Greyhound Stories is pleased to offer school visits. Please see details below to learn more about our school program and how you can schedule a visit! Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or use the contact form below for more information.
2015/2016 School Year – We are ready for another exciting school year with presentations on writing and visits from our beloved greyhound, Perry and amazing staghound, Odin! Reserve your scheduled visit early so you don’t miss out on the excitement of learning and experiencing the fastest land animal second to the cheetah!
“Our students and teachers were so excited to welcome Suzanne Burke and her greyhound into our school. Ms. Burke was the perfect combination of instruction and entertainment. She shared her insights into how her books came to be, talked about the actual writing process and brought her greyhound as a wonderful representation of her books. Her visit had a tremendous impact on our students.” – Terri Harkey, Library Media Specialist, Prosper ISD, Texas
The success of the visit relies upon how well the students and teachers are prepared. Familiarity with the books generates excitement and invites student participation during a presentation. Involve the teachers by encouraging them to use the books in the classroom. Classroom teacher attendance during each presentation is mandatory, as it insures effective follow-up discussions and activities as well as proper student behavior.
The presentation is 30 minutes in length using Powerpoint with a 30 minute Q & A session to allow children to ask questions about writing, the stories, and greyhounds. I bring a greyhound with me so the children can meet a real retired racing greyhound. Children are in awe of these dogs. Greyhounds have a gentle and docile spirit about them. My greyhounds are trained and enjoy the company of children. The greyhound is not typically allowed to be petted, since he has a job to fulfill.
My presentation focuses on the enjoyment of writing and provides tips to children on topics they can write about. Children also learn about greyhounds, their life as a racer, and retired life following the race track, as well as, the rich history of the greyhound. Each story contains social issues children are faced with such as dealing with adversity, leadership, bullying, etc. Question exercises for each chapter for each book are located below to help as a teaching aid. Helping students decide on questions to ask during the author’s Q & A session is another great teaching tool. In addition, if the instructor would like to teach children about charity, they can ask the kids to donate money (often this is very small) in a jar to donate to the Greyhound Adoption League of Texas – a non-profit greyhound adoption group in Dallas, Texas who helps to rehabilitate and find homes for retired racing greyhounds. I have found this one small exercise instills a sense of pride in the children who do this. The raised money and 10% of the proceeds from sales of books are then donated to this non-profit group. This is another topic we discuss as part of the presentation.
For second and third grade classes, teachers should read one of the books as a class project about 4 weeks prior to the visit. During this time, teachers should help students understand the art of asking “good” questions to prepare for their Q &A session following the presentation. I have found these grade levels have incredibly intelligent questions about greyhounds.
Most schools order books so that students can buy them and have them autographed during the visit (see book order form below). Books can easily be ordered from the author and shipped to the school. School order forms are sent home to parents to order the books 4 weeks ahead of the scheduled visit (this allows for proper order volume and timely delivery). The librarian often manages the order forms, contacts me with the number of books to be ordered at least 3 weeks prior to the visit, and payment is made the day of the school visit (from parents payments – either checks or cash are acceptable). You may link to the Book Order Form below to send to parents. Also, a timeline is provided below to help with pre-planning. I will be happy to sign any books following the presentation. Please have a slip of paper or post-it note in each book with the name to be inscribed printed legibly. Book signing is done following the presentation and handed to children later, following the visit.
6 weeks or more Prior to Visit
Have each class read either “Logan’s Secret” OR “Logan and The Mystical Collar”. This should be completed 4 weeks prior to visit. All classes should read the same book.
4 Weeks Prior to Visit
Send order forms home to parents to fill out, send payment to school with order form noting special book inscription for each child
3 weeks Prior to Visit
Place order for total number of each book needed from order forms received. I will often have extra books available for delayed orders. Books will be ordered and shipped to school.
2 weeks Prior to Visit
Conference call with me to discuss details, equipment needed for presentation. I will forward the PowerPoint slide presentation so that it can be available and loaded on a laptop/PC ready for presenting.
Questions for The Rise of the Phoenix coming soon