Meet The Authors: A Literacy Month Activity

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Three world-renowned authors did a book reading and interacted with our grade school students as part of this year’s Literacy Month celebration.

The authors with the hosts and organizers (Top Layer L-R: Mrs. Jane Cacacho, GS Principal, Mrs. Jan Celestial, Administrative Assistant to the Principal, Mrs. Jochelle Preligera, Language Department Chairperson, Ms. Nastashja Melevo, GS Learning Resource Center OIC. Middle Layer L-R: Mr. Drew Daywalt, Ms. Trace Moroney, Ms. Linda Ragsdale. Bottom Layer L-R: Ms. Pearl Barretto, Kinder Teacher, Mrs. Nieves Ramirez, Grade 2 Teacher, Ms. Anniela Dela Cruz, Librarian, Mr. Gio Dy, Language Teacher)

Mr. Drew Daywalt entertained the Kinder and Grade 1 students with his animated reading of “The Day the Crayons Quit”. Mr. Daywalt is also the author of “The Day the Crayons Came Home” and “The Legend of Rock Paper Scissors”. He has received 65 awards for his children’s books, one of which is Time Magazine Top 100 Best Children’s Books of All Time.

In his sharing, he mentioned that he wrote the book series about crayons when he was having a writer’s block. He didn’t know what to write about and chanced upon a box of crayons. He noticed how each stick of crayon looked very different in terms of shape and size and seemed to have its own story, so he said he let the crayons do the writing for him. He mentioned that each crayon’s letter in his books was a message that he got from the crayon that day.

Screenshot of Drew Daywalt reading “The Day The Crayons Quit” to the Kinder and Grade 1 boys

When asked what his favorite color is, he mentioned that he loves blue and pink and that pink can also be a color that boys like. He also explained that one’s favorite color can change. Mr. Daywalt’s advice for beginning writers and artists is to keep on doing what they like and want to do. He says if you want to be an author or an artist, you have to write and draw every day, because everything takes practice so that you can be good at it. 

The video recording of the talk with Mr. Daywalt may be viewed below:

Ms. Trace Moroney wowed the Grades 2 and 3 students by walking them through the writing process and the book illustration process that she undergoes when producing a book. The author-illustrator also did a book reading of her book entitled “When I’m Feeling Nervous”.

Screenshot of Trace Moroney talking to the Grades 2-3 students

The boys listened intently as the author discussed the feelings one may feel especially when placed in a new situation, a situation one does not particularly like, or a situation where one would have to perform or report. Her advice to beginning writers is to write about things that they feel, have done, or are doing. She suggests writing about friendship or things that are important. She also said that it’s important to write from the heart.

Ms. Trace Moroney is the international bestselling children’s author and illustrator of “The Feelings” series and “The Things I Love” series. More than ten million copies of her books have been sold worldwide and translated into over 29 languages.

Screenshot of Trace Moroney answering the question of Kyler Chen from Grade 3-B
Screenshot of Trace Moroney during the book reading

The video recording of the talk with Ms. Moroney may be viewed below:

Ms. Linda Ragsdale was the special guest of the Grades 4, 5, and 6 students. Ms. Ragsdale shared how her life experiences inspired her to live and to write. She enthusiastically read her book entitled “How I Did It!” and reminded the students that they should always be open to trying anything even if they feel like they can’t do something because trying makes all the difference.

Before she did her book reading, she instructed the boys to note the changes in her tone as she read the story aloud. She explained how the difference in tone can affect how we perceive a character’s feelings and emotions. When asked what her first love was between reading and writing, Ms. Ragsdale mentioned that she really loved being read to when she was a child. She shared that a big part of storytelling isn’t so focus on the reading but on the telling. According to her, it was a big influence on her that it made her want to tell the stories to other people.

Screenshot of Linda Ragsdale while reading her book “How I Did It!”

Ms. Linda Ragsdale is an award-winning author, illustrator, and an international inspirational speaker. She’s no ordinary speaker as she is one of the survivors of the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack in India. This tragic incident served as a way for her to reach and empower thousands of students around the world to impart the values of empathy and compassion. Moreover, her battle against breast cancer made her stronger, a person who was able to find peace in the darkest of times. Her advocacy to promote peace is evident in her published works called “Peace Dragon Collection”, which won the the 2017 Children’s Publication Award from the National Association of Multicultural Education (NAME).

Screenshot of Linda Ragsdale answering the question of Kian Lim from Grade 6-J

The video recording of the talk with Ms. Ragsdale may be viewed below:

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