May 15

My last school visit in Houston this week was also my last visit for the school year. And I’m here to tell you that it was a fun time at Klenk Elementary—home of the Cougars! I was met with a welcome on the school’s marquee, another cool welcome sign in the library, and a bunch of excited kids! It was a great finale for the school year!
I found out that I was part of a double feature this week since I performed for the 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders while the younger students got to enjoy Author/Illustrator Woody Kuon!
Thanks to Mrs. Green for inviting me, for the lunch out, and great conversation. Thanks to Mrs. Hudson for taking pictures and for her help with the book signing. And thanks to all the Klenk Cougars for finishing off a memorable school year. I hope you enjoy your books and don’t forget … those four words!

May 14

Today was another fun day in Houston, TX at Metzler Elementary–home of the Huskies! I performed for all of the 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders, signed a bunch of books, and leaned that Metzler is just full of young writers. How cool is that?
During my stay at Metzler, I had some special helpers for the day–the Husky Paws! Thanks: Araceli, Bailey, Della, Madison, Noah, and Skylar!
Thanks to Mrs. Mohalley for having me out, for the great lunch, all the snacks, and for my own personal parking space. Thanks to some of the Paws for taking pictures. And thanks to all of the Huskies for making a memorable day. I hope you enjoy the books I signed. And with so many young writers, I may get to read your books someday!

May 13

Today I began my last week of author visits for the school year–and I’m back in Texas at Kaiser Elementary in Houston–home of the Cowboys! I performed three shows for the 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders and signed a bunch of books after each show. All the Kaiser Cowboys were wonderful and gave me a great Texas welcome during each show!
I also shared the stage with Mrs. Fletcher’s very cool big comfy chair. I didn’t dare sit in it, though. I knew that if I did, I’d never want to get up!
Thanks to Mrs. Fletcher for inviting me and for the delicious lunch (awesome cake). And thanks to all the Kaiser Cowboys. I hope you enjoy the books I signed. And if you didn’t get one, be sure to ask Mrs. Fletcher to check out one of the books I signed for the school library. Time is running out, though. Only a few weeks of school left!

May 7

Today I ended my first South Dakota tour at Hot Springs Elementary–home of the Bison! I had a great time at my last SD school as I performed in front of energetic students surrounded by cool superhero murals. You know I like superheroes!
After lunch I signed a bunch of books and ended my day by performing for the 5th graders in Mr. Phelps’ classroom. It was a smaller space and we really made the walls in the new building vibrate!
Thanks to Mrs. Skrdlant for inviting me out and for all the help contacting the other schools for this ambitious state-wide tour. Thanks to all the students and parents who had me out through some amazing fundraising. Thanks to Mr. Phelps for the use of his classroom. Thanks again to Mr. Phelps and to Mrs. Skrdlant for taking pictures. And a big thanks to all the Bison for being such great listeners and for showing me a great finale for my first visit to South Dakota!

May 6

My third day in South Dakota had me in McLaughlin Elementary on the Standing Rock Reservation. It was Wacky Wednesday at McLaughlin Elementary and many of the teachers came dressed for the occasion in fun, crazy outfits! I got my own show watching the audience as I performed my two shows.
It was pizza day on Wacky Wednesday (although there’s nothing wacky about pizza) and after lunch I held a writing workshop for a bunch of hand-picked 4th and 5th graders. I hope you all learned something and keep writing: Avery, Braden, Brooks, Connor, Destiny, Ivy Jo, Jade, Jesstin, Lakeisha, Leta, Mercedes, Pamela, Payton, Pizi, Rambur, Sammi, Sarah, Tyla, and Tyler!
During my visit, I was surprised to get a stack of letters and drawings from Mrs. Doust’s 1st grade class. Thanks for writing: Brylee, Caiden, Carter, Daven, Dusti, Grace Lee, Greg, John, Kaylee, Kimimilia, Malzah, Oliver, Romani, Shayla, and Shelloni!
And to those who asked questions…
Shelloni: My favorite movie is Star Wars.
Oliver: For fun I like hiking, camping, and riding horses.
Kaylee: My favorite class was Science class.
Grace Lee: My favorite fruit are bananas
Shayla: My favorite hat is my cowboy hat.
John: Yes, I love to read.
Caiden: Yes, I alway have fun writing books.
And to Maleah, Carter, Greg, and Daven: My favorite color is red!
Thanks to Mrs. Thunker for inviting me. Thanks to Mrs. Taken Alive and Mr. Wutzke for helping me set up. Thanks to Mrs. Mann for the use of her library. Thanks to Lyden for his expert guidance to the lunchroom. Thanks to Emily for the cuts in line. Thanks to the 3rd grade for the original, signed audience banners. Thanks to Zoey Elizabeth for the letter. And a huge thanks to all the fun kids at McLaughlin Elementary! I had a great time visiting your school!

