Children's book author Louise Borden visited Niles schools last week to discuss the writing process with students.
The author visit is funded through the Title I programs and is the second time this year an author was invited to Niles schools.
"Our obligation is to have events that include families," said Edward Jenkins, former interim principal at Lincoln Elementary who helped coordinate the author's visit.
The Niles Times / Kathleen Evanoff
Children's book author Louise Borden shows Jackson Elementary students how she researched her book, 'The Greatest Skating Race,' by learning how ice skates evolved over the century. Pictured with Borden from left are: Michael Cline, 10, Jason Bowman, 10 and Serena Bellay, 8.
Prior to visiting each elementary school, Borden gave a presentation to second and third graders and their families during a dinner event at Niles Middle School. Borden then spent two days visiting Washington, Bonham, Lincoln and Jackson Elementary schools for a presentation to students in second through fifth grades. In preparation for Bordens visit, students read and discussed some of her books in their classrooms. Students also created art posters to hang in the schools' hallways welcoming the author to their schools.
"People ask me where I get ideas for my books," Borden said. "It starts right here in my heart people I know who inspire me and the places I've gone."
Encouraging students to write about the things they know, Borden said every story written is original to the person who wrote it because each person is different with different ideas.
"I like to think no one else could have written my books," she said.
Borden lives and works in Cincinnati, but travels all over the world to research and gain experience from her ideas. She carries a notebook everywhere she goes, she said, and sometimes draws little pictures of her book covers to see how they will look.
She showed students how to research by using her own story, "The Greatest Skating Race, as an example. Borden told students about her visit to Holland to learn how ice skates evolved over the years.
"I like to write about ordinary kids in big times in history," she said. "I don"t look at it as though I"m writing a story," she said. "I'm making a book."
Some of Borden's books include "The Little Ships: The Heroic Rescue at Dunkirk in World War II," "The Neighborhood Trucker," and "Caps, Hats, Socks and Mittens."
Her next book, not yet published, is about baseball, she said.
Borden graduated in Granville, Ohio with a degree in European history. She worked as an assistant elementary school teacher for three years and made books to help her students learn to read.
Since become a published author, Borden has visited more than 500 schools to share her passion for literacy and writing with children.