Today, my last school visit of the year had me at Dunbar Middle School in Dickinson, Texas. I had the rare treat to perform in front of 5th graders only in three large groups—or three teams as they’re divided at Dunbar. Everyone was very attentive and had so many great questions. So much so that during the first show, I didn’t have time to share my silly song with them. Sorry, Spirit Team. You’ll have to hear all about it from the Honor and Courage Teams. Be sure to get them to make a giraffe noise for you!
Thanks to Mrs. Lonsford for inviting me. Thanks to Mrs. Salvato for taking pictures. Thanks to Kaitlyn for the drawing. And a big thanks to all the great 5th graders at Dunbar Middle School. Thanks for making my last author visit of the year an exciting way to end 2014!
I enjoyed a great morning at Minshew Elementary in McKinney, TX–home of the Minshew Mighty Colts! I was greeted by a cool welcome sign and eager students, ready to see my show. I gave two shows and, fortunately for me, Mrs. McNally was able to fit three entire grades into the library for each show. I say I was fortunate because, for each show, I had a packed house in my favorite place to perform–you know, where all the books live!
Thanks to Mrs. McNally, Mrs. Buchanan, and the Minshew PTA for inviting me out. Thanks to Mrs. Stuart for taking pictures, all the help, and for being able to remember every student’s name–wow! Thanks to the Minshew staff for the entertaining lunch. And a big thanks to all the Minshew Colts. Be sure to check out your library for some of the books I signed. And don’t forget to ask Mrs. McNally about winning some of my signed books later!
Today was a split day between two wonderful schools in Burleson, TX. My first stop at Stribling Elementary–home of the Stars! All the students were excited to see me and Mrs. McCalla had installed several cool welcome signs both in and outside the school; it was a great welcome indeed! Between my two presentations in the gym, I overheard that the Stribling Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts would help with the flags at the following day’s Veterans Day celebration. Being an Eagle Scout, that was great to hear!
Thanks to Mrs. McCalla for inviting me, for lunch, and for the great pics. Thanks to Mrs. Orr and Mrs. Kimball for help setting up. And a big thanks to all Stribling Stars for being such a great audience. And to all the Stribling Scouts, best of luck at your Veterans Day ceremony tomorrow. You’ll be great!
After a fun lunch with Mrs. McCalla and Mrs. Oliver, I followed Mrs. Oliver over to Norwood Elementary–home of the Vikings. This was a unique experience since it was my first time performing in an open gym located in the center of the school. They call it “the pit”. I enjoyed speaking on the big stage, in front of their huge, rear-projected screen and being encircled by the pit’s parapets all along the surrounding wall. Even though it’s more like a castle, as far as I’m concerned, it’s a good place for Vikings too!
Thanks to Mrs. Oliver for having me out and a big thanks to all the Norwood Vikings. You had some great questions and enthusiastic animal sounds. I hope you remember those four words I taught you!
Today I finished my Mansfield ISD tour with an exciting day at Sheppard Elementary, in Mansfield, TX–home of the Sheppard Colts! I signed bunches of students’ books and got to give three presentations using Mrs. Prince’s big screen. And that wasn’t the only big thing in the Sheppard Library. This was the first library I’ve visited with a full-sized covered wagon reading area! No kidding. Sheppard students can read books about western wagon trains, all while kicking back inside a covered wagon of their very own. How cool is that?
Thanks to Mrs. Prince and the Sheppard PTA for having me out. Thanks for Mrs. Barta for taking pictures. Thanks to both of them and former school librarian, Mrs. McAmis for the great lunch companionship. And a big thanks to all the Sheppard Colts. I hope you enjoy the copies of my books in your library. Be sure to read them inside that wagon for me!
Day three in Mansfield ISD and I found my way (eventually) to Neal Elementary, in Mansfield, TX–home of the Cheetahs! I took a few wrong turns getting there because the little lady in the box (my GPS) had the address wrong. But even though I arrived a few minutes later than planned, Mrs. Norris helped me set up in a snap. I had a fun time presenting to three large groups of kids, many of whom brought their own books for me to sign. Several even shared some of the stories they were writing. So cool!
