Students in Kitah Alef and Kitah Bet had the opportunity to virtually visit with children’s book author Michael J. Rosen. In preparation, they had read Chanukah Lights Everywhere, a story about a young boy and his sister counting more lights around them on each night of Hanukkah.
Listening to the story read aloud, the students had quickly picked up on the cats appearing on each page and the fact that their numbers matched the numbers of candles burning on each night. So the very first question a student asked was about the cats: “Why did you draw the cats in your book?” Mr. Rosen explained that this was the illustrator’s, Melissa Iwai, choice. The students loved the cats! Other questions during our 25-minute visit included, “How did you come up with your ideas and details for your book?” and “Do you take breaks when you are writing?” Also, “How long does it take to write a book?” This is a very nice story about Hanukkah that focuses on the traditions of the holiday.
We know that talking about books promotes literacy by bringing books to life for children. Visiting with an author lends authenticity and credibility to the reading and writing process. It is a rich experience, allowing students to discover that authors are real people and not just a name on a book cover. Hopefully, this translates into a more personal connection with books. Thank you, Mr. Rosen!