Delhi Middle School (DMS) language arts honor students welcomed author Joelle Anthony to a writing workshop and literature discussion on Wednesday, October 17.
Anthony’s novel Restoring Harmony is the 2012 Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County’s ‘On the Same Page’ selection. In its eleventh year, On the Same Page is a citywide reading project created to enhance a sense of community through a shared reading event encompassing all of Hamilton County.
Two DMS teachers, Kenny Boatright, a seventh-grade language arts teacher, and Kim Caldwell, an eighth-grade language arts teacher, helped coordinate the visit.
“Our students love to read and we want them to read as much as possible,” said Boatright. “We also want them to write. What better way to get them excited about both reading and writing than having a well-published author come into their school and talk with them one-on-one.”
During the writing workshop, the students were presented with oranges. Step-by-step, they described the orange, focusing first on its look before moving onto its touch, how peeling it changed it, its smell and finally its taste. Vivid descriptions of the orange were shouted out, from “You can taste the juice bubbles,” and “It tastes like a sweet lemon,” to “It smells like my grandma’s basement.”
The students who participated felt that Anthony’s visit helped them mature as writers.
“One thing I learned from Joelle Anthony is how to use sensory words to make my writing more descriptive,” said Sami Reese, a seventh grader. “It will really help put more spark into my writing.”
“I enjoyed the lesson where we described an orange. I never realized that there were so many words to describe an orange,” said Lauren Rippy, a seventh grader. “I also liked that she took the time to answer each of our questions.”
In addition to Anthony, librarians from the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County joined the discussion and helped facilitate the learning opportunity.
“I can see this inspiring many of our students to read and/or write more,” Boatright added. “Anytime we can make a positive connection between the students and the public library, we can’t go wrong.”
Restoring Harmony deals with 16-year-old Molly McClure, who deals with life, 10 years after the Great Collapse of 2031. McClure, with only her fiddle for company, leaves the safety of her family’s island home to travel through the desolate, dangerous wasteland on her way to Oregon to find her grandparents, hoping to persuade them to return with her to Canada.
For more information about On the Same Page visit http://teenspace.cincinnatilibrary.org/samepage.