The 31st Annual Student Authors’ Fair is a Grand Success
What a festive sight it was on a recent Saturday morning in May for families and shoppers walking into the heart of the Capitola Mall and finding a treasure trove of children’s literature everywhere. From first glance, it was obviously a very special celebration. Beyond the colorful balloons, flowers, table displays, and smiling faces it was a unique and inspirational festival. This “book fair” was much more than literature written for children by adults. There were hundreds of titles written and illustrated by children themselves, displayed creatively to share with the community.
Throughout the school year, students across Santa Cruz County produce “volumes” of writing as a key part of their regular classroom instruction. Also each year, hundreds of those students actually author their own publications. Annually, in the spring, their written works are gathered and showcased at this public fair at the mall.
This year on May 5th the Student Authors’ Fair was again held for many students and their families, educators, and community members to enjoy.
The Santa Cruz County Reading Association and The Santa Cruz County Office of Education jointly sponsor this annual event. The purpose of the Student Authors’ Fair is to encourage students to write their own books and then to recognize these students by sharing their books in this public venue. Many students take the opportunity to come to the “author’s chair” and microphone to read their works to the audience that gathers.
This year’s event also included an awards ceremony to recognize the great efforts of educators and organizations that support students and reading instruction.
Lauren Pomrantz, Reading Association President and Michael Watkins, Santa Cruz County Superintendent of Schools presented three annual awards.
Receiving the Barbara Bricmont Librarian Award was Terri De La Torre, Bradley School, PVUSD. This year’s County Reading Association Honor Medal was presented to Janet Burton, First Grade Teacher at San Lorenzo Valley Elementary School, SLVUSD. This year a new award category was named in memory of Barney Bricmont and the Literacy Award was presented to Jennifer Robinson of the Raising a Reader organization.
Personal pride and esteem were evident throughout the Fair. Many students were proudly reading their books to an audience. Many others were perusing the books of their classmates and those from neighboring schools. Teachers and parents volunteering together at their booths on this Saturday, expressed how proud they were of each other, their school communities, and the works of the students from across Santa Cruz County.
Congratulations to the award recipients and to the many teachers and parents and hundreds of students that contributed to and participated in this year’s Student Authors’ Fair.