EATEL’s eighth annual Book Grants transform local students into published authors

Staff Writer
Gonzales Weekly Citizen
Dr. Shondra James’ Donaldsonville Primary 2nd grade class proudly holds up their books.

GONZALES - EATEL recently delivered books to eight Ascension Parish primary classes who were recipients of the eighth annual EATEL Imagination Press Book Grants.  Encouraging creativity and student expression, local teachers and their classes spent several months developing narratives and illustrations for their winning story ideas.  EATEL and Internet-based photo book publisher Picaboo transformed the students’ work into hardbound books. Each student received a copy of the book to share with family and friends, and a copy of each class’s finished book has been added to the school’s library.

 “EATEL and Picaboo’s partnership is a great example of how companies can help make a memorable impact on a child’s academic experience,” said Patrice Pujol, Ascension Parish School Board superintendent. “This EATEL grant is an opportunity for students to learn about the bookmaking process, while teaching them how to share their ideas with others.

 In addition to becoming published authors and seeing their books for the first time, the students were also surprised when EATEL’s Jenny Heroman brought along her video camera and interviewed the teachers and several students about their books.  EATEL TV customers can watch the EATEL Community Connection TV Show starting Monday night, January 12th at 6:30 on EATEL channel 4 and 704.

            This year’s grant winners are:

·         Sandi Bourque, 2nd grade teacher at Donaldsonville Primary, whose class book is titled:  When I Grow Up.

·         Susan Chmurka, 3rd grade teacher at G. W. Carver Primary, who had two winning story ideas for two separate classes.  Her class books are titled:   Deer Dollars and Lakeside LOVES Lemonade.

·         Maggie Gautreau, 4th grade teacher at Gonzales Primary, who had a winning story idea which she used for two classes:  Life on a Ship.

·         Dr. Shondra James, 2nd grade teacher at Donaldsonville Primary, whose class book is titled:  Our Special Memories.

·         Joanna Kohrs, 3rd grade teacher at St. Amant Primary, who had two winning story ideas.  Her class books are titled:   How to Be Safe Like Me and How to Get Reading Superpowers.