Chicago School Visits (finally!)

Hey everyone,

I did lots of fun events in Chicago a couple weeks ago... and I've been meaning to post these pics ever since then!  One of my school visits was to the eighth graders of Bateman, who read Red Glass.  What an incredible visit-- I loved the teachers and students I met, and was blown away by their enthusiasm.  It's such a joy doing school visits like this, where the students have thought really deeply about the book and connected with it in so many interesting ways.

Delicious taco lunch with students...

The teacher, Mrs. Tellez, worked with university professor and author Steve Wolks to put together phenomenal activities to go with Red Glass.  (Steve is writing a book for educators on using literature in the classroom to explore social issues, and Red Glass will be featured in the chapter on global social issues.  I can't wait to read this book, and I'm sure I'll be recommending it heartily, based on seeing his ideas at work in the classroom.)  Here's a smattering of some of the activities displayed on the eight-grade classroom walls-- the first involves writing about memories:

They also did some interesting extension activities-- one involved learning more about the genocide in the former Yugoslavia and Guatemala.  And they took the international theme a step farther by talking about journeys they'd like to make... 

Inspired by the poetry that Sophie reads to Pablo and Angel on the roadtrip, students wrote their own journey poems:

And another poetry activity, to encourage students to make connections with poetry outside the book:

Here's another fun activity:

Not surprisingly, many students picked the scene in the world's most disgusting bathroom! ;)

I love seeing readers' visual interpretations of characters and scenes-- so much fun!


Here I am with the teacher, Mrs. Tellez, who put so much energy into making the Red Glass reading experience special for her students!  I'm grateful to her and Steve Wolks for letting me share their activities with you all...

Before Chicago, I was in Michigan for an event at Schuler Books (a great indie bookstore), I did a library presentation to a fabulous audience of avid readers and book clubbers.  Here I am with some teens from the library's teen group and the genius behind it all, librarian Mary Hennessey.  The world has some pretty spectacular teen librarians in it... and I'm lucky enough to meet a lot of them!  And the teen readers were so smart and funny and insightful... it was lovely having dinner with them after the presentation.

 I also did another fun school visit in Chicago, and had a lovely day with folks at the IRA conference-- I'll share those pics in my next post-- time to get Lil  Dude dressed and ready for his day now!