|illustration by Stephanie Graegin|
Big thanks for all the enthusiasm and great questions and stacks of books for me to sign! I've said it before, and I'll say it again: connecting with readers is THE BEST PART of being an author. Thank you.
New to my presentation -- which includes all sorts of information about my life as an author and all my books -- is a re-enactment of one of my favorite scenes in BOY: Big Snake Day.
At the Birmingham Zoo, which served as the model for my fictional Meadowbrook Zoo, this event happens in June. It gives keepers an opportunity to involve guests in monitoring the health and growth of the animals -- and re-enacting the scenes give me an opportunity to involve a bunch of students at once as we learn some fun things about snakes.
It also gave me the opportunity to CREATE a big snake. Meet my new traveling companion:
And here he is all stretched out, with students:
He needs a name, doesn't he?? (In the book, there's Pete the reticulated python... hmmm.......)
Before we get to the BIG snake, we also measure a smaller snake, which I bring out in an Igloo cooler "hot box" (for carrying venomous snakes). The snake rests in an inside-out pillowcase.
Why inside-out? Because those pesky seams might damage fragile snake scales!
I also give some of the volunteers cards printed with snake jokes. The kids read the jokes, just like they do at the real Big Snake Day. (It's all about entertainment, folks!) Here's the one that gets the most laughs:
What do you do if you find a snake in the toilet?
Wait 'til it's finished.
It you'd like me to bring Big Snake Day to your favorite child's school, please contact me: irene at irenelatham dot com.
|Look at all those sweet faces! THANK YOU, new friends!!|