Thursday, May 8, 2008

Challenge Artwork Judged

Oh, what a night!

A fine group of educators, parents and children's book authors gathered at the home of author, Phillip Hoose to judge the artwork entries by Kindergarten thru 3rd Graders to the Hey, Little Ant Essay Challenge. There was much concentration, debate, and laughter as the amazing submissions were reviewed.

Meanwhile across the country, 17 additional judges are reviewing the writing samples submitted online by kids in Grades K-3.

Results will be announced on May 21, 2008!

More Photos
Photos by Mark Mattos

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Challenge Hits Mid Atlantic Press

An ant article ran in seven affiliated newspapers in Maryland and Delaware with grand quotes from ANTvisory Board member, Patty Dean, director of Early Childhood Education at Salisbury University.

"The book just capitalizes on so many things," said Patty Dean, director of Early Childhood Education at Salisbury University. "There's the science aspect: Why do we have so many insects and what would happen if none of them got killed? There's the social justice perspective: What is the point of killing a living creature? There's a part in the book where the boy's friends urge him to kill the ant, so we talk about making decisions for yourself, and your own conscience."

Full Article

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Ant On the Wall

Phil Hoose had the pleasure of viewing the wise responses to the Hey, Little Ant Essay Challenge from students at Princess Anne Elementary School in Princess Anne, MD. Rumor has it that he got in a bit of singing as well.

Just one week left of the Challenge and over 700 (brilliant) entries so far. Keep them coming, kids!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Challenge Taken in Maine

Some fabulous facts about ants from this essay challenge entrant from Phil & Hannah's home state of Maine:

"Dear kid, Please don't kill the ant! They just have 45-60 days to live! They only take crumbs, and why would you need any crumbs? Ants just need food to feed their colony. Exactly, like you need food for your family to be strong and healthy. The ant that you are about to step on might be the strongest in the colony and others may be counting on him to bring them food. Ants need food to survive!

Think about it, kid, if all of the ants in the world died, what would we do without them? Ants recycle the crumbs we don't use, so they are helpful! Also, if you died, what would we do without you? Your mother and father would cry like there was no tomorrow, they would die. They love you. Ants love the ant that you are about to step on too. P.S. BE NICER TO ANTS!!"

Hurray for the PS!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Ant on Public Radio

Author, Phil Hoose and educator & long-time Hey, Little Ant advocate, Rita Rubin Long appeared on Maine Public Radio to discuss the history of the book and The Hey, Little Ant Essay Challenge.

Listen Here!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Challenge Taken in Georgia

From a 2nd Grader in the beautiful South:

"The boy should not sqishe the ant. If they switced the boy would not like to get killed. The boy is killing nature. ants are a part of nature. The ant's would not like it. Let the ant live."

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Challenge Taken in Washington St.

All of these amazing thoughts keep coming in from kids across the country. This from a second grader in Washington--

"I think the kid should let it free because I care for the environment and when I grow up I will be a scientist and I will stop people from cutting down trees. I care for ants because they are part of the environment and without the environment we could not survive."

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Ant Visits Friends School

The Maine Sunday Telegram wrote up a nice piece about the Hey, Little Ant Essay Challenge. The article by Ray Routhier featured Phil Hoose's visit with the swell kids at the Friends School of Portland.

Quoted from Article:

"When I was younger, when ants would come out of their house, I would squish them," said Darrah, 7, as her classmates listened. "It was a long time ago."

Asked why she squished, Darrah said she thought it was "cool" at the time. But now, older and wiser, she realizes ants aren't just tiny moving objects.

"They have homes, like we do," she said.

Full Article

(Photo by Jack Milton)

Friday, March 14, 2008

Challenge Taken in Iowa

From a thoughtful second grader:

"I think the boy shouldn't squish the ant because he should think about his actions. He should think about how it would feel to be like the ant. What if he was the ant and the ant was him? If the kid hurts the ant and the ant had a chance to be bigger, the giant ant would probably go around squishing us in return. The moral is we get what we deserve."

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Challenge Taken in Maryland

Thanks to all the great work that Prof. Patricia Dean at Salisbury University has doing to promote the Challenge, entries have been pouring in from Maryland. This from a third grader --

"I think the kid should leave the ant alone because ants are like people too, except they are tiny, red or black, they have antennas, and they are insects, but it doesn't matter. Ants our just like us, they have homes, nature, water, air, friends, trees, and more. Anyway the kid shouldn't squish the ant just because his friends tell him to, besides ants are people meant to live like we are meant to live."

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Challenge Taken in Virginia

This great second grader answered the challenge with:

"Hey little ant, The kid says, ""I didn't see you there!"" He cups his hands and the ant climbs in. The kid lowers the ant by the nearest anthill. Soon his friend asks him why didn't you squish it? Well, if you were a ant would you want to be squished? ""Wow, you're right"", his friend said, as they walked home from the park."

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Challenge Taken in Florida

This advice came in from a third grader in Florida today--

"The ant should bite the boy and run away. He is a little tiny ant and he can run faster than the boy. Then he would alert his friends."

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Challenge Taken in O, Canada!

The Hey, Little Ant Essay Challenge went international today with the submission of amazing essays from a third grade classroom in Alberta.

"I will not harm you little ant. I will let you go back to your family and your little town too. I will not do what the other kids think. I will not hurt you so you can go help the baby ants. If you were me and I was you, I would not want you to harm me. The other kids are wrong and you are right. I should not pick on small animals like you. Even though you are small you are just like me so I will ""NOT"" hurt you." -Third Grader, Alberta, Canada

Monday, February 25, 2008

Challenge Taken in Indiana

This fabulous drawing came in from a 1st Grader in Indiana today. Below the illustration were written the words,

"The boy did not squish the ant. The ant was happy."

If you cannot read the ant's speech bubble, it says, "I'm happy."

Well, so are we. Thanks, Indiana.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Challenge Taken in Ohio

My, oh, my we have another raft of entries. This time from the mighty state of Ohio. This came in from a third grader who picked up the rhyme beautifully!!

KID: I understand how you feel!
Remember though- you have been known to steal my meal.
And my friends are telling me
That I should squish any insect-an ANT or a Bee!

ANT: It doesn't matter what your friends tell you.
There is only one answer and the answer is TRUE.
Listen to your heart
and STOP what your shoe is about to start!

KID: Maybe you are right.
Maybe we should not have started this fight!
What do my friends really know?
Perhaps you are not my foe!
I will leave you alone!
And I will even share my ice cream cone!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Challenge Taken in Texas

A third grader in the Lone Star State had this to say,

"I think that the Kid should spare the Ant's life because the Ant is an innocent food collector. The Kid doesn't have to do what his friends want him to do. It's just like if you were a character kid and you were hanging out with a kid who doesn't have a lot of character, then you'd have to find a new friend. If you are friends with someone who is making bad choices, then maybe you might make bad choices too. But you don't want to do that and let bad choices get into your mind.

The Kid should become friends with the Ant and be nice to Ants. The Kid has a tree house where the Ant and his family can be with him. The Kid and the Ant could play games like Checkers or Hide and Seek. The Ant would probably really be good at that game. When they got done playing, the Kid could make a picnic for the Ant so that it wouldn't have to steal the food and the Ant could take the food for his city."