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Visiting author inspires future writers
Sue Scott

“I want to write a story about a flying potato,” says first grader Ben Bowsher.

“I want to write a story about a flying potato too,” says classmate Adalyn Hamby.

Where did this inspiration to create a book about an aerial spud come from? It all started with Battle Ground Elementary students reading the book “Weird Little Robots.” After hearing the story, students created their own robots using recyclable materials such as cardboard and empty toilet paper rolls. Then, teachers proudly placed the bots in the hallway for display.  

Ben used a soap container, pipe cleaners and other items to create his robot “Bob.”

Adalyn painted a box and used bottle caps for eyes for her robot “Dottie.”

The culmination of the lesson came March 12 with a visit from Carolyn Crimi, the author of the children’s book “Weird Little Robots.” Crimi shared how she started writing books in elementary school and how she uses photos and objects around her for story ideas.

“When I am looking for story ideas, I adjust my hat, roll up my sleeves and look into my idea box,” Crimi told the class. She opened a decorated shoe box and pulled out items like a colorful, plush creature and a small plastic cow. The students shouted out lots of possible storylines including how that cow jumped over the moon and landed in her mailbox. During this brainstorming session many creative story ideas sprouted, including a flying potato.

Crimi shared with the students that she got her idea to write “Weird Little Robots,” after seeing a photo of a miniature robot on Facebook. She has published 19 children’s books.

Ben Bowsher and Adalyn Hamby with their robots
Robots in the hallway
Author Carolyn Crimi