LTER sites express interest in publishing books for K-12

Network News Fall 2004, Vol. 17 No. 2

Much Ado about Children’s Book

According to Phil Robertson (Chair, Education Committee), an informal email survey of the LTER sites shows there is considerable interest in pursuing LTER site-level kids books. The survey (see attached file) shows that at least 10 sites have definite current interest in publishing a children’s book, while two indicated tentative interest.

But the process will not be easy, as Phil discovered from Diane McKnight, lead investigator of the Niwot and McMurdo books: It will require concerted effort and coordination to get things going. However, Phil says, “the fact that we already have an in with an established publisher is a huge plus in this intensely competitive market, and we should captitalize on the groundwork already laid by Diane and colleagues.”

The activity will also need good resources. In addition a few thousand dollars paid to the illustrator and author (not counting royalties), Niwot spent $15,000 to purchase copies of their book for local elementary schools—a stipulation in the site’s contract with the publisher. Phil suggests that the process might work better if the sites treat it as a network-wide initiative, thus enable them to join forces to seek external funding for the activity. He suggested further that the LTER executive appoints an ad hoc committee, with representatives from the publication and education committees, to take the process through the next steps.

Related Links: 
Site survey (.xls)
Related Documents: