Friday, June 25, 2010

Connecting to That One Child

Last week I had the opportunity to visit a 4th grade class to talk about my poetry, artwork, endangered species and getting published. I noticed, as I surveyed the room while I was doing my presentation, one child that I just couldn't connect with. He stared in the opposite direction of me.

Usually there is at least one child like this when I visit a class. I really like the challenge of grabbing their attention, and try different things in my presentation to draw that child in.

My paintings wouldn't turn his head. My animal questions didn't turn his head. Reading poems in my book didn't turn his head. I didn't realize that while I was doing all these things, I was trying to reach that child, until after.

Finally, when I started using volunteers to show the size of a Mekong Giant Catfish, the wingspan of a Comoro Black Flying Fox and California Condor, and how far a Snow Leopard can leap, the boy connected. He got excited. I started asking how many feet were in XX number of inches and this little boy answered. He couldn't wait to volunteer. I had him hooked.

It was a neat feeling for me.

Oh, and he had been listening, I knew this by the wonderful questions he asked at the end of my presentation.

1 comment:

Angelica R. Jackson said...

How validating! Makes all that tearing out of your hair over rewrites seem beside the point, doesn't it?