Third Graders at VES Co-Author Book

Create a rough draft, compose, revise, rewrite and illustrate, that is what one classroom of third graders at Vilonia Elementary School, said, it took to co-author “We Survived,” a classroom book, with them telling their stories.

Teacher Kathy Moore said the publication includes drawings and one-page stories from 22 students, a teacher’s aide and Moore. The group began the process in October, she said.  

“We first wrote out our stories by hand,” Moore said. “Then, we used technologies to do the rest.”

As far as the stories, the subjects ranged from surviving the 2014 tornado to changing a poopie diaper. Tristan Wyatt wrote about surviving the tornado because “everyone in Vilonia can identify” with the topic.  Dalton Ellis wrote about surviving pee-wee football. His team, the Vilonia Gray Eagles won the Super Bowl.  Allison Benzing told her story of a trip down the river in an inner tube where she almost drowned. Oscar Jimenez told about a dog scaring him when he was four. Kenna Wise wrote about being “drenched with sweat” after a basketball practice.

Pouring over their word and sketches, they said, made them realize the “hard work” and time it takes to be an author.  However, the experience did not deter some of them from thoughts of pursuing a writing career or one of an illustrator.

A polished copy was mailed, this week, to a publishing company and Moore anticipates the finished product will be back in February. The cost, she said, will be about $19.95 for each copy.