A pair of computer-animated, wandering eyes encourages young readers to look at Mona Kerby's Web site, "The Author Corner: Mid-Atlantic Authors."
The site introduces middle school students to mid-Atlantic authors and illustrators of children's books. Kerby, an assistant professor of library science at Western Maryland College, is among them.
"I did this for the sheer love of it. When you've been a teacher for so long, you're always looking for ways to make students read," said Kerby, a teacher at Western Maryland College for three years.
Located on the Carroll County Public Library server, Kerby's pages give children glimpses of authors Mary Downing Hahn, Mary E. Lyons, Bianca Lavies and David Wisniewski, a recently announced Caldecott Medal winner.
Each author has a biographical blurb, some with a photo and a sound bite. The titles of their books are listed and some can be clicked on for a summary.
Visitors to Kerby's pages, which first appeared Feb. 3, can also e-mail the authors or order their books. Kerby, formerly an elementary school teacher and a library media specialist in Arlington, Texas, described her site as "just another dimension to bring the student back to the book."
Kerby has written 10 books of fiction, biography and science. Her books "Asthma" and "Cockroaches" were named to the 1989 Outstanding List of Science Trade Books.
Scott Reinhart, assistant director of Carroll County's libraries, helped contribute the computer know-how for Kerby's "Author Corner" on the World Wide Web.
The project was one of several financed with a $30,000 grant from the state Department of Education. The grant also allowed the purchase of equipment and software for the library and the college, as well as the training of Western Maryland College students and staff to create Web documents.
Kerby's pages can be found on Carroll On-line, a series of pages the library maintains and that contain information on county business, government and community news.
Kerby said her pages will improve as more authors are added. She would like to add book reviews written by children.
"[The page] is still in its infancy," she said.
Her Web pages have been visited 3,245 times and the pages have generated about 20 e-mail messages, primarily from Kerby's students and Texas friends, but none from children.
"Author Corner" can be found at www.carr.lib.md.us/auth co/home.htm.
Pub Date: 3/03/97