FBC preschoolers become published authors

The young authors pose with copies of their first published work. Shown are, from left, sitting, Finn Barbaree, Jack Shirley, Bailey Grace Sirmon, Kasen Wilson, Bennett Malone; standing, Achilles Carrisal, Charleigh Grant, Harleigh Daniel, Israel Hammond, Kamren Reid, Sophia Givens.

News Staff Writer

While First Baptist Church (FBC) preschoolers were being recognized last week for their fundraising effort on behalf of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, those in one group were collectively celebrating the publication of their first writing effort.
The 11 pre-kindergarten and kindergarten youngsters — each of whom contributed a page of copy and a hand-drawn picture that filled another page — were treated to a publishing party for If I Were a Cloud, a book which was published April 10.
“They did well,” said Cindy Cobb, FBC’s Weekday Education Director. “Our 4-year-olds and 5-year-olds collaborated on a book. They did the pictures and all, and it was the first time any of them had been published.”
Signs that the children were pleased with their debut writing effort included the classroom door, which was decorated with pictures of the students and the book they combined to bring to life. There was also a poster in the back of the room, signed by each of the contributors, who worked nearly two months on the project before sending it to the press.
“We started this in February,” said K-4 and K-5 teacher Tracy Hall. “They finished it and mailed it in on April 5, and it was published on April 10.”
The various themes chosen by the students for their respective pages included sports-themed ones, like one who would play for the Kansas City Chiefs if he were a cloud, one that would cheer for Auburn University, and one that would play tee-ball.
One youngster would still go fishing with his pawpaw, while one young lady would continue to stick close to her Nana. Other pages included a ballerina cloud and a cloud playing in the sand of a Bahamas beach. Another youngster said he would love to visit outer space if he were a cloud, and one chose to have his cloud become a T Rex.
“The book is precious,” Hall said. “Every one of them wrote a page and drew a page, and I’ve sold 20 books. Except for our two youngest children, each boy and girl wrote his or her own words and drew and colored his or her own picture. The two youngest, I helped them write the letters to their words, but they did all the rest.”