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Let's ignite curiosity for great books and beautiful language with this wondrous (and funny) children's series!
Let's ignite curiosity for great books and beautiful language with this wondrous (and funny) children's series!
Let's ignite curiosity for great books and beautiful language with this wondrous (and funny) children's series!
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242 backers pledged $25,031 to help bring this project to life.

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BAX CLASSICS: "Great literature through the eyes of a kid!"

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When a child is inspired to reach "higher on the bookshelf," we believe habits are begun that shape an entire life.  We also believe these habits should begin early, in-step with other kid influences.

Bax Classics takes a unique angle in revealing the big ideas, beautiful language and deep hearts of our greatest books.  They're not adaptations, but expeditions into wondrous, novel-esque worlds, led by an ornery-but-lovable pal and his oddball obsession with literature!   (More below... and please visit Bax Classics on Facebook!)

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How do Bax Classics Work?

Bax comes in three volumes.  Each volume opens with a fun kid dilemma, whereupon Bax's wiley imagination pushes things off the rails, whisking everyone into the wondrous world of a classic!  Kids get right up close to the novel's unfolding, fueled by Bax's eccentric love of that author's work! (Think Calvin & Hobbes, with a nod to Jumanji, but traversing the world of a classic!)

Volume Overviews: 

When Bax's best friend, Marla, tricks Bax into being the Fairy Godmother in her home production of Cinderella, Bax thinks fast, declaring what Cinderella really needs is a Magwitch!  This sets the kids off on a flight of fancy that becomes momentous for the two pals and takes us into to the heart of Dickens' tender and mysterious novel.

The Theme:  Kindness; and if we can let go of our assumptions, we can help almost anyone make their way.

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It's "Tell me a Scary Story Night" at Bax's house, and Bax's sitter, Hattie, is giving him the works.  Refusing to be out-ghosted, Bax dials up "Jane Eyre" with the specters of Gateshead and Thornfield! Everything goes as planned until Bax crashes into the realization that Jane is actually a story of LOVE!  (Eeeek!  Now that's scary!)

The Theme:  Sometimes, what appears to be the scariest of circumstances is actually our greatest dreams trying to break through. 

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When things get a little too predictable in Mr. Carbunkel's reading class, Bax makes an impassioned plea for some high adventure taken from the teacher's personal bookshelf.  Carbunkel is tempted, but dare he open the enormous leather-bound book that "hasn't un-seized an honest reader in over 150 years?"  Here, Bax takes the helm and the class is swept away... right into Melville's brilliance.

The Theme:  The stuff we think we need can become an obsession -- in which case it may be more powerful to simply "let go."

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Three volumes... Three evocative worlds to explore...
Three volumes... Three evocative worlds to explore...

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Curriculum... our Secret Sauce!

In the video, we shared an excerpt from our first learning module, Parallel Translations.  After kids enjoy Bax's whimsical excursion through a novel, kids can experience the same scenes beautifully described by the original author, creating exciting juxtapositions and explorations of this thing called language!

Claptrap & Bibble Babble (module 2) is an educational romp through long-forgotten, silly-sounding words and phrases.  And should Webster fail us, teachers can introduce other ways to understand what-on-Earth the author was bibble-babbling about!

Pressing Pause (module 3).  Here we slow down, sit with our kids and ponder some themes within the Bax Classic. Even at the Kindergarten level we've enjoyed some very lively discussions.... which only deepen at each grade level.

A note on age:  Just as the stories can be enjoyed as a Read-to-Me or Read-it-Myself experience for kids ranging from 3 to 8, the curriculum has been conscientiously designed to scale with a child's understanding.  See FAQ's for more information!

*The curriculum comes as printable PDF's, however the "Educator's Bundle" also includes downloadable AUDIO-VISUAL enhancements (which will eventually become our APP!)

The Bigger Picture

Our LONG TERM GOAL is to grow Bax Classics until it can become our family-run publishing business... one that helps appetize readers with big fat books (and sprinkles of tasty language) helping prevent some resistances to "literature" later in school.

Also on our Vision Board is an outreach to rural schools, temporary children's shelters and prisons with literacy programs that would welcome picture book intros to deeper reading experiences.

Oh-- and someday we want a Baxmobile!   

Our dream car looks like this... but with a motor.
Our dream car looks like this... but with a motor.