Thanks to Mrs. Norris and the Neal Elementary PTA for having me out and a big thanks to all the Neal Elementary Cheetahs (a name they chose themselves)! Keep reading and keep coming up with those great stories!
Today I got to meet all the great students at Tarver-Rendon Elementary in Burleson, TX. It was 50s day today in honor of the 50th day of school. Many students and teachers were dressed in 50s styles; if I had known, I would’ve worn my leather jacket! I performed two shows, signed some books, and gave a writing workshop for some of the 3rd and 4th graders. Mrs. Buckles even had the great idea to raffle off thee of my books. Great questions: Abby, Aidan, Alina, Ashlyn, Autumn, Bryant, Cayden, Chloe, Conley, Daniel, Gicelia, Grace, Hannah, Jake, Joshua, Kinly, Logan, Madeline, Miranda, Nevaeh, Pavel, Purity, Samantha, Savannah, and Sydney. I hope you had as much fun as I did!
Thanks to Mrs. Buckles for heading up this Mansfield ISD tour. Thanks to Mrs. Buckles again and the Tarver-Rendon PTA for having me out. Thanks to Mrs. Krueger for helping me set up and for “warming up the crowd” with her songs (feel free to use my farm song in the future, if you can remember how to make the giraffe sound). And a big thanks to all the great Tarver-Rendon students. All the best during your next 50 days!
Today was the first day of my Mansfield ISD tour with a stop at Ponder Elementary in Burleson, TX. I gave three presentations, signed some books, and met several wonderful Ponder students and teachers. I was fortunate to visit Ponder this fall because they’re moving to a brand new school after Christmas break. Mrs. Campbell even showed it to me on the way back from lunch. It’s big, new, and almost ready to be filled with curious students!
Thanks to Mrs. Campbell and the Ponder PTA for inviting me (and for the great lunch). Thanks to Mrs. Brown for helping me set up. Thanks to Mrs. Coatney’s class for the wonderful thank you banner. And a big thanks to all the great students at Ponder Elementary! I hope you enjoy your new school!
Be sure to check out Mrs. Campbell’s cool library blog HERE!
The last stop of my short tour took me Eastward, over to Mize Attendance Center in Mize, MS! I was on the big stage this time and had the unique opportunity to perform for 2nd graders all the way up to 8th graders. All grades were very polite and were full of fun questions. I even had one boy ask who was my favorite superhero. It’s always cool to see when, after I give my answer (Batman), most of the boys in the audience raise their hands triumphantly and high-five each other. It’s true, I’m more of a DC guy than a Marvel guy.
Thanks to Mr. Jones for inviting me (I enjoyed talking bees and blueberries between shows). Thanks to Mrs. Adams for taking pictures and to Mrs. White for all the help. And a big thanks to the wonderful students at Mize Attendance Center. You were the perfect end to my first Mississippi tour!
Another day in Mississippi and another welcome sign in front of Madison Avenue Upper Elementary, in Madison, MS! I had a fast and furious morning with three shows for all the 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders. Just like their younger counterparts next door, everyone was excited, full of questions, and extremely polite; I heard “yes, Sir. Thank you, Sir” so many times, I felt like an officer in the Army. I had the pleasure of meeting many of them personally when I signed 200 copies of my Night of the Dragons book!
During a signing break, I had a chance to meet a fellow author and teacher at MAUE, Mrs. Michelle Smith. She gave me a copy of her first book all about the Common Core State Standards Initiative. Don’t worry, her colorful book makes it much clearer than it sounds. It’s called What in the World is Common Core? and it’s illustrated by DeAnna Backel. You can get your copy HERE or simply click the book cover below.
Thanks to Mrs. Berry and the PTO for having me out and giving me a big Mississippi welcome for the second day in a row–I think Mrs. Berry did great organizing her first author visit! And thanks to all the wonderful students at Madison Avenue Upper Elementary. I hope you all enjoy your books!