Very few high school students publish a book before they graduate and even fewer publish a book in another language, but that’s exactly what a group of Hillgrove High School students did.
The Hillgrove Honors Spanish students and their teacher, Aaren Erwin, wrote and published the book, “Una Noche de Sueños,” during the fall semester. The book, written in Spanish, is a compilation of short stories about all the crazy things that can happen in a person’s dreams. The Spanish students collaborated with Hillgrove’s art students, who illustrated the stories.
A dozen of these Hillgrove students took a book tour to Mableton Elementary School where they read “Una Noche de Sueños” to students in Karla Duran’s first grade dual language immersion class.
“My students were so excited to be able to show off their book,” Erwin said. “From concept to final product, we put in a lot of hours and work, and to see it pay off in the end was such a cool experience to have! I will never forget seeing my students share their pride in the book, their pride in knowing two languages, and their excitement to share the stories with the elementary-aged students.”
After reading the stories, the Hillgrove students worked together on extension activities and on coloring the illustrations in the book. Through the generosity of a Hillgrove Foundation grant, the Hillgrove students were able to give copies of their new book to children who attended Shop with a Hawk in December and to the class of first graders at Mableton. The Hillgrove Foundation’s grant also helped fund the initial publication of the students’ book.
“The visit from the students from Hillgrove was great! My students enjoyed it and left the visit excited to have their own Spanish book to take home,” explained Duran. “Some of my students told me that they wanted to write their own book in Spanish! Having high school students reading and sharing with elementary students made a great impact on my students.”