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Hummingbird, School Visit, 200 Posts

HummingbirdOur picture of a hummingbird is in High Five magazine this month in the Look at the … feature. Four other photos we took will appear in the coming months. Look for the squirrel, tapir, zebra, and river otters.

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I had a wonderful time Thursday at St. Francis Xavier Elementary School in Vicksburg. I spoke with first through sixth graders in three separate groups. I got some suggestions from the students about what my next project should be: vampire bats and tide pools. I was invited to St. Francis by Mrs. Dinnie Johnston, the librarian. We met at the Children’s Book Festival this year. I learned during the visit that Wolfsnail is now part of the Accelerated Reader program. It is leveled at 4.4 and is worth .5 points. I took a look at the AR quiz for Wolfsnail. The last question was a little strange. One of the possible answers was a “female wolfsnail.” Snails are hermaphrodites, which means that each snail has female and male reproductive parts. I have always wondered about the AR process — how books are selected and who makes out the tests. After the visit, I stopped at Lorelei Books to leave some signed copies of Wolfsnail.

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Today’s post is my 200th. I started the blog nearly 2 years ago (August 2007). It has become an integral part of my work. I love being able to communicate so easily with friends, readers, students, colleagues, and, even, family. I received a letter this week from one of my readers who lives in Hattiesburg. He told me he’s found several more wolfsnails near his house. “Me and my friend set a woflsnail on our piano and forgot about it. Then the next day I found it stuck to a corner of the piano! There are so many wolfsnails here!!!” He signed his letter “Wolfsnail Jackson over and out.” It was great to hear from Wolfsnail Jackson. His story about the piano reminds me of the day we “lost” a wolfsnail in the kitchen. We found ours tucked between some cups that held the boys markers and pens. My mother took the photo on the left. The snail was crawling onto my hand from a table at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science and leaving quite a trail behind.

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