New Castle News

Local News

May 3, 2013

Children’s author engages Mohawk Head Start students in reading fun

NEW CASTLE — The bulletin board in the Head Start classroom at Mohawk Elementary School spelled out, “Welcome, Suzanne Bloom.”

The greeting was for the children’s author/illustrator from Binghamton, N.Y.

The upbeat, cheerful Bloom wrote the book, “The Bus For Us” and 14 other books geared at ages 3 to 6.

The writer spoke to students as part of the Pennsylvania One Book, Every Young Child program. Each year, libraries collaborate with Early Learning providers to include young children and families in the author visit.

Lorena Sears Williams, director of the F.D. Campbell Memorial Library in Bessemer, worked with the New Castle Public Library to facilitate the application and was accepted in Bloom’s tour. Williams needed a larger facility than the library , so she asked Mohawk Head Start teachers to host Bloom’s visit.

“Thus, we were able to have the space and a ready-made, age-appropriate audience,” said Williams, who works with the two classes of the Head Start program at Mohawk for outreach story times and book lending.

“So this is a continuation of what, in my estimation, has been a very mutually rewarding partnership,” she explained.

The group of about 30 students gathered around Bloom as she drew, talked and asked questions.

Reaching into a large green bag, Bloom took out more colored markers. As soon as she started doing a picture on her easel of a boy reading a book, every child was transfixed.

“I started drawing when I was about your age,” the left-handed Bloom told her audience as she proceeded — using two markers at a time, then three — to color in a dragon. “I love to make pictures.”

Then she asked, “What color should the shirt be?”

“Blue, blue, blue,” called out the group.

When the drawing was complete, Bloom opened a large, colorful, easy-too-see copy of “The Bus For Us” and started reading.

The story is about Tess’s first day of school and waiting for her first ride on a school bus with her older friend, Gus. Tess keeps asking him, “Is this the bus for us, Gus?” as various vehicles pass by.

Bloom instructed the students to answer Tess’s questions in different voices — quiet, squeaky, growling like a bear and hissing like a snake.

Included in many of the drawings in the book are Bloom’s own dog and cat.

A fire engine, ice cream truck, garbage truck and back hoe go by. Finally, there was the big yellow school bus.

“How many boys are in the picture?” Bloom asked.

Grayson Banks answered, “Five.”

Dakota Stringer counted five girls.

This is the eighth year of the program that highlights the importance of early literacy development in preschoolers. Collaborating agencies support early childhood literacy efforts and emphasize the importance of reading early and often to children, as well as engaging them in conversation and other activities centered on books.

As part of Pennsylvania One Book, Every Young Child program, Bloom traveled to 49 sites during April and the first three days of May.

“Then I’m going home to start writing another book,” she smiled, adding the tour has been tremendous fun because the kids get so involved in the story.



Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Author.tiff Arthur the author: Children’s writer/illustrator visits Neshannock Elementary

    A story about a grandmother and her granddaughter flying over a city grew from the vivid imagination of children’s author Arthur Dorros. “Abuela” also spurred the creativity of students at Neshannock Memorial Elementary School who had eagerly awaited a visit from Dorros yesterday.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Greer House changes name

    Greer House, a provider of assisted living services and care to seniors, has unveiled its new name. “We are thrilled about our new name — Clen-Moore Place,” said executive director Susan Leise, “because it better reflects our commitment to provide a vibrant environment where our residents thrive each and every day.

    April 16, 2014

  • Huston.jpg Greg Huston: Pirates pitching is porous and LeBron’s a phony

    The Buccos got swept this past weekend in their own personal house of horrors, otherwise known as Miller Park in Milwaukee. The Pirates will hover around .500 this year mainly because they do have some stars in Marte, McCutchen and Alvarez, and they play the right way with grit.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • 01.jpg Photo Gallery, Story: Students team up on paper pantry

    Food is not the only thing that sometimes is in short supply for those in need. With that in mind, students from seven Lawrence County high schools joined Westminster College sororities and fraternities Saturday in preparing a paper pantry for local residents.

    April 14, 2014 8 Photos

  • school.jpg Neshannock approves resignation, agreement, related legal fees

    The Neshannock school board accepted the resignation of business manager and board secretary Melissa Morosky Thursday. Morosky’s resignation is effective Wednesday.

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Solomon to head Warner advisers

    The Historic Warner Cascade Theatre has named Nanette Kaplan Solomon chairwoman of the board of advisers. Solomon is a New Castle resident and professor of piano at Slippery Rock University.

    April 12, 2014

  • Consultant hired for downtown riverwalk

    The city of New Castle has hired a consultant to plan a pedestrian riverwalk in the downtown. Council awarded a contract for $30,000 to Macking Engineering Co. of Pittsburgh on Thursday.

    April 12, 2014

  • New Visions slates downtown meetings

    The New Visions Clean and Green Action Team will meet at 6 p.m. Monday at the Confluence downtown. The Earth Day event in downtown New Castle April 26 will be discussed.

    April 12, 2014

  • money.jpg County seeks grant to plan for park upgrades

    A plan for upgrading six parks in Lawrence County hinges on a state grant. The commissioners Tuesday approved an application to the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources for matching greenways funds to create master plans for the parks, a venture estimated to cost $239,600.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mooney.jpg Mooney named as recipient of Butz Humanitarian award

    Anna Mary Mooney, a volunteer for several community organizations, will receive the 2014 Butz Humanitarian Award. Mooney will be honored at a dinner April 22 at The Villa in Shenango Township. She is the 15th person to receive the award, named after the original recipient, Jack Butz.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo