Good Shepherd Episcopal School

My first author visit of the 2011-2012 school year was yesterday at Good Shepherd Episcopal School in Dallas, Texas. We spoke to kindergarden through 2nd grade, and the presentations were in the new library which houses almost 29,000 books, an aquarium filled with corals and tropical fish, two parakeets, and a yellow rat snake! Their amazing library is located in the school’s new Center for Creative Learning which is the first elementary school in Texas to be awarded LEED Gold certification established by the U.S. Green Building Council.

From left to right: Author Matthew Shane Bronson, Author/Illustrator Tammy Carter Bronson, and Librarian Liz Fleskes.

Both the librarian, Liz Fleskes, and her assistant, Claudia Hinton, made us feel very welcome. They treated us to lunch from the Corner Bakery along with coffee, snacks and a beautiful display featuring our books.

Good Shepherd's Book Display

The students were well prepared for the visit. They were familiar with every story, and several students sent us fan mail after the program. My favorite is from the youngest student to ever send me an email:

“Hello–My name is Jordan. I am a pre-Kindergarten student at Good Shepherd Episcopal School. Thanks for coming to visit with us today. I wish that I had brought you some flowers. I hope you can come and visit us again.


P. S. My daughter was insistent on sending you this thank you email. You obviously made quite an impression today. Thank you.”

What a perfect visit to begin the new school year! Thank you, Good Shepherd Episcopal, for inviting us to your school. We enjoyed meeting your students, and we are grateful for the wonderful memories!

Corals in the Good Shepherd Aquarium

Good Shepherd Episcopal School Author Visit

Thursday, September 8, 2011

9:10-9:40 – Kindergarden/Pre-K (~50 students)

9:55-10:40 – 2nd Grade (53 students)

10:40-11:35 Book Signing

11:35-12:15 First Grade (55 students)

12:15-1:30 Lunch

1:30-2:00 Kindergarden/Pre-K (~50 students)

Help Libraries Destroyed by Hurricane Irene

I stumbled across a blog post on August 31 by a fellow SCBWI author who is heartbroken by the destruction of a small town library. Hurricane Irene destroyed the entire children’s collection at Wells Memorial Library in Upper Jay, New York.

Click to visit Kate's Blog.

When award-winning children’s author Kate Messner saw the destruction first-hand, she posted pictures and wrote a moving story pleading for help. Kate’s article inspired me to donate autographed copies of my picture books to help rebuild the library’s collection.

Posted August 31st, Kate’s story was quickly picked up by NPR’s All Things Considered and School Library Journal. Word has also spread quickly through Facebook and Twitter, and if you visit Kate’s original post, you’ll see she’s already updated  her article with a quick “How to Help” guide and more information about additional libraries destroyed by flooding.

Her Live Journal also has information about how to donate to the Silent Auction being held for Wells Memorial Library.

More Information:

Wells Memorial Library Website

Kate Messner’s Website

Vermont Libraries Destroyed

New York Libraries Needing Help article covering destruction in NY, NJ, & VT.

North Carolina Libraries Mostly Undamaged

List of Libraries in Need @ LibraryThing