NEW YORK, Feb. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Random House Children's Books has named Cindy Ventura, a third-grade teacher from the Lou Henry Hoover School in Whittier, CA, as the winner of the 2005 Magic Tree House Educator of the Year Award. In its inaugural year, the Magic Tree House Educator of the Year Award recognizes an individual teacher who has creatively and successfully incorporated both the Magic Tree House series and the Magic Tree House Research Guides into his/her classroom curriculum to promote learning and literacy. Ms. Ventura's prize package includes a trip to New York City for a luncheon with Magic Tree House author Mary Pope Osborne, a full set of autographed Magic Tree House titles, as well as $500 worth of Random House Children's Books for her classroom. Osborne will present the award to Ms. Ventura at a book signing event (on Tuesday, Feb 22, 6-pm, Barnes & Noble, 240 East 86th Street in Manhattan). Ms. Ventura's award winning entry details how she effectively integrates the Magic Tree House books into her third grade classroom curriculum through a year-long program which emphasizes reading, reading comprehension, creative thinking and story writing. Each year begins with a challenge to students to read no less than 28 Magic Tree House titles over the course of the school year. Concurrent to these continuous reading efforts are various classroom projects based on the Magic Tree House series. The school year culminates with a writing assignment which allows third graders to write their own Magic Tree House adventure. Observing the progress of her third graders as they read and work with Magic Tree House throughout the year, Ms. Ventura remarks that, "A teacher ends up feeling that they must have struck gold." Osborne, who played a key role in selecting the winning entry, commented, "Ms. Ventura's essay made it clear to me that her classroom exemplifies exactly what I strive for with my Magic Tree House books -- the perfect combination of learning and fun! I'm thrilled and flattered that Magic Tree House has played such a valuable role in her class, and I'm looking forward to meeting her in person." Next year's 2006 Magic Tree House Educator of the Year Contest will begin on September 1, 2005. For the contest rules, visit http://www.randomhouse.com/teachers/magicth after May 1, 2005. The bestselling Magic Tree House series includes 32 titles and has sold over 21 million copies in the last 3 years alone making it among the top 5 bestselling series on the Publishers Weekly bestseller list. The Magic Tree House Research Guides, which launched in 2000, include 12 titles and have sold over 1.2 million copies. Kids, teachers and parents can experience even more Magic Tree House fun through its interactive website at http://www.magictreehouse.com. Translated into over 21 different languages, Magic Tree House is known by kids and teachers all over the world for its power to inspire reading!
SOURCE Random House Children's Books