Tour Announcement Recap
by Matthew
October 20, 2021

IN CASE YOU MISSED LAST NIGHT’S ANNOUNCEMENT, HERE’S THE RECAP:

Our family will be spending the 2022-2023 school year traveling the country in a tiny home school bus, visiting Title I elementary schools in all 50 states, doing assemblies on creativity and collaboration, and giving away 25,000 books to kids from underserved communities.

We’ll be taking our version of the great American road trip—visiting off-the-beaten-path communities and asking people from widely different backgrounds a common set of questions.

Whatever we discover, we’ll share with our followers—via daily photos, videos, and essays.

Our goals are several:

  • To spur reading, creativity, and collaboration in literacy deserts across the country
  • To increase awareness of the national crisis of poverty-fueled inequity in our nation’s public schools
  • To set up micro-giving campaigns in every school we visit
  • To conduct a major research project, measuring the impact of author visits
  • To experience and chronicle our adventures, hoping to discover we’re not quite as divided as it sometimes seems.

We aim to boost awareness, prompt engagement, and raise smiles. But we can’t do it on our own. $5 puts a book in the hands of a kid who otherwise wouldn’t have access to it. $150 buys books for an entire classroom.

PLEASE HELP US PUT BOOKS ON THE BUS: www.busloadofbooks.com

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The Busload of Books Tour is a year-long project to promote literacy and raise awareness of the challenges facing our nation’s public schools.

Author/illustrator duo Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr (that’s us) and our four kids will spend the 2022-2023 school year traveling the country in a school bus/tiny home, visiting Title I schools in all 50 states (plus DC), and giving away 25,000 hardcover books to students and teachers from underserved communities.

As we travel, we will be blogging, vlogging and posting frequently to social media. All of our content will be appropriate for bringing families and students along on our ultimate road trip.

The latest on Instagram:

The Daily Minute: 6.18.24
In which Robbi reports from a rainforest near Anchorage.
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And they’re off!
 
Robbi and the kids (the dogs) left home early afternoon yesterday. They flew to Seattle last night and caught an overnight flight to Anchorage, where they landed just after midnight Alaska time. To kill time during their 12-hour layover, they’re going to rent a car and drive down the Turnagain Arm to Portage. It’s a gorgeous stretch of road along the water.
 
Later today, they’ll catch a flight to King Salmon, a small tundra town which is the jumping-off point for many sport fishing adventures—and the place where the fishermen in our district catch the bush planes that take them to their various fishing camps.  
 
The whole trip will take about 36 hours, at which point Robbi and the kids will land on the beach and be greeted by Robbi’s brother in a pickup truck. They’ll drive to our compound, take the plywood off the windows, head to the spring to get water, hook up the solar panel, and then start setting up our fishing lines.
 
It’s so much work to get started every year, but they’ll be up and running by the time I reach the tundra late next Monday evening. It’s possible I’ll jump off the plane and straight into my waders. Once the fishing starts, it waits for no one.
 
PS - This illustration is from our picture book Sunrise Summer, which tells the story of Alden’s first season as a member of the fishing crew. It’s a great way to get a glimpse into our lives in Alaska.
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The Daily Minute: 6.17.24
In which we tape up the coolers, and Robbi’s hair proves tundra-ready.
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The Daily Minute: 6.16.24
In which Robbi leaves for Alaska tomorrow and the dogs are running free.
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Whoever you are, take your seat on the bus!

Our adventure is your adventure. Our country is your country, too. Follow along with us!