonus, we received 50% of the sales, which we were able to use for art supplies. We will be participating in this community event again this November — this year with an additional resource. :)
I believe in the power of creative thinking, and appreciate your journal — it creates enthusiasm and activates genuine higher-level thinking in an age group that tries to act like they are “too cool for school.” The junior high school is moving towards problem-based learning (essentially building problem-solving skills) as a model for school improvement. I feel that giving our students opportunities to be challenged in fun, dynamic, accessible ways will serve them well throughout their lives. I will also share your inspiration with the language arts teachers. Thank you!
I have used and LOVED your journals with my own daughters to teach them to be FREE as they write. I LOVE THEM! The face that they have new covers ROCKS because kids LOVE choice! I started my own 4th grade for the first year this year and passed out writing journals (I purchased at big lots) to encouage them to write EVERY DAY! I planned to use some concepts from your book to get them to be OK with physically using their journals!!! I would love to use your books with my awesome 4th graders. They are awesome because when we started on Wednesday I was in the hall talking to a mom of a student who just moved in from New York and when I walked into class EVERY ONE of them was working on their weclome packs. I was stunned how awesome they started off the year!!
What inspired me the most to use the Wreck is to motivate students to push themselves in a way that traditional sketchbooks do not. I teach high school art and despite all the encouragement, prompting and pleading, I still have too many students who are unwilling to put more of themselves into their work because of fear of failure and their work “not being good enough” (in their opinion, of course!). I think your book is an excellent way to challenge them to go beyond “ok” work. I just bought copies for my Advanced Art students in hopes of breaking though before they finish their college portfolios. If chosen, I would really love to be able to use the Wreck This Journal with my Freshman art students, while I still have 4 years to work with them. Thanks for a fresh, innovative approach to help people stop being afraid of creativity and take risks with that creativity!
These journals would be great for my students. I am a special education teacher and work with students who have different disabilities… My class loves writing journal entries. This is how we start off our day. Our students get bused from different districts and as we are waiting for all the students to arrive in the morning, the students write in their journals. Every morning is a struggle for some because they never know what to write about and they never like the topic I have chosen… This would be their creative little book… Something they could look forward to writing in every morning… an INSPIRATION !!!! Writing with a smile on their faces! Priceless!!!
Sorry didn’t mean to spell your name wrong in my previous comment… My iPhone spell check auto corrected your name.
THANK YOU KERI and all the wrecking crew…! I have been using your book as an inspiration for kids in my class since last year. I was ecstatic when I discovered it one day in a local Barnes and Nobles Book Store. Since, I have been hooked on your perspective and creativity! The kids have loved your book so much it helped to start a journaling craze in our art lab which spilled over into our school! It has inspired many in my class and in addition to seeing my copy tossed, stomped and in some cases licked or mashed with food and other gross stuff, my copy actually disappeared one day! No worries! I loved to see their reactions and plan on using your ideas in class once again. You have changed the way I look at art creation and I have now seen more clearly avenues on how to combine social, psychological and humor concepts in art creation and destruction! Thanks for helping so many people with your books! Peace!
Thank you for this packet, and for thinking of teachers and our students! I teach third grade, and I keep copies of “Wreck This Journal” and “How to Be an Explorer of the World” on my desk already. I love to encourage my students to be creative in their artwork and their writing, and not to fear doing it “wrong” or making mistakes. (How can eight year olds already worry about this?…but they do!) Your ideas definitely help me to accomplish this in my classroom~ Thanks!
How are you? I hope everything is fine. My name is Julio Cesar. I am a (Brazilian) Portuguese teacher. I work at a public school, in the countryside of Sao Paulo State, in Brazil.
I love to encourage my students to be creative in classroom with their writings. It is not easy, but I am trying.
I “discovered” your “wrecking-wonderful-idea-books” at Amazon and at The Book Depository.
I am going to buy the box set to present it to my students next school year.
I am planning on starting a blog “Julio e suas Histórias” (Julio and his Stories) and I was thinking about making small videos with my experiences using your books as a inspiration to my kids.
Keep on doing the good job.
Sincerely, your friend in Brazil,
Teacher Julio Cesar!
Oh, thanks a lot for sharing the teacher packet!
I just want to know if I can translate your interview and post it at my blog!
Thank you very much for your attention!
