Piece of Cake PR

Tabula Raisa: Innovative New Education System Set to Whisk Children to 51 Global Destinations

Developed by creative catalyst Eric S. Townsend, backed by publisher Mascot Books and now taking pre-orders, Tabula Raisa™ (pronounced TAB-you-lah RAY-sah) provides an invaluable supplement to any child’s early education. The system builds four key capacities: curiosity, creativity, consideration, and confidence. The fun starts with an adventure book. Thanks to the magic of a genie named Ogul (OH-gool), Raisa (RAY-sah) and her companion Hendrix (a red fox) travel to distant lands by flying tablet. Through each of the planned 51 destinations, the explorers meet an artisan to learn about a local craft tradition. The excursions are brief but momentous tours. Upon Raisa’s return, children are invited to the official Tabula Raisa™ website for follow-up projects that take the learning up several notches. Children get to explore and create like Raisa! The initial steps of the project were funded successfully on Kickstarter.


Fairfax, VA -- (SBWIRE) -- 04/23/2015 -- A Renaissance man and son of two career educators, Eric S. Townsend was shocked to learn that established booksellers stocked very few titles to assist young children with exploring the world. He set out to augment that collection. Tabula Raisa™ encourages a simple departure which can then expand horizons. Pique curiosity, spark creativity, build consideration, and boost a child's confidence. The results can be spectacular.

Tabula Raisa™ transcends the traditional book series to fuse adventure literature, multimedia, online videos and research, hands-on projects "in the field," a map of the world, branded apparel, and even handmade dolls. Children are given all that's needed to travel the globe from home. The magic happens when a child models the behavior of the system's inquisitive lead character. Raisa wonders about objects in her home. Where did they come from? Who made them, how, and why? They certainly didn't fall from the sky!

Tabula Raisa™ is far from whimsy. The 51 destinations utilize a classic adventure template to unlock the boundless wisdom of the arts and cultural diversity. What seems like a very large place to a child (the world) suddenly becomes more intimate.

Even the youngest child — with the help of a parent, guardian, or early childhood educator who reads along — can glean hours of fun and learning. Readability scores and product testing have revealed that children six years and older can read Tabula Raisa™ books on their own. Scoring models have included Flesch-Kincaid, Gunning-Fog, SMOG, and the automated readability index.

Listening carefully, asking questions, problem-solving, and critical thinking can all arise from exposure to how things are made. A child's research skills, creativity, and dexterity are increased through follow-up projects at the official Tabula Raisa™ website. Their guide (Raisa) doesn't just witness traditions and craftsmanship to satisfy her own curiosity — she faces her readers and attempts to facilitate their own journeys of learning.

A special limited edition book kicks off the Tabula Raisa™ education system. Destination Dhaka is now available for pre-order, while supplies last. Visit www.TabulaRaisa.com/shop. Just over 800 copies remain. This is the only time this particular publication will be made available to the public. Books begin to ship on June 15, 2015. Don't wait, order yours now!


Destination Dhaka offers a sneak peek into the table-setter for the education system, The Legend of Tabula Raisa™ (scheduled release date through publisher Mascot Books: September 15, 2015). The legend will present the back story of the three main characters and how they came to be world explorers. With some of this teased, Destination Dhaka then whisks children to the 10th largest city in the world (Dhaka, Bangladesh) for the first of 51 Tabula Raisa™ destinations. They meet a carpet weaver named Dipu, one of many who earn such a living in the second largest textile manufacturing economy in the world. Dhaka will also be featured in 7 Destinations (scheduled release date through publisher Mascot Books: September 15, 2015). This release will join the explorers as they hop from continent to continent. Raisa and friends mingle with other local artisans who have mastered craft traditions — one destination and craft per continent to get started, seven in all. By the following September, the remaining 44 destinations will be released as part of the complete 51 Destinations.

"This isn't just a series of books. It's an excursion-based education system that takes children to dateline cities like Paris, Rio de Janeiro, and Shanghai as well as remote destinations like Jipijapa (Ecuador), the Hopi reservation (United States), and Mawson Station (Antarctica). There, Children meet a local craftsperson at work and discover what it takes to fashion magnificent things. They're brought up to speed with the growing interest in craftsmanship and multiculturalism," explains Townsend, who has been recognized for excellence by The Webbys, American Marketing Association, Society for Marketing Professional Services, and the Service Industry Advertising Awards. "They flex their own problem-solving abilities through follow-up projects at the Tabula Raisa™ website. The early exposure to diverse cultures establishes a foundation for greater maturity and socialization later in the child's development."

Continuing, "I'm also excited about our map of the world that plots all future destinations, the hands-on activities offered though our website, and the handmade doll of Raisa herself. I grew up with National Geographic magazine and their supplemental resources. I was challenged with brain games and played with action figures. A true holistic learning system is powerful and tons of fun!"

The project's first phase of funding was secured through Kickstarter. While some felt the original $12,000 goal was ambitious for a children's book, the project not only exceeded the threshold, but was featured by Kickstarter above 417 other projects in publishing (spanning 14 sub-categories). Tabula Raisa™ was even selected as a coveted "Staff Pick" and tabbed as a "New and Interesting" project. This success led Townsend to see a potential that extends far beyond the average children's book. While the project's creator is delighted with the early buzz, he knows that there's plenty of work ahead.

"I can't believe how far we've come in short order, but this is just the start of things. I think that early enthusiasm stems from our fresh approach, the developing depth of the offering, and our tireless, round-the-clock commitment to make this a true stand-alone education system. We continue to test it with children six years and older, and have obtained readability scores from Flesch-Kincaid, Gunning-Fog, SMOG, and the automated readability index. This looks very promising." he adds.

The first product from the Tabula Raisa™ education series, the limited edition Destination Dhaka book, is now available for pre-order, while supplies last. Visit www.TabulaRaisa.com/shop. Just over 800 copies remain. This is the only time this particular publication will be made available to the public. Books begin to ship on June 15, 2015. Don't wait, order yours now!

Media Contact
Mark Arnoldi / 571-839-5768 / tabularaisallc@gmail.com
High resolution promotional images are available upon request.

About the Creator
Eric S. Townsend is a Renaissance man — creative professional, project marketer, visual artist, author, songwriter, and son of two career educators. Graduated with honors from the arts program at the University of Richmond (Virginia, USA). Born in the shadows of New York City and currently working in the Shenandoah foothills west of Washington DC. Recognized for excellence by the American Marketing Association, Society for Marketing Professional Services, Service Industry Advertising Awards, PR Week Magazine, Washington Business Journal, The Webby Awards, and WTOP Radio. Finalist, Margaret Fitch Prize for Creative Writing (University of Richmond). Previously published in business ebooks (GoBooklets.com, Amazon.com/author/ericstownsend). Credited on over 100 songs (as producer, composer, musician, vocalist, or lyricist). Learn more about Eric S. Townsend at his portfolio: (Behance.net/ericstownsend) and his LinkedIn profile: (LinkedIn.com/in/ericstownsend).

About the Publisher
Mascot Books is a Herndon, Virginia publisher. Founded in 2003 by Naren and Aimee Aryal with a title about a university mascot (the Virginia Tech Hokie Bird). Has published nearly 1,200 books. Sold and fulfilled over 2,000,000 units through online outlets as well as brick and mortar retail chains like Costco, Barnes & Noble, and Nordstrom. Specializes in the children's market — from picture books like Bo, America's Commander in Leash (which features the Obama family dog) to early-chapter stories. Proponent of free speech and free press. Learn more about Mascot Books at their website: MascotBooks.com.