But this summer I visited The Eric Carle Museum and I was lucky enough to stumble upon an exhibit of Keats' work and a little background on his creations. And I'm going to admit something really embarrassing here - I had always assumed that Keats was African-American, just because his much loved character, Peter, is black.
But Keats was a nice Jewish fellow who lived in Manhattan and found that picture books lacked the diversity he saw all around him, so he decided to do something about it.
And really, who could resist this adorable little fellow that Keats cites as his inspiration for Peter?
So my eyes were opened which is always a good thing. Now jump to a January afternoon when a Kindergarten teacher asks me for a copy of The Snowy Day to read her class, and to my horror, my little library doesn't have it! I'm sure the did, once, but it is there no longer, and I had to tell my colleague that I couldn't provide it for her, but that I wouldn't be surprised if I could find such a classic story online somewhere.
And boy did I find it. A quick search brought me to ezra-jack-keats.org where I found a completely awesome animated version of the storybook, and cool online game, and the news that they had decreed January The Snowy Day month! Seems it's the 50th anniversary of that story, and I thought their idea was a very good one.