Project Deliverables / Dates

Teaming up with outstanding Disney/Pixar artists like Marco Bucci and Kim Gilbert, we've been able to chug along pretty happily.  At the start of the campaign, here's where each book stands:

MOBY DICK (Vol I): Complete and undergoing final preparations for print!  Curriculum is complete with new modules being added. Book to be printed and released in Oct/Nov in time for Holiday shipment.

GREAT EXPECTATIONS (Vol II): Artwork complete except for title and end pages. Curriculum in-progress.  Looking at a Feb/March deliverable!

JANE EYRE (Vol III): Artwork over half complete!  If Jane continues to move well, we'll print and ship her alongside Great Expectations, otherwise shortly thereafter.  (Please Like/Follow us for continual updates!)  

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Closing Thoughts...

It's been quite a journey getting ready for this campaign.  That said, we recognize our work is just beginning, and we promise we will do our best to exceed your expectations with this series.   

It is our hope and intention that this venture creates opportunities and enjoyment not just for ourselves, but for EVERYONE in the village-- from the writers and artists to the parents and teachers of the littlest readers.  We anticipate there will be EXCITING NEWS at every turn and we'd love to have you a part of it!

Our very best, 
TeamBax

A Very Special Thanks goes out to Sylvia at SchoolExpress... Gary Brown at Koru Inc... Ryan and Anna at Ribbow Media... Carla Cushman and Nina Morel (check out their book!)... Richard Eddinger (our Herman Melville)... and Jessica Wolstenholm, whose blog and curricular work on many cool projects has been an inspiration. :)

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Risks and challenges

With all our accumulated wisdom, we decided NOT to do a Kickstarter until we had most of the work completed, focusing on PRINTING needs only. We've also been pretty meticulous about budget and time requirements.

The main variable is probably our overseas printer who's in high demand (but for good reason). Busy or not, we love our rep (a 30-year veteran in publishing top notch kids books) and he believes we're gonna be A-okay with our calendar as planned.

If anything else gets hairy, we promise to reach out to mentors and allies -- which we've done several times already :) But all in all, we're in very, very good shape to execute as planned.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Friends of Bax

    Many thanks for your vote! Please take an illustrated "Friend of Bax" button for your favorite early reader, blessed with thoughts of happy reading!

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    A Christening

    Deck your favorite tablet with a PDF of Book I, featuring MOBY DICK! If you like, add $1 and we'll also drop a newly-minted Bax button into an envelope for you! (And mail it!)

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Let's Set Sail!

    Get a beautiful 32-page HARD COVER edition of Book I where we meet Bax, his class, and shove off with Melville's epic, MOBY DICK! We'll also include a PDF copy, the Bax button, and printable CURRICULUM with three ubercool modules!

    IS THIS A GIFT? Get a super cute "I SAILED with AHAB" tee by adding $15 each. (Child and adult sizes.)

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    The Virtual Bax Library

    Get all three Bax Classics -- MOBY DICK, GREAT EXPECTATIONS and JANE EYRE -- in digital PDF format. Each title includes our printable CURRICULUM with three modules each!

    Like to upgrade to an "eBook" tailored for your iPad, Android or Kindle device? Add $5 and we gotcha covered on all three titles!

    **Virtual titles to be released in step with hardcovers. See Deliverables section for release dates.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    Reader's Choice (limit 250)

    Get the VIRTUAL BAX LIBRARY above, PLUS take your choice of MOBY DICK, GREAT EXPECTATIONS or JANE EYRE in a beautiful 32-page HARD COVER edition. Includes the Bax button and the entire printable CURRICULUM!

    BONUS: If all 250 are claimed, we'll also deliver your Virtual Library titles in an "eBook" format, tuned for the device of your choice!

    GIFTING? Choose from THREE super cute T-shirt designs for $15! (Choices and sizes confirmed prior to shipment.)

    **Extras are bundled with your book in one shipment. See Deliverables section for release dates.

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $45 or more About $45

    Dickens & Melville Gift Set

    Take Melville's MOBY DICK and Dickens' GREAT EXPECTATIONS in beautiful 32-page HARD COVER editions. We'll also include PDF copies, the Bax button, and the printable curriculum with THREE modules per title!

