So I believe last week I posted about Square Cat this super cute book about Eula the Square Cat and her struggles with being square. My class did a writing activity based on Eula and I posted it here. What made this project unforgettable was the fact that Elizabeth Schoonmaker - the author...a REAL PUBLISHED author of a book I'VE READ - found my blog! How, I have no idea, I'm still a small fish in a big blogging sea, but somehow she found it.
She left a cute comment on the original post as if she were Eula. She emailed me kind words and shared information I could share with my kids. She even mailed us Square Cat pins. I cannot put in words how gratifying it was to have Elizabeth (we're on a first name basis now) see our projects and think they were worthy of comment and praise. She even posted some pics of our projects on her own Square Cat blog, check it out here.
If you want to see our original project click here.
I kept all of this a secret from my kids until we got the pins. Then we revisited Eula and her story, discussed the author and her ideas...and then I shared that she had seen their projects. It was amazing to see how their faces glowed from the information. We got online and I explained the whole chain of events...(so they saw my blog, which previously I had not shared), they saw Eula's blog, and they saw Elizabeth's email with some of her pictures. They couldn't believe it...They feel famous, and big time. They gained some swagger (as my Special K box says) when using their pins. It was one of my most memorable and special teaching mornings, EVER!
One of my little boys is a struggling reader, and a previous cat-hater. He's made some big strides this year, in terms of reading and in terms of cats. He now asks after Max and Ellie on a regular basis. The story Square Cat really struck this student. After reading the story he used his indoor recess time to draw Eula and asked to have her taped to his take-home folder. Check it out!
He regularly refers to himself as a book nerd now, something he wouldn't have done before...and basically he's amazing. But yesterday, he was in intervention while I was presenting some of the information about the blogs, and the author. When he came back I pulled him aside and showed him everything...he was astonished by the whole chain of events, and I could just see his little heart expanding with wonder at the whole thing. Afterwards we had to continue finishing up our tortilla projects before writing thank you notes to Elizabeth and Eula...this little guy asked me over and over when he could write his note, he so wanted to write his note and thank Eula and Elizabeth for his pin.
It was just wonderful! Here is a picture of my class with our pins...a couple of students were out sick which is sad, but these kids had an unforgettable day!
Can you tell by my long rambling message above how thrilled and humbled I am by this whole Square Cat experience. I never imagined blogging would lead to such special moments like this one and that it could help inspire my kids as well...
I was going to write about our Tortilla project but I think I'll save it for tomorrow...
Spring break has officially started for me! Yippee! And with spring break the beautiful summer weather we were having in Illinois has been replaced by cool rainy spring weather - doesn't it just figure!