Imagine the Possibilities

Imagine the Possibilities is an annual school-wide program made possible through the John D. Wallace, Jr. ’78 Memorial Guest Artist Series Fund that brings authors, illustrators, and poets to Princeton Day School to work directly with students across disciplines and grade levels.

History of the Program

The program began in 1996 with the idea of having an artist spend the day on campus and visit classes in the Lower, Middle, and Upper School.

Now, the program has doubled in size and scope, with multiple artists spending two days each on campus, while engaging in division assembly presentations, classroom workshops, and autographing sessions.

Each year, Program Coordinator Bev Gallagher matches up teachers and artists in a variety of ways to best enhance the experience for the entire community. The artists are chosen up to a year in advance, giving the teachers a chance to build curriculum around their visits.

Ms. Gallagher notes, “Each year I get to dream again and imagine ways to inspire our community. I feel honored and privileged to have worked on this program for all these years. What started out as a one-year program has truly grown into something amazing. My colleagues find remarkable ways to use the artists and their talents, allowing for spectacular visits.”

Twenty Years of Imagine the Possibilities (Video)

20 Years of Imagine the Possibilities

2019 Artists

January 4, 2019

Tracy K. Smith, Poet Laureate of the United States of America

Tracy K. Smith is an American poet and educator. She is currently serving as the 22nd Poet Laureate of the United States, an office she assumed in 2017. She has published three collections of poetry, winning the Pulitzer Prize for her 2011 volume Life on Mars. She is the Director of Princeton University's Program in Creative Writing.

Among her awards: Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, James Laughlin Award, National Book Award for Nonfiction

April 8 & 9, 2019

Laurie Halse Anderson, author 

Laurie Halse Anderson is a New York Times bestselling author known for tackling tough subjects with humor and sensitivity. Her work has earned numerous ALA and state awards. Two of her books, Chains and Speak, were National Book Award finalists. Chains also received the 2009 Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction, and Laurie was chosen for the 2009 Margaret A. Edwards Award.

April 11 & 12, 2019

Sophie Blackall, artist and illustrator

Sophie Blackall is an Australian artist and illustrator of children's books based in Brooklyn, New York. She is a two-time winner of the Caldecott Medal for Hello Lighthouse (2019) and Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear (2016). She has illustrated more than 30 books.

Roster of Artists 1996-2018

Roster of Artists

1996 Georgia Heard · Earl Lewis · Rafe Martin 1997 Ashley Bryan · Georgia Heard · Mary Pope Osborne 1998 Sandra Cisneros · Floyd Cooper · Mary Pope Osborne 1999 Ralph Fletcher · Naomi Shihab Nye · Brian Pinkney 2000 Nikki Grimes · Pat Mora · David Wisniewski 2001 Peter Lourie · Jerry Pinkney · Jacqueline Woodson 2002 Jennifer Armstrong · Paul Muldoon · James Ransome 2003 Paul Janeczko · Chris Raschka · Naomi Shihab Nye 2004 Kristine O’Connell George · Joseph Bruchac · Bryan Collier 2005 Georgia Heard · Earl Lewis · Rafe Martin 2006 Jaime Adoff · Peter Catalanotto · Alice McGill 2007 Kadir Nelson · George Ella Lyon · Janet Wong 2008 Chris Soentpiet · Angela Johnson · Ann Turner 2009 Raul Colon · Kathi Appelt · J. Patrick Lewis 2010 Carmen Agra Deedy · Andrea Davis Pinkney · Jeffrey Eugenides · Charles R. Smith Jr. 2011 Pam Muñoz Ryan · Steve Jenkins · Carmen Agra Deedy 2012 David Diaz · Michael J. Rosen · Cornel West 2013 Allan Wolf · David Wiesner · Linda Sue Park 2014 Paul O. Zelinksy · Jack Gantos · Marilyn Nelson 2015 Paul B. Janeczko · Matthew Cordell · Carole Boston Weatherford 2016 Jan Reynolds · Peter Brown · Kwame Alexander 2017 Christian Robinson · Matt de la Peña · Mark Fearing 2018 Grace Lin · Melissa Sweet · Kelsey Burns '10