As a writer I’m passionate about tackling the issue of ageism—particularly in picture books. Unfortunately (and often unknowingly) we are teaching negative attitudes about older adults to very young children. Kids need realistic and positive images of old. We all do.
In my 50’s I made a major career change to write picture books, both fiction and non-fiction. I’m excited to share I recently signed publishing contracts with Eerdmans Books for Young Readers and Sleeping Bear Press. My first picture book biography will come out in June 2018.
In my 25 years in healthcare I worked primarily with stroke survivors. I was fortunate to know and be inspired by many amazing older role models. It’s important to me to highlight hidden strengths through stories and I had the good fortune to co-edit a collection of true tales by survivors of stroke. Climbing the Mountain: Stories of Hope, Healing and Humor after Stroke and Brain Injury was published by Fairview Press (2008, 2014).
After earning a degree in Speech and Hearing Science from the University of Minnesota I found creating stroke education and support programs highly rewarding. I worked with older adults in rehabilitation centers, long term care, hospitals, and the community. As a self-employed consultant I continue to write materials and teach workshops for both stroke survivors and healthcare professionals
Back in my early 20’s I gave little thought to growing old until hearing a speech by the famous Betty Friedan—soon after her book The Fountain of Age was published. She was followed by Maggie Kuhn, the founder of the Gray Panthers—an advocacy group for older citizens. I realized then that most of what I believed about growing older was merely myth.
With my eyes opened I was impelled me to read more and learn the truth about aging and later life. Twenty years later I participated in the birth of the Vital Aging Network at the University of Minnesota. Today I’m thrilled to collaborate with Dr. Sandra L. McGuire on the resources at this website. She has long devoted her energies to the cause. (Read more about her below.)
This website and the A is for Aging blog bring together my favorite things—picture books, older adults, and gardening. Gardening you ask? Well yes, that’s a stretch, but I believe we must plant the seeds to positive aging starting very young—in childhood. I hope you’ll join me in an effort to nip ageism in the bud.
After many years in Minnesota and stints in Michigan and Kansas, I currently I live in Minnesota.
More about Lindsey. Definitely not “need to know”…
- I adore a tiny rescued pup with a very long moniker “Rocky Forrest Ferris…” plus several others. (I take no responsibility.)
- I tend to stumble frequently when walking the dog–gazing up at beautiful large trees. (I often pat them, but only occasionally hug.)
- I’ve “adopted” university students far from home–3 from China and 1 from Singapore so far. They have really enriched my life.
- I tell people I have a “pack-a-day habit” using little sticky notes. I love reading non-fiction, but I really, really dislike note-taking.
- The Great Lakes and the mighty Mississippi River inspire total awe and I visit every chance I get.
“Children today are expected to live longer than any other generation of Americans. Let’s rise to the challenge of promoting positive aging and combating ageism—it benefits everyone”. Sandra L. McGuire RN, EdD
Dr. Sandra L. McGuire is an advisor for the A is for Aging blog and resources. She is a Professor Emeritus at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
Dr. McGuire is a Fellow of the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education (AGHE) and serves on the AGHE K-12 Committee. She is director of the Kids Are Tomorrow’s Seniors Program (KATS) and served as a member of AARP’s National Policy Council.
Dr. McGuire has worked with the Teaching and Learning about Aging Project, served on the Board of the Center for Understanding Aging, and contributed materials to the National Academy for Teaching and Learning about Aging. She has coordinated a university gerontology program and taught courses such as “Aging and Society”.
Over a period of almost 30 years, Dr. McGuire has contributed to numerous books and published on aging, aging education, promoting positive attitudes about aging with children, and aging as portrayed in early children’s literature in journals including: Childhood Education, Journal of School Nursing, and Educational Gerontology.
She is the author of the Growing Up and Growing Older Booklist compiled over many years. Like the resources at this website it is a compilation of carefully selected children’s literature with meaningful portrayals of older adults. (See Resources for more information and blog page for reviewed books.)
Click on button below for Lindsey’s LinkedIn profile: