© Larry Dane Brimner, Trustee, Brimner/Gregg Trust, 2015; Home Page Author Photo Credit: Roxyanne Young
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SCHOOL VISITS

Everyone Has a Story

A blend of stand-up comedy and pro-literacy message, Larry's highly-interactive, full- day school visit consists of four (4) 45- to 60-minute programs for older children, plus one (1) 30-minute presentation for kindergarten. He typically speaks in elementary schools but having taught junior and senior high, he is comfortable with those levels as well. “Everyone Has a Story” touches on mining for ideas, story development, research techniques, and/or any combination of these topics as he takes students through several titles from idea to publication. With grades 1 & 2, he looks at two titles and discusses the notions, or ideas, behind each story. Then he reads one of them aloud to show the end result. He also shares a much-edited manuscript to prove that writers seldom get it right the first time. (Approx. time: 45-50 minutes, includes Q/A) With grades 3 and above, he discusses his work in more detail and includes nonfiction in the mix. (Approx. time: 50-60 minutes, includes Q/A) A teacher for 20 years and former Teaching Fellow with the National Writing Project, Larry likes to demonstrate the Five- Step Writing Process. His programs work well in conjunction with Six Trait Writing instruction and blend with the Common Core. Larry is a born-teacher and holds valid K- 12 teaching credentials from California. With Larry's youngest friends (K and Pre-K), he tells them about the day a little brown bear walked into his office and gave him the idea for Country Bear's Good Neighbor. Then he'll share the published story. Next he'll read Dinosaurs Dance and demonstrate "the dance," which is a series of movements that reinforce vocabulary development. After the demonstration, everyone will join in to dance to music. This program is capped off with an echo-reading of Cats! A brief Q/A will follow. (Approx. time: 30 minutes)

Protests & Boycotts: The Fight for Dignity and Freedom

This program, intended for grades 4 through 12, focuses on the African American struggle for equality and the farm workers’ fight for better working and living conditions. (Approx. time: 45 minutes) Diving In: Research, a.k.a., Snooping in People’s Drawers Best with smaller groups (2 classes +/-). Intended for grades 4 to 12, this program is about what its name implies: research. It discusses how Larry, who has been called a “master researcher,” collects the information, quotes, documents, and images that end up in his nonfiction books. (Approx. time: 45 minutes) Note: Teachers and aides are expected to be active participants in the programs so they will be able to do follow-up activities with their students. As adults, they should model good listening skills and proper audience behavior. 

Fee Structure, or What This Will Cost

Larry handles his fee structure a little differently than most other authors. That said, he offers a bit more (four longer programs, plus a shorter kindergarten program vs. the standard three programs). His daily fee is $850, plus travel and lodging expenses, for visits of one or two days. However, he prefers to simplify things by covering his own travel and lodging expenses and will do so with bookings of three-days or longer. He encourages you to invite other schools in your area to piggyback onto your visit. Within Arizona and San Diego County, Larry’s full-day fee is $850, total (No expenses! No surprises!). CONTACT! NOTE: Larry will do his best to say yes. He likes nothing better than making you a hero with your staff and WOW-ing your students. If his fee or arrangements are problematic, please send him a proposal. (He believes that born-teachers never leave the profession, they simply change venues.)

Equipment Needs

For “Everyone Has a Story,” Larry requests that schools provide the following: Table, (about 5-feet in length), cordless microphone (lapel or one on a stand), CD-player (boom box), LCD-projector with cables to connect to Larry's PC, and screen. If your school has a computer connected to a projector, that's even better. Also, a bottle of water is nice.

Writers’ Workshop

For Grades 4 to 8. Length: 1 hour; limited to 25+/-. Do your students’ writings suffer from the blahhhs? Do they lack spark? Is it a chore to get beyond the first sentence, or word? Is the organization a meSs? Throughout Larry’s teaching career, his job description was “Writing Specialist.” Pure and simple, he taught kids to write. While he doesn’t believe that creativity can be taught (It can be nurtured, however.), he does believe that writing can be made better. Whether teaching (1) Verbs that Zing or (2) Beginnings that Have Readers Begging for More or (3) Writing from the Other Dude’s Point of View or (4) Bringing It to an End or (5) Poetry with a Focus, he can help students refine and polish their writing. A typical workshop begins with Larry teaching the concept (approx. 20 minutes). Students then write anew or re-write a pre-existing piece that they have been working on (about 20 minutes). We end with a group critique (which Larry will lead). Writers’ Workshop (be sure to identify which area or areas you’d like him to focus on, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or something of your choosing) may be substituted in lieu of one longer “Everyone has a Story” presentation. It may also be booked as a stand-alone, additional event (after-school or evening) for $300. Please, only one Writers’ Workshop per day.     

A Successful Author Visit

The most successful author visits come when the students have been prepared. Take the time to introduce them to some of Larry’s more than 160 titles. You probably already have some in your library. Other things you might do include: Prepare special bulletin boards Have each grade level develop a bulletin board around one of Larry’s books Help students prepare questions they might want to ask the author Conduct a writing contest, with the winners getting to have lunch with the author Create student-prepared art to accompany Larry’s books

“I knew I had picked someone who had engaged the students in thinking and

inspired them to read and write. ...When he left the building at the end of the

day, it was like he was a rock star." --Susan Cormier, Kyrene del Cielo Elementary

School, Chandler, AZ

You did a superior job of presenting to our entire student body. Each session was brilliant and filled with so much meaning and information. I do not know how you do it. Thanks for making this a memorable event for our students here at Neil Armstrong. You should consider training others in the 'how-to' of presenting." -- Robert C. Mallon, Library Media Specialist, Neil Armstrong Elementary School, Port Charlotte, Florida

What Others Say

Larry is always happy to share comments from teachers. Here, you will find some from schools where he has previously presented.
SCHOOL VISITS
© Larry Dane Brimner, Trustee, Brimner/Gregg Trust, 2015; Home Page Author Photo Credit: Roxyanne Young
INDEX

SCHOOL VISITS

Everyone Has a Story

A blend of stand-up comedy and pro-literacy message, Larry's highly-interactive, full-day school visit consists of four (4) 45- to 60-minute programs for older children, plus one (1) 30-minute presentation for kindergarten. He typically speaks in elementary schools but having taught junior and senior high, he is comfortable with those levels as well. “Everyone Has a Story” touches on mining for ideas, story development, research techniques, and/or any combination of these topics as he takes students through several titles from idea to publication. With grades 1 & 2, he looks at two titles and discusses the notions, or ideas, behind each story. Then he reads one of them aloud to show the end result. He also shares a much-edited manuscript to prove that writers seldom get it right the first time. (Approx. time: 45-50 minutes, includes Q/A) With grades 3 and above, he discusses his work in more detail and includes nonfiction in the mix. (Approx. time: 50-60 minutes, includes Q/A) A teacher for 20 years and former Teaching Fellow with the National Writing Project, Larry likes to demonstrate the Five- Step Writing Process. His programs work well in conjunction with Six Trait Writing instruction and blend with the Common Core. Larry is a born-teacher and holds valid K-12 teaching credentials from California. With Larry's youngest friends (K and Pre-K), he tells them about the day a little brown bear walked into his office and gave him the idea for Country Bear's Good Neighbor. Then he'll share the published story. Next he'll read Dinosaurs Dance and demonstrate "the dance," which is a series of movements that reinforce vocabulary development. After the demonstration, everyone will join in to dance to music. This program is capped off with an echo-reading of Cats! A brief Q/A will follow. (Approx. time: 30 minutes)

Protests & Boycotts: The Fight for Dignity and Freedom

This program, intended for grades 4 through 12, focuses on the African American struggle for equality and the farm workers’ fight for better working and living conditions. (Approx. time: 45 minutes) Diving In: Research, a.k.a., Snooping in People’s Drawers Best with smaller groups (2 classes +/-). Intended for grades 4 to 12, this program is about what its name implies: research. It discusses how Larry, who has been called a “master researcher,” collects the information, quotes, documents, and images that end up in his nonfiction books. (Approx. time: 45 minutes) Note: Teachers and aides are expected to be active participants in the programs so they will be able to do follow-up activities with their students. As adults, they should model good listening skills and proper audience behavior. 

Fee Structure, or What This Will Cost

Larry handles his fee structure a little differently than most other authors. That said, he offers a bit more (four longer programs, plus a shorter kindergarten program vs. the standard three programs). His daily fee is $850, plus travel and lodging expenses, for visits of one or two days. However, he prefers to simplify things by covering his own travel and lodging expenses and will do so with bookings of three-days or longer. He encourages you to invite other schools in your area to piggyback onto your visit. Within Arizona and San Diego County, Larry’s full-day fee is $850, total (No expenses! No surprises!). CONTACT! NOTE: Larry will do his best to say yes. He likes nothing better than making you a hero with your staff and WOW-ing your students. If his fee or arrangements are problematic, please send him a proposal. (He believes that born-teachers never leave the profession, they simply change venues.)

Equipment Needs

For “Everyone Has a Story,” Larry requests that schools provide the following: Table, (about 5-feet in length), cordless microphone (lapel or one on a stand), CD-player (boom box), LCD-projector with cables to connect to Larry's PC, and screen. If your school has a computer connected to a projector, that's even better. Also, a bottle of water is nice.

Writers’ Workshop

For Grades 4 to 8. Length: 1 hour; limited to 25+/-. Do your students’ writings suffer from the blahhhs? Do they lack spark? Is it a chore to get beyond the first sentence, or word? Is the organization a meSs? Throughout Larry’s teaching career, his job description was “Writing Specialist.” Pure and simple, he taught kids to write. While he doesn’t believe that creativity can be taught (It can be nurtured, however.), he does believe that writing can be made better. Whether teaching (1) Verbs that Zing or (2) Beginnings that Have Readers Begging for More or (3) Writing from the Other Dude’s Point of View or (4) Bringing It to an End or (5) Poetry with a Focus, he can help students refine and polish their writing. A typical workshop begins with Larry teaching the concept (approx. 20 minutes). Students then write anew or re-write a pre-existing piece that they have been working on (about 20 minutes). We end with a group critique (which Larry will lead). Writers’ Workshop (be sure to identify which area or areas you’d like him to focus on, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or something of your choosing) may be substituted in lieu of one longer “Everyone has a Story” presentation. It may also be booked as a stand- alone, additional event (after-school or evening) for $300. Please, only one Writers’ Workshop per day.     

A Successful Author Visit

The most successful author visits come when the students have been prepared. Take the time to introduce them to some of Larry’s more than 160 titles. You probably already have some in your library. Other things you might do include: Prepare special bulletin boards Have each grade level develop a bulletin board around one of Larry’s books Help students prepare questions they might want to ask the author Conduct a writing contest, with the winners getting to have lunch with the author Create student-prepared art to accompany Larry’s books

“I knew I had picked someone who had engaged the students

in thinking and inspired them to read and write. ...When he left

the building at the end of the day, it was like he was a rock

star." --Susan Cormier, Kyrene del Cielo Elementary School,

Chandler, AZ