Sunday, February 19, 2012

A Visit From Tad Hills

Charming New York Times bestselling children's book author and illustrator Tad Hills made a joyful visit to our wee school recently to share his talents with our eager students.

To quote Sara, our librarian, Tad was "masterful" in the way he engaged and entertained the students throughout his 45-minute presentation.

From the start it was evident that Tad Hills enjoys being around children and has the experience to create an easy flow that allows for student input (sometimes at inopportune moments) while constantly stimulating their imaginations and funny bones.

I was really psyched for his visit because I wanted to meet the man behind How Rocket Learned to Read. Rocket is a book I discovered late last year and I was impressed with how it supports children's literacy development in phonological awareness and phonics as well as promoting the joy of reading.  It was the perfect book to share in the reading course I taught last semester at Fordham University.  Plus, the main character is a dog and who doesn't love dogs?

His visit to PS347 led me to discover some of his other titles such as Duck & Goose, Duck, Duck, GooseWhat's Up Duck? and Knock, Knock! Who's There? (Tad killed 'em with this last title!  Sample line: Knock, Knock! Who's there?  Ken. Ken who? Ken you hear me? (Of course I can! I'm right here.) And if you know me at all you know that this is exactly MY kind of humor! And the kind kids experiment with all the time to much hilarity.

In addition to reading from several of his books, Tad engaged the children by showing them how to use different shapes to create a character and then he answered questions while painting a picture of "Duck"(which he generously donated to our school library!)

After the presentation I shot up to introduce myself and thank him for visiting.  He autographed two books for me (Rocket and Duck & Goose) and one for Lauren's precious Levi.  And before I escorted my class out Tad posed for a picture with me.

But, in my haste I neglected to realize that I was holding the book backwards (that's the back cover of Duck & Goose in my hands).

Ah, well!  A little bit of mistakery in an otherwise flawless morning.

Thank you Tad for visiting! We hope to see you again when Rocket learns to write!


Ms.M said...

Super envious again. I do like both those books VERY much. My kids adore Duck & Goose.

BTW, I didn't mean to go on for so long on my comment on your last post. Sorry.

Ms. M
Ms.M's Blog
A Teacher's Plan

Gary said...

We have been most fortunate at our school to have so many wonderful children's book authors and illustrators visit us. And I am so glad that I have this blog to document their visits. I'll let you know about upcoming author visits and if you'd like an autographed book we can arrange it.

Dumdad said...

Sounds like a great day. The wonders of reading: if a kid can read he or she can do anything.

PS Thanks for your comment about my son and his 18th birthday. Yes, I still can't quite believe how he got to be so old (and me even older)!

Ms.M said...

Gary, that would be wonderful and I would be VERY grateful. :) Keep me posted.

Ms. M

Gary said...

Dumdad - AMEN! Some of my best escapes have been through the pages of a book. Thank goodness for the wonders of reading.

Ms. M. - I will let you know who is next on our schedule when I get back to school next week.


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