Esther Pearl Watson + Mark Todd

Reading in the Deep: Illustrated Children’s Books about Life Below Water

Grant Awarded: $27,340

According to the National Assessment of Educational Programs, only 35% of 4th-grade students in the U.S. are reading at a proficient level. This collection of illustrated children’s books will motivate children to develop their literacy skills by providing visually interesting short storybooks about ocean life. As part of the Illustration for Publishing class at ArtCenter College of Design, students learned about deep sea habitats, symbiosis and animal life from Dr. Shana Goffredi, a deep-sea explorer and professor of Biology at Occidental College. They then created illustrated children’s books about ocean science with captivating story lines and visual narratives. The storybooks will also be printed in both English and Spanish to broaden the reach of the project.