with Bruce Van Patter 2004-2005 School Visits

My visit to Shamona Creek!

Give a kids the chance, and they'll jump into making a story. Shamona Creek students were so ready to imagine, I had trouble keeping track of all the ideas!
Creative minds at work!
My time in schools is not really about me. It's about the students. Of course, I draw a lot. Make that A LOT! But I give plenty of time for kids to air out their ideas, whether they're drawing or just thinking out loud.
This story, from the first assembly, as about a tiger who finds an old pirate book. In it, he sees a map which tells where pirate treasure is. He's almost got it, but along comes another tiger. He's the great-great-grandson of the pirate! And he has a huge mechanical arm! Why? Just because my "villain" chooser thought it would be cool. And so do I.
And in the second assembly, a hermit who lives out in the desert decides he wants to be more human. People think just because he wears a cactus suit, he's a little prickly. But he's really a nice guy. When he finds a little alien in the desert, the alien helps him find a huge bee-hive where Cactus Man can get himself a beard of bees. But he didn't think about the queen bee! Watch out, Cactus Man!
The Wheel of Fiction chose great directions for us. Thanks to all my "spinners".
Hey Shamona Creek kids -- just like this wonderful superhero by Kevin, you all have super ideas!

Remember to share your ideas with others, that way you'll always be creative!

And check out my site -- start with Fun Stuff in the bar below.

Amazing Stories!

Check out these workshop tales:

See Spots Run. I loved this idea for a story; I just didn't love the first drawing I did of it. So after the kids left, I did another version. In this story, a cow wants to be accepted by the spotted cows. She doesn't have any spots. So she gets magic ones. But if she tells anybody they're not real spots, they'll all jump off and run away! I guess she told.

I'm illustrating cows right now for my next book, Farley Found It. Here's a little sample:

This story started with a nose. A big nose. It was a part of the drawing two students made to start us off. We decided he could smell really well, and he's tracking down his missing raspberry pie. Who took it? Could it be? It is! His mom took it because whenever she bakes it, he eats it all. He better be careful, or it's Bye-Bye Pie!
I have to say, this was my best day ever for workshop story titles. In The Ticket-Taker, a dog has been waiting to finally leave the house to go to the movies. She's ordered tickets. But the mailman, who hates and fears dogs, steals the tickets so the dog won't come out! The dog replaces the film with a film she makes of dogs snarling. I don't think he'll be sticking around for the ending!
I was so impressed with all the creative examples up on the walls and in the classrooms in this school. Like this chair, for instance. In one third-grade class, this chair can only be sat in when someone is reading aloud their own writing. I love that idea!
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Pick the ingredients to stories and click through to see how I've started them. Then you finish the story!

Make a character out of some funny people I've drawn for you!
Strange news is happening! Let my Headline Maker give you a really weird headline. Then write a story!

click on the images to go to the writing activities