Wayne Center Elementary School Enhances Students’ Interests with Visit from Medusa!

Reading excerpt from my book to Wayne Center Elem students during author visit.

Reading excerpt from my book to Wayne Center Elem students during author visit.


I love visiting schools to talk with students about the importance of reading for success in life. I may not look successful in my Medusa costume, complete with a wig of rubber snakes, but I’ll swallow my pride to get kids excited about books!
Wayne Center Elem students enjoy hearing Greek mythology stories.

Wayne Center Elem students enjoy hearing Greek mythology stories.


Recently I spoke to all 400 students in Grades 1-6 at Wayne Center Elementary School in Kendallville, IN. It is a beautiful building that was constructed just a few years ago. Our sessions were conducted in the spacious and sunny library! Thanks to the Wayne Center Elementary School librarian for allowing us use of the space for the morning.

It was great fun addressing all 6 grades at intervals. I tailor my talk to their maturity levels. Here are comments from one Third/Fourth Grade teacher:

Our school was treated to a visit from Medusa dressed Kayleen during our end-of-year reading celebration. Kayleen was wonderful to engage each group of students, no matter the age group, and talk about her books and what it is like to be an author. The students had a great time asking questions and learning more about her too. What a great visit!

I heard many good things from the staff after her visit and they all said Kayleen engaged the students at each grade level. Thank you to Kayleen for taking time out of her day to come join us. It was wonderful meeting her.

Dawn Jackson
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The school also purchased copies of my books for their school library.
My thanks to Wayne Center Elementary Principal Karen Gandy, and teachers Patrice Abbee and Dawn Jackson for arranging my visit.

Patrice Abbee (L) and Dawn Jackson (R) helped arrange my visit to Wayne Center Elementary School.

Patrice Abbee (L) and Dawn Jackson (R) helped arrange my visit to Wayne Center Elementary School.

What is your school doing to promote students’ interests in reading? An author visit might do that!

If you are an educator or know of a school that would be interested in an author visit from me, I’d appreciate your letting me know. I want to connect with as many students as possible to let them know the value of reading and writing.

Speaking to Lancaster Elementary School Students Rocks!

I love speaking to students at Lancaster Elementary School!

I love speaking to students at Lancaster Elementary School!


Recently I spoke to 3rd and 4th grade students at Lancaster Elementary School in Ossian IN. My friend Lyn Rodgers arranged it and I thank her and the other teachers for allowing me to speak to their students about the writing process, how I get my ideas for writing and the importance of reading, spelling and grammar, of course, writing itself!
I spoke to 3rd and 4th graders at Lancaster Elementary School.

I spoke to 3rd and 4th graders at Lancaster Elementary School.


The kids were attentive and respectful. They had lots of questions and listened while I showed full-color pictures inside my books and told them how hard an author has to work. I can carry around the desire to be an author for years but until I’m actually sitting in a chair at my desk, putting the words on paper, nothing in that dream will come true.

I work in a middle school and enjoy interacting with kids, especially about books and reading. Do you need a speaker at your school to motivate your students? Please contact me and we’ll try to make it happen!

My lovely friend Lyn Rodgers arranged my visit  at Lancaster Elementary School. Thanks, Lyn!

My lovely friend Lyn Rodgers arranged my visit at Lancaster Elementary School. Thanks, Lyn!


What advice would you give students today about being a writer?

Angela Witte–Mrs. Indiana 2010

Witte with Stitches of Hope members

 It was my pleasure recently to interview Angela Witte. Angela is a Wells County native and Norwell High School graduate. On Nov. 13, 2010, she was crowned Mrs. Indiana. I first knew Angela as my dental hygienist. She was friendly and professional. I later discovered she and my daughter used to cheer together.

  Angela is no stranger to beauty pageants. She has focused on achieving in that area and has done well. She has a passion for helping people and wants to volunteer as much as she is able during her reign. She attended a meeting of Stitches of Hope, a group that crochets and knits caps for people who lose hair from cancer (www.stitchesofhope1.blogspot.com).

The volunteers enjoyed her stories and her willingness to help us tag the caps to be sent to hospitals.

 Angela is looking for more opportunities to help groups throughout the state of Indiana. If you know of a charity fundraiser that could use her assistance in promotion, please contact her at the website below. 

Witte with Stitches of Hope volunteers

 The illness could not have come at a worse time. On November 13, 2010, Angela Micklitsch Witte had a sinus infection that included coughing, sneezing, and nasal congestion. Unfortunately, she was participating in a pageant for the title of Mrs. Indiana in Greenwood, Indiana. When not on stage answering questions for judges, she was backstage blowing her nose. Witte had purchased the softest facial tissues she could find so her nose would not be red when facing the audience and judges.

 
Despite Witte’s discomfort, she managed to look relaxed and respond well to the questions she was asked. Her endurance paid off when Witte was crowned Mrs. Indiana 2011.
 
Witte, a 2004 Norwell High School graduate, has established herself as an experienced contender for local pageantry:
Miss Wells County 2006 (first runner up); Miss Mideast 2006; Miss IPFW 2006; Miss Fort Wayne 2007 (third runner up and Community Achievement Award); Miss Mideast 2007 (winner); Miss Indiana 2008 (voted Miss Congeniality, Jon Price Community Service Award, Miss Miracle Maker Award, Hoosier Leadership Memorial Scholarship); Salvation Army’s Fort Wayne Queen of Charities 2010 (winner, voted Miss Congeniality).

    

At her latest pageant which included eight other contestants Witte, who now lives in Fort Wayne, swept the awards by winning the Physical Fitness Award and Mrs. Congeniality.

The latter honor is especially significant to Witte. “Being crowned Mrs. Congeniality means the most to me because making new friends and building relationships with my peers is the most important part of pageantry for me,” she said.

The areas of competition in the Mrs.America pageants are Interview- 50%, Physical Fitness in Swimsuit- 25%, and Evening Wear- 25%. To prepare physically for the competition Witte has established an exercise routine that includes using a treadmill and lifting weights. She often jogs outside with her husband Zach Witte, a 2003 Norwell graduate. She also exercises with co-workers to a Jillian Michaels video. Witte is employed full-time as a dental hygienist with Dr. Blake Taylor and Dr. Molly Sigler in Bluffton. “Exercising together as a team is fun and it makes us healthy,” said Witte.

She will compete for the Mrs. America crown the first two weeks of April 2011 at the Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, nicknamed “Mrs. America’s home away from home.” . The event will be televised.

Competing for the national pageant is Witte’s only chance to win the title of Mrs. America. “Once a woman wins a state title, she is not allowed to compete again,” said Witte. “That allows other women the opportunity to win.” The winner of the Mrs. America pageant will then compete for Mrs. World.

During the time leading up to the Mrs. America pageant, Witte plans to keep a busy schedule. Besides working full-time, she will fill free time volunteering throughout the state for charities. “If somebody needs my help in promoting a fundraiser, I will make the drive to their location and lend a hand,” she said.

“The Mrs. Indiana pageant is based on a concept of what a modern woman is like,” she added. “For me community service is a huge part of who I am. I really like getting into the community as much as I can. I’m hoping groups and organizations will utilize me as a volunteer.”

Those interested in requesting Witte for an appearance to support an event can contact her at

www.mrsindiana.com

The End
Reprinted with permission of News-Banner
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