Best wishes from your friend in Brazil,
Keri, your books have completely revolutionized the way I use sketchbooks in the classroom. I am a high school art teacher and every year I have been so disappointed to find my students’ sketchbooks half empty, underutilized and uninspired. Ten years ago, I tried referring to the sketchbook as a “visual journal” to try to really push students to take more risks and do more than just “sketch” in their books, but the end result was still not what I wanted. Two years ago, I introduced my students to your “Wreck This Journal”, “Guerilla Art Kit” and “How to be An Explorer of the World” books and the results have been amazing. No longer are my students intimidated by a blank page. More importantly, it allows them to understand the importance of the process of making art; remembering the JOY they once felt creating; giving them permission to make mistakes and take risks; and actually pay attention to the world around them. I have used your books in my regular high school art classes and computer animation classes at the beginning of the semesters to get students’ creative juices flowing, but your books have had the greatest impact on my “at-risk” students. Two years ago I ran a graffiti art class for four “at-risk” students to re-engage them into school and get them their art credit. I couldn’t connect with these kids through traditional teaching and art methods. I bought them each a copy of “Wreck This Journal” and they were totally hooked. Through your books, these kids were given permission to break the rules, take risks and create in a safe, unintimidating way. And when they thought they were just being crazy, rebellious students, they were in fact LEARNING…. Learning about the process of art making, how to speak about art and the visual world, how to incorporate the materials of our contemporary world into their artwork, how to enjoy creating once again; how to feel good about themselves… and so on. They carried these books around with them everywhere, showed all of their friends with pride, and despite the fact that they were purposely attempting to destroy these books every chance they got, these books were the most precious thing they had connecting them to their school. They critiqued each other’s work and worked in each other’s books. “Wreck This Journal” opened the door for these students to continue onto other art projects and gave them the confidence to try various types of art. This small class of four students grew into an after school club. The following year it became a full class of 25 students. This upcoming year, I have two full classes of 25 kids (with a waiting list) and a special needs class of 10 who want to do it too. I am highly anticipating how my special needs students will love your books and will celebrate each of their own unique ways of mark making, regardless of ability. Of course, I can’t afford to buy them all books so we have been using some of your ideas as prompts and been making up our own ways to “wreck” our sketchbooks. I would be honoured to have a class set of your books for my students as a gift and they would be proud to have them, however, what your books have already inspired in my students really is the true gift.
Hi Keri! I am so excited to have discovered your work! I have been an art teacher for 14 years and 12 of these years have been in the middle school. My superintendent was reading the Global Achievement Gap and I saw an opportunity to expand our art program by offering to design a new class that focused specifically on the creative process in all forms. The bonus was, that in turn, our district had to hire an additional art teacher to teach my art classes. The new class I am starting today :) is called “Creative Endeavors”. I plan on using a lot of your ideas in your books and am so excited to share your work! A class set would be awesome! Thanks for the inspirations! September
To start with I am not a teacher as such(although I did qualify as a lecturer a few years ago) nor am I an artist (although I do dabble in lots of different creative things) but I was introduced to your book ‘Living out Loud’ a year ago when I went on a self-directed learning course in the Netherlands. I am in fact a youth worker (an informal educator)who works with young people aged 14 to 25 in a wide range of formats. I run the Debating Society; I am the Student Involvement Coordinator; I work one-2-one with young people on various personal issues; I deliver personal,social programmes (FRIENDS)related to health and well-being; I am a canoeing instructor; and I also work with young people who struggle with our current formal education system decide if they want to carry on with their education into post 16 (Transtion) to mention just a few things I do. It is with the Transition and FRIENDS group that I feel your book could be of use. I am also currently studying a Masters Degree in Creativity and Education and looking at ways to engage students in learning that will enthuse them to learn and explore. I hated school and also found many ways to escape each day. Even from infant school days, I loved to go on adventures in my head but was always told off for daydreaming. I read Enid Blyton books such as the Famous Five and Secret Seven and often went off exploring the areas local to me. This did not stop when I got older, as I moved around a lot with my work and loved nothing more than exploring my new environment. I would have loved to have been an explorer or some form of adventurer I think, but this was never encouraged by my mother who had set beliefs on what women could do. So I conformed to an extent until I hit 28 then I decided to return to college and do what I wanted at that time. Since then I have kept on studying and learning in different ways but have never quite found out what it is I want to do – although I love my work at the moment. It wasn’t until recently that I discovered that I have a form of Dyslexia, which may account for many of the problems I had with education. But I won’t let it stop me learning. In my years as a youth worker I have met many young people like me who struggle with formal education and have difficulty finding their way in life, and I think this might be why I have reached the place I have today in doing my MA in creativity and education, as i want to find a way to help them and engage them in learning that is FUN and beneficial to them. I think your work might help this process and I would love to work with them using your materials. Thank you for inspiring work. Pam x