Martin Walker student chosen as Bluebonnet Luncheon representative
Special to Leader-Press
SAN ANTONIO, TX—Spring in Texas means bluebonnets blooming everywhere. But ask any third through sixth grader across Texas what Bluebonnets mean and be prepared for a totally different answer.
The Texas Bluebonnet Award is a reading program sponsored by the Texas Library Association that encourages third-sixth graders to read for pleasure. Students have a year to read five books from the list of 20 titles to vote for their favorite in January. This year, over 150,000 students across Texas participated. The winner is announced in February. The winning author receives the Bluebonnet Award at a luncheon during the Texas Library Association Conference in April. The Bluebonnet Luncheon is attended by over 1,000 librarians and library dignitaries.
The Bluebonnet Luncheon includes inviting students to meet the winning author and helping present the award. Students are selected in a drawing held in November. One school is selected from each of the 10 state library districts to bring a student. Martin Walker Elementary was picked to represent District 3 at the luncheon.
Teresa Garrett, Martin Walker librarian, selected fifth grader Clayton Murphy to represent Martin Walker at the luncheon in San Antonio. This year it was District 3’s turn to present the summary of the winning title: Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson.
“Clayton was a natural choice for this distinction because of his history with the Bluebonnet program. In third grade at Fairview Jewell, he was selected to represent CCISD at the Texas Book Festival to introduce the titles for that year. Later that year, he was picked to attend the Bluebonnet Luncheon in Austin. It seemed fitting that he finish his elementary reading career by attending and speaking about the winning title this year,” Garrett said. “Clayton was very excited to participate. He did admit that speaking before such a large group of people did make him a little nervous.”
Students with their families went to a private conference room to meet with the award winning author. Seated as a panel students were given the opportunity to introduce themselves to the award winning author, Victoria Jamieson, and question her using questions they had prepared earlier. Their questions were very enlightening and entertaining. Everyone enjoyed this part of the program.
“Getting to talk to the author and ask questions was my favorite part of the day,” Murphy said.
Students got copies of Roller Girl to have signed and get their pictures made with Jamieson. After a formal meal, the author was introduced and Murphy took center stage and presented his summary in a lively and humorous speech peppered with laughter from the audience.
“Clayton was a natural and afterwards everyone in the room was waiting to congratulate him on his amazing speech,” Garrett said. “Clayton did an amazing job representing Martin Walker and CCISD.”