Students at L.C. Kerr Elementary School were given a once-in-a-lifetime chance Wednesday morning. Award winning authors and illustrators Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel paid the school a visit, taking the time to talk with students and autograph copies of their children’s books.
Stevens and Crummel, who are sisters, are an author/illustrator duo who have written and illustrated many of the stories used in Reading Street, the school’s reading basal program.
According to Faith Jackson, community liaison for Clinton City Schools, students were given the opportunity to purchase copies of the authors’ books as a fundraising effort through the school. In addition to the purchase of the books, CAFE provided five copies of the books to each classroom, to be used as classroom sets and enhance student learning.
“This is a great experience for our students,” Jackson said. “The visit allows our students to meet real authors and learn about writing in the process.”
Clinton City Schools superintendent Dr. Stuart Blount called the opportunity a “game changer.”
“The opportunity for our L.C. Kerr students to meet a real author and illustrator, is a game changer experience for the students,” Blount said. “The students at Kerr are beginning to learn to read and appreciate literature. Meeting the creators of books at that young of an age will allow students to not only read with more passion, but to have some knowledge of where and how the books originate”
Wednesday morning, after Stevens and Crummel spent one hour with each grade level, they took the time to meet individually with each class and autograph copies of their books. Students stood quietly in line, in awe, at the opportunity to meet the duo and have their books signed.
“I enjoyed this so much,” Regina Taylor, first grade teacher said. “I think I enjoyed this more than anything else in all my years teaching.”
According to Jodi Hall, media specialist at L.C. Kerr, Stevens and Crummel explained to all the kindergarten and first grade students how each of them had the talent of writing and illustrating inside.
“The kids created a character and will take what they have learned back into the classroom and it will become a lesson for the teachers,” Hall said.
Crummel was in education before writing children’s books. She taught math for 31 years in the Forth Worth area. Stevens, her sister, illustrates the books. Several of the ladies’ books have been used in the reading program at L.C. Kerr, in addition to many other schools across the country.
“We appreciate teachers going above and beyond for their students,” Blount said about the teachers bringing in the authors.
Reach Kristy D. Carter at 910-592-8137, ext. 2588. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd. Like us on Facebook.