May 5

On the morning of my second day in my state-wide South Dakota tour, I visited Redfield Elementary in Redfield, SD! I had a treat as I set up for my show because I shared their big auditorium with the High School orchestra. I don’t know who played that french horn Star Wars theme but I enjoyed hearing it!
I performed two shows this morning for the Redfield Elementary Gems, one for Kinder, 1st, and 2nd grade and then another for all the 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders. I was on a tight schedule but I managed to sign a bunch of books for the elementary library between shows. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them. Don’t forget to read the special message I wrote in a couple of them!
Thanks to Mrs. Stover for inviting me and thanks to the PTSA for having me out. I enjoyed performing for all of the Redfield Elementary Gems!
After packing up from my morning shows, I drove an hour over to visit Groton Area Elementary in Groton, SD—home of the Tigers! I performed two more shows for some energetic audiences. I even had the chance to get my picture taken with all of 1st grade.
And, of course, the silly one…
Thanks to Mr. Dalchow for inviting me. Thanks again to him and Mr. Piggers for helping me set up. Thanks to the Groton Area Elementary PAC for having me out. I heard all about the great things they do for the Tigers and how the Tigers pay them back by being Super Readers. I even heard that the Tigers have read over 96 million words this year. Way to go, Tigers!

May 4

Today I visited my very first school in South Dakota! I didn’t make the trip alone this time. I came with my wife Becky and chief of tour security, Virgil the chihuahua. So far, we’ve had a fun time driving around the scenic farmlands! The first stop in my state-wide tour was at Sioux Valley Elementary in Volga, SD!
The Sioux Valley Elementary students were very welcoming and the Junior Kindergartners even made me a special banner for my show! And after each show, all the Sioux Valley students performed some special cheers. Let’s see if I remember them all: there was the round of applause, the stamp of approval, the rollercoaster, three hip-hip-hoorays, and my favorite, the cowboy cheer–yee-hah!
Thanks to Mrs. Beito for all the help, leading the cheers, and for the wonderful introductions. Thanks to the Sioux Valley Elementary PTO for having me out and for lunch for my wife and me. And a big thanks to all the Sioux Valley Elementary students. Your special cheers, banners, and balloons made for a welcoming first visit to your beautiful state!

May 1

My last day in North Carolina had me at Monroe Avenue Elementary in Hamlet, NC—home of the Tigers! Not only was I welcomed by a banner on the library door but also by the main school sign outside.
¡Y en Español!
It was fun Friday at MAES, not just for me but for the Tigers, too. After my show, all of Kindergarten were whisked away to the high school for “Wild About Wellness.” Unfortunately, they were rained out. But at least they got a bus ride and cool T-shirts! Then, after my second show, 4th and 5th grades got some band fun at an instrument presentation.
Check out some 5th grade author “bio-cubes.” That’s a first for me; very cool!
Thanks to Mrs. Terry and Mrs. Humphrey for setting everything up. Thanks to Mr. Foster and the Monroe Avenue PTO for having me out. Thanks to Courtney and Meghan for the cool pictures. And a big thanks to all the Monroe Avenue Tigers! You were a great ending to my first North Carolina tour!