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Digital Storytelling

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Content Development

Curriculum Design

We are first, and foremost, storytellers with a passion for education and a deep understanding of curriculum. We curate, produce, and publish “small batch” educational media. The award-winning stories, learning games, literacy tools, and curriculum we have created and helped our clients develop are inspired by the 4 C’s of 21st century education—Creativity, Critical Thinking, Communication, and Collaboration. We are deeply committed to projects that celebrate authentic voices, diversity, multicultural literature, and real-world learning. Our most recent clients include Sesame Learning, UNESCO MGIEP, Benchmark Education, and Splashworks. 

What's New

A book list for young people in the age of school shootings


William H.G. Butler Middle School

William H.G. Butler Middle School is a graphic novella that examines the Orwellian realities that could face a nation without gun reform. Inspired by news & research on gun violence in America, it was published on Instagram as the social media posts of a fictional school in the summer of 2018 over seven weeks. Eisner and Harvey Award nominated comics journalist Josh Neufeld praised our work, writing: "The format of the @williambutlerms narrative is very clever, both in terms of subject matter and the Instagram “delivery system.” It’s rife with hashtags and feels very connected to our techno-cultural moment. And what makes the whole thing work is the deadpan satire of the piece."We have taken the story a step further and given it a home on Medium to delve into the inspiration behind each post. Read here


Spot on Fiction

We recently commissioned and edited a forthcoming collection of 70+ original fiction leveled readers and graphic novels by diverse and international award-winning children's authors and illustrators for the school market. These stories will be published as leveled readers for the school market for grades 3-5. The authors we commissioned and whose works our team of editors developed and edited included Derrick Barnes, Jane Yolen,Virginia Driving Hawk Sneve, Joseph Bruchac, Traci Sorrell, Bao Phi, Jerry Craft, Gwendolyn Zepeda, Rene Saldana Jr., David Bowles, Reem Faruqi, Claudia Guadalope Martinez, Ibi Zoboi, Gwendolyn Hooks, Floyd Cooper, Isabel Campoy, Jennifer Torres, Robert Lui-Trujillo, Joel Christian Gill, and Niki Daly.

Client: Benchmark Education


Digital Storytelling

World Rescue

Through fast-paced gameplay set in Kenya, Norway, Brazil, India, and China, meet and help five young heroes and help them solve global problems—such as displacement, disease, deforestation, drought, and pollution—at the community level. We collaborated with UNESCO's Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development and Zu Digital to create the narrative design, characters, and script for this video-game inspired by the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.

Watch the trailer here

Interview with Games4Sustainability

Roundtable Discussion on Teaching with Games (Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop): Part 1, Part 2

 

 

Grandma's Great Gourd

Featured in USA Today! A Common Sense Media "Best Book App for Kids" pick and winner of Tech with Kids "Best Pick App" Award. 

In the tradition of beloved children's stories Little Red Riding Hood and Three Billy Goat's Gruff, Grandma’s Great Gourd is an interactive storybook app that brings alive a trickster tale from South Asia which celebrates the keen wit and problem-solving powers of grandmothers everywhere! It is based on the award-winning picture book Grandma and the Great Gourd, by best-selling author Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni. 

 
 

HangArt

A Common Sense Media 20 best EdTech Tools of 2016 Selection. Featured in The New York Times "10 Children's Apps for Summer Road Trips, Common Sense Media's "Best Word Game," "Best Spelling" and "Best English and Language Arts, Apps, Games and Websites" lists, and a 2016 Best Play & Learn Apps selection by Teachers with Apps! 

A literacy app that celebrates words, art, and storytelling. Kids play a visual Hangman based on high-frequency words, then draw their own pictures and create stories using their won words. Ages 5-8.

 
 

Dentist Bird: A West African Folktale

A Parents' Choice Foundation Recommended App

An interactive book app based on the Liberian folktale How Plover Bird Came to Clean Crocodile's Teeth. Children explore the sights and sounds of Liberia’s rainforest while helping one clever bird cure a crocodile of his terrible toothache!

 

Content Strategy

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Big Belly Business

A research-based, culturally-relevant, and highly-illustrated lower literacy pregnancy guide for Liberia based on the best-selling What to Expect When You're Expecting. Funded with a grant from the US Department of State's Office of Global Women's Issues. 

Client: The What to Expect Foundation

 

Babu Barta Bangaldesh

A low-literacy, evidence-based, culturally-relevant, and highly-illustrated lower literacy pregnancy guide for Bangladesh based on the best-selling What to Expect When You're Expecting. Funded with a grant from the US Department of State's Office of Global Women's Issues. 

Client: The What to Expect Foundation

 

Curriculum Design

We have developed, written, and produced pre-K to Grade 12 Common Core-aligned lesson plans and and curriculum on a wide range of fiction and non-fiction content areas, including history, financial literacy, English Language Arts, oral history, and current events. Our roster of clients include Sesame Learning/The Primary School, Sesame Workshop, Scholastic Education, PBS Learning Media, The New York Times Learning Network, Teachers College at Columbia University.

We have also developed book club and discussion guides for children's book publishers and and children's and middle grade trade book authors, including Katherine Applegate (Home of the Brave), Marina Budhos (Tell Us We're Home), Ann Martin (Everything But a Dog), and Ricardo Cortés (I Don't Want to Blow You Up).  

Samples of our client work are available upon request. 


 

Past Projects

History Detectives Laboratory

A flash-based online educational game inspired by the PBS series History Detectives. HD Lab featured two game-based investigations around the Industrial Revolution where students assume the role of detective to investigate mysteries surrounding historical artifacts.

Client: Lion Television

 

Ion Future: The STEM career exploration game

A free online game for middle and early-high school students where players explore the breadth and variety of STEM-based professions and match their interests with different career pathways in STEM.

Client: E-Line Media/Change the Equation.

 

English 3D

Curation of content selections for a series of anthologies for a language program designed to accelerate language skills for all academic language learners, including long-term English language learners, advanced ELL/ELD students, and community dialect speakers.

Client: Scholastic Education

About Literary Safari

Our team of talented writers, editors, educators, designers, creative directors, and illustrators have extensive experience creating entertaining and inclusive educational content that is easy on the eyes, promotes literacy, and can be aligned to the Common Core State Standards.

Founder, Sandhya Nankani is a producer, editor, content developer, and editorial strategist whose work has been recognized by the Association of Educational Publishers. An alum of Scholastic Education and Weekly Reader classroom magazines, she has over a decade of experience creating engaging and educational digital and print games, books, apps, and magazines for children K-8, as well as low-literacy learners. Over the years, she has taught College Composition to college freshman, edited Writing for Teens magazine, collaborated with Google for Educators, authored hi-low and leveled fiction and nonfiction readers for Heinemann's Fountas & Pinnell programs, developed a middle school ELA program, and written curriculum for the New York Times Learning Network, PBS, and Sesame Workshop.

Born and raised in Ghana, India, and the United States, she is committed to developing innovative, inclusive, and diverse content for children. She is also a co-founder of KIDMAP (Kids' Inclusive and Diverse Media Action Project), a group committed to diverse representation in digital content for children.

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