‘Book Worms’ infest Lab School library

Twenty-six fifth grade students evolved from grade school writers to published authors in a matter of months.
Parents and students gathered on Tuesday, March 12 to celebrate the publishing of autobiographies by lab school students led by their teacher, Cheri Jeanfreau.
A school-wide event was held to exhibit the autobiographies of Jeanfreau’s English and language arts students, followed by a celebration of their work in the cafeteria. The students’ excitement was evident as many autographed not just their books, but also pencils, bookmarks and the arms of fellow students.
The excitement was divided between the pride of being newly published authors and the treats awaiting them in the party afterwards.
“It was a lot of fun,” said lab school student Julia Swank. “It’s the first book launch we’ve done at this school, and after we are going to eat and have cake.”
Other students shared this excitement because Jeanfreau had ordered a special book-shaped cake for this event.
The students began their path to authorship through extensive research and hands-on activities. Their research included tours of Southeastern’s KSLU station and The Lion’s Roar office, as well as exploration of the events occurring in various stages of their childhood.
This project not only demonstrated the children’s imaginations and aptitudes at writing, but also their ability to work together to produce their event. Jeanfreau noted this, as her students were professional and polite throughout the process.
“In a lot of classes the children bicker and argue, but these are like brothers and sisters,” said Jeanfreau. “They get along well.”
Being published authors is a stepping stone in many of these children’s dreams, as their determination and dedication to learning is outlined in the chapters of their own stories.
“It amazes me that at 10 years old, they know they want to go to college to get a master’s degree before they get married, so they’d have money to pay for the wedding,” Jeanfreau said. “They’re impressive.”