Award-Winning Author Visits SIS
Last March 22nd and 23rd, SIS was glad to welcome award winning author and literacy activist, Jane Kurtz, to Parkside and Bayside campuses. Jane grew up in Ethiopia and attended boarding school in Addis Ababa. Her experiences abroad have greatly influenced her writing which display a keen sense of cultural awareness and one’s identity. Jane was taught from an early age that reading was both fun and essential, a message she carries to her audiences even today.
On March 22nd Jane met with grades K-5 during 4 workshop sessions in which she told them about her life as an international student living in Ethiopia and how reading influenced her writing. Elementary Librarian, Alicia Ngaropo-Tuia had this to say about Jane’s visit,
“everyone wanted to fly off to see all the wild life she had shown us, and she also did some great presentations with all the ES students learning about how she makes connections about her life and experiences to help her write stories. Her passion for writing and reading was evident in her discussions and she shared many strategies for gathering ideas for writing that supported a lot of what teachers and students do during writers workshops and SIS.”
Then on March 23rd, Jane met with the 9th grade Writing Class to discuss their newest endeavor of writing historical fiction. Students and teachers received many tips and activities on researching and writing about historical events. Barbara Montgomery, the 9th Grade Writing Class teacher, said this about Jane’s visit, “Jane Kurtz’s visit was very engaging and she captured the student’s interest with her lively details from her life and family. One of the important points she made was: inspiration is great, yet even fiction writers need to research to get the details for their stories right.”
Jane also met with a select group of students from grades 6-8 in a series of 2 workshops centered around improving their writing. The key elements of these workshops allowed students to see how their own experiences form the base for many interesting stories whether real or fiction, and how reading helps us to develop immersive language in our writing.
Throughout SIS Jane’s visit had a clear impact on students from reading her books to drawing pictures of animals they saw to writing articles about her visit in the Middle School Journalism class. Students and teachers alike were inspired by her enthusiasm for reading, writing, and exploring the world in which we live.
A big thank you to Jane and her husband, Leonard, for making the long journey to inspire us. And thank you to all the teachers and staff who helped make this event possible.
To read more stories about Shekou International School visit their website: www.sis.org.cn/why-choose-sis