Today I spent some time with the 6th graders at Taylor Middle School in Taylor, TX. I gave three presentations, met a bunch of polite and intelligent students, and answered some great questions about writing. I also had a special guest listening in on my shows–Dobby! Check him out in the picture above.
Even though these kids were too old for my silly song at the end, it does look like I’m holding a high note here. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah love a parade!
Thanks to Mrs. DeHoyos for inviting me, for the use of her library, and all the help setting up. Thanks to Mr. DeHoyos for the tasty BBQ lunch. And a big thanks to all the future writers and current readers at Taylor Middle School!
What a great day at The Academy at Nola Dunn! I was greeted by a cool welcome board and then I performed two shows to the very polite Kinder, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd graders. I even got to pose with Mrs. Pearce’s class after they gave me a super-sized thank you!
After a nice lunch in the teacher’s lounge, I held an extended writing workshop to all the 4th and 5th graders. I was pleased to discover how many young writers are at Nola Dunn. And I’m not talking about just the show of hands when I asked. I could tell by the many insightful questions I had thrown at me. I’m sorry that I didn’t have time to answer them all.
Thanks to Mrs. Patterson for inviting me and I hope you and your fellow educators have a safe trip to Boston. And a super-sized thanks back to everyone at The Academy at Nola Dunn!
I just performed at my first school for the season — Bullard Elementary in Bullard, TX. Home of the Panthers! I gave two shows to each and every 4th grader in the school. According to my brief audience poll, Bullard Elementary 4th grade is chocked full of readers AND writers. They had some great questions, too. Including the rare question as to why movie novelizations are usually different from the movies themselves. I’m glad I could answer that one and if anyone else wants to know why, attend one of my shows and you’ll get a side-by-side comparison!
Thanks to Mrs. Williams for inviting me. Thanks to Mrs. Naumann for the help and the great introductions. Thanks to all the kids who took pictures today; there are a couple posted right here! And a big thanks to all the Bullard Elementary 4th Graders! Keep reading and keep writing!
Available for preorder is the first Tony Hawk chapter book I wrote for Stone Arch Books. It’s called Tony Hawk: Live 2 Skate – At Large.
As this book comes out, I just finished writing my fourth book in this series, and with each title I got to delve deeper into the skating world. I learned some tricks, studied the lingo, and came up with some crazy places to skate. Also, while researching the books, I met some cool skaters. Thanks to Ezra, Lucas, and Ian in Kalispel, Montana and thanks to former skater Hugo, in Austin, Texas.
Whether you’re a skater or not, I hope you enjoy reading this fun series!
I just wanted to take a moment to sincerely thank you for your presentation at my son’s school last week. It really struck a chord with my son, and I’m so tickled to see that he absorbed so much from having listened to you speak.
Let me explain.
My son, Hunter, is a second grader at Williams Elementary in Katy, TX. He is a very bright boy, and interested in things beyond his years. Yet, he doesn’t enjoy reading. He never really has. He usually wants answers that even his teachers can’t give him, and we try to encourage him to find his answers by reading. His struggle is that his reading level is more on par with fiction and he isn’t interested in anything that seems “not real”. He wants answers. He wants the truth. But, non-fiction is too difficult for his reading abilities. He would rather just find a competent adult and learn by watching them and asking them a million questions. I try to read to him as much as I can, but it hasn’t seemed to help. I hate to see him so frustrated with his own reading ability. I know he’s a bright boy, and I encourage him constantly, but the struggle is still there.
Since your presentation, Hunter has a new sense of confidence. I have heard him repeat multiple times, “I CAN DO THAT”. He even encourages his little brother and reminds him of the 4 most powerful words!
We purchased “Night at the Museum: Night of the Dragons” and he is really enjoying it! He came home that night and read 10 pages, without us telling him he had to read. That’s HUGE for him! He is reading every night before bed and doesn’t put up a fuss. We’ll be purchasing the next in the series very soon! Please keep writing!
