Angie Arnett: A Most-Marvelous Librarian
To start with, we love anything that Phil Bildner writes! Second, I am always looking for good mentor texts to use to teach with, especially ones about ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Cornelius was a real person, and although Phil may have exaggerated parts of what he did, Cornelius Washington symbolized everything that New Orleans is. And what a great story…a story to celebrate the revival of this city and the devastation of Hurricane Katrina 10 years ago.
What made you want to create a book trailer for Marvelous Cornelius?
Phil Bildner has been visiting my school for several years now, and we have become great friends. I was honored when he asked me if I wanted to get a small group of students together to work on a book trailer for his newest book. And after I read the story, I fell in love with this garbage collector and how he lived his life. I loved everything he represented. I couldn’t wait to share it with my students!!!
Tell us about the process of creating the book trailer.
All my 4th graders could apply to be a member of the Book Trailer Team. After reading through 60+ applications, I chose the top eight that really wanted to be a part of this. Once I had my team, we met once a week during lunch/recess for several weeks. We read the story first, “Facetimed” with Phil, and brainstormed which images we would use from the book. Phil worked with them to pick out their favorite images, narrow it down to just 4-5 important images, and develop a script. Then I sat down with them and we discussed some different ways we could put the book trailer together. We agreed Adobe Voice was the easiest tool. We recorded their voices, added the images, and VOILA…a fabulous book trailer for a fabulous book!
How did the kids enjoy being part of the process?
They loved it!! They were excited to be a part of something that no one had ever done. They were honored to be one of the first people to see a book before it was even published. But they were the MOST thrilled to create something for an author that they know and love. They took great ownership in this project and showed great teamwork.
How did the Book Trailer Crew of fourth graders respond when they saw their trailer posted on the websites of Chronicle Books and on that of the author, Phil Bildner? How did it make you feel?
When they first saw the book trailer posted, they were so overjoyed, they couldn’t stop smiling and grinning. I sent the link to their parents and I received such positive feedback from them as well. It’s not every day that you get to be involved in something so extraordinary. I am so proud of the effort these kiddos put into the process of creating this book trailer…I think it’s one of the highlights of my entire librarian career! And I got to do it for one of my good friends and favorite authors in the whole world!