I’ve said it before and will say it again and again:
One of the best things that’s happened since Robbi and I announced our plans for the Busload of Books Tour is partnering with the incredible Sara Clarke-De Reza to dream up a research study that will measure (for the first time at this scale) the impact of author/illustrator visits on elementary student attitudes about reading and creativity.
Sara has assembled a mighty team of colleagues from the departments of Education and Sociology at Washington College: Bridget A. Bunten, Nick Garcia, Michelle Johnson, and Erin Counihan—as well as two student research assistants, the excellent Avery and Riley.
Sara’s team is working with more than half of our Tour Schools to conduct three surveys (one before we visit, a second on the day of our visit, and a third one month later) to see how student (and educator) attitudes about reading, writing, storytelling, and self-image might have shifted as the result of our presentations and book giveaways.
The resulting data will provide an unprecedented glimpse into a question that has proved vexingly difficult to answer. We’re honored and excited to be part of this landmark study.
Sara and her colleagues will be on hand tomorrow/Friday night at the Garnet Elementary Community Resource Fair. Swing by between 5-7pm to paint the bus and then go say hi to these smart folks who are doing their part to make the world better.