I wanted you to know just how powerful your presentation was. My son was just one of many kids there that night. He’s just one of the thousands of kids you’ve spoken to before. If no one has shared a similar story with you before, I’d be surprised. Thank you for the presentation. Thank you for the books. Thank you for inspiring my child!
Today I drove a couple hours due west to perform at the Hood County Library in Granbury, TX. I enjoyed the scenic drive through the countryside and around the Granbury square.
There wasn’t such a big turnout but I enjoyed telling everyone about my career in special effects, how I turn a film script into a junior novel, and even how I write picture books. I think the kids enjoyed the show and some were especially great at making crazy giraffe sounds!
Thanks to Christina Proctor for inviting me and a big thanks to the kids who made it out to the show.
Today I enjoyed a special appearance at the Kerens Library in Kerens, Texas. I had to dial up the wackiness a bit since I was part of their Wacky Wednesdays summer program for kids. There was a nice turnout and everyone seemed to have a good time.
However, this was an extra special appearance since Kerens is my new hometown. That’s right! After singing the farm song during my show for so many years, I finally moved to one. So today I drove into town, pulled onto the main street, and visited my new library for the first time!
Thanks to Barbara Latta for inviting me and it was great to meet all of our new neighbors. I’ll be back soon to get my library card!
Today I visited my last school of the school year … Meadows Elementary in Fort Hood, TX. Even though the troops had been training with large artillery all night long (the hotel window literally shook with every blast), I was up early and drove onto the base to meet some very enthusiastic students. I performed three shows in their huge school library and since the mic was on the fritz, my voice was almost gone by the last show. Luckily, I still had enough juice left to show everyone that illusive giraffe sound. Catch a show next year to hear what that sounds like!
Thanks to Mrs. Tedford for inviting me. Thanks to Mrs. Leech for all her help and for being such a gracious host. Thanks to Mrs. Burr for her help reigning in a few of the rowdy ones. And a big thanks to all the kids at Meadows Elementary.
And thanks for writing, Kaylee!
Today I stood before the many fine students of Cedar Valley Elementary in Killeen, TX. I met so many great kids and answered questions about writing, special effects, and (for those who’ve seen my recent show), donkeys! I was pleased to receive an overwhelming response when I asked how many students enjoyed writing his or her own stories—my biggest response of the year!
I was especially fortunate to meet two exceptional young writers. Mrs. Osborne made a point to introduce me to Margaret and Timothy, two winners of the Take 190 West Writing Competition. Of all 5th graders entered in the district, Margaret won 1st and Timothy came in 3rd. Great job, you two! I was also pleased to learn that Margaret enjoys one of my all time favorite authors, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
Thanks to Mrs. Knopp for inviting me and for the use of her library. Thanks to Mrs. Bzoski for her help and for her generous gift of a funky cool hat (it may turn up in a show sometime soon). And a big thanks to all the students at Cedar Valley Elementary. Be sure to read some of those Wishbone books in the library. They’re are written by many fine authors and there’s even my very first Wishbone book, Digging to the Center of the Earth.
Today I had a fun author visit at Reinhardt Elementary in Rockwall, TX—home of the Reinhardt Rockets! I had an opportunity to meet every student in the school but 4th grade (hope you guys had fun on your field trip). I even had lunch with the 5th and 6th grade book club members! I had fun eating and chatting with 5th graders: Alex, Bailey, Cheyenne S., Faith, Kavya, Rachel, and Stephanie (thanks for the wonderful thank you note, Kavya & Rachel) and 6th graders: Cheyenne B., Kensey, Lizzy, Madison, Maci, and Shelby. What a great way to spend lunch!
Thanks to Mrs. Figert and the Reinhardt PTA for inviting me. And thanks to all the Reinhardt students and teachers for being such wonderful audience members. Keep blasting toward the stars, Reinhardt Rockets!