Matthew Posts
In Which Our Tiny Home Emerges (A Glimpse Inside the Bus)

In Which Our Tiny Home Emerges (A Glimpse Inside the Bus)

The bus exterior has been amply documented. But in case you missed it, here it is, colorfully adorned with a literacy-themed mural, painted with love and persistence by Robbi and me and a bunch of our friends and a few hundred kids and community members. "But what...

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In Which We Are Finally Finished With the Mural

In Which We Are Finally Finished With the Mural

Last night around 9:30... After a marathon session of outlining clouds and applying a layer of clear coat, we finally finished the mural. Surely there will be nicks along the way and the necessary patchwork that follows, but for now we are done and moving on to the...

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In Which Robbi Does the Line Work for the Bus Mural

In Which Robbi Does the Line Work for the Bus Mural

The color is in. So it's time to add the final line. It's patient, painstaking work, but the results are so gratifying. This stage of the process is all Robbi, so my work for the moment is bringing her snacks and loudly exclaiming. Delight and calories in equal...

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Cookie of Perfection on the ALA Summer Reading List

Cookie of Perfection on the ALA Summer Reading List

Switching for a moment from bus to books... We just found out Cookie of Perfection (book 3) was included on the American Library Association Summer Reading list (alongside such creators as Kate DiCamillo, Jason Reynolds, Dav Pilkey, and Jenni Holm, among others)....

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In Which Many Hands Make Light Work

In Which Many Hands Make Light Work

Last week, the kids made a great start on the mural coloring. Yesterday, we recruited a spirited corps of semi-professional painters to continue the work. We divided and conquered, expanding the sky, filling the fields, and mixing a new shade of green to round out the...

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The Daily Minute: 5.6.22

The Daily Minute: 5.6.22

This is the Daily Minute for May 6, 2022. In which the students of Garnet Elementary are excellent painters and practically waterproof.

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(Re)Introducing the Busload of Books Tour Research Team

(Re)Introducing the Busload of Books Tour Research Team

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...

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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: 12.9.22
In which, having just arrived in Texas, we plan to spend the night in Jasper County.

#busloadofbooks
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Robbi got this text from Erica Bridwell (known to friends and colleagues as “B”), the first-grade teacher who hosted Jasper during Tuesday’s visit to North Pike Elementary School in Summit, Mississippi. We signed a copy of Everywhere, Wonder for B, and Robbi had written in the dedication to “keep fighting the good fight.”
 
It’s a difficult time to be a teacher, especially at a school with limited resources and especially when serving kids who bring additional challenges to school. Educators need a boost every bit as much as their students do.
 
We’re sharing this to show that the tour is also for them, and maybe even more so. 
 
“We miss y’all! It felt like a part of us left when y’all did. Y’all have NO IDEA the impact you’re making not only on kids, but adults too! I haven’t had the easiest school year so far. I have felt defeated, frustrated, and overwhelmed. My connection with my students has felt faint and really nonexistent… I’ve struggled to find ways to motivate them, encourage them more… then y’all come along and somehow it has put fire back into me. Your words have made me reflect since I read them… “keep fighting the good fight…” it was powerful. I had that “full moon feeling” that feeling of how much I love what I do. I thought of what it means to me and what those kids mean to me. I remembered why God chose me to do this. Your kind words lifted me up. So thank you. Thank y’all. What y’all are doing is amazing! Safe travels! I’ll be following!”
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The Daily Minute: 12.8.22
In which we bask in the sweet Louisiana night and brace ourselves for the enormity of Texas.

#busloadofbooks
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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!