Literacy Advocate, Educator, Author & Speaker
Who Is KP Carter?
Kathy Carter was born in Brooklyn, New York and was raised in Newark, New Jersey. She is a literacy advocate, educator, author, and speaker. Her aspiration to teach and love of learning began early. As a young school girl, Kathy often rushed home after school to “teach” her dolls and toys the lessons she had learned and write in her diary. She is a proud product of the Newark Pubic Schools where she attended Charlton Street School, Avon Avenue School, Clinton Place Junior High School and graduated from Arts High School in 1970.
After high school, Kathy attended and majored in elementary education at Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, NC. There she further developed her love of literacy. Kathy continued to journal about her college experiences, wrote articles for the school newspaper, and served on the editorial staff of the yearbook.
Upon graduation from JCSU in 1975, Kathy returned to New Jersey and became a per diem substitute teacher throughout the 1975-76 school year. Her experiences in the public school systems of Newark, Irvington, East Orange and Orange inspired her to further her studies in order to meet the literacy needs of the students. Kathy applied for and was awarded a full fellowship in the School of Education at Kutztown State University in Kutztown, Pennsylvania. She focused on the teaching of reading and earned her Master of Education in 1978.
Throughout her 35 year career, Kathy taught literacy and social studies to students in elementary, middle, and high school in the Newark, Orange, and Montclair Public Schools. She developed and implemented educator workshops and parent sessions that focused on literacy. Summers were often spent as an Adjunct Professor of Reading at the Borough of Manhattan Community College and as the lead teacher for the Title I program in the Montclair Public Schools.
Recognizing the importance of continuous learning, Kathy earned certificates as a Reading Specialist, Supervisor, and School Administrator. Workshops and seminars at the Teachers College at Columbia University, Rutgers University, and Kean University also fed her desire to be a lifelong learner.
Upon her retirement from the Orange Public Schools as Director of Language Arts and Testing, Kathy began her second chapter. She spends her days focusing on her business, KP Carter Writes LLC, writing, author visits, providing literacy workshops for parents, educators, and community groups, and traveling.
Summertime with Lizzie B. Hayes is Kathy’s first Middle Grade book in the Lizzie B. Hayes series. The historical fiction book is a glimpse of life in Newark, NJ during the1960’s through the innocent eyes of a child. Currently, she is working on the second book, Lizzie B. Hayes and the Great Camp Caper.
“At every school event, I’m always asked if I am Lizzie B. Hayes. The truth of the matter is, she is a combination of people I have met, places I have been, and experiences I have had.”
“Students often want to know why I became a writer and decided to write Summertime. Quite frankly, I can’t remember when I didn’t write. It’s always been a part of who I am.
When my oldest son was first beginning to read, I was eager to share my love of literacy and get him hooked on learning at an early age. At the time, there were very few books with positive images of characters that looked like him. By the time his younger brother came along, more diverse books were beginning to be published but not quite enough. So, I decided to write one myself.”
Get Caught Reading
Summertime with Lizzie B. Hayes
Summertime with Lizzie B. Hayes centers on the life of an eight year old, three generations of her colorful family, and one sultry summer – 1967 - in Newark, NJ. Although the 60’s were often turbulent, it was a much simpler time when many families gathered around the table for dinner and children went inside before the street lights came on. Readers of all ages get a glimpse of this significant time period through the innocent eyes of a child.
Lizzie B. Hayes is the only child of divorced parents. She lives with her grandparents and her two cousins, Shu Shu Mookie. The cousins can’t wait to kick off their summer of nonstop fun with all the other kids in Newark, NJ.
Always wanting to be the center of attention, Lizzie is up to her usual antics and has several tricks up her sleeves to guarantee that all eyes are on her. But this summer is different!
Just as Lizzie gears up for a summer filled with jump rope contests, shooting hoops, trips to the local library, and of course, roller skating at break neck speeds, she begins to hear rumors of trouble brewing in her city.
To make matters worse, Lizzie’s father plans to take her on a two week vacation down south, South Philadelphia that is, and now she is faced with leaving everyone she loves for the first time. When she comes back, everything has changed.
The book is used to give students a better understanding of the 1967 Newark Rebellion, how to process life’s challenges, and the strength of family love.
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“I am very observant and notice people everywhere I go. That helps me to develop authentic characters. After teaching for so many years, I have lots of students in my head and forever in my heart.” -KP Carter
“KP Carter took a tragic event in the life of our country and weaved it into a marvelous account of childhood innocence. The writing was simple yet tutorial, and the graphics connected the pieces like a finished crossword puzzle. Ms. Carter proved that a book for children can be educational for adults and enjoyed by any person, no matter their persuasion.”-Marc Curtis Little, Author – Radio host
“I really enjoyed reading the book Summertime with Lizzie B. Hayes. I liked the fact that Lizzie never gave up trying to stay in Newark, NJ when she didn’t want to go to South Philadelphia. However, when she got there she really liked it and didn’t want to come home when the two weeks were up. I am waiting for another book about Lizzie maybe in the fall when she goes back to school.”-Yanni Halstead 4th grade student
"This book is an must read for anyone that wants to experience the nostalgia of growing up with family, playing with friends and experiencing the bond of family. My son who is 12 absolutely loved this book and has taken it to his school for others to read. Well written for the middle school age as well as for those older. We look forward to other works from the author!"-Suszette Parker-Basia - Parent