Taken from a painting of Kapiti Island at Sunset.
by Sonia Savage.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Sype with author Rob Buyea - author of 'because of mr terupt'

Over the last number of weeks I have been reading to my class, "because of mr terupt". The story is about some fifth graders and their teacher. A very special teacher. My class and I were enthralled by this book, each time I ended they would groan. I always seemed to end just at a place where we wanted to know what was going to happen! I didn't do that on purpose, I was reading the book for the first time along with the students. The book is written from the viewpoints of  seven students, and it is only when each character's voice is heard that the reader builds up the story. This is just one very clever aspect of this book.

Where did I hear about this book? I live in New Zealand and this book is not published in New Zealand or sold here. This is where the beauty of the internet comes into play. I read about it on The Two Writing Teacher's Blog. That post and its links made me want to read the book. My next decision was would I buy it on Kindle, or as a hold in your hand book. As I know that students often want to read the book for themselves after I have read it to them, I chose the hardback version. Great choice!

Then today we were able to meet Rob Buyea, the author of this outstanding book.  For a whole hour we were able to share with him our thoughts about the book and ask him questions.  It was a magical hour, and a great end to our first term for 2011.  I finished the day on a high. I owe my thanks to the Two Writing Teachers and also a teacher on Goodreads, who said he was open to skyping with classes.

To those of you who have had a skype with an author, I hope you share my excitement in our ability to do so these days, even if they live thousands of miles away, to those of you who haven't, do it, it is a wonderful experience. Hopefully it will switch my students into reading and writing even more than they are already.

I did have some heart stopping moments as I am sure many of you identify with.  Our internet was working at lower capacity and slower than normal.  After sharing my anxieties with the Principal, we set up with his notebook, which linked with cable, rather than my wireless laptop.  The video reception was not perfect, we could see Rob well although there was some breaking up of the picture from time to time.  I had linked our computer to speakers so there was no trouble with sound!

There was some slight problems with accents.  New Zealanders have a very odd way of saying the short 'e' sound. (Don't tell Australians I said that!).  So we had a few laughs later about that.  However we were delighted. I am still on a high!!

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