First was a very special assembly for our fourth graders with Lynne and Laura. Because I was on the committee that honored Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! with its shiny gold Newbery medal I have met Laura and we’ve become friends. However, I only knew Lynne by way of her terrific books. Laura began with a glorious telling of The Bearskinner. Anyone who saw her tell her speech at the 2008 Newbery Banquet will know that she is an extraordinary storyteller and as she did everyone in that Anaheim ballroom a few years ago she had our fourth graders absolutely riveted. She was followed by Lynne who did an absolutely delightful drawing activity — leading the kids through ways to draw a myriad of emotional facial expressions, telling a story as she went. It was wonderful — if you get a chance to see either of these ladies go!
But the day wasn’t over yet. After school, our great middle school librarian Roxanne Feldman had arranged for our faculty/staff book club to meet with Adam Gidwitz and his editor Julie Strauss-Gabel to discuss his marvelous debut novel, A Tale Dark and Grimm. And Laura, who knew Adam way back as a student at her school, sat in. Adam is also a wonderfully engaging person and I can’t wait till he comes back to work with our fourth graders this January. He’s another I recommend you go see given the chance.
Here I am, in our school lobby, with the two wonder ladies on either side of me.
On behalf of all of us at Dalton, our great thanks to Lynne, Laura, Adam, Julie, and Candlewick for making this day possible.