Creative New Children’s Book Encourages Imagination & Out of the Box Thinking

Share Article

Author Penny A. Smith wrote the story to promote early childhood literacy & raise funds for the non-profit, First Steps for Families

Cover of author Penny A. Smith's new children's book

Author Penny A. Smith, a retired elementary school teacher with over 23-years of experience, noticed a trend of illiteracy amongst her young students, particularly those from at-risk families with an incarcerated parent. Concerned with what she observed, Smith wrote “Jimmy Dean: The Longest Dog You’ve Ever Seen,” an educational and humorous new children’s book that she hopes will help promote early childhood literacy and imagination.

“Jimmy Dean: The Longest Dog You’ve Ever Seen” is the first of many “Jimmy Dean” adventure books to soon also be published in support of Smith’s advocacy. The colorful illustrations and carefully constructed prose encourage out of the box thinking and creativity. In the book, Jimmy Dean gets himself in silly situations parents can then discuss with their children while reading together such as “If you were as long as Jimmy Dean, what could you do? Where would you go?”

“We have three dachshunds, one is the real-life Jimmy Dean and longer than the other two,” said Smith. “One day I looked down at him and said, ‘Jimmy Dean, you’re the longest dog I have ever seen!’ I know children love animal stories, so I decided that one remark would make a fun story and cute title.”

Smith and her husband Mike are the co-founders of the registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, First Steps for Families. It was created to help promote early childhood literacy among at-risk families by providing intense literacy training for very young children and their parents so they will excel when entering school. Funds from the sales of “Jimmy Dean” go directly towards supporting First Steps. To learn more about their non-profit, please visit the First Steps for Families Go Fund Me page.

“Jimmy Dean: The Longest Dog You’ve Ever Seen”
By Penny A. Smith
ISBN: 978-1-5035-7219-5
Available at Barnes & Noble and Amazon

About the author
Penny A. Smith and her husband Mike are lifelong residents of San Angelo, Texas and even attended the same elementary school Smith then taught at for over 20 years. She worked primarily with Pre-K and First Grade students at the Stephen F. Austin Elementary school. Her husband volunteered as a Bible class teacher with Through God Comes Justice Ministries, Inc. at the Tom Green County Jail. These experiences inspired the Smiths to found their own non-profit, First Steps for Families, as a way to give back to their beloved community and promote early childhood literacy among the at-risk families.

For Review Copies & General Inquiries Contact:
LAVIDGE – Phoenix
Lauren Dickerson

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Lauren Dickerson
Email >