2002-2003 School Visits

My visit to L.B. Morris Elementary!

It was dark by the time I drove down the long hill into the quaint Pocono town of Jim Thorpe. As I passed this clock tower, I thought, "I'm in for a great time in this school tomorrow." And guess what -- I was right!
L.B. Morris is just brimming over with kids who love to make up stories!
It's rare I get to spend a whole day with the younger kids in a school. This day, my attention was focused on just the students from k-2. They were nice kids. Fun kids. Kids with active imaginations.

In our assembly, we invented a story about a bear whose pet dog is lost. Here's where it gets interesting: he finds that the dog has been taken to the Amazon river, where a pink dolphin keeps him trapped in the rainforest. (Shades of Max Bonker!)

Then the rest of the day was spent in workshops, coming up with the wild and wacky stories you see in the column to the right.
I love the concentration on the faces of kids using their imaginations. These doodlers put lots of detail into their doodles.
The day ended with 3 whole kindergarten classes squeezing into the room to imagine a story about a dog who sails on a boat made of bones to an island where his pals relax with him in a lazy hammock, scarfing down pickles! These two teachers took back the drawings. Thanks for laughing at my jokes, you two.

Hey, you Morris kids! Keep up those big ideas coming! Draw, write, tell stories. The fun you had with me you can have making up your own stories. Why not grab a friend and think of a story today?

Here's what teachers at L.B. Morris wrote about my time at their school:
about the assembly:
"One of the best we've had here."
about the workshop:
"Your workshop was fantastic! You kept the students involved and interested the entire time... After the workshop, we used your drawing to write a story about "The Barnyard Olympics." Some of my students were so enthusiastic about writing they didn't want to stop. Great job!!"
A line-up of great stories!

Here's a parade of fun ideas that just got started in our time together. I hope some students will put the finishing touches on these!

The Barnyard Olympics. I have to say, this first story was my favorite of the day. Ideas were really flowing on this one. A cow wants to win the Barnyard Olympics and take the farm crown away from King Pig. But he has to get all the chickens in the coop in the fastest time. But are they chickens? Nooooooo. Just when they're all in, they reveal themselves to be ducks in on King Pig's evil plot to stay the boss. This story really quacked me up!
In My Pet Alien, a lady who wants an alien for a pet more than anything in the world (or any other world, for that matter!). While in a pet store, one of the cats does a really weird thing with its eyes, and she realizes she finally can have her purrrrrfect alien pet!
When a monkey swipes a boy's favorite invention of his fathers, he sets out to get it back in The Monkey and the Amazing Plane. I challenged the kids to dream up other really cool toys the boy's inventor father could make!
This, um, strange-looking fellow is a monster. No surprise there. I love this doodle -- because it turned out strange, we had a great start to a character.
And in the story below, the switch is that the monster has to wear a human mask to be able to enter a burger-eating contest. The other contestant waits for just the right moment and Whoosh! Off comes the mask!

Read all reviews of Bruce Van Patter's presentations
The Story Kitchen
Hey kids! Keep the creative fun going! Check out my Story Kitchen, where you choose the story ingredients and finish a story I've started! If you finish one, email me your ending and I'll post it on my site!
Create your own character using one of eight funny, interesting faces on my page of MUGSHOTS. Click through to a question sheet that will help you make a face into your own hero... or villain.
What else do you want to know about:
Read about other recent school visits:
Wasson Ave. Elem.
Round Hills