Lessons From Nonfiction Author Visits

Vampires, fairies and wizards make wonderful subjects for stories, but what about horses that can spell, bodybuilders with awesome strength or simply quiet eggs? These last three are all from nonfiction books, and while textbook reading assignments are often received with bored eye rolls by kids, nonfiction books such as these delight as much as they inform.

Reading nonfiction books has a number of benefits for kids. Education.com lists a few, saying that reading nonfiction:

  • Develops information literacy, which helps kids solve problems and think analytically; work in groups and independently; locate, evaluate and use information
  • Builds vocabulary, especially learning and understanding content-related words
  • Increases interest in nonfiction topics by providing information in a more interesting way than textbooks
  • Often pulls in reluctant readers, especially boys.

 

And when reading nonfiction books in classrooms is coupled with a visit by the author, the subject matter is brought even more to life.

Step Right Up: How Doc and Jim Key Taught the World About Kindness

For example, for when Donna Janell Bowman talks to students about her book STEP RIGHT UP: HOW DOC AND JIM KEY TAUGHT THE WORLD ABOUT KINDNESS, she illuminates the history of this Civil War-era story. Donna’s picture book biography tells the story of how a former slave, Doc Key, used kindness (and sugar) to teach his straggly horse Jim how to spell and do math, among other amazing tasks. Her book tells about the segregated society at that time, the Tennessee Centennial Exposition and the Confederate army. And in her school visits, Donna shows vintage photography of the real life people and animals in her book and expands on the books subject matter.

Be the Change: A Grandfather Gandhi StoryAnother picture book biography author, Bethany Hegedus, discusses the life and lessons of Gandhi in the school visits she does for her GRANDFATHER GANDHI and BE THE CHANGE: A GRANDFATHER GANDHI STORY. Young students learn about India in the time of Gandhi, his ideas about peace and how they relate to kids’ lives today.

A Rock Is LivelyDianna Hutts Aston teaches about nature in the school visits she presents in association with her series of books called AN EGG IS QUIET, A BEETLE IS SHY, A ROCK IS LIVELY, and others. She brings an extensive nature collection display to her presentations, which compliment STEM lessons.

The natural world is also discussed by Ammi-Joan Paquette in her “Is It Fact–Or Fiction?” author visit. Tied into her new TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE book series, the presentations cover wonders of the world as well as how to discern true facts from “fake news.”

Two Truths and a LieAmmi-Joan even blends the idea of fiction and nonfiction in a presentation for younger children. Inspired by her THE TIPTOE GUIDE TO TRACKING FAIRIES, the author takes small groups of kids on an interactive nature walk where the learn about the world while spying for fairie hiding places. Events like these build children’s imaginations as they learn while being entertained.

When you’re looking to get your students hooked on the real world, look for authors whose visits are built around nonfiction books, helping children expand their learning.

 

5 Steps to Find Your Best Conference or Festival Speaker

Whether you’re organizing a conference or festival, you want attendees to leave with great memories. And for that, they need to emotionally connect with the speakers you present.

How to choose the right speakers isn’t as easy as looking up a list of “great speakers.” Your conference or festival needs the RIGHT speakers, and there’s an art to finding yours. Continue reading “5 Steps to Find Your Best Conference or Festival Speaker”

2017 Summer Reading List

The sun is shining, birds are singing, and summer is almost here. So there’s only one question we’re trying answer: What are we going to read?

We at The Booking Biz are always looking for new books to read and recommend. That’s why we’ve compiled this list of the books we’re most excited about this summer. Continue reading “2017 Summer Reading List”

10 Amazing Results of Author Visits

You know the wonderful benefits of having authors at your schools, libraries and events. You’ve seen the smiling faces of both children and adults who are inspired by what they hear. But what about the results?

Here are 10 amazing things that happened because of an author visit by one of our clients. Continue reading “10 Amazing Results of Author Visits”

How to Make the Best Skype Author Visits

For a child (or book lover of any age), nothing beats an in-person meeting with an author or illustrator. Seeing them standing next to you. Being able to ask them questions. Watching them sign your very own copy of their book—personally, just for you.

But in-person visits are not always feasible. That’s when Skype offers the next best thing. Continue reading “How to Make the Best Skype Author Visits”

How to Choose the Best Author or Illustrator for Your Event

Many children’s book authors and illustrators spend a lot of time visiting schools and libraries to teach, inspire and encourage young readers—and even those children who aren’t so enthusiastic about reading. But with so many amazing speakers available, how do you choose? Here are some guidelines: Continue reading “How to Choose the Best Author or Illustrator for Your Event”

10 Tips For Amazing Author Visits

Author visits at schools and libraries are special days for the children in your community. They show students they too can achieve their dreams. Author visits validate the lessons teachers and librarians like you tell to kids who are always skeptical. And author visits bring books and topics to life, like writing, art, science and civil rights.

All the authors and illustrators at The Booking Biz have been vetted by us to give the best presentations at schools and libraries. But what happens before the speaker arrives is also important to the success of an author visit. Here are 10 ways to make sure your next author will be the best.

Continue reading “10 Tips For Amazing Author Visits”

5 Ways Author School Visits Benefit You

By Carmen Oliver

I hear over and over how the school visits I’ve been a part of have benefited both students and teachers. They are the bridges that help children connect with books, the world and each other. Children see that reading is cool. It gives them a magic that has the power to carry them to their dreams.

Here are some of the favorite benefits I’ve seen and heard of from some of my favorite people—librarians.

Continue reading “5 Ways Author School Visits Benefit You”

3 Tips to Write Winning Grant Applications

For our Author Visit Tips series, this month we have a guest post from our client Christina Soontornvat, an author and grant-writing teacher who has raised a large amount of funds through writing winning grant applications. Christina gives us 3 tips that you can use to write grant applications that will win funds for your school or organization.

Continue reading “3 Tips to Write Winning Grant Applications”