FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 2, 2009
Contact: K.E. Schwab
SRU's Slanina writes third Annie Mouse adventure
SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - The difficulty of meeting new people, especially someone who is different, is the latest adventure for Annie Mouse, the brainchild character created by Anne Slanina, professor of elementary education/early childhood at Slippery Rock University.
"Annie Mouse Meets a New Friend," is the third book in Slanina's on-going Annie Mouse Adventure series.
"As in my previous two books - 'Annie Mouse meets her Guardian Angel' and 'Baby Brother Goes to the Hospital' - the story is meant to be read together by parents and their children as a way of opening discussions about difficult subjects. It is a way for parents to breach difficult topics with their children, and hopefully strengthen the lines of family communication while also providing children with coping skills," Slanina said.
In Annie's latest 20-page adventure, published by Annie Mouse Books Publishing, the young mouse befriends someone who is different and in the process is subjected to ridicule and risks losing her old friends. "Being torn between her loyalty to her old friends and her new, genuine friend, she ultimately learns what it means to be a true friend," Slanina said.
"Annie's new friend is blind and Annie finds herself wanting to learn to read Braille," she said. The book also deals with peer pressure and with being bullied. "Like all young children, Annie often misunderstands what adults are saying. She is often troubled by confusing, complicated life circumstances around her," Slanina said.
The work has led to Slanina to address local Lions Clubs as both a way to promote the books and involve the clubs in its major work of aiding the blind. "About 80 percent of visually impaired children are enrolled in regular classrooms, so the book makes a nice tie in with the real world," Slanina said.
Lisa Akers Slanina, an aspiring special education teacher and new mother - and Slanina's daughter-in-law - did the illustrations for the book. "She also handled illustrations for the first 'Annie' book," Slanina said.
Slanina said she would use the book in her "Introduction to Early Childhood Education" classes when the subject of diversity is taught.
Slanina has established a new Web site - http://www.anniemousebooks.com - that offers coloring pages and other activities for young children with an instructional/information pages for parents that includes details on how children learn.
Annie and her family will take a cross-country trip in Slanina's next book. "This will be a chapter book that may be used in grades three through five as a social studies book. It will include family dynamics, like is predecessors, but will also include information on historic sites that the mouse family visits," she said.
Slanina is also slated to make presentations at local schools and Girl Scout troops to discuss her book.
The book is available at Annie's Web site, the Student Government Association Bookstore in the University Union on the SRU campus and other locations.
Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.