Tuesday, January 20th, 2009
On Thursday, January 15, both 4th grade classes bundled up for a trip to the New York Public Library on 42nd Street. Even though temperatures were low, spirits were high, since the destination was a question and answer session with esteemed children’s writer Cornelia Funke.
After a short subway ride, the students took the opportunity to watch some of the skaters at the rink in Bryant Park. They soon entered the library, and were escorted up through the hallowed halls into the Trustees Room. For many students, this was their first trip to the 42nd Street library. Their teachers made sure that they looked up as they walked through the hallways, noticing the architectural details. The students were quite impressed!
Cornelia was accompanied by Eliza Bennet (who plays Meggie from the Inkheart book in the film of the same name). Cornelia and Eliza both gave short introductions about their roads towards writing and acting, and then the floor was opened up for questions. The students asked questions ranging from “What is your inspiration?”, and “Were you nervous trying out for the part?”, to “Is it difficult condensing a novel into a movie script?”, and “Who is your favorite character that you have ever written?”. Cornelia spoke quite eloquently about the writing process, and let students know that she didn’t even begin writing until the age of 28. When one student asked her if she liked the feeling of power of controlling her characters, she answered with a short chuckle and told the student that he should let his characters out of his power, and then he will really see where his stories would really go!
Eliza in turn, spoke about acting and her love of the book Inkheart. Many children were quite interested in the process of moving a book off the pages and into a film.
After the questions were asked, each student got a chance to meet Cornelia and Eliza and have their book (or poster if they did not have a book) signed. Thanks to the New York Public Library for hosting this special event!
The 4th grade had a wonderful morning, and yes, Cornelia Funke’s books are flying off the shelves! Why not come into the library and check one out!