Through a joint effort of R.C. Buckley Elementary, Lansing LOVES to read! and Lansing Community Library a reading incentive was recently given to Lansing children ages 5-12. Read one or more books written by Matt Christopher, individually or with a parent, and fill out a reading log for a chance to win one of his books (with a personalized note from his son, Marty). According to R.C. Buckley Elementary School Literacy Specialist Sandy Rapp, many children read Christopher’s books without knowing of the local connection.
42 years after his father had spoken with R.C. Buckley Elementary students about the inspiration behind his writing career, Marty Christopher picked up the torch and entertained students once again with the story behind his father’s literacy legacy.
Christopher made a point to talk with the children about perseverance. It took many attempts before Matt Christopher sold his first work. He did not give up and eventually became a prolific children’s author- writing about kids and sports, with a lot of adventure and the occasional mystery thrown in. Christopher is a natural story teller and the kids had question after question. Christopher also shared that both he and his Dad, were inducted into the Lansing Central Schools Sports Hall of Fame.
Along with the reading challenge, Christopher gave the children one last challenge. He asked them to see if they could find his picture in the LCS Sports Hall of Fame. He gave them a hint: “The picture doesn't look like me now. Look for a tall, skinny kid with hair.”
A Lansing Historical Association Newsletter is on display at Lansing Community Library (encased in the Matt Christopher collection) with an article written by Town Historian Louise Bement. Bement’s fourth grade class was visited in 1972 by Matt Christopher. The article is full of interesting facts about Matt’s life, including that he went to school in the building that is now our local library.
Did the reading incentive work? According to reports, Christopher hit it out of the park.