Today we had a visit from Erika T. Wurth, a Native author. She did some generative writing exercises with my students.
In October, we had a visit from Deborah Miranda, a Native author. She led my students through poem writing and found poetry.
Recently, in February we had a visit from Mac Barnett and Jory John. They gave an engaging and humorous presentation to, and pranked, our 3rd-5th graders who were clamoring to read The Terrible Two afterwards.
Coming up in April, we have Jason Reynolds visiting our school. I was just making copies of the preorder forms this morning. I Can. Not. Wait. to hear what he will have to say to my 6th-8th grade urban students.
This spring, we will have Kevin Emerson as a writer-in-residence for three days working with my 7th & 8th grade students. I’m thrilled to have gotten a grant donation to make that possible. I know it will be epic.
In the past two years of working at this school, I’ve been fortunate through my twitter connections, the support of the Electa Quinney Institute at UWM, and our wonderful independent bookstore, Boswell Book Company, to have several authors visit our students: David Treuer, Lisa McMann, Kevin Emerson, Joelle Charbonneau, Elizabeth Eulberg.
This is what I know: It is worth all of the work behind the scenes to make it happen. The excitement about reading those authors’ books, the ability to meet them in person, seeing that writing is something that can be done, understanding more about the revision process, realizing that those names on the books they read are real people. There is something magical about an author visiting my students in person at their school. I will never stop working to make it happen as often as I can.