4 Tips + Inspiration to Turn Your Book Into School Visit Material

Apr 18, 2019 | The Business of Publishing

If you’ve published (or are in the process of publishing) a book for children, school and library visits can be a great way to get your work in readers’ hands.  But you’ll need something a little more than just reading your book aloud to make an effective visit.

Book–>Idea–>School Visit!

Have you brainstormed ideas yet?  Here are 4 tips to help you generate some possibilities:

1. Get Fresh Perspective

Have someone new read your book and tell you the most unique thing about it through their own lens.  You might find an interesting angle in your work that you hadn’t seen before.

2. Remember Your Process.

Think about the process you went through to create the work.  What was the most fun or difficult part for you?  What could your audience learn from that?

3. Think About Ties to Curriculum.

Whether your book is fiction or nonfiction, think creatively about the ways it ties to your target audience’s curriculum standards.  That may help you generate angles that will be ultimately attractive to schools.

4. Look for Examples.

Seek out visit descriptions from other creators, and let the sparks fly!  You can get started with these topics below, from 2019 attendees of our Crafting Successful Author & Illustrator Visits workshop.

See Some Examples from our Alums

These authors/illustrators brought their books and ideas to our Crafting Successful Author & Illustrator Visits workshop, where our faculty mentors helped them grow their ideas into polished school presentations.  Their ideas were polished and brought to life at the workshop.  Do any of the topics spark ideas for your own visit?

Elizabeth SteinglassElizabeth Steinglass
Soccerverse: Poems about Soccer

School Presentation:
“Let’s Pretend: A Poetry Writing Workshop”

To write a mask poem, a poet pretends to be someone or something else. Read, discuss, and write mask poems with poet Elizabeth Steinglass, author of Soccerverse: Poems about Soccer.
Soccerverse by Elizabeth Steinglass

Mylisa LarsenMylisa Larsen
Playing Through the Turnaround

If I Were A Kangaroo, illustrated by Anna Raff

How To Put Your Parents To Bed, illustrated by Babette Cole

School Presentations
Mylisa has developed multiple school presentations–you can see them on her website.If I Were a Kangaroo by Mylisa Larsen

Pam Jones-NillPam Jones-Nill
David’s Flamingos, illustrated by Jeanne Conway

School Presentation:
“Finding Inspiration”

Pam will share the true story of the 3 flamingos that inspired her to write the book. After a reading of the story, students will use their own imaginations to bring flamingos into their classroom.
David's Flamingos by Pam Jones-Nill

Rowena RaeRowena Rae
Rachel Carson and Ecology for Kids: Her Life and Ideas, with 21 Activities and Experiments

School Presentation:
“Finding the Fun in Writing Nonfiction”

Science writer Rowena Rae will use her book, Rachel Carson and Ecology for Kids, to share with students the fun she had researching, writing and revising the manuscript for this nonfiction book. She will discuss how and where she gathers information, different ways to organize nonfiction ideas, tips for getting started on a piece of writing and continuing to the end of a first draft, and ways to revise and improve a draft to make it sparkle.
Rachel Carson by Rowena Rae

Shanda McCloskeyShanda McCloskey
DOLL-E 1.0

Coming in September 2019 from DOLL-E 1.0
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

School Presentations:
Shanda offer STEM programs about robots and drones, as well as literary presentations/workshops about WRITING, EDITING, the magical powers of ILLUSTRATION, and even COMICS!

T-Bone the Drone by Shanda McCloskey

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