Tag Archives: author visit

Lauren Tarshis Visits Clinton School

Lauren Tarshis

This week we were thrilled to have author Lauren Tarshis visit with our third, fourth and fifth graders in the auditorium. Not only did she personalize approximately 75 books for kids, but she connected with both students and teachers in the hour and a half that she stopped by. Through the support of our local bookstore, Words, we made this visit happen.

When I think about what made the visit so special, it had to be her stories of not having the reading “gift.” She explained how she couldn’t finish a book until high school and how she hid her reading concerns. As an adult, she wanted to be a writer and again faced challenges only to have an encounter with J.K. Rowling and understand how even someone as goddess-like as the creator of Harry Potter, can write an unsuccessful novel. Years later, Lauren has become a writer and a successful one at that. She inspires kids to learn about history and we thank her and her encounter with J.K. Rowling.

Graphic Novels Celebrated with Author Dave Roman

Clinton Elementary students were super psyched to meet author/illustrator Dave Roman in March.  His visit marked the first time we have had a comic writer speak and it was worth the wait.  His talk focused on his craft, but also on Astronaut Academy.  Third – fifth grade students had been getting ready to meet him by creating their own versions of a space academy and were ready to discuss their ideas.  Thank you Dave for visiting!


Adam Gidwitz to visit Clinton Elementary

What happens when a librarian goes to the AASL conference and meets her favorite authors?  Did you guess that she would be totally motivated to convince one of them, Adam Gidwitz, to visit her school?  Well, I am happy to announce that Adam is visiting Clinton in April and the kids are totally psyched.  Each 4th and 5th grade teacher has received a copy of A Tale Dark and Grimm to read to their class.  You can totally tell that they have started reading due to  the spike in requests for the book!  Kids want their own copy to read along with in class and to read at home.






Here is a video from his recent tour to give you a sneak peek at what we will see!!!


Jarrett Krosoczka’s TED Talk on Lunch Lady Heroes

This year at the annual New Jersey Association of School Librarian’s Conference I got to meet Jarrett Krosoczka.  Now I was already of fan of the Lunch Lady graphic novel series so I went in expecting good things.  What I did not know was that I would become a huge fan of Jarrett as a person.  He has inspired me to expand our collection of his books and bring his message and resources to more kids.  He has a website, StudioJJK.com,  filled with resources and activities for kids.

He also has one of the most popular TED Talks.  His story of how this all came to be is pretty funny and an inspiration to me as a teacher as I also dream of one day giving a TED Talk on the power of library.  Perhaps my dream will come true!


Myth-O-Mania Series Gives a Voice to Hades

This year Clinton Elementary School is excited to host author Kate McMullan.  She is the author of the Myth-O-Mania series (in addition to much more) that re-tells popular myth stories from Hades point of view.  When students hear the prologue of Have a Hot Time, Hades! they are hooked.  Here is an introduction book series trailer published by Capstone Publishers.


Author/Illustrator Edel Rodriguez visits Clinton School

On February 29, Mr. Rodriguez visited Clinton School. At school-wide assemblies, he talked about his childhood, coming to America, how he became an artist, and how he works through the processes of designing posters, postage stamps, Broadway graphics, magazine covers, and, of course, his books!  He also visited a third grade classroom, where students had designed small Cuban flags with their questions for Mr. Rodriguez written in Spanish, and delighted the author by asking questions in his native language.
During the month of February, students learned about Mr. Rodriguez’s work through readings and library activities at school. Mr. Rodriguez was born in 1971 in Havana, Cuba and immigrated to the United States, where he studied illustration, painting, and graphic design and worked at Spy magazine,and MTV. He has worked for many book publishers as well as for The New Yorker, The New York Times, MTV, New York Magazine, The Nation, The Village Voice, Rolling Stone, Newsweek, and Time. He is the recipient of a Gold and three Silver Medals from the Society of Illustrators, created a US postage stamp and illustrated numerous Broadway posters. His book art includes Mama Does the Mambo, Float Like a Butterfly, and Oye, Celia. In spring 2008, with the publication of Sergio Makes a Splash! Edel made his debut as author and artist. Sergio Saves the Game! was published in 2009 and his most recent illustration work is for Sonia Sotomayor: A judge grows in the Bronx / la juez que crecio en el Bronx.
The support of Clinton parents and the Clinton PTA made this author visit possible.
Written by Elizabeth Aaron


Local Author’s “Bioluminescent” Story Shines

Jennifer Latimer and Alidis Vicente

On Friday January 13th, the Clinton Elementary School 3rd grade hosted Maplewood’s own Alidis Vicente. Mrs. Vicente is a 2001 Columbia High School graduate and author who resides in Maplewood. Her 2010 picture book, The Coqui and the Iguana tells the tale of a young girl’s trip to Puerto Rico and her discovery of the bioluminescent bays. The audience was introduced to the native coqui, or tiny tree frog, and the iguana, an animal that was brought to Puerto Rico many years ago.

3rd grade students were not only treated to a reading, but also invited to share in lessons of multiculturalism and environmentalism. They learned that many of the bioluminescent bays in the world are at risk due to the pollution from boats. Students were asked to consider how we could still enjoy the rare “glowing” waters in Puerto Rico without further damaging them.

Mrs. Vicente’s own story of growing up in a Spanish-speaking household and spending time with family in Puerto Rico connected with many in the room as students acknowledged their own international families and friendships at Clinton. Encouraging all students to write about what they know and what they are passionate about, she reminded them that age should not be a factor in writing as she herself is much younger than many authors today. Students are looking forward to her next book.

Click to see a clip of the author visit on youtube.

— Jennifer Latimer, Clinton Elementary School Library


This article can also be found on the Clinton Elementary School PTA website. http://www.clintonelementary.org/2012/01/19/local-authors-bioluminescent-story-shines/