Southwest Children's Literature

Sun Logo

The Piñata Quilt


About the Reviewers:

This is a photo of Jesusa and Kathy.

Jesusa Valdez

Jesusa Valdez is a junior at Northern Arizona University. She has been working with children for twenty-one years. Her first experiences with children were in Burley, Idaho as a teacher's aide in the migrant program with Cassia County School District. For the last fifteen years, she has worked with preschool children-twelve of which have been in the implementation of the Head Start program through Child Parent Centers, Inc. in Tucson, Arizona. Jesusa has been married to Norberto for 19 years. They have two wonderful daughters, Daniella, 17, and Brianna, 13.

Jesusa believes that parents are their child's first, and most important, teacher. She never allows an opportunity to escape where she can encourage parents to talk and read with their child. Jesusa views parents as partners in the endeavor to inspire a love of reading and learning in their children. It is because she is a fervent believer of this, that she loves the following passage from Judi Moreillon's book, Read to Me:

For in this life,
I'll need a map.
Let it begin
upon your lap.

Kathy Steele

Once upon a time, there was a little girl named Kathy. Kathy loved make-believe, and she loved to read. She read and she read and she read. She read to her mommy. She read to her daddy. She read to her dolls. She read to her brother. She really liked to read books about families.

Kathy grew up and when she was sixteen, she met her prince. When she was eighteen, her prince, Wayne, married her. Kathy became Kathy Steele. After many years, Wayne and Kathy had two sons, Ryan and Derek. They lived in a vast land called Texas, and, in 1986, moved to a different land called Tucson, Arizona. Kathy still loved make-believe and so she worked in a magical place called preschool. She worked there for a very long time - over 24 years! She loved to read to the children. She read and they read. They read and she read. One day in 1992, Kathy opened a school called Faith Community Academy and worked there for twelve years. She was able to help other preschool teachers by presenting seminars at teacher conventions and early childhood conferences.

Kathy loved the magical land called preschool, and she loved working with the children. She wanted to learn more about teaching them, so after earning her associate's degree at Pima Community College, Kathy enrolled in classes at a distant castle called Northern Arizona University (NAU). Kathy has learned many things, and she will complete her bachelor's degree in early childhood education in December 2005. Since being in this land of learning, Kathy has discovered there is still much more to learn. She has decided to take more classes at NAU to get a special thing called a master's degree in early childhood education. So once again, Kathy reads and she reads and she reads. She reads things called textbooks. (Fall 2005)

to mainpage

About the Book | Book Review | Children's Voices | Interview | Lesson Plan | About the Reviewers