March 7, 2013


It was my pleasure to participate in World Read Aloud Day 2013.

This initiative to increase global literacy and celebrate the power of words and stories to change worlds is the creation of Pam Allyn at LITWORLD -- a non-profit literacy organization, fostering resilience, hope and joy through the power of story.

Thanks to author extraordinaire, Kate Messner, who helps facilitate authors to read aloud to classrooms all over the world via Skype to celebrate this special day.

Thanks to Kate, I connected with amazing school librarian Mr. Schu a few years ago.  Check out the video on his blog post about World Read Aloud Day.  (There are books being given away at the end of his post.)

In keeping with tradition, I wore my bunny slippers while traveling around the country to classrooms in Maine, Iowa, Illinois and Texas.

Here's a photo of my first visit with the kids in Ohio, who created this FUNTASTIC video invitation for me . . .

Alas, a snow day cancelled school.  Deb Tyo, thanks for the apt photo.

School was open in Maine, where I got to hang out with some very cool 7th graders.  In this photo by Abigail Luchies, I got a chance to see what the students saw.  (My view, of course, was very different.) 

Love that the boy in the back row has his copy of Diary of a Wimpy Kid next to him.

From Maine, I traveled to Illinois To meet Todd HiIlmer and some of his 6th and 7th grade students.

These kids were adorable!

Mr. Hillmer and his gang, sharing lunch, stories and fun trivia questions.

 I stayed in Illinois for awhile because Mr. Schu was in the house.

A few of his students read touching introductions for World Read Aloud Day.  This young lady in blue quoted something from Sharon Creech's Love That Dog that may or may not have made me cry a little bit.  All his students were engaged and inquisitive and appreciative and I so wanted to be there in person to give them all hugs.  (One of the disadvantages of Skype visits.)

Two minutes after leaving Illinois, I was visiting with Shannon McClintock Miller's students in Iowa.  (One of the advantages of Skype visits.)

Can you guess what's missing from this photo?

Photo courtesy of Shannon McClintock Miller

The pot-bellied pig, of course!  He was scheduled to be part of World Read Aloud Day festivities, but was unable to walk through the snow.

Don't worry, they found another way to add a whole lot of fun and shake up the day. 

Van Meter School Celebrating World Read Aloud Day With a Little Harlem Shake!

Had only fifteen minutes to get all the way to Texas.  Luckily, Skype got me there in about two seconds . . . and didn't lose my luggage!

Hello, Jane Jergensen's 6th graders at Kerr Elementary School in Allen, Texas!

The group was much larger than could fit on one screen!

I had the great pleasure of visiting Kerr Elementary in Allen, Texas last year, during a school visit.  And I was equally impressed with these kids during our Skype visit.  You should have seen the long line of kids waiting to ask questions; and such good quality questions!

After having lots of laughs in Texas, I ended the day with two classes of adorable kindergarteners back in snowy Illinois.

Library Guy, Jeff McHugh, was fun, friendly and funny.  He told me that when I showed the kids my giant purple pen and told them purple was my favorite color, one of the kids said, "Wow.  Purple is my fourth favorite color."

Loved these kids!  We had a lot of fun reading Kelly DiPucchio's Zombie in Love.  Thanks, Mr. McHugh for sharing this awesome, engaged group with me!

World Read Aloud Day was a blast!  Can't wait till next year.  Won't you join in by reading aloud to children in your community or, via Skype, to children around the country . . . or the world?


Laurie said...

That was a very busy, but awesome day! I know you enjoyed it, but I am sure the kids had a blast!

Wild About Words said...

Thanks, Laurie! It was a happily exhausting day. Always happy to participate each year.

Valeria said...

This is cool!