The Central Virginian

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Young Louisa authors show off their creations

Posted on Tuesday, February 12, 2019 at 5:00 am

Layaunna Burruss, a student in Jessica Mehlhaff’s third-grade classroom at Trevilians Elementary School, reads from the book she published. Her book was one of 12 chosen for publication.

Back in October, Trevilians Elementary School third grade teacher Jessica Mehlhaff found herself looking for a unique way to teach her students what parts of speech synonyms and antonyms are. She wanted a lesson plan that would be educational, challenging and, most importantly, fun.

It’s safe to say Mehlhaff was successful on all three counts. Twelve Trevilians Elementary School students officially became published authors on Jan. 25.

As part of her lesson, Mehlhaff asked students to write and illustrate their own books. The only requirement was that the book feature several words that were synonyms, and several that were antonyms. Once completed, Mehlhaff had the books printed and professionally bound.

Then the real magic occurred. The school’s library was transformed into a showcase room for the 12 students. They were put in the spotlight and read their book to fellow students. Afterwards, the newly-published authors autographed copies of their books and distributed them to classmates, many of whom grabbed them with outstretched arms and big grins.

Family members of each author were invited to attend the session. Many of them posed for photos with their new author.

This is a partial article. Read the full story in The Central Virginian’s Feb. 7, 2019 issue.

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