Students’ book finalist in national competition

Published 7:17 pm Tuesday, February 6, 2007

A book of stories and drawings from fifth grade students at Lizana Elementary has been named a finalist in the nationwide Learning National Book Challenge.

“Walk in Our Shoes” is a compilation of 26 essays by students and their teacher Linda Morris.

“It was more for learning, that’s the only reason I did it,” Morris said. “We decided to come up with a topic and each student wrote a story and drew a picture. I didn’t even know it was going to be entered into a contest.”

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Morris had asked her students to write an essay about a subject that had an impact on their lives. Students chose topics including drugs, homelessness and Hurricane Katrina. It took five weeks to complete the project.

Dakota Roberts wrote about the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, scenes he says he still clearly remembers seeing on television.

“I keep thinking about it all the time,” he said. “It’s still hard to believe that somebody would go that far.”

Ryan Creel wrote about gas prices rising, in part because it stopped his family from taking a vacation last year.

“It’s becoming a real problem,” he said matter-of-factly. “Most people can’t afford to pay all that money. Last summer, we were supposed to go to Disney World, but because of gas prices, we couldn’t go.”

The book is being printed by Studentreasures, a company that promotes learning through publishing.

The winners of the Learning National Book Challenge will be announced in May.