On April 4th 2013, children’s author Jane Kurtz visited Findley Elementary for an author’s visit. Jane donated her time and expertise at last year’s 2012 Lights of Hope auction. Seventeen families from Findley pooled their funds and bought this author’s visit from the silent auction.
Jane Kurtz spent the majority of her childhood in Ethiopia. She has since written over 30 books, many of which take place in Ethiopia. Jane talked to the over 800 students and staff about how the books she writes draw on her experiences. For instance, she spoke about a boy that lived near their family growing up in rural Ethiopia. He raised pigeons for extra money. Jane’s brother asked him to teach him how to raise pigeons. This has become the story in the book, “Only a Pigeon”. As she spoke, she showed photo after photo of her life from when she was a child to mother and now grandmother. At all times, she said, she loved to read and tell stories: gifts, she says, she received from her mother and father. Kindergarten through 5th grade students were captive as she spoke.
Findley teachers were unanimous in saying this was one of the best author’s visits they have ever had at the school. They said students were enthusiastic about writing and couldn’t wait to rewrite assignments with new ideas. Jane’s ideas and encouragement about writing and telling your stories invigorated an entire school.
Jane continues to be involved in Ethiopia through Ethiopia Reads, a nonprofit dedicated to bringing books and setting up libraries in Ethiopia. You can find more information about Jane Kurtz and her works at http://www.janekurtz.com/index.html and Ethiopia Reads at http://www.ethiopiareads.org
Thank you to Jane Kurtz for being a strong supporter of Ethiopian Orphan Relief. Having her give of her time was such a treat. Her gift resulted in a large amount of money given to EOR at the auction and again to the 800 kids that learned about her life and writing. If you want an amazing author to come to your school contact Jane Kurtz. This is one woman who has had many adventures and is a perfect storyteller to share them.