Amato, Carol A. 1942-
AMATO, Carol A. 1942-
PERSONAL: Born April 18, 1942, in Hamden, CT; daughter of Carl and Flora (Maturo) Ardito; married Philip P. Amato (a professor), August 20, 1966; children: Maria Amato Coates, Nicole. Education: Emerson College, B.A., 1964; Boston University, M.Ed., 1965. Hobbies and other interests: Nature photography, writing and reading poetry, outdoor sports, including cycling, swimming, cross country skiing, and jogging, bird watching, and nature workshops and programs.
ADDRESSES: Agent—c/o Wiley, 111 River St., Hoboken NJ 07030-6000.
CAREER: Language and learning specialist in the Boston, MA, area, 1965—. Volunteer at the New England Aquarium, Massachusetts Audubon at Wellfleet Bay, the Museum of Natural History, Cape Cod, and the Cape Cod Aquarium.
MEMBER: Authors Guild, Authors League of America, National Science Teachers Association, American Speech, Hearing, and Language Association, National Wildlife Federation, Massachusetts Audubon, Massachusetts Marine Educators Association, Arnold Arboretum, Save the Manatee Club, Northeast Hawk Watch Association, Center for Children's Environmental Writing.
AWARDS, HONORS: Award from Roger Tory Peterson Notable Nature Club, 1992; award from Massachusetts Audubon.
"YOUNG READERS" SERIES
The Truth about Sharks, Barron's International (Hauppauge, NY) 1995.
Captain Jim and the Killer Whales, illustrated by
Patrick O'Brien, Barron's International (Hauppauge, NY), 1995.
To Be a Wolf, illustrated by Patrick O'Brien and David Wenzel, Barron's International (Hauppauge, NY), 1995.
Raising Ursa, 1996.
Adios, Chi Chi: The Adventures of a Tarantula, illustrated by David Wenzel, Barron's International (Hauppauge, NY), 1996.
The Bald Eagle: Free Again!, Barron's International (Hauppauge, NY), 1996.
Penguins of the Galapagos, Barron's International (Hauppauge, NY), 1996.
On the Trail of the Grizzly, illustrated by Patrick O'Brien, Barron's International (Hauppauge, NY), 1997.
Chessie, the Meandering Manatee, illustrated by David Wenzel, Barron's International (Hauppauge, NY), 1997.
The Giant Panda: The Hope for Tomorrow, illustrated by David Wenzel, Barron's International (Hauppauge, NY), 2000.
(With Eric Ladizinsky) Fifty Nifty Science Fair Projects, illustrated by Kerry Manwaring, Lowell House (Los Angeles, CA), 1993.
Super Science Fair Projects, Lowell House (Los Angeles, CA), 1994.
(With Deidra Heinlein and Evan Forbes) The Earth, Teacher Created Materials (Westminster, CA), 1995.
Backyard Pets: Activities for Exploring Wildlife Close to Home, illustrated by Cheryl Kirk Noll, Wiley (New York, NY), 2002.
SIDELIGHTS: Longtime education and language specialist Carol A. Amato has expressed her love of nature not only in her hobbies and volunteer activities, but through a series of early-reader books about nature and in several collections of hands-on science activities. In her 2002 offering, Backyard Pets: Activities for Exploring Wildlife Close to Home, Amato shares with readers various activities for attracting and learning about animals nearby. She gives readers information about catching, caring for, and releasing such creatures as snails and slugs, toads, worms, crickets, caterpillars, fireflies, birds, and butterflies.
Amato told CA: "As a very young child, I was fascinated by the rhythms of language. When I was three years old, I would sit on my bed (so my mother told me) and recite poems I made up aloud ('Oh look at the pigs, how dirty they are. They all look like a candy bar') while she hid behind the door writing down my words. Then she would send them to the local newspaper to be published in the poetry column. (They must have been short of adult poets!) So, early on, I was encouraged to write and praised for my efforts, I was also read to daily, before the days of picture books. This wonderful daily ritual allowed my imagination and appetite for words to grow.
"I was an introspective child, and writing gave me a means for self-expression and provided the attention I needed but was too shy to seek. I also spent most of my time outside, discovering all the wonders of nature from wild bunnies and white-footed mice to ants and caterpillars! Although I grew up in two city suburbs of Connecticut, I managed to find green, happy places by exploring far from home by foot or [on] my faithful blue Columbia [bicycle]!
"I wrote all through high school and college, most often poetry and usually just for myself. I wanted desperately to be a writer, but grew up in the days when this was considered an inappropriate career for a woman. Freelance writing is still a dream for most writers, male or female, except for those who have come into an inheritance or won the lottery!
"Because I was still interested in language, I studied to be a speech and language pathologist and received a Masters degree in childhood aphasia, a neurological disorder affecting receptive and expressive language. As a young adult, I continued to write primarily poetry and was published in a few journals and magazines. Busy with a career and family, I didn't have much time to pursue my writing dreams. However, I never lost my love of the natural world and the out-of-doors. Through the years I became a member of many wildlife organizations and attended as many workshops and programs that I could fit into my schedule. I also volunteered at Audubon sanctuaries and local aquariums both in Boston and on Cape Cod, where we now have a summer home. I'm an avid nature photographer and have won prizes for my wildlife and landscape photos.
"Through the years as a language-learning specialist, I developed and implemented a life-science program for children with learning difficulties. In later years, I brought this program to the Boston public schools, funded by a grant. I am now presenting this program in other schools as well. An additional workshop teaches students about nonfiction writing, using my science workshop methods.
"The objectives of both my programs and the Young Readers' Series are to encourage parents and teachers to develop inquiry skills in their children that make learning non-threatening and challenging, and to enable them to help children to retain their innate sense of wonder and joy in discovery learning. I also hope to promote a love and appreciation of all living things and to convey the urgency of our role in the conservation and preservation of our fragile environment."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
School Library Journal, March, 2001, Lisa Smith, review of The Giant Panda: The Hope for Tomorrow, p. 231.
Science News, April 6, 2002, review of Backyard Pets: Activities for Exploring Wildlife Close to Home, p. 223.*