Friday, March 1, 2013

Young Author Appreciation Day

Hey everyone! I've been super busy since Wednesday and I am finally getting the chance to share all the fun. Well at least my fun. Remember that guest reader/speaker thing I mentioned last blog? If not, pretty much I was asked to visit an elementary school this week for young author appreciation day. It was for a third grade class here locally in my state, and for just a small but meaningful time slot. I will straight up say I was nervous about going. I know they are kids and that seems silly, but for those of you that don't know me, I'm very nervous and shy with public speaking. And I was going to have to read my book in front of them, and talk to them about ... well, who knows what. I didn't really have any idea what to talk about. I never did this before. The day of, I quickly jotted down some little facts about the importance of reading and writing in a notebook and went on my way.
When I got there I realized its been a very long time since I stepped foot in a school and it was sort of like being a new student. I had no idea where to go. (which I found kind of funny) But it wasn't long before I found the office and got my visitor pass and was escorted to the 3rd grade class.
I was a little early, so I sat back in the teacher's chair and watched them learning about decimals and fractions. (Let me just tell you, until this day they boggle my mind and instantly make me panic.I was just happy the teacher didn't call on me to answer any questions )
Then before I knew it was my turn to take the front of the room. I stood there for a moment, tiny little kids with big, curious eyes staring at me, and I felt my fingers shaking a little. I introduced myself, and then decided to start off the day with one very important question. "Who in this room wants to be a writer?"
When I saw half the class raise their hands, I felt myself start to relax. Before I knew it, I didn't have to think of anything to say, they were talking and asking the questions and I was just answering. They wanted to know all about writing and books, and they instantly reminded me of me at that age. They had stories on their desks that they written, they had stories they were telling me about. They were so enthusiastic, it was awesome! Then I asked them the question, "Who here wants me to read them my book?"
Every single hand shot up. And as I read, they leaned forward and listened completely.

(here is a shot of me. This is what I was dressed like and my book. I wore bright colors because it was for a third grade class and because the bright colors gave me the confidence I needed and the positive, bright energy I seeked. Plus I just really like fun colors )

And when I was done I asked them, "What is the message of this story?"
And they all started raising their hands, saying things like "love, family, helping others, hope, etc."
And we went on to discuss different ways to help people, and how they have helped others in their lives and how others have helped them.
Over all the experience could not have been more meaningful for me. I grew as an author that day. I learned things, as well as taught things. I read a story as well as heard stories. The imagination and excitement in that classroom was indescribable, and completely beautiful and gave me the inspiration to write again, that I've been missing. It reminded me just why I wanted to be a writer growing up and reminded me that all I have to do is believe in myself. As long as I got my notebook, my pen, and my imagination, I know I can make my dreams come true.

And since that class, I've been writing since. I might have gone there to inspire children, but in the end they have inspired me.

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