    GIFTING? Get a pair of super cute Bax tees-- "I Sailed with Ahab!" and "Love the Dickens out of Story Time!" by adding $25! (Colors and sizes confirmed prior to shipment.)

    **Melville and extras bundled and shipped for Holidays; Dickens ships early 2017.

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    Pledge $65 or more About $65

    Bax's Big Bookshelf

    Receive each Hard Cover Edition as they are released -- MOBY DICK, GREAT EXPECTATIONS and JANE EYRE -- complete with printable CURRICULUM, the Bax button, AND the 3-book Virtual Bax Library for your tablet!

    GIFTING? Choose from THREE Bax Classics T-shirt designs by adding $15. (Size and color confirmed prior to shipping.) Additional books just $20!

    **See Deliverables section for release dates. Curriculum and extras are bundled with first book and shipped for Holidays.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    Educator Bundle!

    Teachers, get ALL THREE TITLES in both HARD COVER and digital editions, PLUS a media-enhanced curriculum that's tuned for classroom instruction!

    Curriculum integrates fully produced MP3's of "Melville," "Bronte" and "Dickens" reading their own descriptions alongside Bax as demo'd in our project video!

    As a BONUS, your first book will arrive in a whimsically illustrated Bax Classics BOOK BAG in your choice of THREE designs selectable prior to shipment!

    **See Deliverables section for release dates. Curriculum and extras are bundled with first book and shipped for Holidays.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Educator Bundle: Happy Class Edition!

    Love this one! Take the "Educator Bundle" with the media-enhanced curriculum above, then, allow us to dress you in a Baxilicious "Casual Friday" T-shirt in one of several FUN designs, including... I (heart) Big Girl Books... I (heart) Big Boy Books... We Love the Dickens out of Story Time... or My Classic Ate Your Comic Book!

    But WAIT! We'll also include a colorful assortment of Bax Classics BOOKMARKS and STICKER SHEETS, enough for a classroom of 30 wiggly readers!

    That's three books, enhanced curriculum, a book bag, swag for the students, and T-shirt for teacher -- all for the price of a cup of coffee and 66 pieces of toast!

    **See Deliverables section for release dates. Curriculum and extras are bundled with first book and shipped for Holidays.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Bax Classics Reading Club!

    Send kids on a unique literary adventure that begins in Nantucket and goes up to THREE CLASSICS deep!

    STARTER KIT includes:
    • Six hard covers of Book I (MOBY DICK)
    • Special Teacher's Guide
    • Enhanced Curricula with MP3's
    • Searchable PDF of Melville's original novel
    • Six Bax BOOK BAGS
    • Six ubercool "I sailed with Ahab" TEES
    • A 12x18 POSTER of Bax and his pals on the big adventure, with a place for your own CLUB NAME or SCHOOL NAME right in the design!

    To keep the group rolling, every child/parent gets a "$5 off" code for JANE EYRE and GREAT EXPECTATIONS redeemable from our website now in development.

    Kits are personalized and delivered to the SCHOOL, LIBRARY, or INSTITUTION of your choice!

    For a 10-child kit, add $150.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Paint Me Like the DICKENS! (Limit 4)

    The ULTIMATE GIFT! In addition to the Educator Bundle, our esteemed artist, Marco Bucci, will paint your child into Book II (Great Expectations) or Book III (Jane Eyre) before it goes to print! Your choice!

    Your child will be part of the Bax Classics series as long as it lives. Additionally, you'll receive a 12x18 ART PRINT of your child's scene for his or her wall!

    Unsure about the quality? Google Marco Bucci. THIS IS A TREASURE!

    *The PRINT will ship for the holidays, along with a fancy certificate for your book, "Coming soon to your mailbox!" See Deliverables Section for book release dates.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Classics for a CHANGE

    Backers, this Reward is very close to our hearts and gets us going with our longer-term vision...

    With your pledge -- and some help from our friends at BOOK 'EM NASHVILLE and READER TO READER-- we'll deliver 50 Bax Classics to temporary children's shelters, prisons, and rural schools in need of support.

    If you chair a small group or own a business, please consider helping us bring under-served kids and adults into the world of great literature (and deeper humanity) with this accessible and elevating book series.

    Benefactors may remain anonymous or be credited inside the book covers. We'll get your preferences on all matters including tax deduction when we confirm your order... and THANK YOU deeply!

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Funding period

- (33 days)