Monday, September 28, 2015

ThinkIn15 with Mr Schu

On Saturday I participated in a ThinkIn at an elementary school about 45 minutes away. Even though it was gorgeous weather on Saturday and I live to be outside when it is so lovely out, I went.  I could have rolled over at 7:30 am and gone right back to sleep as the other peeps at my house did but I didn't. I had a strong conviction to go because Mr. Schu (John Schumacher) was the guest speaker and I love to follow his lovely blog posts and tweets.  He's created quite a community of readers, authors, bloggers, librarians, and teachers.  I gave up my Saturday morning for him and it was well worth it.

He had a plethora of slides about connecting students with books to start the day off and we didn't even get to half of his slides. He says he has OCD when it comes to making slide shows.  That OCD is exactly what makes him entertaining to see in person.  He flits from story to story, sharing funny anecdotes about authors he's met, and his own quirkiness. He has a smell test for all new books. Yes, I said smell test as in "doesn't this book smell a-m-a-z-i-n-g!"

I had many things I wanted to say to him but I'm nervous and weird and can never get the right sentence out at the right time so I nodded my head a lot in the two conversations we had.  One of the things I wanted to say was that I loved Matthew Baker's book, If you find this, which when Mr Schu shared about this book everyone else looked at it like they'd never heard of it and he said he couldn't find a copy of it in the book stores he stopped in on his way through Iowa.  Hmmm.  I loved the book and we need to start a buzz about If you find this. 

His second presentation shared lots of new books with us and he gave away lots of books.  He talked about authors he loves like Kate DiCamillo, Ame Dykeman, and Katherine Applegate and he likes funny books which made me wonder if he likes Emily Gravett books.  Her books are unusual and kids like her sense of humor.

I was the lucky winner of TWO books from Mr. Schu (thank you, thank you!); A passion for elephants; the real life adventure of field scientist Cynthia Moss by Toni Buzzeo and Holly Berry and Ivan; the remarkable true story of the shopping mall gorilla by Katherine Applegate and G. Brian Karas.  I loved The one and only Ivan also by Applegate and many teachers use it for a read aloud so this book will make a great addition to our library.  And did I mention that it's signed by K. Applegate!

I think it is interesting that I got two books with super long titles and both about animals.  I had to sit on my hands for the rest of his giveaways and it was very difficult; he had so many great books to give away.  My friend Nancy was the lucky winner of Brian Selznick's new book The Marvels.

You can find Mr Schu's wonderful blog posts at Watch. Connect. Read. I love reading his posts, his book recommendations make my lists long on Titlewave, and he entertains using Vine and lots of book trailers.

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