Each spring brings with it longer days, wildflowers, and the annual Student Authors’ Fair. This traditional event, organized by the Santa Cruz County Reading Association (SCCRA) with support from the Santa Cruz County Office of Education, highlights the talents of student authors. Local elementary schools including public, private, charter and home-schools, display tables full of books created during the year by their students and invite friends and families to come to the Capitola Mall to read the books. Books are written in different languages, including English and Spanish, and have a variety of formats. Some are a collection of class essays or poems, beautifully illustrated with watercolors. Others are painstakingly aged “log books” creatively illustrating their authors’ understanding of life in another historical era. Each book is the culmination of many days of work, as students move through the writing process, from drafting, to revising and editing and finally to “publishing.”
A consistent highlight every year is the Author’s Chair, hosted by San Lorenzo Valley Elementary School teacher Janet Stahl. Students read from their books and are artfully interviewed about their work by Janet. Even students who decide not to be onstage, enjoy the opportunity that the fair provides to show their books to their families. Pride radiates from the faces of these authors as they share the product of their efforts with an audience. This year’s event was held on Saturday, May 6, 2017 at the Capitola Mall.
To register your school for next year’s Student Authors’ Fair, please visit the Santa Cruz County Reading Association website. The Santa Cruz County Reading Association is the local chapter of the California Reading Association, itself a part of the International Literacy Association.
In addition to organizing the yearly Student Authors’ Fair, the SCCRA hosts a monthly book club organized by teachers for teachers to promote professional learning on the teaching of literacy. Information about the book club is distributed in August to school principals and is also available on the Association’s website.