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From the Classroom to Print: Create a Comic Project #1

The Create a Comic Project has taken its first foray into publishing teaching material with Create a Comic Project #1, aimed at both children and educators. The 26-page comic is written by John Baird, the Create a Comic Project’s founder, and illustrated by a bevy of comic artists, including Ryan Estrada, Emily Snodgrass, and Erin Ptah. It’s published not-for-profit through Lulu.com.

The first issue is written as an introduction to the series, touching on a range of topics, such as captions, bubble types, and symbolia. These subjects will be developed deeper in later issues. As an added bonus, textless versions of every page are included along with bonus textless art pages. An instructor can use these pages to run their own comic making activity. 

The Create a Comic Project is a superlative children's activity, combining youth literacy education with fun visual elements that delight the students,” said Xia Feng, Coordinator of Children and Youth Services at the New Haven Public Library, the Create a Comic Project’s first home.

Create a Comic Project #1 is the first of many planned comics that will serve a dual role: to equip educators with materials they can use in the classroom or after school programs; and, to make comics children would find interesting to read.

The comics seek to fill a gap in current how-to comic literature, which mainly targets teens and adults, by attracting 8-12 year olds to the craft. As the percentage of kids who are Internet savvy increases and computer literacy spreads to more diverse populations, youth oriented comic education could help train the next generation of online comic makers.

The comic is available for purchase at the Create a Comic Project Lulu storefront.

The Create a Comic Project (CCP) is a non-profit youth literacy program that uses comics to help kids enjoy creative writing. For three years and counting, the project has helped educate hundreds of children from all walks of life and won awards and sponsorships from several institutions, including Yale University. Many of the Internet’s top webcomics have loaned their art for use in the project, making the CCP one of the largest multi-comic educational collaborations of its kind. The project’s website is located at http://ccproject.comicgenesis.com.

John Baird’s earliest experience tutoring others was in elementary school reading to younger kids. He liked it so much he kept doing it well into his college years, earning recognition from AmeriCorps for his service to the community. He thought of the Create a Comic Project while working as an English teacher in Taiwan, ROC, to promote creativity and language skills among his students. He’s currently in Pittsburgh, PA, where he continues to volunteer his time to help at-risk youths. He can be reached at createacomic@gmail.com.