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Archive for the 'Author Visits' Category


Two Schools in the Valley


I had an exciting day (and night) in the Rio Grande Valley where I first visited Yturria Elementary in Brownsville, TX. I had fun spending the morning with the Yturria Rangers! Everyone had great questions with many of them being well thought-out and written down ahead of time.

How about a game of Where’s the Author?

After I signed a ton of books, I had the pleasure of having lunch with the Reading Rangers Book Club. It was wonderful meeting all of you!


Thanks to Maria for the cool friendship bracelet (see my wrist below). Thanks to Mrs. Cortez for the fabulous introduction, to Mrs. Torres with all the book-wrangling, and to Mrs. Longoria for the generous gift basket and all the hard work preparing everything on such short notice. And a big thanks to all the Rangers for an exciting beginning to my trip back to the Valley!

After lunch I traveled to Victoria Heights Elementary, home of the Mighty Tigers!

After my single afternoon show (where I got to move down the aisle this time, up close and personal), I signed some more books (even a few for my own elementary school, Russell), I received yet another generous gift basket, and got to pose with my many welcome banners!



Thanks to Mr. Martinez for the great introduction, Mrs. Ara for the bookmarks and all your help, and to Mrs. Vital for having me out and for all of your wonderful preparation; I wouldn’t have known it was your first author visit if you hadn’t told me. And a big thanks to all the Tigers themselves. You made for an exciting afternoon!

But the day wasn’t over yet! Later that night, I was honored to be the first keynote speaker for BISD‘s Fall Literacy Conference!

Even though this was my first time presenting to all grown-ups, I had a great time sharing stories from my time at Russell Elementary, as well as the many things I’ve learned during my ten years of school visits. Thanks to everyone for being so welcoming letting me spend the day in BISD!



First Day of School!


My first day back in school was in not one, but two schools sharing the day! This morning, I hung out with the fun students of Nickerson Elementary in, where else but Nickerson, Kansas!

We had two exciting shows in the gym and then I signed some books for the school library AND three lucky winners! I don’t know who you are yet, but congratulations! I hope you enjoy my books!

After lunch with some of the faculty, I zipped over to South Hutchinson Elementary in, none other than South Hutchinson, Kansas! I signed some books for their library and three more future prize winners. Then two more rip-roaring shows in their gym!

I had a great time at both schools but was particularly pleased to sign a book for Marshal (with one L, as he’ll tell you) and four books for Hardy Boys mega-fan, Landry. I hope you enjoy your books, guys!

Thanks to Mrs. Hawver for inviting me out and for all the help! And a big thanks to the young readers and writers at Nickerson and South Hutchinson. It was an amazing way to start off the new school year—two schools in one day!



Last Visit…For Now!


My last author visit of the school year was split between two great schools in Gainesville, TX. In the morning, I was greeted with the smiling faces of the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th graders of Chalmers Elementary! We had great fun and I was thrilled with all the great writing questions.

After lunch, I made my way to Edison Elementary and met the Kinder and First Graders. They were especially energetic (only five days left of school, you know), and rattled the school walls with those dragon roars!

I enjoyed meeting everyone but I especially enjoyed getting to chat with Jeremiah who is a young writer and, turns out, can make some of the most realistic animal sounds I’ve heard. Keep up the good work, man!

Thanks to Mrs. Lawson for having me out and to Mrs. Burgess for all the help. And a big thanks to all the Chalmers and Edison students for helping me end the year on a high note. Now, it’s back to writing so I can show you all some cool new stuff next year!



Lewis Elementary – Day Two!


During my second day at Lewis Elementary I had a wonderful time with the other half of the school—the 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders!

I met a bunch of young writers, answered some great questions, and signed some more books, including a healthy stack for the school library!

Thanks again to Mrs. Eversole for inviting me out, the great lunch conversations, and the superb local shopping recommendations! But the biggest thanks of all goes to all the great kids at Lewis Elementary! I hope you enjoy my books in your library and I hope to read some of your books someday!



Back in San Antonio!


Today was day one of a two-day visit to Lewis Elementary in San Antonio, TX! I had a great time visiting all the K – 2nd graders for a quiet, cozy (well, not so quiet), one grade at a time presentation in the library!


Pause here to shout out to my friend Bob (pictured above), who not only just had a birthday, but also has been part of the show from the beginning of my touring days!


I had a great time meeting the younger half of Lewis Elementary, signed a bunch of books, and even had a thoughtful thank-you email waiting for me from Mrs. Vaquera’s second grade class. I’m glad you enjoyed my visit!

Thanks to Mrs. Eversole for inviting me, lunch, and all the snacks! See you tomorrow!



Navigating Sienna Crossing


Today I was back in Fort Bend ISD, Missouri City to be precise, to spend the day with the Sienna Crossing Navigators! My first time at the school, I throughly enjoyed the murals painted, not just the library walls, but on the hallways as well!

I performed a show in the cafeteria, then zipped over to the gym for the next. Both venues were packed full of enthusiastic young readers!


After lunch and some more storybook art appreciation, I finished the day with another show in the cafeteria—or a caf show, I call it a caf show!

Thanks to Mrs. Maresca for inviting me out and for lunch. Thanks to Mrs. Mize for all the tech help. Thanks to all the students who created the cool welcome banners. Great meeting Mr. Hall—the big Wishbone fan. And thanks to all the wonderful Sienna Crossing students for a fun-filled day!

Until next time, see you later, Navigators!


Down on the Southside

Today I got to visit the fun kids at Southside Elementary in Mabank, TX!

I performed two shows for the 1st through 4th graders, answered some great questions, and even signed some books between shows. And… I don’t know if my eardrums will recover from that last dragon roar. Wow!

Thanks to Mrs. Welch for inviting me. Thanks to Mrs. Kirby for prepping all the kids before my visit. Thanks to Mr. Wilson for help setting up. And a big thanks to all the great kids at Southside Elementary!

I hope you enjoyed my visit and remember those four words!



Decatur ISD – Day Three

My Decatur ISD tour came to a delightful conclusion this morning with a quick stop at Young Elementary, on “Fly Friday” no less!

These lucky students began their Friday with the pledge of allegiance and … a guy in a funny hat! I presented to the entire school at once and the gym walls trembled with their dragon roars!

Thanks to Mr. Saunders for help setting up. Thanks again to Mrs. Highlander for inviting me AND the fun lunches AND taking pictures AND the thoughtful gift bag. Thanks to all the great students and teachers I met this week. And a dragon-sized thanks to each and every student at Young Elementary. You were a wonderful grand finale to my time in Decatur!



Decatur ISD – Day Two


Today I spent the day with the fun students of Rann Elementary! Everyone had such great energy and I was blown away by your cheers!

After a couple of the shows, I even signed books for a few of the students!

En inglés y español!


Thanks again to Mrs. Highlander for having me out and another fun lunch. Thanks to Mrs. Slimp and Mrs. McNiel for all the help. And thanks to the Rann students themselves! It was a pleasure to hang out, talk about scripts, metaphors, and make weird giraffe noises with everyone!


Decatur ISD – Day One

Back in Texas, Decatur, Texas to be precise, to visit three great schools in Decatur ISD, beginning with Carson Elementary!

I enjoyed all three sessions with the star students and answered tons of great questions. I even signed one of my favorite books in Carson’s library: I’m a Great Big Monster Truck! I had to attend a couple of monster truck rallies to research that one. How fun is that?

Thanks to Mrs. Highlander for having me out. Thanks to Mrs. Zamora for tracking down my book. And the biggest thanks of all goes to the Carson students themselves. You were a fun beginning to my Decatur drop-in and don’t forget those four words!