Spiro-based retired educator sweeps young readers up on adventure

September 13, 2021 | Headlines

SPIRO — Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, many families have sacrificed much-anticipated travel plans, and kids have had to learn and play from home.

As a retired educator, author Sharon J. Beard has always celebrated the magic of twining entertainment and teaching to help children retain what they’re taught in school and foster a love of learning.

In her children’s book, “Koke Goes to Oklahoma,” Beard invites young readers on an exciting adventure across the Sooner State and peppers in fun facts about Oklahoma’s rich history and beautiful scenery along the way.

Beard’s fun-loving German Shepherd, Koke, serves as a tour guide in this playful book brimming with photographs and delicate, hand-drawn illustrations. As Koke pokes through fields, comes across dazzling ponds, and encounters an eclectic mix of wildlife, she weaves in facts about Oklahoma’s long history. From the rich bounties of corn Native Americans grew in proximity to the Arkansas River to the Oklahoma land rush of 1889, Koke shares fascinating tidbits about the state’s past and present.

“I wrote this book from my dog’s perspective because I think that animals and pets help us get back in touch with nature,” Beard said. “I hope my book can help kids feel connected with the outside world and maybe even make them laugh. This book provides a way for them to learn things through enjoyment and without the pressure that often accompanies academics and instruction.”

Ultimately, “Koke Goes to Oklahoma” offers parents and teachers an engaging tool that they can use with their children to teach them more about the state’s culture and unique historical underpinnings while also having fun along the way. “Koke Goes to Oklahoma” is also available in an engaging audio format.

“Koke Goes to Oklahoma”

By Sharon J. Beard

ISBN: 978-1-4908-4018-5 (softcover); ISBN: 978-1-4908-4019-2 (e-book)

Available through WestBow Press, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon

About the author

Sharon J. Beard is a retired speech pathologist and special education teacher. Now, she spends much of her time writing books, poems, and songs. Beard also photographs many of the images used in her books. She earned her bachelor’s degree in speech/language therapy and special education from Northeastern State College in Tahlequah, Okla. She is the author of “Koke Goes to Oklahoma,” “Like a Panther in the Night,” “Down by the Barn,” and “Raven Goes to Arkansas.” Beard also wrote two albums of original music titled “Daddy if She Only Knew” and “No More Tears.” She has four children, nine grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. Beard currently resides in Spiro, Okla. To learn more, please visit www.sharonjbeard.com or follow the author on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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