Right authors for older kids

Older students yawn and play with the things around them. They’re not having fun like the Kindergartners. For the fourth and fifth graders, this is the scene during author visits.  Some authors do entertain students of all ages. However, some writers’ stories lean towards the younger kids.

Many author visits this year were interesting and students were intrigued, but several of them lacked topics intriguing to the upper grades. Recently, Douglas Florian came to visit the school. He was a poet whose poems were for children eight and under.  For older kids, the time they spent with him was dull. Not many were interested.

When the fourth and fifth graders were younger, these authors were interesting to them. They have just grown out of them. Another example was Ted Scheu, “The Poetry Guy.”  He’s visited Colonial a lot, but for the older kids, he was not interesting.  Some of his poems are aimed toward younger students and some older. To be fair, he does occasionally make everyone laugh, no matter what their age.

There have been some authors who do entertain the older kids too, but others who aren’t aimed at their reading levels.

This editorial originally ran in the June 2017 print edition of the Colonial Times.