Each year, the Young Alberta Book Society (YABS) and its supporters–with a special nod to Delton teacher-librarian Kathy Oster–spearhead an event called Story Avenue. Geared toward grades 5 and 6 students from Edmonton’s City Centre area, the objective is to promote literacy by bringing the students together with professional authors and illustrators from Alberta.
The event also relies on corporate sponsorship and we are all grateful to this year’s sponsors, which include:
TD Bank Group, Telus and Landmark Builders. Many thanks to these organizations for making a difference to kids in our local community!
For the two mornings in which Story Avenue 2015 runs (February 12 and 13th), an exuberant group of children’s authors and illustrators collects to inspire a love of books, reading, illustrating and writing. I am proud to be among Alberta artists presenting at Edmonton’s downtown Centre for Education.
Day one of Story Avenue has now wrapped up, and the students worked hard and had fun. They also left with a free signed book from one of the authors or illustrators who worked with them.
To demonstrate how the students felt about what they did and learned today, I promised my groups that I would turn my blog over to them.
Along with a pseudonym (or a pen name) for each student, here is what they have to say about Story Avenue so far:
I liked talking about writing. What made me proudest was the details I wrote. (iPlayMusic, grade 5)
The proudest thing about my writing would be the problem and three attempts [to solve it]. What I liked best was pretty much everything. (Leo, grade 6)
What I did well were my first-person skills. I liked writing the cat story. (Daemonight, grade 5)
What I liked best was everything and the character named Mud. (Darthshoot, grade 5)
I liked best that we got to have a wild, fun time with Karen. I got to use my sister in my story. (SMC, grade 6)
Something I did well: I got the story from a painting. I liked best when the cat opened the cage. (Flora, grade 5)
I was proudest about learning new ways to write. What I liked best was writing a story from one picture. (Shado1097, grade 6)
What I did well was banging my character’s head and writing my story. (Captain Sponge, grade 5)
What I liked best was that you gave us tips on how to write a story and meeting a real author. I was proudest about finding a problem and solving it. (Rihanna, grade 6)
What I liked best was I got to be creative. I was proudest that I wrote about a book. (Super Coolio, grade 6)
What I liked best about our writing session was EVERYTHING. (Marshmallow Man, grade 5)
Something I did well was I looked at a picture of a very colourful bird and I wrote about it. (Jeff, grade 6)
What I liked best was that Karen’s workshop is so fun. The protagonist is telling the story. (Terrier The Protagonist, grade 5)
It was fun and I like when we did names to describe the words. I put lots of detail in my writing. (Artist, grade 5)
I like the cool ideas I got from different views. I improved so much this year. (Melody, grade 6)
What I liked best was learning the fun things and thinking of new things. (Compoloompa, grade 5)
I like the learning and the writing. I am proud of the action. (Doctor Who, grade 6)
We got to write a story. I am proudest of writing the describing words. (Monkey, grade 5)
I liked writing our stories. I was proudest of how I was in the eyes of the bird. (Teeth, grade 5)
I liked best the specific word exercise at the beginning of the class. I am proud of the dialogue and my writing. (Paris, grade 6)
Something I liked best was finding a way to like writing. I am proud of writing a story and learning new skills. (Maska, grade 6)
I liked learning about writing. I liked explaining the protagonist. (Piano Player, grade 6)
As a second-year presenter at Story Avenue, I can honestly say that this event is a highlight for me. The students, their willingness to try new tasks, and their eagerness to learn are a huge draw. And just as the Alberta artists strive to inspire their students, I think we all agree about something else: that the students inspire us too. Such is the magic of Story Avenue.