I spent Thursday morning at St. Matthew school in Oak Creek, WI visiting with the 7th grade class. Since I started the Saturday morning Young Adult program, I’m always looking to recruit readers and when I was invited to speak I thought it was a great opportunity to try to start a YA book club. Ms. McDonald, the teacher agreed. We even did a Drive By Video™.
But, back to the visit. I was welcomed with cheers and awe that I actually knew authors (I personally think the kids were just happy to have something different happen in their school day, but I’m not complaining). I talked about my love of books and how they led me to all the wonderful things I now get to do.
When I asked the class if anyone read Twilight, 3/4 of the class raised their hands (almost all the girls and a half the boys). They all wanted to know if I met Stephenie Meyer (I haven’t). Their second choice of author to meet was Stephen King (sorry, don’t know him either). But I did impress them with a story about Dean Koontz and the ginormous line at Comic Con to see Stephanie and the cast of Twilight.
I gave away free books and the kids were especially thrilled with those autographed by authors. One boy even asked for a note written by the author about her book. Then I asked if anyone was interested in blurbing for the blog. All the rest of the books were passed out to enthusiastic readers.
So now we’re on the lookout for a book to start the book club with that will appeal to both boys and girls in the seventh grade. The teacher would like to steer away from the paranormal for now, so I’m looking for suggestions. After we all read the book, I’d like to set up a video chat with the author to discuss their book with the kids. I need help here. Any suggestions? Read any good YA books lately that would appeal to this group? Want to be the author of choice? Please post your ideas and email me with the specifics to firstname.lastname@example.org. Let’s start something special here.
Oh, and don’t forget that it’s Your Turn Friday, so please comment on the book you’ve been reading lately.
Bottom Line: Seventh graders…check. Now on to the eight graders. I know no fear.